Sir Bob Murray recalls why he changed Sunderland AFC badge after 'sinking ship' ridicule

Sir Bob Murray has recalled the reasons why he changed Sunderland AFC's badge to the current design - and why it was 'the right thing to do'.

Wednesday, 31st October 2018, 2:05 pm
Updated Wednesday, 31st October 2018, 2:08 pm
Sir Bob Murray at the Stadium of Light

Under his stewardship, and coinciding with the Black Cats' move to the Stadium of Light, the club's current crest was introduced back in 1997.

On his website,, the former chairman said: "The previous badge had been is use for about 30 years but was regarded as outdated by some and the depiction of a sinking ship which had become the norm to mock the club was disliked by many.

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"I thought the time was right to make a change and update the image of the club. It was never going to be popular with everyone but I think it was the right thing to do.”

"The brief for the new design was to draw its visual inspiration from across the region and the heartlands of Sunderland support."

On his website, a section on the club badge adds: "Over the years Sunderland AFC has sported at least seven different badges or crests and the move to the new stadium in July 1997 coincided with the latest version being revealed.

"Bob Murray was keen that a distinctive new crest be launched to coincide with the start life of life in the stadium and hoped that a fresh, modern image would help the club open an exciting new chapter in its history.Bob said:

"The crest includes a central shield divided into quarters and featuring unmistakable regional landmarks. The Wearmouth Bridge, is featured in the bottom right of the shield while Penshaw Monument in the top left, is included to acknowledge the depth of support for the team outside the City boundaries. The remaining quarters proudly boast the internationally recognised red and white stripes of Sunderland AFC.

"Supporting either side of the crest are a pair of lions which also feature on the City of Sunderland’s coat of arms – a reference to the long tradition of mutual support between two great institutions.

"A colliery wheel crowns the crest to honour the strong mining traditions of the region and acts as a reminder that the Stadium of Light lies on land which was once the largest mine in Sunderland and one of the most important in County Durham, Monkwearmouth Colliery.

"Entwined with the colliery wheel is the club motto, “Consectatio Excellentiae” – “In pursuit of excellence”, a fitting inspiration to the team and its supporters."