• Transform magazine
  • September 23, 2017

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Lantern creates destination brand for resilient Newington Estate

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Situated on the easternmost tip of the UK, the suburb of Newington, Ramsgate, in the parliamentary district of Thanet, is not perhaps the first location immediately associated with a modern, forward-facing marketing strategy. With place branding most often linked with burgeoning national identities or dedicated to budget-heavy urban metropolises, creating a brand for an area with a small population, and an even smaller economy, might seem dubious. Yet community-led regeneration saw the people of the Newington Estate, Newington, help drive positive neighbourhood change and retain the sense of place of which its residents are so proud.

Local, community-led organisation Newington Big Local collaborated with London-based branding agency Lantern to develop an identity for an area which, although it has experienced difficulty in the past, is proud of the passionate and hard-working nature of its residents. Recently granted £1 million in Big Lottery Fund funding, the Newington Estate and Lantern wanted to develop a digital presence to communicate funding plans and ensure local residents remains enthusiastic and supportive during the ongoing funding process.

Bright, bold prints and image-led marketing collateral sees the estate’s renewed place brand reflect and enhance the personalities which make Newington Estate unique. Its new logo is a flag, representing the proud sense of identity held by the estate’s residents while signalling the optimism and promise for the Big Lottery Funding - and what Newington has yet to offer.

The estate’s destination brand also highlights the variety of families and individuals residing in the area, all of whom contribute to a welcoming sense of place which sees the estate bounce back from various challenges over the years. “Right from the start we worked with residents from the estate to help inform the design. From strategic workshops to creative presentations, it was important to make sure we reflected their defiant spirit throughout the branding and tone-of-voice,” says designer for Lantern, Henry Brown.

And, explains Brown, much of Lantern’s work was based on undoing the negative associations citizens sometime have of estates, which like Newington are largely comprised of flats and high-rise housing. “Through intelligent wordplay, we’ve completely transformed the stereotype of an estate from something negative into a place that’s fiercely optimistic and proudly independent. This is reinforced by a suite of upbeat illustrations and a colourful brand system that’s easy to apply and roll out,” says Brown.

On the Lantern project page, Cara Thrope, head of community development for Newington Big Local, says, "We've always been a community of underdogs and right from the outset Lantern's attitude focused approach gave us a powerful personality. All the residents love it and are proudly flying the flag!"

Situated in Ramsgate for over 50 years, the Newington Estate continues to defy expectation. Adopting a powerful, colourful identity for the area, which relies on carefully linked imagery and wordplay yet retains the area’s character fundamentals, was paramount. Together, Lantern and Newington Big Local have demonstrated the Newington Estate as a forward-thinking place distinguished through its traditional, main attributes – resilient, proud and inspiring.

 

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Newington Estate before/after logo

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Newington website