Mick Darnalds, Vauxhall Walk, Borough of Lambeth, London SW11, 2011 • Guess McDonald’s trademark enforcers never got this far.
Sell 4 You, 51 Exeter Road, Exmouth, Devon, 2009 • Psychedelic seaside sign, still there in 2017 but very sunbleached.
The Spar, 1c Braganza Street, Kennington, Borough of Southwark, London SE17, 2002 • Colourful yet grim, with a DIY awning logo. It lasted till 2016 and was then redeveloped into […]
The Barber Room, Steve’s Garage Ltd, 90-91 Plender Street, Borough of Camden, London NW1, 2003 • DIY signage meets groovy graffiti. By 2008 the whole block had been demolished and […]
Rent Here, Vote Sensibly, circa 407 Purley Way, Waddon, Borough of Croydon, London CR0, 2017 • Brilliant billboard intervention on the main London to Brighton highway, in an area which […]
C&S Builders Merchants, 15-17 Leytonstone Road, Stratford, Borough of Newham, London E15, 2006 • Great mix of fancy fonts and trad sign painting here. Last spotted in 2012 and by […]
Take Cover, 142 Church Street, City of Westminster, London NW8, 2003 • Faded bed painting meets saggy awning, not a great advert for its services. By 2016 it had long […]
Rainford Hardware & DIY Supplies, 212 Battersea Park Road, Borough of Wandsworth, London SW11, 2002 • DIY sign advertising DIY shop.
City Confectionary, 105 Shoreditch High Street, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E1, 2002 • Lovely quirky sign writing, with ‘confectionery’ spelled wrong on both sides.
Lahoree House, Victoria House, 7 Wilton Road, Victoria, City of Westminster, London SW1, 2004 • Slice of grungy old London in a historic head-lined building outside Victoria Station, now undergoing […]
Concourse Burger Bar, Concourse House, Lime Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Hand-drawn mixed messages on Scouse burger bar. The entire building was demolished to build new offices some time after […]
More Shoe Upstairs, Wardour Street, Soho, City of Westminster, London W1, 2002 • It must have been a very big shoe…
H.W. Cooper, Willow Walk, Bermondsey, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2002 • Colourful sign collage on a glass and perspex works. By 2017 the wonky drainpipes were still there, but […]
Caf´e Paradise, 116 Chingford Mount Road, Borough of Waltham Forest, London E4, 2016 • Divine accent intervention.
Pompey Hardware (Keys Kingdom), 92 Fawcett Road, Southsea, City of Portsmouth, 2016 • Completely brilliant shop themed in blue and white after Portsmouth’s football team, aka Pompey. The owner even […]
Platform Cafe, Leicester North Station, The Sidings, Leicester LE4, 2016 • Cute cafe signs in heritage station that sends steam engines along the main line to Loughborough’s defunct Central Station. […]
Mama’s Discount Wholesalers, 305 St. Saviours Road. Leicester LE5, 2016 • Astonishing Aladdin’s cave of a shop which was even more packed inside than out. I’m wondering if the wall-mounted […]
London Center College, Cumming Street, Borough of Islington, London N1, 2006 • Impressive sign! Not only does it namecheck Oxford and Cambridge universities, it offers ‘assistance’ with visas. Hmmm.
Govan Discount 2, 1014 Govan Road, Govan, Glasgow G51, Scotland, 2010 • I wonder what Govan Discount 1 Superstore is like? This branch is next door to yesterday’s Chung’s, and still looks […]
E. Watson & Son & Daughter, The Joiners Arms, 120 & 116-118 […]
Floorcraft, 20a Oxford Street, Whitstable, Kent, 2002 • DIY sign-painting meets mini-grandeur. Now houses Oxford Street Books.
Dawn Crystal, 3 HighStreet, Amblecote, Stourbridge, West Midlands, 2016 • Cute old shop opposite the Ruskin Glass Centre in Stourbridge, a West Midlands town that was once the world centre of the cut glass […]
Welcome to Super Azarbayjan, 65 Hackney Road, Borough of Hackney, London E2, 2007 • Surely one of the best shop names ever. By 2012 it was a hip-looking shop with […]
Avis Windscreens, 1 Creekside, Deptford, Borough of Lewisham, London SE8, 2002 • DIY hand-painted gate on the garage which hosted (and covered up) yesterday’s old Medina sign. It is now Greenwich MOT Centre, with […]
W.E.H. Nunns Mens Wear, 16 Bridge Street, Leatherhead, Surrey, 2003 • No-nonsense menswear emporium which looks like it had seen better days. Note classic lighted ‘ties’ sign inside. By 2009 it […]
I.B.S. Merseyside Ltd, 72 Waterloo Road (between Regent Street and Porter Street), Liverpool L3, 2008 • Interesting hand lettering with Ws like upside-down Ms and an 18th-century look. Google reckons […]
Cafe, corner of Henry Street and Suffolk Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Wonky hand-lettering for this generic cafe, which was still a derelict corner in 2014, despite being almost in the city […]
Sans’ Cafe, 2 Lightbody Street, Liverpool 3, 2008 • A famous greasy spoon for 40 years, albeit sans apostrophe knowledge. Owner Tseng Chikhao died in 2014; there’s a great article here. The […]
Nameless green Chinese shop, Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • Attractive decaying paint job in lucky Chinese colours. Now a house.
Oriental Food Wholesale & Retail, 31 Nelson Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • I can’t find a 31 Nelson Street now, so maybe it got knocked down.
Saigon Vietnamese Restaurant, 54 Berry Street, Liverpool L1, 2003 • There used to be lots of nice old neon signage in Liverpool. This charming example is now totally gone, replaced […]
Supergrows Cosmetic, 405 Mare Street, Borough of Hackney, London E8, 2010 • Yargh, nightmare on Mare Street. That’s some cosmetic (bottom pic).
Unity Shop, 2 Atwell Road, Peckham, Borough of Southwark, London SE15, 2010 • Elegantly-pillared charity shop lookalike selling ‘georges & Swiss voile laces’ – ‘georges’ being presumably georgette. Now gone.
Greek Gods Taverna, 6 Maiden Lane, Covent Garden, City of Westminster, London WC2, 2003 • Blimey. This became a branch of the famous trendy restaurant Polpo, itself a beautiful re-imagining of a […]
Hare Krishna Matchless Gifts, 102 Caledonian Road, Kings Cross, Borough of Islington, London N1, 2010 • How cheerful! Still there but with a slightly less psychedelic logo.
Inter Biz, 1d Blenheim Grove, Peckham, Borough of Southwark, London SE15, 2010 • Wonkily hand-painted one-stop shop for a bewildering array of financial services. A note on the door says ‘Am down the […]
Bungalows Cafe, 80 Mare Street, Borough of Hackney, London E8, 2007 • Another cafe with handily-placed church. Still there but not as attractive.
Softys, 68b Bridge Street, Bolton, Lancashire, 2010 • Its full name was once Softys’ Hard Stuff (sic), but part has fallen off – see the full sign on Flickr, taken in […]
Gem Tool (Mfg) Co. Ltd., 6 Regent Place, Jewellery Quarter, Birmingham, 2005 • Old workshop in Brum’s fascinating Jewellery Quarter. Now gone; Google Street View shows a faded patch where […]
Handy Supply Co, 41 Herbert Road, Borough of Greenwich, London SE18, 2004 • DIY type for a DIY store. It’s now, blub, a Peri Peri Grill.
The Drink Box, 159 Camberwell New Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE5, 2001 • Looks like it’s called Off Licence, but tiny ornate handwriting reveals its true identity. It’s been […]
Bikeshire Racing, 15 New Kent Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2001 • Charmingly naive motorbike murals, long gone. A small disclaimer under “Free Fitting” reads “(to loose wheels)”. Now a block of […]
Ford Specialist, 123 Fairfield Road, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E3, 2010 • Mmm, I must buy a Ford so I can take it there. (Checks Google Street View.) Blimey! It’s […]
Hand Car Wash, Corner Bow Road & Arnold Road, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E3, 2007 • Oops, back-to-front N alert. I had a Ferodo bridge behind me, I should […]
Shoe Repairs and Things, 151 Kings Road, Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, London SW3, 2003 • Despite the vast wealth that surrounds it, there are still some funny old things surviving on the […]
B & S D.I.Y. Homecare, 313 Kentish Town Road, Borough of Camden, London NW5, 2012 • DIY sign for a DIY shop; despite its makeshift appearance, it’s still there.
Global London College (Ryman), 149 Fleet Street, City of London, EC4, 2015 • Maybe it’s a play on GLC (Greater London Council), a body which was abolished in 1986. This […]
HGV Apply Here, 10 Church Street, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, 2015 • Mmm, professional. And the top windows just say “GV”.
The Beano Cafe, 6 Caledonian Road, Borough of Islington, London N1, 2002 & 2003 • A tale of Kings Cross: in the course of a year, the Beano edged from decaying […]
Adans Travel Agency, 175a Battersea High Street, Borough of Wandsworth, London SW11, 2002 • Sigh, the internet did away with travel agents sporting charming paintings of floppy planes and fruit-like ABTA […]
The Barge, 271 Victoria Dock Road, Borough of Newham, London E16, 2002 • I was attracted by the wonky painted wall sign of this once-grand docklands boozer, established as the Freemasons […]
Paolina Thai Food Cafe & Takeaway, 181 Kings Cross Road, Borough of Camden, London WC1, 2003 • Abject-looking takeaway with nice lettering on its pavement sign (bottom). It’s still there, […]
Autos, Arch 491/2, King John Court, Shoreditch, Borough of Hackney, London EC2, 2004 • I love this angular DIY lettering. It’s under the viaduct featured yesterday and later demolished for the London […]
JacLen, 18 Dockley Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE16, 2001 • I love the typography on this DIY doorway, deep in a Dickensian Bermondsey viaduct. It’s presumably named after Jack and […]
Camden Auto Electrics, Greyhound Couriers, 2 Bayham Street, Borough of Camden, London NW1, 2003 • From the days when Kings Cross was a warren of auto workshops. It’s now been […]
Bills Cafe, Frankwell Quay, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, 2014 • No more bills to pay now. Part of an endangered quayside works, of which more tomorrow.
Fair City Cars, 125 Digbeth Road, Birmingham, 2005 • Poignant name and home-made chauffeur logo tacked onto a handsome premises which has since been demolished, along with the adjoining Hennessey’s Bar (which […]
Art Worx Art Sale, Baptist Sunday School, Westbourne Baptist Church, North Street, Emsworth, Hampshire, 2003 • Village art sale in a nice old hall. A far cry from White Cube. […]
L&D Motorcycles, 179 Kennington Lane, Borough of Lambeth, London SE11, 2005 • A forest of for sale signs on this old-time motorbike store. Fitting therefore that it became an estate agent, […]
Anne, 62 High Street, Waddesdon, Buckinghamshire, 2014 • More genteel net, albeit in a rather minimalist setting.
Textile Fabrics M+M Overseas, 18 Calvert Avenue, Borough of Hackney, London E2, 2002 • From the same school of signwriting as yesterday’s shop. By 2012 it was an anonymous tailors, while the other […]
R-H-Leather, 36 Goulston Street, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E1, 2004 • Slightly less glamorous than yesterday’s clothes shop. Later became Gaba Unique Fashions Ltd, whose unique fashion statement was that it also […]
J & Sons Unisex Hair Salon, 501 Cambridge Heath Road, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E2, 2006 • Ambitious hand-painted lettering depicting a mysterious pater/materfamilias (it’s hard to tell which from […]
Yum Yum’s, 5 Boot Parade, High Street, Edgware, Borough of Barnet, London HA8, 2004 • It looks like they may protest their yumminess too much on this nice vernacular acrylic sign, […]
Costprice, 41 Brick Lane, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E1, 2007 • Jaunty take on the Costcutter theme. It’s become more sedate since this was taken.
Pal Cargo Service Ltd., 36 Toynbee Street, Borough of Tower Hamlets, London E1, 2004 • Yet another gem from the decaying wonderland of Toynbee Street. Glad to see they deliver “doors […]
Model, 11 Berwick Street, Soho, City of Westminster, London W1, 2002 • I think we can assume it’s not Kate Moss. I managed to relocate this door on Google Street View, looking […]
Valerie, 85 Ealing Road, Brentford, Borough of Hounslow, London TW8, 2014 • Redolent of an Ealing film set, a classic net-curtained coiffeuse with bonus carriage arch.
Veg Out, Side of 228b Stoke Newington Road, Northwald Road, Stoke Newington, Borough of Hackney, London N16, 2002 • Not entirely healthy-looking veggie outlet, next door to yesterday’s surfie fridge shop; […]
St George the Martyr, Borough High Street, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2001 • An ambitious but not-very-successful bit of Christmas calligraphy. At the time, a church boasting a website seemed […]
Xmas Trees, Near Sandford Hotel, Sandford Road (A351), Wareham, Dorset, 2004 • I always like a hand-written sign so I pulled over in the middle of a long drive to snap […]
Cameron Hair Fashions, 48 High Street, Caterham, Surrey, 2001 • A poignant sight: you just know this is one of the last Christmases for this lovingly ruched and curlicued old coiffeur’s, which […]
Sandwich Bar Cafe, 4-5 Hatfields, Waterloo, Borough of Lambeth, London SE1, 2001 • Fine old-school cafe with spurious tinsel and customer in festive green hat. The ruched curtains, painted ivy and […]
Chalton Fish & Chip Shop, 61 Chalton Street, Borough of Camden, London NW1, 2005 • Totally gone; it’s now been restored to a house and you’d never know the chippie was […]
East & West Supermarket, 489 New Cross Road, Borough of Lewisham, London SE14, 2002 • Typically blasted shopfront from New Cross, where continents collide in a bus stop scrum. Now Penny’s […]
Metacrest Ltd, Lidlington Place, Borough of Camden, London NW1, 2003 • Not the world’s finest figure studies, but charming even though the bloke on the right appears to be baring his […]
Hing Loong, 59 Tower Bridge Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2002 • Faded takeaway with semi re-inked letters; it’s still there, with new sign.
R.E. Harris Motor Engineers, 1a Doughty Mews, Borough of Camden, Holborn, London WC1, 2003 • Angry epitaph on doomed garage, now demolished in favour of apartments in this exceedingly expensive area.
White Moon Gents Hair Dressers, 3 Lanson House, Whitchurch Lane, Edgware, Borough of Barnet, London HA8, 2004 • Hairdressr is not, I feel, a clever anticipation of Tumblr et al; nor […]
Roystons Curios, 88 High Street, Lowestoft, Suffolk, 2007 • Is that as in creepy village Royston Vasey off TV’s ‘The League of Gentleman‘? Cheerful!
Bridge Cafe, 2 Bridge Rd, Willesden, Borough of Brent, London NW10, 2004 • Wonky cafe-shack that’s now demolished. The DIY logo looks like half a burger bun, but it’s meant to […]
The Terminus. (aka Eastern Promise), 38 Greenwich Church Street, Borough of Greenwich, London SE10, 2002 • Old glass sign briefly revealed (and probably still lurking there) by Eastern Promise cafe replacing […]
Martinis, 226a Brixton Road, Borough of Lambeth, London SW9, 2003 • This once had a superb yellow plastic facade, which I shall post another time. It’s now gone completely.
Adfa Ventures Limited, 446 New Cross Road, Borough of Lewisham, London SE8, 2002 • Mmmm, their hi-tech sign is really giving me confidence. Now replaced by a solicitor, however.
AM & Son Auto Electrician, 25 Midland Road, Borough of Camden, London NW1, 2002 • One of of a series of decaying garages subsumed into the vast, posh ramparts of the […]
Car Spares, 31 Wallis Road, Borough of Hackney, London E9, 2006 • Yeah, I’d definitely get my car parts here.
The Tyre Shop, 100 Balls Pond Road, Borough of Islington, London N1, 2002 • Not a tyre in sight, but a nice hand-crafted two-tone paint job. Later became an office of […]
La Brosse Gentlemen’s Hairdresser, Institute Walk, East Grinstead, West Sussex, 2004 • Barbershop in a tree. What else do you expect in Institute Walk.
Phil. Terry Trouser Maker, Unit 4b Regent Studios (ex-Ada Street Workshops), 8 Andrews Road, Cambridge Heath, Borough of Hackney, London E8, 2005 • Old-school signage, now departed, in a grungy block […]
Hunt and Son Security, Riverside Way, Borough of Greenwich, London SE7, 2005 • So called because you have to hunt for them in the cafe, where they have “poped”.
Alum Food Store, 100 Harper Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2001 • Splendid hand-made sign, though possibly misspelt as the name changed to Alom when they got a “proper” one.
Bob’s Shoe Repairs, 171 Blackfriars Road, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2001 • Classic if wonky signwriting. Now a dry cleaner in a block due to be demolished.
America St Testing Stn, 39 America Street, Borough of Southwark, London SE1, 2002 • A lovely name, charmingly hand-painted. Was replaced by a far less cheerful-looking auto business.
Grandma’s, 4 Clapham High Street / Gauden Road, Clapham North, Borough of Lambeth, London SW4, 2002 • Grandma’s barred-up Jamaican hole-in-the wall appears to have gone, along with her Bob […]
Chemist. NHS Prescriptions Dispenced, 165 Deptford High Street, Borough of Lewisham, London SE8, 2002 • A classic: generic name, random full stop, spelling issues, misplaced security fears. Became Hair by […]