Monday, November 17, 2008

The disappearing robins part 1 (Charlton Athletic)




There has been a trend for a lot of clubs to upgrade their nicknames to sound harder. For example, the Biscuitmen of Reading are now the Royals and the Robins of Charlton are the valiants and the Glass boys of Crystal Palace are the Eagles. Unlike Eagles Robins are not hard, as although Ely still have a Robin on the badge, Swindon, Charlton, Cheltenham and Bristol City have all got rid of the Robins from their badges.

Charlton Athletic have had the current badge with the hand holding the sword since 1968, although the original idea for the design was first announced in 1963 when it won a competition held by the club and they have had a similar design since this date.

The original badge had the letters CAFC in the shape of the diamond, but after World War 2 chose a Robin design, which they wore in the 1946 defeat to Derby in the FA Cup Final.

They have at other times also used the Greenwich Council symbol as their badge.

When the current badge design was chosen the nickname 'The Robins' was replaced by 'The Valiants', as it went better with the badge and was connected with their home ground, The Valley. Out also went the song 'The Red Robin' to be replaced by 'Old Father Thames', however this tune was soon unsurped again by the old one.

As well as being known as the Robins and the Valiants Charlton are now commonly called 'The Addicks'. The most likely source of this nickname is from haddock, the fish as local Arthur 'Ikey' Bryan used to give it the players as a reward when they won a game. A lot of people think it is a recent nickname, but it actually goes back at least to 1908.

In 2002 the fans were informed that the club had decided that the sword motif was too agressive for a family club and that they would choose another one as an online vote. The 3 that were chosen are shown above, the CAFC that bears more than a passing resemblance to the current Fulham badge, the more traditional robin, or the addick. The fans were up in arms when they met Arsenal on April 1st, well the ones who hadn't noticed what the date was.

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