In a touching gesture, Vale’s next opponents Leyton Orient will don a shirt sponsor that pays tribute to club staff who served in the First World War.
Orient dispensed of previous shirt sponsors 666Bet earlier this week following the temporary suspension of 666Bet operations by the Gambling Commission.
It was widely expected that the club would announce another commercial sponsor but instead the club have come up with a unique and fitting tribute to the 17th Battalion Middlesex Regiment (the Footballers’ Battalion) which 41 Clapham Orient players and staff joined. Eight of the 41 were to lose their lives including three of their finest players, who fell in the battle of the Somme.
Tom Jeffes, Leyton Orient’s Head of Commercial, said: “Leyton Orient Football Club is steeped in history and I am absolutely delighted to be able to incorporate the Somme badge on the first team and replica shirts for the remainder of the 2014-15 season.
“As the first Football Club to sign up en masse in the Footballers’ Battalion it is very important that we remember our past and those that lost their lives.”
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Football and the war…
You can read more about the Football Regiment and Clapham Orient’s contribution to the First World War over at this website:
The Daily Telegraph also has this moving piece on the sacrifice of Clapham Orient and other footballers during the conflict:
OVF has also produced several articles about Vale players who sadly lost their lives when in service. Links to these are below:
- In memoriam: Port Vale’s WW1 heroes
- The sad fate of Sam Jennings seventy years on
- Cult Hero: Jack Roberts, a WW2 legend