BECKLEY,WV (WOAY) – Recently there has been some debate whether the Historic Black Knight Municipal Park should be renamed?
Mayor Rappold has called the city council and informed them that he wanted to change the name.
One of the driving forces behind getting the mayor to re-think the naming of the park is Thomas Patterson the great-grandson of Ernest Chilson which the new restaurant in the park is named after.
Patterson told Newswatch, that some long-term members of the once private club are unhappy about the recent announcement.
He continued by saying the Black Knight was segregated until the 1980’s and that the negative connotation shouldn’t be connected with the cities new endeavor.
“It’s for the entire city of Beckley not just the way less than 5% who were lucky enough to grow up out there including myself and my family I’m proud that my great grandfather built it. I’m not particularly proud of the heritage of a private country club and I’ll be way more if it becomes a successful city park.”
Patterson says he would like for the name to be changed to Beckley Unity Park in order to represent the current times.
The public will have a voice in the re-naming but the final decision will come down to city council.