I remember the first time I saw it, I have quite vivid memories of the occasion. It was around 1.30 on the 6th of March last year, the Saturday we faced Mansfield at home.
I was making my way to the Three Tuns and stopped to buy a programme from one of the vendors on Boothferry Road. I handed over two shiny pound coins and in return received a glossy 40 paged ‘official matchday magazine’ as they are termed nowadays. I tucked the proggie under my shoulder as I crossed the road in search of ale and when I reached the Tuns side of the road I looked at the front cover.
I stopped dead in my tracks, gazing intently in disbelief at what I was seeing. “Tigers reveal new crest!” screamed the text underneath a picture which made me utter involuntarily: “What the fuck is THAT?”
I staggered the rest of the way to the pub, the doormen both shaking their heads in disbelief as I held the cover up. Through the doors and it seemed like everyone in the pub held up a programme and said in unison “Have you seen this?”
I’m sure you know what I mean, you must have seen that crest by now. A shield with the Humber Bridge overlaid with three crowns at the top and below it what was ostensibly a tiger’s head. Except it looked nothing like a tiger’s head, more like an owl with a goatee beard, or a clipart crab with a circumcised dick before it.
Inside the programme our board spouted forth; ‘We are delighted to unveil the new Club Crest of Hull City AFC that will take the Tigers forward into the millennium..it was designed by James Hinchliffe who is studying Graphic Design at Leeds University’. What are they teaching at University’s these days??? Thankfully that abomination did not see the end of the season, let alone the start of the 21st century.
It was replaced with a hastily redrawn effort which now emblazons the matchkit and everything on sale in the now well-stocked club shop. The new version is by no means perfect but it is a drastic improvement. I must admit I quite like the idea of having the bridge and three crowns in our insignia, it shows where we are from for a start, the tiger’s head on it’s own never did that, but the nose is still shockingly poor. Not only does it have a phallic look to it, but there is a love heart at the end of it! A tiger should look menacing, not loveable.
Regardless of the aesthetics of the new crest, the principle of it’s existence sucks. You might have noticed that the crest designer shares his surname with our loveable Vice President, he also shares the same gene pool as he is Stephen Hinchliffe’s son.
It has been said that Hinch junior. was compensated quite well for his efforts, giving him somewhat more than a line on his CV. It is also rumoured that daddy gets a royalty every time the thing is used. Now whether these allegations are true or not, it can still be argued that it was not necessary to change what is the principle identifying mark of our club.
Granted, before this new logo was adopted, everything in the club shop had a different tiger on it, either the sideways on one or the front perspective version that had it’s mouth open as if yelping after a suppository had been stuck up it’s arse.
But why couldn’t the fans have been asked to choose which one they preferred? Or at least be consulted regarding the design of a new one. We were asked to vote for this seasons match strip, which has a lifespan of one or two seasons, yet were not asked our views on the design of something which might be with the club for decades.
The crest of the club is its identifying mark, part of the heritage of our 97 year old club, and it is far from amusing to think that this change was just the first of many coffer lining exercises from our ‘advisor in football matters’. I am surprised that more of a fuss was not kicked up over this at the time of the change beyond a few letters in the SportsMail.
Maybe people felt it churlish to complain about such a thing when the clubs very life had been in threat just months earlier and maybe we’ve just got used to the design and have lumped it rather than liked it. So I guess we are stuck with it, unless of course Uncle Tom and chums win their battle for control of the club, because I can’t see him wanting to keep any vestige of Hinch’s reign.