Ofsted order to raise profile prompts Roundel to revamp Guildford College Group brand

Roundel has overhauled the Guildford College Group brand, which was established through a merger of Guildford College, Merrist Wood College and Farnham Sixth Form College in 2009.

The consultancy was appointed to the work in May following a seven-way credentials pitch after the college was informed by Ofsted that it needed to raise its public profile following the merger.

Tasked with unifying the colleges, Roundel sought to create a parent brand that related consistently with college sub-brands, retaining the ’individuality’ of each and appealing directly to separate student bases.

’For the students, the group name doesn’t matter,’ says Roundel design director Ross Shaw, who brought back the name Merrist Wood ’after the college tried to eradicate it’.

The college group marque draws on a palette composed of red, blue and green, from each campus, in a bid to minimise implementation costs. Orange and purple have been added.

Merrist Wood, which is green, Farnham, which is red, and Guilford, which is blue, previously had one tone but now each has an expanded palette with five hues.

Shaw says a three-dimensional ’liquid shape’ translates to ’the potential to form futures, careers, dreams – anything’.

The tip of the wave is a ’liquid swirl’ held at a critical point ’but never breaks’, he adds.

Although the marque is designed to show potential, it also gives reference to a ’C’ for college, a ’G’ for Guildford or a ’6’ for sixth form, Shaw explains.
Guidelines are now being delivered to the college ahead of a November roll-out, when signage and an inter-campus minibus fleet bearing the new livery will appear.Staff Smart cars will also feature the marque, and an iPhone app is being designed.

The consultancy continues to work on a series of websites, which will include animated versions of the new identities, due to go live in 2011. ’You’ll be able to move seamlessly from one to the other, and again they’ll be colour-coded,’ according to Shaw.


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