Lighting up Old Joe

The University’s clock tower, at the centre of our Edgbaston campus, is affectionately nicknamed Old Joe, and you can light him up to promote your special cause. 

old joe pink high res

The University’s clock tower, at the centre of our Edgbaston campus, is affectionately nicknamed Old Joe in memory of the University’s founder Joseph Chamberlain. Officially titled the, Joseph Chamberlain Memorial Clock Tower, the tower was completed in 1908 and is the tallest free standing clock tower in the world.

Do you want to light up Old Joe?

To celebrate, commemorate or raise awareness for a cause or event, changing the colour of Old Joe can bring your campaign coverage and exposure.    

As the University receives many requests, we need to manage these carefully to ensure there are no clashes, and to factor in the time it takes to physically change the clock’s colour.

In addition, to ensure that when Old Joe does change colour, the impact is noticed, there is a limit on the number of times the clock can change colour in a calendar month.

The request must also align with the University’s strategic framework and have planned communications content. The Estates team retain the right to decline a request if it is deemed unsuitable.

Information to consider

  • Old Joe can only be changed to one colour at a time. You can choose from: white, red, green, blue, orange, pink, purple or yellow.
  • Old Joe’s colour can only be changed for three consecutive days.
  • Ideally, a notice period of one month will be needed to process requests.
  • Have you considered how you will communicate the reasons for the colour change? When you submit your request, please send any text or content relating to the change, and what it symbolises, so that the University’s Marketing and Communications team can distribute this accordingly.

Making a request

To make a request to change the colour of Old Joe, email us at oldjoe@contacts.bham.ac.uk and please include the following:

  • The date/s of the change
  • The colour you would like
  • The event/cause for the change
  • Any University links to the cause
  • Attach any communications text or content relating to the colour change

You will receive a reply from the team as soon as possible verifying whether your request has been approved. You will also be sent instructions to complete payment.

Payment

A charge of £50 (weekdays) or £100 (weekends/bank holidays) is payable to cover the costs of carrying out the change; plus VAT. The cost is set at £50 or £100 whether you wish to change the colour of Old Joe for one evening or three.

Payment needs to be made by completing the recharge request form. Please ensure that appropriate authorisation has been obtained before submitting your request, as rechargeable works will proceed on the assumption that you are able to submit a Proactis order. The Estates team will action chargeable works requests for Old Joe colour changes only when the request has been authorised and a recharge request form has been completed and forwarded to the email address recharges.estates@contacts.bham.ac.uk.

Who can I contact?

Not sure whether your request is suitable? Send your questions to oldjoe@contacts.bham.ac.uk, or refer to our Old Joe calendar for a flavour of what causes have been promoted in the past, and what is scheduled for the future.