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Our New Identity


To ensure we are ready for tomorrow, here at Northumbria University we have been working with our staff, students, alumni and partners to articulate who we are and what we have to offer.

Our belief is that in a changing world people are looking for bold, confident leaders who can set the direction for the future. We know that with the right people – staff, students, alumni and partners – we have the leadership, innovation and inspiration to do just that. 

We have summarised this vision into one core idea: #TakeOnTomorrow,

This idea represents an institution that is bold, directional, confident, challenging and can do, that embraces the future and faces challenges head on. 

Northumbria’s new logo – celebrating our heritage

The new logo, our shield, is not a new design. It comes directly from the University coat of arms.  The only real change we have made is to align it to our new brand palette – black and white.


Whilst we believe the new logo is a confident statement about our future direction and a celebration of our heritage, we wanted to make sure that our stakeholders agreed.  So, we carried out extensive research with current and prospective students in the United Kingdom, Europe and Overseas, as well as representatives from the business community and our alumni.

Having engaged with over 3,000 respondents, we found that two thirds felt that the new logo would be more likely to be associated with a high quality and ambitious university than our existing Northumbria logo. When asked about the words they associated with our new logo, the top five were; Bold, Leader, Traditional, Authoritative and Professional.

Northumbria’s new logo immediately signifies change but simultaneously celebrates its heritage.  It recognises where the University has come from, but when combined with #TakeOnTomorrow – there is a very real sense of strength and direction.

Northumbria’s coat of arms

The University coat of arms, which is used for ceremonial events such as congregations, illustrates and reflects the importance of the University’s origins and its historic links to the city. It grounds us by celebrating where we have come from, reflecting our heritage in a bold and future-facing way.

The design has four key elements; a shield, crest, motto and supporters.

The shield is always the basis of a coat of arms and items that appear on the shield are known as charges. Northumbria’s shield contains two triple-towered castles, representing the City of Newcastle upon Tyne, and an open book which represents learning. The arched line of battlements dividing the shield refers to the Roman Wall, a historic feature of Northumberland. Whilst the curve of the arch reflects the King George the Fifth Bridge over the River Tyne, more generally the bridge alludes to the University’s role in the transmission of knowledge to, and strong links, with the society in which its located.

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