Yearly Archives: 2017


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On one of my walking tours back in 2014 guests had the opportunity to see this reveal of a newsagent and tobacconists’ sign at No.5 Stoke Newington Church Street. Starlove, as it was known, occupied the premises from at least 1962 until the late 1970s […]

Numbers 3-7 Stoke Newington Church Street



Via Amanda Jacks on Twitter I was alerted to the reveal of this ghost sign near Columbia Road Market. It’s at the junction of Ravenscroft Street and Wellington Row. The text at the bottom is clearly ‘For Hire’ with the firm’s name being either O. […]

For Hire: Stunning Reveal near Columbia Road Market



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While researching the old painted advertisements of Islington I was contacted by Leo Hornak, a journalist at the BBC. He wanted to record a piece about ghost signs (coming soon), and had grown up in a house with one on the outside. It turned out […]

John C. Mather, Alwyne Lane


The above ghost sign was revealed a couple of years ago by the redevelopment of a site on the North side of the Eastern end of Oxford Street in London. It is a palimpsest, and advertises ‘Venos Lightning Cough/Cold Cure’. It wasn’t their only painted […]

Venos & Veglio Reveals on Oxford Street




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This beautiful glass fascia was captured by Brian Heppell after being revealed briefly in 2014 during the fitting of new signage at 192 Brick Lane, London E1. I have looked for S. Sadler by name in the trades section of a number of Victorian and […]

S. Sadler, Brick Lane


This fragment was one of my early discoveries when I first started noticing ghost signs in 2006. It was located on a very prominent wall on Stoke Newington Church Street, adjacent to William Patten School. At some stage after it was originally painted the patch […]

Wine & Willing: A Stoke Newington Mystery


Simon Memel sent me a link to this article on Dezeen by Owen Hatherley about an odd thing that has just happened on Walthamstow High Street. The council has funded the standardisation of shop front signage, leading to the loss of shops’ individual character. I […]

Cookie Cutter Shops on Walthamstow High Street



Over the years I’ve tried to seek out and review books about ghost signs here on the blog. Here is a set of recommendations drawn from these, focused on those in English. In a future blog post I’ll feature work published in other languages. 1 […]

Five of the Best: Books about Ghost Signs


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This ghost sign for the London Co-Operative Society on Frederic Street, London E17, has now been partially covered by new signage for the Still Bar and Restaurant. In addition, the last visible portion of the sign, a small strip on the right, has been painted […]

RIP: London Co-Op, Frederic Street




Earlier this month I was back in Mazeppa, Minnesota for more workshops with Mike Meyer and Better Letters. This gave me an opportunity to see some of the signs there without the snowy backdrop, and also to spend some time in Minneapolis where there were […]

More Minnesota Ghostsigns…



Fading Ads of Gloucester extends the current series from the History Press in the UK, USA, and Ireland. The material has been researched and gathered by Chris West, graphic designer for the publisher. The format of the titles in the series varies but this one […]

Fading Ads of Gloucester by Chris West



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On one of my recent Bankside Ghostsigns Walks an Australian guest tipped me off about the recent restoration of a famous Dingo Flour ghost sign in Fremantle, Australia. This was undertaken at the end of 2016 with a grant from the Western Australian Heritage Council. […]

Dingo Flour Restoration in Fremantle Australia


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Guests on my Stoke Newington Ghostsigns Walk in early 2015 were lucky to see a bonus fading fascia en route, advertising The Vacuum Shop. This was revealed by works to the Anglo Asian restaurant, which now straddles numbers 60 and 62 Stoke Newington Church Street. […]

The Vacuum Shop and George Braun


Mary Roberts recently visited Harwich and captured these photos of the Harwich Old Bookshop, with it’s distinctive glass fascia, tiled panel in the entrance-way, and mosaic threshold sign. Her friend Christine then did some digging via the wonderful site, Harwich & Dovercourt, and discovered an […]

Harwich’s Shops: Now & Then



Peter Vogel runs the Nutmegger Workshop in Texas, and specialises in vintage and faux aged signs. Back in 2014 he sent me this collection of pictures of a genuine Coca-Cola ghostsign “trapped within a vestibule behind and between” the Witherspoon Building and its neighbour in […]

Hidden Coca-Cola Ghostsign in Portland’s Witherspoon Building


Above is my 2007 photo of the Brymay/John Bull palimpsest on Quernmore Road in Haringey. At the time, in addition to wondering who John Bull was, I said I needed to go back in the winter when the tree would be less obstructive. I did […]

Quernmore Road Signs & Ghostsigns Cluster


Fading painted advertisement on wall advertising Gold Dust Washing Powder
Lurking in my folders of blog post ideas I came across a photo that I’d forgotten about, of a ghostsign advertising Gold Dust Washing Powder. This is shown below and was quite small so I did a few searches and discovered the one above, used […]

Gold Dust Washing Powder: An Unsettling Reveal



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This popular London ghostsign is located at the Kings Cross end of Gray’s Inn Road, with the photo above from Jennifer Pedler and the History of Advertising Trust. A couple of years ago I gave a talk at Middlesex University where one of the students, […]

Scales, Weights & Weighing Machines in London’s Kings Cross


Spitalfields Life has published a series of pieces documenting East End shop fronts, in support of the campaign against the forthcoming rise in business rates across the area. I have picked one photo from each piece and would encourage a proper browse of all of […]

East End Shops from Spitalfields Life


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This ghostsign on Stoke Newington High Street comes at about the halfway point of my walking tour through the area. It is a palimpsest which has been well researched by Sébastien Ardouin. I recently took a couple of close-up photos, one of which has added […]

John Hawkins, Steeles & Chaney Signs