About Newcastle United
The black and white vertical stripes of Newcastle United are famous throughout the world, but on Tyneside, the Toon Army of adoring supporters form one of the strongest fan bases of any football club. The fierce rivalry between Newcastle United supporters and their near neighbours, Sunderland, is one of the most vehement in the UK.
Football started on Tyneside in 1877. Stanley Park Cricket Club in Byker had a football team in 1881, changing its name to Newcastle East End FC in 1882. The rival East End and West End clubs merged to form Newcastle United in 1892, and the St James' Park ground became the club's home. Newcastle East End's colours were red shirts with white shorts and red socks, but changed to black and white vertical stripes in 1894.
The supporters of Newcastle United wear their team's shirts on every occasion they can, whether it is at the match or shopping with the family. The club changes its kit style on a regular basis, together with the change and third choice kits, with the new shirt being eagerly snapped up by fans. This means there is a healthy trade in club shirts, especially 'retro' shirts of vintage seasons. Shirts signed by the team or individual players fetch high prices, and there is a market for match-worn kit as well.
Club memorabilia is popular among supporters. Old match programmes and tickets, together with photographs of current and previous players are eagerly collected. Signed club shirts and other match-worn kit often demand high prices. Newcastle United merchandise includes training wear, replica shirts, polo shirts and jackets. The gift-ware range includes pin badges, car stickers, key fobs and many other items featuring the black and white stripes.