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Stoke City

Formed 1863. Wound up in 1908
Re-formed in 1908.

Founder member of the Football League 1888. Failed re-election 1890.

Elected back into the Football League 1891. Resigned 1908.

Elected to Division Two 1915.

Kit History




Stoke Ramblers




1870-1871 a







stoke ramblers circa 1868

1873 q B

1877-1879 b B

Width of hoops varied
stoke 1882

1882-1883 b

Width of hoops varied
stoke 1883

1883-1887 i

1887-1888 i

stoke 1890

1890-1891 b

stoke fc 1891

1891-1892 i

stoke fc 1892

1892-1893 i

1893-1894 i

1894-1897 b i

stoke fc 1897

1897-1898 i

1898-1900 i A

1901-1903 b i

stoke fc 1903-04

1903-1904 i

stoke fc 1906-07

1904-1908 b i v




Re-formed as Stoke FC in 1908 after the old club was wound up.


First teams played in both the Southern League and Birmingham & District League.

Stoke Southern League kit 1908-15


Southern League
stoke fc 1908

1908-1915 b i v

Birmingham & District League
stoke city fc 1918-19

1918-1919 v

stoke fc 1919-20

1919-1920 v

stoke fc 1921

1921-1922 b

Football League
stoke city 1922-23

1922-1923 v

1924-1925 b




Stoke City



stoke city 1926

1926-1927 v

stoke city fc 1929-30

1929-1930 v

stoke city 1927-28

1927-1932 i

stoke city fc 1932

1932-1937 b v

Red central stripe also appeared
sroke city 1937-39

1937-1938 b v

stoke city 1938-45

1938-1945 i v

stoke city 1945

1945-1946 b

stoke city 1946-49

1946-1949 k i r

stoke city 1949

1949-1950 v

stoke city fc 1946-51

1950-1952 b v

stoke city fc 1952-53

1952-1953 v

stoke city fc 1953

1953-1954 k

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1954-1957 c d r v

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stoke city 1957-58

1957-1958 v

stoke city fc 1958-59

1958-1959 v

1959-1960 k v

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stoke city fc 1960

1960-1961 m

stoke city fc 1961

1961-1963 e

Warm weather kit
stoke city fc 1961-63 cold weather kit

1961-1963 v

Cold weather kit
stoke city fc 1963-64

1963-1964 e f v

stoke city fc 1965-67

1964-1965 m v

stoke city 1966-68

1965-1968 v

Appeared end of previous season
stoke city fc 1966-67

May 1966-67 alt g y

Warm weather kit

Aug-Dec 68 b d g n o

stoke city december 1968 to march 1969

Dec 68-March 69 x z

stoke city 1969-1972

March 69-72 b d g n o

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1972-1973 b o x

stoke city fc 1974-75

1973-1974 e o x

Umbro logo added March
stoke city 1974-75

1974-1975 (2) u

stoke city fc 1975-76

1975-1976 (1) d o

stoke city 1975-76 alternate strip

1975-1976 (2) u

stoke city fc 1976-77

1976-Feb 1977 o

Appeared in late previous season
stoke city 1976-77

Feb-May 1977 u

stoke city fc 1977-81

1977-1981 b d l


1981-1983 b l p

stoke city fc 1983-84

1983-1985 b e p


1985-1986 h


1986-1987 b d w


1987-1989 h l p

stoke city fc 1989-90

1989-1990 b p w


1990-1991 h p

stoke city fc 19691-92

1991-1992 b p


1992-1993 b e j p

stoke city fc 1993-94

1993-1994 e j p w


1994-1995 b e p

stoke city fc 1995-96

1995-1996 b e j


1996-1997 b e j

stoke city fc 1997-99

1997-1999 b e j

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1999-2001 e l p

Le Coq Sportif
stoke city fc 2001-03

2001-2003 e

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stoke city fc 2003-04

2003-2004 e l

stoke city fc 2004-05

2004-2005 e j

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stoke city fc 2005-06

2005-2006 a e l s t

stoke city fc 2006-07

2006-2007 a

Le Coq Sportif
stoke city fc 2007-08

2007-2008 a

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Le Coq Sportif

2008-2009 a

Le Coq Sportif
stoke city 2009-10

2009-2010 a

stoke city 2010-11

2010-2011 a

stoke city fc 2011-12 home kit

2011-2012 a

stoke city fc 2012-13 home kit

2012-2013 a

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stoke city fc 2013-14 home kit

2013-2014 a

Warrior Sports
stoke city 2014-14

2014-2015 a

New Balance
stoke city fc 2015-16

2015-2016 a

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sroke city 2016-17 1st kit

2016-2017 a

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stoke city fc 2017-18 1st kit

2017-2018 a

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stoke city 2018-19 1st kit

2018-2019 a

stoke city 2019-20

2019-2020 a



stoke fc 1877-78It is generally accepted that Stoke were formed in 1863 by former pupils of Charterhouse School working as apprentices at the North Staffordshire Railway Works, making them the second oldest League club still in existence. There are no records of any matches until October 1868 when the team, known as Stoke Ramblers drew 1-1 in a fifteen-a-side game against EW May's XV. Their colours at this time are recorded by Percy M Young as "crimson and blue." Around 1871 "Ramblers" was dropped from the club's title and blue and black shirts were worn. During the 1870s Stoke became the leading club in the Potteries area, merging with Stoke Victoria Cricket Club in 1878, when they moved into what became known as the Victoria Ground, their home for the next 119 years.

stoke city crest 1882There was considerable individual variation to the hooped jerseys worn up until 1883: players provided their own kit and their tops often did not match. In the 1882-83 season some players applied a stylised letter "S" to their jerseys but once again there were variations in the size and location of this early "crest."

Stoke entered the English FA Cup for the first time in 1883 and turned professional two years later. When the Football League was formed in 1888, Stoke were one of the 12 founder members.

Stoke finished bottom in both of their first two seasons, winning only seven matches throughout and lost their place to Sunderland in 1890 without a vote being taken. After finishing as champions of the Football Alliance in 1891, Stoke were voted back into the Football League following the decision to add two more clubs for the 1891-92 season. New regulations required that clubs now register their colours with the League and no two clubs could wear the same kit so Stoke wore black and gold in league games, retaining their red and white stripes for all other matches. Again they had to seek re-election at the end of the season but they held on to their place. Between 1895 and 1898 they had to contest test matches to avoid relegation to the new Second Division. They remained in the First Division (wearing claret shirts) until 1907 when a growing financial crisis came to a head following relegation to Division Two and gates plummeted. In 1908, having finished in mid-table, Stoke went into liquidation and resigned from the League. Ironically this galvanised local businessmen, the clergy (the Victoria Ground was owned by the Church of England) and supporters to form a new limited company and purchase the old club's assets. The new club applied to rejoin the League but were, perhaps not suprisingly, rejected in favour of Tottenham Hotspur.

Stoke now fielded first teams in both the Birmingham & District League and the Southern League. In the Birmingham League the team played in red and white shirts while the team that played in the Southern league continued to turn out in blue and red. In 1915, having finished as champions of the Southern League Second Division, Stoke were elected back into the Football League for the third time but, with all professional football suspended for the duration of the Great War, it was not until 1919 that they played their first fixture. In 1922, Stoke were promoted to Division One only to be relegated the following season. In 1926, now known as Stoke City, the club dropped into Division Three (North) but bounced back as champions in 1927. In 1933 Stoke won the Second Division championship to return to the First Division, with a 17-year-old Stanley Matthews playing 15 matches in his first season.

As Matthews grew in reputation, so did attendances, which went from an average of 11,500 to 23,000 and in 1934, the directors announced that the club was in the black for the first time. By the end of the decade, with Matthews at its heart, Stoke has a strong side that was widely expected to win honours but the Second World War intervened. The side that reassembled for the 1946-47 season comprised most of the pre-war squad, albeit six years older. They came within one win of clinching the championship but lost their final stoke city crest 1953match at Sheffield United. Even worse, Matthews left in May to join Blackpool.

The club crest, which was based on the coat of arms of the city of Stoke, appeared on the team's shirts for the first time in 1953. The various elements are taken from the individual arms of the towns that were brought together in 1910 to form the county borough of Stoke-on-Trent: Burslem, Longton, Tunstall, Fenton and Stoke. This crest was dropped after four seasons.

In 1953, City dropped into Division Two: crowds dwindled and the club seemed to be going nowhere. In 1961, however, manager Tony Waddington pulled off a coup by persuading Matthews, now 46, to rejoin the club. Overnight, attendances trebled with 35,974 fans paying to watch his homecoming, paying off his £3,000 transfer fee into the bargain and in 1963, with Matthews weaving his magic on the right wing, Stoke won the Second Division championship in their centenary season. In 1965, now a knight, Stanley Matthews played his last game for Stoke at the remarkable age of 50.

stoke city crest 1968In May 1966 Stoke adopted a candy-striped version of their traditional striped shirt which was worn in warm weather throughout 1966-67. Another variant appeared in December 1968: designed by David Herd (who had joined Stoke on a free transfer from Manchester United the previous summer), it featured traditional socks and a "kiln badge," the details of which were found by Keith MacKenzie-Ingle in November 2015.

stoke city fc crest 1977England goalkeeper, Gordon Banks, signed from Leicester City for £52,000, became the mainstay of Stoke's side in the early 1970s and in 1972 they won their first major honour, beating Chelsea 2-1 to capture the League Cup. For the next few seasons, Stoke challenged for the championship (finishing fifth in 1974 and 1975) and enjoyed two European campaigns but in 1977 they were relegated.

A new and simpler club crest was introduced in 1977: a Stafford knot and pottery kiln represented local tradition while red and white stripes were added.

stoke city fc crest 1992In 1979 Stoke were back in the First Division but it was a struggle to retain their place: after a radical change of kit in 1983, they were relegated in 1985 to Division Two and then in 1990 they dropped into Division Three.

A turning point was reached in 1991-92 when Lou Macari was appointed manager. The team won the Football League trophy and, the following season were promoted as Division Two (now the third tier) champions. During Macari's tenure, the full Stoke coat-of-arms was adopted as the club's crest, with their name added to a scroll at the top.

stoke city fc crest 2001Stoke reached the play-offs in 1996 and the following year moved into the brand new Britannia Stadium, officially opened by Sir Stanley Matthews on 30 August 1997. Relegated again in 1998, Stoke were taken over by an Icelandic Consortium during the 1998-99 season.

Under their new ownership Stoke adopted a modernist new crest in 2001 and came stoke city fc crest 2012 (150 years)through the play-offs to return to Nationwide Division One at the end of the season. Seven years later, in 2008 they were promoted to the Premier League after a gap of 23 years and in 2011 reached the FA Cup final for the first time in their long history, losing 0-1 to Manchester City.

A special crest was commissioned for the 2012-13 season, which marked the club's 150th anniversary, with their Latin motto (United Strength is Stronger) underneath.

You are welcome to Contact Me with corrections and additions.


  • (a) Stoke City Official Website
  • (b) Stoke City FC - Images of Sport (Tony Matthews 1999)
  • (c) Bury FC - Images of Sport (Peter Cullen 1998)
  • (d) Football Focus
  • (e) empics
  • (f) Ipswich Town FC - Images of Sport (Tony Garnett 2000)
  • (g) Football Cards
  • (h) The Oatcake Website - part of the Rivals network, this site has an interesting section on kits worn since the 1970s.
  • (i) Pete Wyatt - HFK Research Associate
  • (j) David King
  • (k) Conn Barrett
  • (l) True Colours 2 (John Devlin 2006)
  • (m) Greger Lindberg
  • (n) Football League Review provided by Simon Monks
  • (o) Alick Milne
  • (p) True Colours 2 (John Devln 2006)
  • (q) "A History of British Football" (Percy M Young) provided by Peter Ferrette.
  • (r) Simon Monks
  • (s) Nick Brayford
  • (t) Mike Pinkstone
  • (u) Chris Worrall
  • (v) Keith Ellis (HFK Research Associate)
  • (w) Daniel Martin
  • (x) Anthony Sealey
  • (y) William Kay
  • (z) Keith MacKenzie-Ingle
  • (A) Daily Telegraph (March 20 1899) submitted by Kingsley (Wrexham FC)
  • (B) Charles Alcock's Football Annuals 1873, 1876, 1877, 1879, 1880, 1881 researched by Robin Horton

Crests are the property of Stoke City FC. Team photograph courtesy of Stoke City FC.