Letters - 11 August 2017

From Woodbrooke to restorative experience


I’ve been reading with interest the letters regarding the rebranding of the Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre, as I’m experiencing a similar process in my workplace.

In both cases, a longer name is being shortened to a shorter, more snappy one, leaving the old, longer name still there, but no longer to the fore.

In both cases it has provoked some strong reactions – often feelings of pain and discomfort, sometimes anger, outrage and… ‘how could they?!!!’

In both cases, after the event, there has been a thoughtful explanation of the process (14 July), which has aided understanding and acceptance.

I think that in both cases the reactions have come from a place of strong belonging, deep connection and feeling part of the thing that seems to have been changed, seemingly out of the blue, or at least without considering ‘me’/’us’.

The communications team at my workplace have acknowledged that the rebranding process could have been more transparent, less rushed, with more employee involvement, which they have now put in place.

It helps me to remember that I don’t need the new name or logo to continue to feel connected to Woodbrooke, but if the rebranding can help more people to make that connection then that can only be good.

What can we learn from this? How could such a process be managed in the future? How can those close to the name have a sense of belonging in the process?

Name and address supplied

The Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre has shortened its name to Woodbrooke; all that has been lost is three words from a title.

As regular visitors in a number of capacities we feel that we can assure Friends that there has been no loss of Quaker ethos, Quaker welcome, Quaker ministry or Quaker community.

The education provided continues to support and inspire Friends. Others who visit find ‘a place of loving friendship and enjoyment’ and are touched by its care.

Marilyn Higgins and Sheila Houldin

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