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When Reading-based St Luke and St Bart Church got in touch for a new brand and website, we knew it would be a project with a difference. Three months on and everything is not only up and running, but also getting great feedback from their parishioners and their surrounding communities.
They began their search for a new agency in the summer of 2017, hoping to find someone who could deliver a brand that would inspire their current congregation while appealing to the wider community and the next generation of potential churchgoers.
The new brand needed to engage confidently and reflect the many aspects of church life beyond worship spaces – events, child clubs, a community garden and so on. They were also considering bringing both churches under one umbrella name – Redlands Parish Church – and needed a brand that was flexible enough to stand on its own or with accompanying sub-brands.
From there, they needed to redesign their website to reflect their ethos and new brand, be user friendly for a wide range of abilities and to enable people to make church hall bookings directly instead of over the phone.
Discovery and concepts
Having met several members of both churches to get a feel for the parish, its members and the aims of the church, we developed two concepts that highlighted the warm, friendly feel that we all got from the Redlands Parish family.
Concept one features a stylised hand which was influenced by the ‘r’ of Redlands and demonstrates ‘reaching out’, the hands of Christ and a togetherness with the local community. The colour palette combines the traditional Reading red brick of the church with four modern, bold colours representing the vibrancy and diversity of the four ‘spaces’.
Concept two represents the ‘spaces’ in the form of four olive leaves, and their connecting together also creates the shape of the cross. As well as representing new growth and togetherness with the wider community, the olive tree is a symbol of peace in many faiths. The natural colour palette has a freshness which contrasts with the Redlands red brick.
With a congregation that ran from children through to people in their 90s, and covering the range of nationalities that make up this diverse part of Reading, there was a need for a very simplistic, easy to use website – but that need was balanced by the fact they needed features like a hall booking system, dynamically updated events calendar and a countdown timer to the church’s next big event.
One of the great things about this project was how much other collateral the church needed going forward, something that allowed us to get fully involved with integrating the brand on so many different levels.
From external and internal signage and events posters through to branded items that their parishioners can share with others (branded brollies for a rainy day, perfect to give to someone in need on the street – how great an idea is that!?), we’ve been able to get stuck in with it all.
What the church say…
“Theme’s concept and design work not only communicates who we are, what we do, and why we do it, but we also loved the way Theme listened so carefully throughout the time we worked together. We’re thrilled that we now have a concept that expresses the vibrancy, openness, and dynamism of our community”. Rev’d Dr Graeme Fancourt.