South Shields FC have unveiled a new club crest – with a nod to the town’s maritime heritage.
The club says that a change of badge is necessary for commercial reasons and to ensure it has its own brand.
The Mariners had been using the town’s coat of arms, but were unable to gain exclusive rights to the badge.
The new crest includes a life ring to represent the town’s maritime history, as well as simplified versions of the Tyne Lifeboat and an anchor, and the town motto ‘Always Ready’.
Since returning from a two-year exile in Peterlee in the summer of 2015, the club has gone from strength to strength, earning back-to-back promotions and winning five trophies under chairman Geoff Thompson.
He says the decision to change badge was not taken lightly.
We have thought long and hard about the decision to modernise the club’s crestGeoff Thompson
Mr Thompson said: “We have thought long and hard about the decision to modernise the club’s crest.
“When we came back to Mariners Park from Peterlee almost three years ago, we needed to keep some continuity at the club and didn’t think it was the correct time to change it.”
The club added that it had lost revenue over the last three years as a result of its inability to gain exclusive rights to the current badge, which will be replaced at the end of this season.
A statement from the Mariners said: “It was decided that we need a more simple and modern design, which we can use going forward in an exciting time in the club’s history.
“The decision is backed by the club and its committee not only for commercial reasons surrounding exclusivity of the badge, but also to have our own brand moving forward.
“As the current crest belongs to the town, we do not have any rights to have exclusive use of it.
“Therefore, the club has lost revenue, with other sources providing merchandise with the town’s logo on it.
“We depend heavily on the revenue gained by merchandise sales, gate receipts, food and beverage sales.
“Gaining exclusive rights to the badge will enable revenue to be kept to build our club for the future.
“However, we appreciate that many aspects of the current badge are key to our local history and the club.
“This was also backed up by fans, many of whom stated aspects which needed to be maintained in the new badge.”
As 2018 marks the 130th anniversary of the formation of the first South Shields FC, a special edition crest will be used next season.