THE best ideas are borne in the most unlikely places.

Northwich Victoria unveiled a new away kit for the new season, 145 years on from their first one, last month.

And the two are linked.

"It's a nod to the past," said Paul Bazley, the club's commercial manager.

"That's exactly what we wanted to achieve."

A drawing that dad, Dennis, had hung on the wall of his shed provided inspiration.

It shows half-a-dozen men, most of them with striking moustaches and one carrying what appear to be goalposts, wearing long-sleeved shirts coloured with red and blue hoops.

Two young boys are running alongside them.

Gifted to him while Vics were playing home games at Barnton, it left Townfield along with the team at the end of the 2017-2018 campaign.

 

Northwich Guardian: A drawing gifted to Dennis Bazley that provided the inspiration for Northwich Victoria's new away shirt based on a uniform worn by players representing the club shortly after its formationA drawing gifted to Dennis Bazley that provided the inspiration for Northwich Victoria's new away shirt based on a uniform worn by players representing the club shortly after its formation

 

Bazley tucked the picture, thought to be Vics' first strip following their initial formation in 1874, under his arm for a first meeting with Buccaneer Promotions - a firm based at the Old Fire Station on Chesterway following a move from Moss Farm.

Together they turned the original concept into reality.

"My dad was barman for our matches [at Barnton]," said Bazley.

"The picture was there behind him for everybody to see while he was pouring drinks, and he put it in his shed after we moved on.

"I looked at it and thought it would be great if we can replicate it in some way."

Supporters got a glimpse of the shirt during the club's annual meeting earlier this year before an official launch in July.

The players wore it for the first time during a friendly at Llandudno.

 

Northwich Guardian: Northwich Victoria's players, including goalkeeper Danny Taberner, model the new away shirt during a photoshoot with club photographer Angela Buckley last month. Picture: Angela Buckley/Truly PhotogenicNorthwich Victoria's players, including goalkeeper Danny Taberner, model the new away shirt during a photoshoot with club photographer Angela Buckley last month. Picture: Angela Buckley/Truly Photogenic

 

Bazley told the Guardian he had felt a mixture of terror and pride before they ran out.

He added:"I held my breath for a bit.

"Even though I love the design, and what it represents, you're never sure how everybody else will react.

"Fortunately the reaction has been wholly positive which was a big relief.

"It's stressful waiting for that moment, I can tell you!"

The new shirt features the logos of sponsors Anderton Concrete, S&I Hodgkin and Whitlow Engineering as well as two charities the club is backing; The Offside Trust and Tiny Steps.

It is available to buy.

Bazley said: "I was given carte blanche by the rest of the committee, which was brilliant.

"For me it was about the whole story; the timing was right given the anniversary and also the fact we've got support from our friends at those Northwich companies.

"There were other little things too like Buccaneer's base being a stone's throw from the old Drill Field where I went to watch Vics as a lad with my old man.

"It's all fitted together well."