Historic Coventry Trust

A rebrand to connect people with place

Originally set up in 2011 to save one of Coventry’s most important buildings, today Historic Coventry Trust has started the largest transfer in Europe of public heritage assets to a charity.

This change of scale prompted a growth in ambition as the Trust looked to become more visitor, community and activity focussed, so they asked rbl to help align their brand with this new, wider purpose.


Our initial research highlighted low community awareness of the Historic Coventry Trust. Those that were aware of the Trust thought of them as primarily a preservation organisation looking to ‘save’ buildings.

As the Trust was looking to move on from pure preservation, we needed to find ways to demonstrate how they would bring new life to the City’s heritage.

This raised an important question. What is heritage in a city of innovation? Coventry is a city that through revolution and regeneration has re-invented itself time after time. To reach out and make heritage not only relevant but influential in Coventry’s future we would need to create connections between people and place, and between the past and the present.

The focus for the organisation was shifting to becoming a more open and active part of the City, while maintaining their reputation as a trusted partner in historic building restoration and regeneration. We mirrored this by opening their brand up – creating a more transparent framework to be filled with life and culture, while retaining the key historic elements.

The result is a more flexible, legible and representative brand, with a wide range of tools and assets, from inspirational communications to clearer wayfinding. Together, these will help the Trust deliver on all their current and future ambitions: to operate top-class visitor attractions and offer luxury accommodation; to act as landlords to innovative businesses and hosts to engaging events; and to play a vital, inclusive and influential part in the local community.

“rbl have gone above and beyond at every stage of the process, from adding valuable insight to helping navigate the needs of a complex group of stakeholders. They’ve never lost sight of what matters and they’ve helped us create a clearer more inspirational vision for the organisation.”

Graham Tait
Assistant Director, Historic Coventry Trust

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