When producing stationery, you need to ensure that your materials support and project our shared NHS identity. To enable you to do this, we’ve developed a set of guidelines covering the principal stationery items required by NHS organisations.

As stationery requirements vary across the NHS, it would be unhelpful to provide more prescriptive instructions than those given here. But please be aware that you cannot apply a design style to your stationery.

Stationery for children’s trusts

 With material such as stationery it is important that you follow the corporate identity policy of your lead organisation. You should only use the organisation's correct and authorised logo or trademark. You also need to ensure that material clearly reflects the appropriate line of accountability: this is an important issue for children's trusts, as they are not separate entities and the lead organisation retains accountability for services.

If you need to include further information regarding your trust and/or other partners, you can place it in the footers of certain stationery items, such as letterheads.

If only a small part of your organisation is involved in a children’s trust, it may be possible to use existing stationery and still recognise your involvement in the trust.

For example: a paediatric ward within an NHS hospital might be involved in a children's trust. The ward could continue to use its local NHS corporate letterhead, but could include information about its trust membership in the footer.

Using a professional printer

We recommend that you use a professional printer to produce your stationery items, for the following reasons:

  • A professional printer can prepare the computer files needed to print your stationery correctly
  • Using a professional printer can be a cost effective way of buying good quality stationery
  • Your stationery will be of a consistent standard


When printing NHS-branded stationery, in the majority of cases you shouldn’t require more than one or two-colour printing.


Printing the NHS logo or your logotype

Across all your stationery materials, the NHS logo should only be reproduced in NHS Blue (Pantone® 300) or, where this is not possible, black.

For most NHS organisations, your local logotype should be printed in NHS Blue and black – or, if printing in black and white, in black only. You should not reproduce your logotype in any other colour, or as a tint of either NHS Blue or black.

Printing in NHS Blue alone will not deliver the same clarity as black, and for this reason should be avoided. You should also ensure that you use the original artwork from your logotype and do not alter it in any way.

Paper stock

We recommend that you use good quality white paper for all NHS print applications, including stationery. This will help you maximise logo clarity and minimise procurement costs.

However, there may be instances where audience needs or business requirements make alternative paper stocks necessary. For example, if you are:

  • producing materials for people with visual impairments – use yellow paper (with black ink); or
  • producing materials for elderly or disabled people, who often find paper too flimsy to hold - use a stiffer material, particularly if you are supplying location directions.

In all cases you should choose a laser-compatible stock. You should also keep environmental issues in mind. Sustainable paper sources, inks and processes will lessen the impact of your printing operations.

Last updated: 06/05/08