Firstly, I don’t feel the crest necessarily needs to be changed but obviously from a business view it certainly makes sense. The current crest displays the main entrance of the Boleyn Ground which will be a fond memory by the time the new badge comes into effect. West Ham will be settling into the Olympic Stadium and having the old stadium on the crest, although sentimental, doesn’t make an awful lot of sense.
If the crest wasn’t to be changed, there wouldn’t be any complaints from any West Ham fans, but those claiming that “it’s our history” doesn’t really hold up to me. In West Ham’s (Thames Ironworks FC) 119-year history, the club’s crest has morphed 14 times from the original. That’s an average change of every eight-and-a-half years, incidentally the current crest has been in action since 1999 (soooo last millennium). So, there is a case to make a change regardless of the imminent move away from the Boleyn Ground (which features so heavily on the current crest).
Ultimately, I’m in favour of the crest change but I wasn’t impressed with the initial suggestion of the new crest. There was something not quite right about it and most supporters felt the same. The font came across as very cartoon-like and it was essentially the current crest with the Boleyn Ground removed from it, making it look rather empty.
The inclusion which struck a nerve with the supporters was the ‘London’ text at the bottom of the crest. I initially thought it was an odd inclusion but after deliberation I’ve come to the conclusion that it makes sense economically and globally. According to the owners a large amount of foreign football fans are unaware that West Ham is a London based football club. One of the biggest cities in the world, and the capital city of the country where football was invented, it makes sense to be attached as close as possible to London in a business sense. Some were happy to compromise to ‘East London’, but that seems like an unnecessary adaptation and I do understand that the local fans are proud East Londoners but where does it stop? The co-ordinates of the Olympic Stadium – ’51.5386° N, 0.0164° W’?
In conclusion I think the suggested crest is far from the best. Many semi-pro Photoshoppers are producing preferable crest ideas. It’s now looking likely that the original will stand after 72 per cent of fans who agreed to the changing of the crest also voted to adopt the suggested crest. It will most likely grow on me, and I don’t hate it. After all if worst comes to worst we only have to put up with it for eight-and-a-half years.