Chances are, if you’ve never actually visited the Borough of Waltham Forest,
you’ll be completely unaware of how much it has to offer.
And yet, from the very origin of its name in the Doomsday Book in 1075
– Wilcumestouue means ‘The Welcome Place’ –
Walthamstow and latterly the Borough of Waltham Forest,
has always had a reputation as a welcoming place for visitors.
NATURAL OPEN SPACE
Originally the area was renowned for its abundant natural open space:
the attractive Epping Forest was loved by royalty, including King John and Queen Elizabeth I.
Since then, it has always been popular with day trippers looking for a break from the city, and a space to unwind. If you visit the Borough today though, you’ll be surprised by the amount of natural open space there still is, including the beautiful London Wetland Centre.
BAGGI were asked by Waltham Forest to review its destination and invest branding,
help identify what makes the borough unique and bring it to life through storytelling and a flexible, new visual identity system.
The invest programme plays an important role in attracting private and public investment to the borough. Waltham Forest recently received £31 million from the UK Government's levelling up fund, more than any other London borough.
This will go towards a variety of key projects such as improvements to Leyton Station, sustainable programs for walking, cycling, local parks and sports facilities, and attract visitors to a new cultural quarter centred around the new Soho Theatre Walthamstow.
Over time, following a rapid period of Victorian industrialisation, the Borough,
like many others, became a commuter town but one with a very strong
creative and cultural reputation at its heart.
This was pioneered by William Morris and the Arts & Crafts movement, sustained by the reputation of Walthamstow Art School (featuring Peter Blake and Ian Drury amongst its alumni) and very much in evidence today through its street art, God’s Own Junkyard and as the first London Borough of Culture in 2019.
HOME OF MAKERS AND CREATORS
SHINING A LIGHT ON WALTHAM FOREST
The incredible diversity of the Borough’s communities and culture, combined with natural open space makes Waltham Forest unique amongst its peers. Especially with a connectivity and infrastructure that acts as a catalyst for collaboration, creativity, and innovation.
Founder Mark Baxter said, “The most successful ‘place brands’ usually have clearly defined stories and attributes. But they also have consistent and distinctive brand identity assets that are flexible and easy to use across many different activities. They are not over-imposing the brand on the place. Rather they are shining a light on and showcasing the very best it has to offer.”
This was the intention when creating the identity for Waltham Forest’s investment branding, as featured at a recent event in the Borough. The logotype was inspired by William Morris’s famous line ‘Fellowship is Life’, chiselled into the fascia of Assembly Hall in Fellowship Square.
The ‘FOR’ element of ‘FOREST’ is used to highlight the unique benefits for people looking to live, visit, work and invest there. And instil a sense of pride amongst residents.
Debbie Porter, Corporate Director for Communications & Strategy at Waltham Forest added:
“It has the potential and flexibility to skip between, or focus, on the huge variety of amazing assets the Borough has to offer - from God’s Own Junkyard to The London Wetland Centre, from the new Soho Theatre to Portsmouth University campus.
Celebrating the place, and its people above all else.”