Competition: Design the Slow Ways symbol

This competition has now closed. Thank you for all the amazing entries. The judge have over 250 ideas to look at! The winning design will be posted here in coming weeks. Join the Slow Ways newsletter for updates.

The Slow Ways will be a network of 7,000 walking routes that connect Great Britain’s towns and cities as well as thousands of villages. People will be able to use the Slow Ways to walk between neighbouring settlements or daisy-chain them for longer journeys. 

The first draft of the Slow Ways routes have been imagined and created in lockdown by hundreds of volunteers from across the country. 

We now need a strong visual identity for the Slow Ways. In the future this might be used on signage, waymarkers and maps. For now, it will be used on the website we are creating as well as t-shirts, posters and in other places.

That’s why we’re organising this competition. We’re looking for a strong symbol for the Slow Ways that will give them a clear identity. You can see some examples of symbols used on trails around the world on this Twitter thread.

We are looking for a symbol that:

  • is a snail or snail inspired
  • is clear, bold and timeless
  • can be stencilled
  • can be easily adapted to one colour, but you can be as colourful as you like
  • would look good big or small, on a map, waymarker, sign, pin-badge, t-shirt or poster

A snail was suggested by a Slow Ways volunteer and this has turned into a much-loved idea. Snails are slow and humble explorers that carry their homes on their backs, leave trails, are found nearly everywhere and, unknowingly, will actually share the Slow Ways with us. They also have a very distinctive and identifiable shape.

As well as having their symbol used for the Slow Ways, there will be a prize of £250 for the artist(s) of the winning design.

A judging panel will shortlist designs and pick the final winner. The panel will be made up of volunteers who have helped to draft the Slow Ways network and relevant experts.

Before you enter you need to know:

  • Anyone can enter (unless you are a judge or related to a judge)
  • All designs must be submitted before the end of June 30 2020 
  • You can submit up to three different designs
  • Your design must be original and designed by you or your team
  • You should submit your symbol ideally as a vector (.ai .eps .svg), or high quality image (.jpg .png)
  • If your design wins you must be willing to potentially make small alterations to it. In the future we may need to make additions or changes too. 
  • You give the Slow Ways project permission to publish and share your design in Slow Ways related stories even if it does not win
  • If you win, you’ll give complete ownership of the design to the Slow Ways project with the understanding that it will be made available via a creative commons non-commercial license 
  • The judges reserve the right to not pick any designs or extend the competition 

Why not share your ideas and work in progress online using the hashtag #SlowWays?