1991 Home - Promotion Special
This simplistic looking kit is fondly remembered as it was worn during the 1990-91 promotion triumph, only the second in Pools history since Brian Clough guided United to second place in the 60s. This all white affair looked very classy and although I don't know who made it, I know for certain it wasn't Hummel, even though the arrows on the sleeve are certainly a rip of Denmarks finest. The photo below is a special version worn at the Brian Honour testimonial in 1996.
This is my favourite Pools kit of all time as it was the one they were wearing as I started following them. A superb blend of light blue and white meant that I could compare Hartlepool with Argentina (in colours at least, not playing style). Made by 1908 Gold this classy kit ended up spanning nearly three seasons (and just as many managers). In 1998 local rivals Middlesbrough wore a similar design as an away kit - they do say imitation is the best form of flattery.
New makers Super League struck gold with this superb retro looking kit. Gold/amber in colour with black trim this kit looked very much like a subbuteo kit from days gone by. Seldom worn it was sadly never brought out in replica form - very disappointing for two young early teen fans in me and my step brother - we loved this so much we wanted it to become the new home kit.
With new owners and manager Chris Turner at the helm it was out with the old and in with the new. The new millennium saw United throw off the shackles of forever being relegation fodder, and become a professionally run outfit that was ready to challenge for promotion. And we did so in this quality looking shirt, sponsored by local brewery Cameron's. Pools got to the playoffs for the first time in their history in this, only to get beat in the semis by bitter local rivals Darlington. Only lasted one year this kit. A shame.
Hartlepool were riding the crest of a wave in 2004. Promoted the year before and consolidated by finishing in the playoffs, a superb array of new Nike kits were brought out in 2004. All of them, including the keepers superb. The home affair simple blue and white stripes, the keepers plain green or black, the third kit (worn in Playoff final defeat to Sheff Wed) was basically Man United's home kit and my personal favourite was the all navy blue away one. With the Nike being based in neighboring town Peterlee, they probably thought it was best to supply us with decent kits or risk have the factory burned down by angry Hartlepudians.
|Humphreys and Konstantopolous|
Too be honest Pools kits have been made by Nike since and the home one sees very little change to it. Thin stripes to thick and back but with a zig zag edge etc. but the American firm know not to tinker with the classic royal and white combination. This half and half effort was a smart one although linked with dark days at Pools. The club were relegated in 2006 and found themselves in the basement division, but also in 2007, having won promotion again, joy turned to dispair when winger Michael Maidens was tradigically killed in the car accident...
Nike went back to basics with plain white with blue shorts for the clubs centenary season in 07/08. A simple kit in the colours as the original club in 1908, and coincidentally similar to the 91 promotion kit, Poolies snapped this up with gusto and talk of more triumph to follow. However united struggled to produce in it, despite a bright start, and narrowly avoided relegation. Remembered best for the giant killing of Premiership Stoke City with a two nil victory in the FA Cup 3rd round.