The club crest / logo used by Rochdale AFC focuses on a variant of the arms of the former County Borough of Rochdale.
The coat of arms - based on those of the local and reputed Rachdale family with certain additions - was granted to the Borough by Heralds College in 1857.
At its centre, a shield shows a sack of wool and a cotton plant, representing the local wool and cotton industries. Around the edge of the shield sit eight martlets (birds). These are taken from the Rachdale family coat of arms (mentioned above) and are widely used on heraldic devices.
Above the shield and helm (in the position technically know as the 'crest' in heraldry) more local industry representations are made by the inclusion of a fleece of wool (suspended by a band) and the iron centre of an old mill-stone (known as a mill-rind).
A motto below the shield reads; 'Crede Signo'. Roughly translated this means; 'The sign of trust and confidence'.
The blazon (official heraldic description) for the arms reads as follows:
'Argent a woolpack encircled by two branches of the cotton tree flowered and conjoint proper; a bordure sable charged with eight martlets of the field; and for a crest on a wreath of the colours a mill-rind sable and above a fleece argent banded or.'
When, in 1974, Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council was formed (taking over from Rochdale County Borough Council and five other Borough / Urban District Councils) a new coat of arms was created and awarded for Council Use. Rochdale AFC, however, continued (and continues today) to adopt the old Rochdale County Borough arms.
Around the arms (on the football club crest / logo) a ring displays the full club name (and its shorter nickname) using the home colours of blue and white.
Thanks to Richard Wild (Commercial Manager at Rochdale AFC) and Martin Hellewell (Media Manager at Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council) for the above crest and information.