Inaugural London Borough of Culture logo winner announced after public competition

12 July 2018
The winning Borough of Culture logo design

Today (Friday 13 July) the logo for the first ever Borough of Culture is announced. This design, by competition winner Richard Vickers, will become synonymous with the identity of Waltham Forest’s year in the spotlight.

Waltham Forest was this February crowned the first ever London Borough of Culture by Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London. Waltham Forest will deliver a once in a lifetime programme of events for London in 2019.

In preparation, Waltham Forest Council launched a competition to design the logo for the programme. Open to anyone from Waltham Forest, the competition asked for artwork inspired by the borough’s rich cultural heritage, to propel the borough and the winning design across London and beyond.

Over 70 entries were received from local artists, residents, businesses and students. The winning logo has been designed by Waltham Forest resident and graphic designer Richard Vickers.

The design is based on the concept that culture and creativity are often at their strongest when one or more disparate things connect to form something original and fresh. The dots on the logo connect in a lava lamp style to form a W, for Waltham Forest.

Richard said: “I’m very happy that my logo has been chosen, it’s a real honour knowing it will be used across the whole of London and beyond as London’s first ever Borough of Culture. As a Waltham Forest resident and owner of a young design agency it is great to have the opportunity to be involved right from the start.”

With only six months to go before Waltham Forest’s year as the first ever London Borough of Culture, an exciting year of cultural events is being finalised. In the build up to the first major announcements in September people are invited to sign up as a volunteer. On top of this, half a million pounds of ‘Fellowship Funding’ has been made available for ambitious, locally-based cultural activity.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I want to take this chance to say huge congratulations again to Waltham Forest for its superb bid to become the London Borough of Culture 2019. Waltham Forest’s programme of installations and events will improve the lives of people in their local communities and deliver a programme of work that will make our whole city proud.

“London Borough of Culture is a game-changer for our capital. It will give all Londoners, regardless of background, the opportunity to enjoy our fantastic cultural riches, discover hidden cultural gems they never knew existed, and will increase the level of participation in the arts across the city – especially in outer London boroughs.” 

Cllr Clare Coghill, Leader of Waltham Forest said: “It was very difficult to select a winning logo from so many excellent designs, but the panel were unanimous with Richard’s winning concept, which is brilliantly vibrant, and represents different cultures coming together perfectly. 

“Our year as the first ever London Borough of Culture will welcome people of all backgrounds and cultures to experience events that will leave memories that will last a lifetime. “  

Deputy Mayor for Culture and Creative Industries, Justine Simons OBE, said: “London Borough of Culture is great news for the whole capital. I am really looking forward to seeing Waltham Forest shine as the inaugural Borough of Culture. It will bring great art to everyone, inspire the next generation of creative talent, reveal hidden gems and celebrate what we all love about Waltham Forest.”

The logo will be rolled out across the summer, starting with the Walthamstow Garden Party this Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 July. Festival goers will also be able to find out about opportunities for volunteering and creative participation, to help shape our year of culture.

On 30 June 2017 Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, launched the London Borough of Culture competition. Inspired by the UK City and European Capital of Culture Programmes, London Borough of Culture is an award that will put culture at the heart of the community, celebrating the unique and distinctive creativity, character and diversity of London’s boroughs. The title was awarded to two winning boroughs (Waltham Forest in 2019 and Brent in 2020) on 26 February 2018.

Waltham Forest was the first to launch its campaign to win London Borough of Culture and from the very beginning the bid has been developed with residents and members from the borough’s artistic and creative community. Over 14,000 residents, businesses and members of our artistic community got behind the campaign to win and publicly pledged their support for the bid.

As the first Mayor’s London Borough of Culture, Waltham Forest is set to announce a spectacular year of events and initiatives, promising:

•             One spectacular year

•             Four seasons of events

•             500,000+ visitors celebrating our heritage and diversity

•             85 per cent of households in Waltham Forest engaged in cultural activity

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The logo design Click to get info

Richard’s design is based on the concept that culture and creativity are often at their strongest when one or more disparate things connect to form something original and fresh. The dots on the logo connect in a lava lamp style to form the W of Waltham Forest.

The aim with the logo was to create a mark that was simple, upbeat but most of all flexible. The logo will be used across a large volume and variety of materials throughout the year of culture and forms the basis of the overall visual branding.

Built upon a geometric grid, the logo can be used as a repeating pattern when small, but the intention is also for the scale of the logo to be played with, so at times it's blown up to very large sizes with only abstract fragments visible that can be used as placeholders for images and text. 

With over 18 years of experience in the graphic design industry, Richard Vickers set up his own agency Metric in 2013, which has been steadily growing ever since. Richard has won design awards and has been featured in the design press.

Richard’s logo was selected from a shortlist of entries by a panel of local judges: Waltham Forest Young advisor Abdul Raheem; Creative Producer and Project Manager for Waltham Forest based charity CREST - Think Arts Neesha Badhan; Becky Dorgan, Digital Marketing Apprentice at Big Creative Education; Leader of Waltham Forest Council Cllr Clare Coghill, and Martin Esom, Chief Executive at Waltham Forest Council.

Walthamstow Garden Party Click to get info

Walthamstow Garden Party is a Waltham Forest Council festival, produced by the Barbican and Create London in partnership with key local organisations in Waltham Forest, taking place on Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 July in Lloyd Park, Walthamstow, E17 4PP

The fifth edition of this popular two day event will feature international musicians from across the globe including Seun Kuti, Fatoumata Diawara, Adrian Sherwood and Creation Rebel. Across the weekend there will be performances from Waltham Forest community dance group MovE17, workshops with Blackhorse Workshop and Create London, and a ‘Fellowship Island’ zone curated by local creative organisations. 

There will be a London Borough of Culture Information Hub at the Garden Party, where visitors can speak to the team about opportunities to be involved in the 2019. 

Walthamstow Garden Party is one of six major ‘Get Together’ community events to be held around the borough this year including the Leyton Carnival, Waltham Forest Mela, Chingfest, Leytonstone Street Fest and Fireworks Night. /