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East Suffolk Council logo rated eighth best by freelance writer who reviewed every local authority symbol in the UK

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A freelance writer and graphic designer has shared his honest thoughts on Suffolk councils' logos as he rated the emblems that represent all of the UK's local authorities.

Robin Wilde, who is based in Seattle, Washington, published a quirky review of all 399 local authority logos in the UK, placing two Suffolk councils at either end of the spectrum, with one making the top 10, while another was in the bottom 10.

Coming in as eighth best in the whole country, East Suffolk District Council was praised highly for its new, stylish looking logo and colour scheme of greens, blues and yellows.

East Suffolk Council logo. (53279883)
East Suffolk Council logo. (53279883)

Mr Wilde wrote: "This council is very new, as is its logo, which does it no harm, but it’s still a remarkably nice approach.

"The combination of rural farmland and beautiful seaside is communicated well alongside the idea of forward progress."

An East Suffolk Council spokesperson said they were pleased their logo had been recognised for its 'design, originality and technical execution'.

"We believe the design is a bold representation of our strong and recognisable identity, which we hope is a mark of quality," they added.

"The logo was developed by local design agency, Spring from Southwold, as part of the creation of a new super district council for East Suffolk, and the formal dissolution of Suffolk Coastal and Waveney, in April 2019.

"As highlighted by the compiler of the rankings, the logo combines elements that reflect the geography and location of the council, through the idea of a compass point facing east, while also incorporating four colours which embody who and where we are – two shades of blue for the sky and the sea, green for land, and yellow for both the beach and the sun.

"Considerable thought was given to the logo’s appearance, but also to how it would be used in a range of different settings - on public signs of varying sizes, council vehicles, letters and social media icons."

Mid Suffolk and Babergh District Councils logos
Mid Suffolk and Babergh District Councils logos

Less lucky in the outcome of the review were Babergh and Mid Suffolk, rated amongst the worst. Babergh fared the worst in the county coming in 392nd, just seven places from the bottom.

Mr Wilde wrote of their logo: "This is confusing as it has clearly been produced digitally, but by someone with absolutely no artistic sense.

"The lurid colours, massively busy contents and low-resolution system fonts might work for an adventure game from 1991 but not for an organisation in control of services for 92,000 people."

A spokesperson for Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils said: “We are very proud of all that our districts and towns have to offer. It is disappointing to hear East Anglia described as 'backwards' and negative comments about Stowmarket as we believe that both Babergh and Mid Suffolk are fantastic places to live, work and visit.

“To be honest, we’re more interested in supporting our residents and communities – and put far greater stock in winning bronze in the Council of the Year category of the iESE Public Sector Transformation Awards this year for our work through the pandemic and beyond.”

Suffolk County Council logo
Suffolk County Council logo

Mr Wilde rated Suffolk County Council's logo as the 222nd best in the UK.

He said: "The failure to curve the back corner on the extruded block here hurts me inside.

"It would have been so easy! And crucially it harms what is otherwise a standard mid-tier logo."

West Suffolk Council logo
West Suffolk Council logo

West Suffolk was rated 209th, placing it fairly close to the middle of the list. Criticism still came thick and fast, however, with the font labelled 'weak' and the 'out of place grey' deemed a let down.

A council spokesperson said: “We are open to all views but as the author of the article says points have been added on a whim so this is not a serious report and completely the view of one person who describes it themselves as an ‘increasingly deranged stream of consciousness’.

"Our brand is in what we do and achieve. Rather than concentrate on a logo or spend money on creating one, the people of West Suffolk want us to use our time and public money to invest in providing high quality services, especially during COVID.

"This we have done, saving millions of pounds, growing the local economy, providing businesses with access to more than £120 million in grants and rate relief as well as supporting the most vulnerable and preventing homelessness.”

Ipswich Borough Council
Ipswich Borough Council

Ipswich Borough Council came in 113th, second best of the Suffolk offerings, with praise going to its simple design, single colour and 'weighty font choice'.

Coming in first place and crowned best local authority logo in the UK was that of Bedford Borough Council. Mr Wilde wrote: "Ask me for a council logo that can reproduce at scale across your bin lorries and also strike fear into your enemies carried aloft on a banner into battle, and I’ll show you Bedford."

Very last on the list was Allerdale Borough Council, which Mr Wilde likens to the Windows 95 desktop background.

Sharing the list on social media, Mr Wilde admitted the 18,000 word article, which takes 85 minutes to read from start to finish, took him months to finish.

Where would you rate the Suffolk local authority logos?