Football club’s mad dash to collect special Armistice kit
Moving design features poppy and silhouettes in tribute to war heroes
A FOOTBALL club chairman and a businessman face a race across the Midlands this morning in order to get their team kitted out in a strip specially designed for Remembrance weekend.
When Norton Wanderers play Whittington FC in the Staffs Vase today, they hope to be wearing an evocative kit featuring a poppy and silhouettes of soldiers.
It was designed by club chairman Leigh Robinson to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.
Businessman Tom Quinn, who runs sportswear supplier Club Kit Direct, based at Loomer Road, Chesterton, has paid for the kits and arranged for them to be made abroad and shipped back to the UK in time for the game.
However, despite receiving a guarantee that the kits would arrive earlier this week, yesterday they were still being flown to North Staffordshire – from Pakistan via Istanbul.
Tom and Leigh spent most of yesterday frantically ringing round to find out where the plane carrying the shirts would land, so they could arrange to collect them directly from the airport and take them to Ormiston Sir Stanley Matthews Academy, where Norton Wanderers are due to kick off at 2pm.
Tom, aged 25, of May Bank, said: “We think we have tracked the plane down. We are hopefully going to go to Birmingham this morning to see if we can get hold of them.
“We’ve spoken to the airport and we should be able to get them, but it’s not certain yet.
“I can imagine me bringing them up just before kick-off.”
He added: “The kits look really good. No-one has ever really done anything like this before. They’re handmade and designed by Leigh.”
Leigh, aged 40, of Bradwell, said: “It was just an idea I had. We always like to do something for Remembrance. Last year we had a poppy painted on the centre circle.
“We wanted to do something more professional this year for the 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War. So I spoke to Tom and through his contacts he was able to get it made. “The design starts off with dark clouds, which then runs down to the silhouettes of soldiers walking to war. “Then it runs down to the shorts which are all black, representing the ground they walked on, and then down to the socks which have a black trim and a red body which represents the blood that was shed. “My grandfather was in the Army, but I just like to show respect for what people in the services have done for us, and I like to try to be a bit different.
“In future, we will bring out this kit every year and wear it on Remembrance weekend.”
Club captain Joe Sergeant said all the players were looking forward to wearing the kit – assuming it arrives on time.
Joe, aged 25, of Chesterton, said: “I think it’s brilliant, all the lads love it.”
ONE-OFF: The new kit.