A refined and robust solution 

The visual identity is anchored by a newly drawn marque that is a clear graphic expression of the Old Royal Naval College’s spectacular buildings balanced with a simple, clear and flexible wordmark. The keyline detail allows for iterations of the wordmark when necessary – for example when defining a particular named visitor destination like the Painted Hall. This strategy also supports the white label businesses and site partners effectively. The visual identity is then made up through layered elements of image, pattern, shape, colour and type to communicate a sense of the layers of history within the grounds. This layering follows a simple logic and is easy to apply for internal users.

A suite of bespoke patterns have been developed directly from the wonderful baroque and Neo Classical patterns found within the site and are used to add layers to communications or to add recognisable presence when photography might not be possible. The typographic approach is inspired by an original pamphlet issued by Sir James Thornhill, the renowned baroque artist who created the Painted Hall, to introduce the public to his breath-taking artwork.

Bespoke cuts of Caslon have been developed for the new identity to reflect the key eras of the site – Baroque, when it served as a refuge for naval veterans and Victorian, when it began its transformation to Naval college – these are used in a modern pairing to reflect the reality of the site as it is now – a landmark London destination.

A relationship, not just a project
The trust and shared understanding we developed between Thomas.Matthews and the ORNC team was essential to steer the project through some tricky waters. We have maintained our relationship with the organisation through senior team change and continue to work with them closely to deliver projects such as Wayfinding signage across the site, merchandise, event collateral and advertising campaigns and marketing roll-out. Also, we’ve heard the volunteers love their new uniform and are proud to wear it.


Thomas.Matthews have helped bring to life our site’s rich history. TM clearly love a challenge and worked hard to make sure that all our stakeholders were engaged in the design process. This has delivered a relevant, sophisticated and flexible identity that helps the Old Royal Naval College ‘own the domes’ of Greenwich and works across multiple media to tell a much wider story of our past, present and future. The care, craft and attention to detail at all stages – from strategic thinking to print production – mean that working with the Thomas.Matthews team is a delight.

Xanthe Arvanitakis
Director of Commercial & Operations