Sam Roberts


Pickles Street in Melbourne was once home to the Joshua Brothers Distillery, and later United Distillers. The latter adorned the building with a series of painted bottles depicting the products that they distributed in Australia. The pieces were painted in the 1960s by signwriter Keith […]

The Enduring Legacy of the Joshua Brothers Distillery



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The following article is re-posted from the original on Better Letters. This August we’ll be opening a very special sign painting exhibition within the public-facing part of Letterheads 2018: London Calling. It is being curated by Meredith Kasabian of Best Dressed Signs and the Pre-Vinylite […]

The Grand Exhibition of the Society of Sign Painters



The restoration of ghost signs seems to be becoming more prevalent in the UK, or perhaps I’m just more conscious of them taking place. While I don’t document every instance, I thought that this one had an interesting back story, as shared by Stefan Lewis […]

Evans, Jones & Ricketts Restoration in Talgarth, Mid Wales






[This book review is reposted from the original on the Better Letters blog.] “Signwriters are entitled to their immortality just as are other artists and craftsmen” – Kevin Corrigan Kearns, Dublin’s Vanishing Craftsmen Signwriting is perhaps the least documented of the lettering disciplines; it’s nature […]

Karl Blaschke: The Sign Man of Munich






Michelle Heron is a London-based painter with a paticular fascination for old shops and shop fronts. Her paintings depict iconic fascias, many of which have been lost since she turned her attention to them, and some that survive in a state of perpetual uncertainty. As […]

Michelle Heron’s Fantastic Fascias




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Independently of each other I have been sent photos of this beautiful Paris ghost signs by Wim Dammers and book contributor Leisa Clements. It is a remarkably elaborate piece of work, including picturials in other sections. This is isn’t surprising as it is advertising the […]

E. Gautier’s Beautiful Paris Ghost Signs


Back in 2016 I gave a short talk about my archiving work at the annual conference of the Business Archives Council, where one of the organisers was a project archivist for Boots chemists.  Afterwards I shared the above image and forwarded her the archival photo […]

Tracking Down Boots in Stoke-on-Trent



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Following my talk to the Clapham Society last summer we are joining forces, with Roy Reed, to develop a walk exploring the many ghost signs visible on and around Clapham High Street. We are currently carrying out a mixture of archival and web-based research into […]

Ghostsigns of Clapham, a Forthcoming Walk





The list below of painted advertisements in Islington was compiled in the hope that some of those reading it might write in with additional locations not known to the compiler, and in the belief that painted advertisements in other parts of London would make a […]

Painted Advertisements in Islington: Part 4


The list below of painted advertisements in Islington was compiled in the hope that some of those reading it might write in with additional locations not known to the compiler, and in the belief that painted advertisements in other parts of London would make a […]

Painted Advertisements in Islington: Part 3


The list below of painted advertisements in Islington was compiled in the hope that some of those reading it might write in with additional locations not known to the compiler, and in the belief that painted advertisements in other parts of London would make a […]

Painted Advertisements in Islington: Part 2



Historia de la Publicidas is a wonderful archive documenting the advertising history of Buenos Aires in Argentina. Curated by Raul Manrupe the collection features a mixture of archival photography, contemporary images of ghost signs, and other artwork involved in the production and documentation of outdoor […]

Images of Buenos Aires’ Advertising Past


After much deliberation I have taken the decision to cease leading my public walking tours after the last one in May this year. That means there are just two dates left for each of my Stoke Newington (18 Feb and 15 Apr) and Bankside (18 […]

The Future of Ghostsigns’ Walking Tours


The Cat & Mutton pub on Broadway Market in East London has a remarkable array of Victorian glasswork on display in the main bar (see samples below). However, on a recent visit for a family Christmas meal, my uncle and I discovered the above two […]

Gardiner & Lacey at the Cat & Mutton