In 1997, the Football Association commissioned Thomas Lyte to design and make the Women’s FA Cup trophy, with the intention of it having a similar stature to the Men’s FA Cup, which was designed in a late Victorian, early Edwardian style and first presented in 1911.
The Women’s FA Cup was a very different competition back then. The Millwall Lionesses, were victorious in the final that year in front of just over 3000 people at Upton Park, the former home of West Ham United.
Thomas Lyte’s team of silverware designers recommended that the Women’s FA Cup trophy reflect a similarity of lines but also incorporate contemporary design elements. Using The Football Association’s badge as inspiration, they incorporated three lionesses in the design of the handles and finial.
Kevin Baker, Founder and CEO of Thomas Lyte
The Lionesses have since come to illustrate both the lightning-fast progress made by the women’s game and also the struggles of successive generations to get to the point we’re now at. The winners of the Women’s FA Cup, to be held at a sold out Wembley Stadium, will be celebrating not just victory, but also the part club football has played in turning the Lionesses into one of English sport’s greatest sources of pride.
The trophy is cast from sterling 925 silver and took 180 hours to create, with Thomas Lyte’s team using age-old techniques that comfortably pre-date the first men’s FA Cup final in 1872. Thomas Lyte is fully aware of the work that delivering success requires.
“The Women’s FA Cup continues to play a significant role in the development of women’s football in England,” says Meri Markoska, Business Development Manager for Thomas Lyte. “The trophy is a symbol of the importance of the competition and the dedication and hard work of the teams that compete for it.”
This year’s final sees Manchester United in their first final, while Chelsea, who have lifted the trophy four times since 2014/15, aim to make it a fifth. Regardless of the result, both clubs are now part of a fabric that has shifted unimaginably since Thomas Lyte’s original commission. It’s a tribute to the Lionesses, to their journey, and to the passion and hard work of everyone involved in women’s football.
We have selected a number of case studies that demonstrate the broad range of our capabilities designing and making in precious metals.