In September 2008, the Fremantle Football Club advised that it would be undertaking a review of its brand elements, including its logo, jumper and name, Fremantle Dockers.
As part of that process, the club engaged consultants who were given a brief to research the relevance of the brand elements amongst, members, supporters, sponsors, stakeholders and other interested parties.
The research that was undertaken in 2009 included but was not limited to face-to-face interviews with supporters at home games and an on-line survey of the brand elements that was sent to club members.
More than 2900 members took part in the survey in May 2009.
One clear theme from the research conducted in 2009 was that members and other stakeholders wanted to retain the reference to the club as the Fremantle Dockers, and that the most popular name for the club was the Fremantle Dockers, or Dockers, rather than the Fremantle Football Club.
The colour purple was the brand element that members and other stakeholders “most strongly felt” should be associated with the Fremantle Football Club. It was seen as being “strong, liked and unique”.
While white was accepted as a second colour, the research strongly indicated that red and green were viewed as “fragmenting and distracting”. The use of red and green also contributed to the perception that both the logo and jumper contained too many elements and contributed to the “cluttered” appearance of both the logo and the jumper.
The overall outcome of the survey of members, supporters and other stakeholders showed that and that any changes to the logo and jumper should reflect the key themes of “simplicity, authenticity and strength”.
In terms of the guernsey to be worn in 2011, which will replace the current strip, the club has gone “back to the future” by tapping into the design of the club’s red and white heritage jumper.
Fremantle players first wore the red and white heritage jumper in season 2003 at the MCG, when the AFL dedicated Round 19 to the theme of football’s heritage, recognising the traditions and history of the game. The club continued to wear this strip in the heritage round in seasons 2004, 2005 and 2006.
In the 2007 heritage round (round 14) Fremantle played Sydney (red and white), so the players wore a strip based on the East Fremantle jumper from the 1970s (royal blue and white vertical chest panels).
The red and white heritage strip first worn by Fremantle players in the game against North Melbourne on Sunday 10 August, 2003 had its origins in the strip worn by the Fremantle Football Club that contested its first season in the WAFA in 1885.
The club is both proud and duty-bound to ensure that Fremantle’s rich football heritage continues to be promoted and maintained for future generations of supporters. The Fremantle Football Club believes that one of the most appropriate ways to achieve that goal is via the jumper worn by the players every time they run out to represent the club.
Modelled on the guernsey worn in the heritage rounds from 2003 through to 2006, Fremantle’s 2011 home jumper will be purple with three white Vs, while the clash strip will be white with three purple Vs.
In addition to the new jumper’s heritage links, the apex, or point, of the three Vs on both the home and clash guernsey is representative of the base, or “crown”, of the anchor in the new primary logo.
The prominent positioning of the three Vs on the chest of the new jumper, as opposed to the positioning of crown of the anchor in the stomach region of the old jumper, is in keeping with the key themes, one of which was strength.
The final design, which was one of many considered during the brand elements review, formed the basis of Fremantle’s 2010 training strip.
The 2010 training strip - comprising four guernseys, including jumpers with purple and three white Vs; white with three purple Vs; red with three white Vs and green with three white Vs - was very well received by members, supporters and the playing group.
In a competition run on Fremantle’s website during the 2010 season, members and supporters were asked which one of the above four jumpers plus either of the current home or clash guernseys they wanted the players to wear at the club’s third open training session in July.
Almost 70 per cent of people voted for the purple and three white Vs, an overwhelming indication of strong support for the new design theme.
Fremantle’s new primary logo is inspired by traditional club insignias of days past and the pride they represent. Strength, tradition and an acknowledgement of the club’s port heritage underpin the new design that is striking in its simplicity.
The complexity and confusing connotations of a “docker” holding the anchor have been replaced by a strong monogram that incorporates the letter “D”’ interlocking with a simple anchor design that was motivated by the monograms that both East and South Fremantle Football clubs have used over the past 100 years.
The logo also contains the words Fremantle Dockers, with Dockers occupying a prominent position. The design is reminiscent of great sporting club symbols that have stood the test of time.
The new logo represents the establishment of a symbol that will become synonymous with football in Fremantle and beyond for decades to come.
In 1885, the WAFA premiership was contested by four clubs; Rovers (predecessor of the Perth Football Club), Victorians and Perth High School all of which were Perth based plus Fremantle, who wore a red and white playing strip. Perth High School withdrew after only a couple of matches.
In 1886, a second Fremantle-based side, Unions, brought the number of teams back to four. Fremantle won all seven matches contested.
In 1887, Fremantle did not field a team, leaving Unions as the only Fremantle team. Unions adopted Fremantle’s red and white playing uniforms that year and in 1890 they adopted the Fremantle Football Club name. The team won flags in 1888 and 1889 as Unions, and in 1890 as Fremantle.
Between 1892 and 1896, Fremantle won five consecutive flags and tasted success again in 1898, the club’s last season. The club folded reputedly as a result of a dispute with players over uniforms and train fares. In 1898, a new club emerged at the port, East Fremantle, wearing the blue and white they continue to wear today, breaking through for its first premiership in 1900, the year that also saw South Fremantle, wearing red and white, admitted to the competition.