Warm summer evenings and 20/20 cricket, just perfect. And that’s exactly what I got on Friday evening at The County Ground in Derby where Derbyshire Falcons took on local rivals Nottinghamshire Outlaws. The ground was jam packed with what I assume will be the season biggest crowd who were no doubt drawn by the good weather and the rivalry between the two East Midlands Cities (not that the passion runs as high as it does between the two football clubs, such hatred wouldn’t be cricket would it?)
The County Ground itself has undergone something of a facelift (much overdue and probably thanks to some SKY TV cash via the ECB and some 20/20 money) with the new Smith Cooper Stand/Gateway Centre holding some corporate boxes, public seating, box office and team shop as well s a rather smart indoor nets area to train. The pitch side is clad in wood, perhaps to pass itself off as eco friendly, the other side is some curvy coloured thing, and it does look a great deal better than the old facilities and the temporary looking main seating/scaffold tower. It also looks better that the already ageing marquee, which just is grubby after about a year in existence, however I was looking enviously at the VIP’s inside, nipping to the bar and getting a beer, as the rest of us stood for 15 overs or more at the beer or food outlets getting more hungry and increasingly thirsty (please fix for next year).
What I did enjoy was the DCCC logo. It shouldn’t work as it pulls two quite traditional elements, a crown and a flower, together and surrounds it with a very modern and box ticking shield with a gradient type thing. I think the limited colour pallet and the simplicity and quality of both the crown and flower. It just looks like a great emblem to represent a modern cricket club, when applied to signage around the ground, it manages to make Century Gothic look OK (stupidest ? of any font, check it out) It’s not perfect but it works.
On the flip side, the 20/20 team play as ‘The Falcons’ in honour of the Peregrine Falcon which lives on Derby Cathedral’s roof. Firstly it’s clearly looking the wrong way, I always think arrows and figures in logo’s should as a rule go left to right, it’s a more positive direction. It’s like the falcon is flying backwards, away from the scene, rather than advancing boldly ready for action. That and it looks like a logo for a native American sports team. I get that 20/20 is supposed to be a more modern and jazzy discipline, but the Falcon doesn’t cut it for me.
It’s a step on from their previous attempts, which saw the team named Derbyshire Phantoms (presumably after the fact that Derby is supposed to be the ‘most haunted’ city in England, which is a rubbish fact on it’s own), which was once an awful text based solution with a drop shadow, then an equally awful curved thing, although the text got better. Both are better than the first limited overs name of Derbyshire Scorpions, which I have no reasoning for and whose logo was as bad as possible.
Moving on up then for the Derbyshire CCC limited overs identity, but not there yet. Although at least the’ve put some effort in, Notts Outlaws have simply stolen the full overs team’s leaping deer, which is fine enough, but a poor effort really, especially with such an exciting name and rich Robin Hood tapestry of images to draw upon.
The Gateway Centre, wooden clad pitch side facade.
The Gateway Centre, Box office and shop side, coloured and curvy.
County Ground Marquee, nice and shiny here, a bit grubby and yellow in real life.
Phantoms V1, questionable at best.
Phantoms V2, more modern, but a generic curve, bland.
Scorpions logo, why scorpions and why so bad?
Outlaws Logo, neat but uninspiring
This article was originally posted on the Derby Graphic Design blog, on the 4th of July 2011. We’re happy to welcome it to it’s new home on the logocurio.us site.