Yorkshire marketing agency The Bigger Boat has developed a new culture and heritage map for the centre of Halifax, West Yorkshire, to showcase the changing face of the town.
Featuring a hand drawn plan, recreated digitally, the project is designed to help both locals and tourists navigate Halifax’s many cultural hotspots. With highlights including The Piece Hall, Square Chapel Centre for the Arts and the Victoria Theatre, the key destinations have been carefully selected to cover arts, crafts, leisure and history.
With style inspiration taken from the maps of cosmopolitan cities including Madrid, Paris and London, the designers have put their own unique spin on things to reflect the most important elements of Halifax’s history.
Grass takes on a woven texture, for example, harking back to the textile mills of days gone by, and vibrant illustrations provide interesting insights into what people can expect to find at each location.
The project has been funded by Arts Council England through their Cultural Destinations programme. For Calderdale this is part of a partnership project that aims to develop a strong culture-based tourism offer, with a view to increasing the number and length of stay of visitors coming into the area.
Attention to detail was therefore key from the outset, as The Bigger Boat’s creative director Doug Main explained.
“I went ‘old school’ for this project, and visited each of Halifax’s prime cultural locations myself, to sketch the buildings by hand,” he explains. “These pencil drawings have then been digitally recreated which will allow the map to be altered as the town further develops, whilst maintaining an authentic, quirky and fun feel to the finished illustration.”
The project began in July 2016, and 18 maps have been installed in prime locations throughout Halifax.
Commenting on the result, Doug elaborated: “We’re Yorkshire through and through, so it’s great to have worked on a project where we can help Halifax showcase all it has to offer. From the textile mills and intricate architecture of the past, to things like the brand new Library and Square Chapel centre, it’s certainly an exciting time to be visiting this contemporary town.”
Square Chapel director David McQuillan added: “It was important to us to work with a high quality local agency who could create something for the benefit of the project partners, the people who live in Halifax, and new visitors. It’s not easy to do the rich story of the town justice, but we’re thrilled with the finished maps.”