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History of the roundel

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History of the roundel - page 5

Each operating subsidiary of LRT was given its own version of the roundel. London Underground took this opportunity to rationalise its own signage, commissioning design consultants Henrion, Ludlow and Schmidt to advise on their logo in 1984. Their blue and red Underground roundel strongly resembled that introduced by the Design Research Unit in 1972.

Three roundels from the LRT corporate identity booklet, published in 1987.
Reference number: 1998/105089


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In 1987, the corporate identity consultants Wolff Olins were given the task of developing roundels for the other operating subsidiaries of London Regional Transport, thus linking the family of operating companies.

Underground roundel at Canary Wharf station, 2001.
Reference number: 2002/412


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In 1990 LRT and its subsidiary operating companies: London Transport Buses and London Underground reverted to the group name London Transport. Again the roundel was employed as the unifying symbol, to identify and link the companies in the minds of the public. Joint group services were identified by a red roundel. Both rail and bus roundels appeared together on common publicity.

Joint bus and rail roundel at Hammersmith, mid 1990s.
Reference number: 2002/413


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From 1994 bus services were operated on London Transport's behalf by private companies. London Transport Buses (LTB) was responsible for planning and managing the service contracts. LTB set about establishing standards for using the roundel as a unified identity for publicity and signs. A white roundel on a red square became the main symbol for the bus network.

LT Buses roundel at Stratford bus station, 2002.
Reference number: 2002/4110


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TfL and the family of roundels


On 3 July 2000, Transport for London (TfL) was created to manage the majority of transport services in London. As well as the bus system, TfL had responsibility for taxis, London river services, Victoria coach station, Docklands Light Railway, Croydon Tramlink, Street Management, Dial-a-Ride and London Transport Museum. In 2003 London Underground became part of TfL and from 2007 part of the suburban rail network was transferred to TfL, branded as 'Overground'.

Transport for London roundels, 2000.
Reference number: 2000/19958


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The decision to continue using the roundel as the identification of both TfL and its 'modes' was taken early on in the organisation's history. Since then a 'family' of roundels, using different colours to badge the various services, has been developed. This is based on a plain blue roundel for TfL with other colours denoting the various services. Each mode has subsequently gained an independent identity, whilst communicating that they are part of a wider organisation. Any non-roundel logos were eliminated as part of this process.

Multi modal signage at Canning Town station, 2008.
Reference number: 2008/2716


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