Historical Football Kits

 

Leyton Orient

Formed 1881

Elected to Division Two 1905

Kit History

 

Orient FC

 

1888

 

Previously

Glyn CC 1881

Eagle CC 1886

1893 a

Large "O" worn on back of shirt

 

Clapton Orient

 

1898

 

1902-1903 a

leyton orient 1904-1905 kit

1904-1905 a h k

leyton orient 1905-08 kit

1905-1908 a k

leyton orient 1914-15 kit

1910-1915 a s

1920-1921 a

April 1921-1922 a i

1922-1924 a s

1925-1927 a i

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1927-1929 a i q

1929-1931 a i s

1932-1933 q

1933-1934 q s

orient 1935-36 kit

1934-1936 a g s

1936-1939 a q

1939-1940 a

 

 

Leyton Orient

 

1946

1946-1947 a

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leyton orient 1947

1947-1948 q

1949-1951 c s

1951-1952 a

1952-1953 c

1953-1954 c s

1954-1957 a j

1957-1960 a

1960-1961 d j q

Crew neck also worn

1961-1962 a j r

1962-1963

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1963-1964

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leyton orient 1964-65

1964-1965 1 s

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1964-1965 2 a j

Worn from Feb 65 or earlier

July-Dec 1965 a i

Dec 1965-1966 a i

 

 

Orient

 

1966

orient fc 1966-67

1966-1967 a

1967-1968 j s

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orient 1968-1970 kit

1968-1970 a j o s

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leyton orient 1970-73 kit

1970-1973 a j

1973-1974 a j n

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Bukta

1974-1977 a j n

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Admiral

1977-1980 a j n

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Adidas

1980-1981 a

Adidas

1981-1982

Hummell

1982-1986 a

Hummell

1986-1987 a

 

 

Leyton Orient

 

1987

Spall

1987-1988 e r

Spall

1988-1989 a

Ribero

1989-1990 c l

Bukta

1990-1992 a l

Bukta

1992-1993 a l

Bukta

1993-1995 a l

Olympic Sport

1995-1996 c

Olympic Sport

1996-1997 a

Olympic Sport

1997-1998 c

Olympic Sport

1998-1999 a p

Club's Own Brand

1999-2000 a

Club's Own Brand

2000-2001 c

Club's Own Brand

2001-2002 c l

Club's Own Brand

2002-2003 c

Club's Own Brand

2003-2004 f

Vandanel

2004-2006 f

Vandanel

2006-2007 f

Vandanel
Leyton Orient 2007-2008 Kit

2007-2008 f m

Puma
leyton orient 2008-09 home kit

2008-2009 f

Puma
leyton orient 2009-10

2009-2010 f

Puma
leyton orient 2010-11 home kit

2010-2011 f

Puma
leyton orient fc 2011-12 home kit

2011-2012 f

Nike
leyton orient 2012-13 home kit

2012-2013 f

Nike
leyton orient fc 2013-14 home kit

2013-2014 f

Nike
leyton orient 2014-15 1st kit

2014-2015 f

 

Background

clapton orient 1933-34The club's original incarnation was as an offshoot of Glyn Cricket Club, formed to provide members with a winter activity in the East End of London. The club became Eagle CC in 1886. In 1888, at the suggestion of Jack R Dearing, who worked for the Orient shipping line (later P&O), the club became Orient FC and football became their main activity. Ten years later, in 1898, the club changed its name to Clapton Orient FC in a bid to attract wider support. During this period the club wore plain red shirts with a large capital O on the back: they are known to this day as "The O's."

In 1905, Clapton Orient, playing in the Second Division of the Southern League, applied for election to the Football League Second Division. On the first ballot, Orient's application was roundly rejected but a subsequent motion to extend the League was then passed and the "O"s were elected at the second attempt. At the time they wore a unique shirt of white, green and red stripes, the first of many unconventional designs. Orient made little impact after surviving re-election in their first season but by the time League football was suspended in 1915, they were finishing consistently in the top half of Division Two. From 1910 the team's shirts were adorned with a bold red V, which became their signature kit until the 1930s.

No fewer than 41 players and staff volunteered for service in the Great War with the 17th Middlesex ("The Footballers Battalion"), the O's being the first English Football League side to enlist en masse. Three players lost their lives during the Battle of the Somme in 1916 while many more were wounded (i).

During the inter-war period, Orient struggled and in 1929, the club was relegated to Division Three (South). In 1932 a new design of broad red and white hoops was adopted, worn with distinctive all-white sleeves from 1935. In 1937, it was decided to move the club to Leyton, still north of the River Thames but closer to the East End. They continued to play as Clapton Orient until 1946 when, having narrowly avoided bankruptcy, the club's name was changed to Leyton Orient. The old red and white strip was replaced with blue and white although for a few years, shirts featured a bold "V", a reminder of an earlier era.

leyton orient crest 1952The change of location prompted the club to adopt a new crest, based on the coat of arms of the Borough of Leyton. This was worn on on the players' shirts in the 1952-53 season.

leyton orient crest 1965In 1956 Orient won the Division Three (South) championship and in 1962 this unfashionable club was promoted to the First Division, their highest achievement to date. Well out of their depth, the "O"s were relegated after only one season and four years later, the club was back in Division Three. Although the club wore plain shirts throughout this period, a curious striped shield appeared in the latter part of the 1964-65 season.

In November 1966, the name Orient FC was adopted: most commentators believed this was a modern Sixties gimmick, not realising that the club had played under the same title in Victorian times. orient fc crest 1967A simple all-red strip was adopted the following season, embellished with a yellow, white and blue badge, the colours of the modern P&O Shipping Line.

orient fc crest 1970The club continued to lurch from one financial crisis to another but survived on the generosity of its loyal fans. Orient won the Division Three championship in 1970 and returned to the Second Division where they remained for twelve years. Perhaps prompted by this success, the club replaced the tricolour badge with a rather more impressive griffin.

A more elaborate crest was designed in 1976 and worn for the first time in 1977 on the smart all-leyton orient crest 1977white kit with bold vertical red "braces." This featured a pair a wyverns, a mythical creature associated with the River Thames, harking back to the club's connection with the old Port of London. The Os reached the FA Cup semi-finals in 1978, where they were eliminated by Arsenal, ensuring the popularity of the new white look and crest.

By 1985 the club had descended to the Fourth Division and two years later, it was decided to revive the old name of Leyton Orient (although the club did not change colours this time and continued to play in red and white). Four years later, the club was promoted back to Division Three via the play-offs but in 1995, on the verge of bankruptcy once again, Orient were relegated back to the lowest Division (now Division Three). They survived as they always have done and in 2006 they won promotion back to the third tier (League One).

During the 1990s the "O"s wore some spectacular kits including a revived version of the white shirts with a red "V" that was the club's signature kit in the 1920s and a chequered shirt (revived in 2001). In the new millennium the club favoured all-red kits with a variety of entertaining trimmings but in the next decade their kits became more conservative.

In the mid 1990's the club announced ambitious plans to redevelop their stadium but financial problems forced a rethink after Barry Hearn took control of the club and some surrounding land was sold off (to Hearn's company on a 999 year lease) to finance rebuilding the West Stand.

In 2011 Hearn submitted a request to move the club into the new Olympic Stadium and subsequently scuppered West Ham United's plan to take over the stadium. The bidding process had to be reopened and although West Ham were chosen as lease-holders, Hearn promised to fight on, concerned that the proximity of the stadium to Brisbane Road would deprive Orient of support and drive the club out of business.

You are welcome to Contact Me with corrections and additions.

Sources

  • (a) Leyton Orient FC (Images of Sport - Neilson N Kaufman)
  • (c) empics
  • (d) Rotherham United FC (Images of Sport - Gerry Somerton & Chas Robinson)
  • (e) The Men Who Made Leyton Orient
  • (f) Leyton Orient Official Website
  • (g) The Football Encyclopaedia (Associated Sporting Press 1934) Information provided by Arthur Fergus
  • (h) Leyton Orient - A Complete Record 1881 -1990 (Neil Kaufman and Alan Ravenhill) - information provided by Steve Dixon
  • (i) Steve Jenkins
  • (j) Pete's Picture Palace
  • (k) Association of Football Statisticians - provided by Pete Wyatt
  • (l) David King
  • (m) Football Shirt Culture
  • (n) Alick Milne
  • (o) Football League Review
  • (p) Chris Worrall
  • (q) Simon Monks
  • (r) Colin Huggins
  • (s) Keith Ellis

Modern crests are the property of Leyton Orient FC.