Brand Report: Locality

The new organisation is replacing well-established brands Bassac and the Development Trusts Association


The decision to merge two well-known community umbrella organisations, Bassac and the Development Trusts Association, made for a challenging rebranding process.

The process began in November last year after both DTA and Bassac members voted in favour of the merger. The organisations began by designing a new brand name, identity, strategy and website, all of which cost just under £20,000. It is due to be unveiled at the House of Lords this week.

The new organisation, Locality, is replacing two well-established brands: the DTA was launched in 1993 to help local people set up community enterprises, and Bassac, which originated in 1920, has a core focus on strengthening local democracy.

Locality will help people to set up local organisations for the benefit of their communities and support existing community organisations to work more effectively. "Our members share a common cause - to make every place worth living in," says Farah Hidil, communications manager at Locality. "We felt that by combining the know-how from our work in communities, social action, community enterprise and development, we could get a better result for our members."

Five staff members worked on the rebranding process with the communications agency Public Life, having first sought ideas for designs from their member organisations.

The new logo features two rectangles at an angle to represent banners promoting positive change led by members. The rectangles have a 'pointer' on the bottom left-hand corner to make them look as if they are pinpointing a local area on a map, illustrating community focus.

Hidil, who was previously DTA's communications manager, says the biggest challenge was identifying a brand that would integrate two very well-established organisations that had each been strong brands in their own right.

But she adds: "The fact that we're a membership organisation and that we have involved members in the process of creating the brand will help it to become a success."

In January, as the new brand identity and logo were being approved by the board of trustees, the Cabinet Office announced that a consortium headed by Locality would run its community organisers programme.

EXPERT VIEW - Hector Pottie, design director, Figtree

Hector Pottie, design director, FigtreeWith any rebrand, you need to ask why a new brand is needed. In this case - the merger of two existing brands - there is a good case to create a new one. A brand is never just a logo: it's a guiding statement of what the organisation believes and how that belief is communicated to the world.

The name Locality feels much more memorable and friendly than Bassac or DTA - so it's off to a good start, although I'm not convinced by the differently coloured "local" and "ity". It looks simple and considered, with the speech-bubble shapes giving scope for developing the identity into a wider identity language.

On a negative note, however, it feels a bit dull and, despite the world "ambitious" in its strapline, I find it pretty boring and nondescript. In summary, better than its predecessors, but lacking in spirit and craft.


Creativity: 2
Delivery: 2
Total: 4 out of 10

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