National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

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William
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National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by William » Wed Jun 14, 2017 11:10 am

I have been reading the following web page with interest.

https://www.england.nhs.uk/nhsidentity/ ... nes/fonts/

This is for the National Health Service in the United Kingdom.

The National Health Service is the mostly free-at-the-point-of-need State healthcare system in the United Kingdom.

There are some charges for optical, for dental and for prescriptions, for some people, but the more expensive things like seeing the doctor or the nurse or hospital treatment, operations and prescriptions while in hospital are free-at-the-point-of-need, funded from taxation.

However although a National service, there are local Clinical Commissioning Groups (around 200 in total) within the system and each can produce its own documents, hence the guidelines.

William Overington

Wednesday 14 June 2017

Alfred
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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by Alfred » Thu Jun 15, 2017 4:27 pm

Curiously, the NHS Scotland site at http://www.scot.nhs.uk says nothing at all about fonts.
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William
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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by William » Thu Jun 15, 2017 8:02 pm

Hi Alfred

I have found the following.

http://www.nhsscotlandci.scot.nhs.uk/wp ... elines.pdf

Section 4 is about fonts.

It is interesting that the NHS has different fonts in Scotland and England.

William

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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by PJMiller » Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:40 am

I work in the NHS (in England) and the guidelines say that we must use Frutiger, but Frutiger is not installed on any of our computers so we were told by the IT department to use Ariel instead.

Frutiger is a nice font, unlike Ariel which is one of the most overused fonts on the planet!

Some years ago the recommended typefaces were made available for free to all NHS institutions but in more recent years licenses have to be bought for each machine they are installed on.

With the deployment of the new WMD ( Windows Managed Desktop ) we lost all non approved software and fonts from our machines.

When I asked the IT department why Frutiger was not available they replied that it was not available because it was not available and I should use Ariel instead. To me this seemed like a tautology. Oh well ... :( :x

William
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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by William » Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:27 am

I noticed that PJMiller mentioned Ariel (with an e) whereas the typeface is Arial (with an a).

Seeing Ariel, I remembered that there was a Britannia class steam locomotive named Ariel.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_B ... ocomotives

I found it as number 70016.

From time to time I have wondered what is the origin of the name Arial (with an a) for the font.

I found the following theory, criticised yet recorded.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Aria ... s.27_Ariel

There has been a practice of sometimes naming a font after the first printed book in which it, (or sometimes the original font upon which it is based), appeared.

For example, Centaur and Poliphilus.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centaur_(typeface)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypnerotomachia_Poliphili

Returning to Ariel (with an e) and the theory from the Wikipedia talk page.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penguin_Books

It appears that Ariel was the first Penguin book, reference 8 of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penguin_Books seems to imply this.

The book seems to be about the poet Percy Bysshe Shelley.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Percy_Bysshe_Shelley

One of various other uses of Ariel is the character in the Shakespeare play, The Tempest.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ariel_(The_Tempest)

So I am wondering whether, even if the name Ariel were not used for the typeface that may have been Gill Sans, whether the fact that Ariel was the first Penguin book might be something to do with the origin of the name Arial.

Maybe the name Arial (with an a) was coined as a new word so that Intellectual Property Rights could be asserted?

I remember well Pelican books.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penguin_B ... ican_Books

In particular a Pelican book that I have, Five Hundred Years of Printing by S.H. Steinberg, which I bought in the 1960s.

Mostly just musing, but hopefully of interest to some readers.

William

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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by Alfred » Fri Jun 16, 2017 1:02 pm

PJMiller wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:40 am
I work in the NHS (in England) and the guidelines say that we must use Frutiger, but Frutiger is not installed on any of our computers so we were told by the IT department to use Ariel instead.
I don't know why NHS Scotland decided to be different, or why their font recommendations are hidden away in a 'corporate identity' sub-site. NHS Wales (or GIG Cymru, if you prefer) also recommends Frutiger, but their second choice is Verdana:
http://www.wales.nhs.uk/documents/26303 ... %20WEB.PDF

They really should have found themselves a proofreader! On page 7 it says
The minimum size
To ensure good and clear readability of the corporate mark it must not be
used smaller than 24mm high as this will mean that the accompanying.
Maximum height is left to the users own discretion.
and then on the next page the words
Who should use the logo
• Further guidance on use of the NHS in Wales logo can be obtained
from:
are followed by a blank space. :roll:
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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by Alfred » Fri Jun 16, 2017 1:05 pm

William wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 9:27 am
I noticed that PJMiller mentioned Ariel (with an e) whereas the typeface is Arial (with an a).

Seeing Ariel, I remembered that there was a Britannia class steam locomotive named Ariel.

...

One of various other uses of Ariel is the character in the Shakespeare play, The Tempest.
There's also Disney's version of 'The Little Mermaid', where the eponymous mermaid (King Triton's daughter) is named Ariel. ;)
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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by PJMiller » Fri Jun 16, 2017 5:39 pm

Ok ... so I got the name wrong! I almost never use 'Arial' except at work where it is mandated (and even then I sometimes sustitute Calibri and nobody notices). :roll:

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Re: National Health Service (UK) font guidelines

Post by William » Sat Jun 17, 2017 12:19 pm

PJMiller wrote:
Fri Jun 16, 2017 5:39 pm
Ok ... so I got the name wrong! I almost never use 'Arial' except at work where it is mandated (and even then I sometimes sustitute Calibri and nobody notices). :roll:
Oh, you putting Ariel rather than Arial serendipitously had the effect of me finding some very interesting things that I did not know about before.

I enjoyed the search and I hope that some readers enjoyed reading about what I found.

William

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