VE DAY PUBLICITY FOR LONDON UNDERGROUND

It’s hard to ignore the V in victory. From Churchill to lozenges, it’s V for victory. The letter has already been commandeered by a number of organisations for graphic use during this spring and summer’s 50th anniversary of the end of World War Two.

So it’s no surprise to see the V deployed again, this time for London Underground’s publicity material coinciding with the capital’s VE (Victory in Europe) celebrations from 6 to 8 May.

Basten Greenhill Andrews has designed posters, a `commemorative journey planner’ and special Tube tickets. BGA had already created a generic structure for LU publicity material, and VE Day had to fit in.

BGA creative director Sue Turner says: `When you have an important historic occasion like VE Day most designers would reach for the Transport Museum’s archives and borrow heavily from there.

`While that could be done nicely, LU was keen to produce something that wouldn’t cause offence – no big reminders of war or death. We believed it best to allude to what came before but create new imagery.’

BGA arrived at a simple illustration. Turner says: `It is a huge victory V, with a vignette growing around the back. Walking towards the V and congregating are different figures – people from the forces, others with a baby in a pushchair.

`VE Day is a celebration of life. This is a warm and friendly image,’ she adds. The graphics have a slight Eagle comic feel because of the contemporary and apposite colours used.

The leaflet, which can be picked up at stations, details extra trains, station accessibility for the disabled, and a brief story of the wartime role played by the Tube and its staff.

Turner says: `It’s been a privilege to do this work because this occasion isn’t going to happen again.’

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