The striking uniform that will be worn by the volunteer City Hosts for Coventry’s year as UK City of Culture has been revealed.
The first 50 City Hosts will be deployed on Monday, 17 May, and residents and visitors to the city will not be able to miss them in their blue, black and white outfits that perfectly capture the Coventry 2021 brand.
The outfits – which include a polo shirt, long-sleeved zip top, jacket and cap – were inspired by designs by students on Coventry University’s graphic design and fashion degree courses.
As well as those items, City Hosts will also be given a drawstring bag, lanyard, hi-vis jacket, water bottle, pen, notepad and clear face mask.
The polo shirt, long-sleeved top, lanyard and drawstring bag have all been made using 100 per cent recycled material – with the polo shirt alone preventing up to six plastic bottles entering the world’s oceans.
Over 2,300 people have already signed up to be City Hosts. The aim is to reach 5,000 over the course of the year, which starts on Saturday, 15 May.
They will perform a variety of roles in Coventry and Warwickshire, which include providing a friendly welcome and supporting audiences to navigate around the city. They will be present at key transport hubs to provide an initial welcome and a farewell to visitors, while others will provide information on artworks and events.
Coventry City of Culture Trust has partnered with EnV and Coventry University Students’ Union (CUSU) on the recruitment drive and training of the City Host Volunteers.
Martin Sutherland, Chief Executive of the Coventry City of Culture Trust, said: “The City Hosts look fantastic in their uniforms and will provide a distinctive and bright welcome to audiences and visitors to Coventry.
“It is great that so many volunteers have already signed up to be City Hosts, they are going to have a major part to play in our year being a success, embodying the spirit of Coventry UK City of Culture 2021.
“We can’t wait to see them deployed across the city and, as we open up more and more, at major events throughout our year.”
Three proposals were chosen and played a pivotal role in inspiring and informing the final uniform design. They came from Sejin Choi (BA Graphic Design), Beyza Mert (BA Fashion) and Emily Morris (BA Graphic Design).
A further three proposals, by Alice Ellard (MA Design Management), Emily Yeomans (BA Fashion) and Natalie Evans (BA Fashion), were highly commended for the high standard and quality of the ideas developed.
Marie Goodwill-Allen, City Host, said: “It’s fantastic to be dressed in the city’s colours. Our famous colour of Coventry blue with the black and white of two tone and the arrows on our sleeves pointing the way to go to your destination. What a great combination we make as your City Host.”
Ragini Vaghela, City Host, said: “I love the blue, black and white. They are clean crisp colours that will be spotted anywhere. I’d be happy to wear it all day!”
Joshua Mcfadden, City Host, added: “The City Host uniform has been designed by Coventry students with Coventry in mind. These Coventry centric aspects make the uniform stand out and draws the eyes of members of the public. The Coventry blue and bicycle spokes allude to the history of the city.”