London Street Signs
A Visual History of the Signs that Tell Us Where We Are
By Alistair Hall (Author)
In every neighborhood of London you can find a remarkable public archive of lettering: the city’s rich variety of street nameplates. A unique collection of styles and forms that stretches back to the seventeenth century, these little labels hide in plain sight—people use their information daily, but rarely give them much thought. London Street Signs uncovers the stories behind these generally unassuming treasures, revealing where they came from before they were affixed to brick or stone. It includes a variety of types, from enamel plates to incised lettering, from the simplest cast iron to gloriously ornamental architectural plaques. From the iconic sign at Abbey Road that graced the Beatles’ album cover to the stunning tiled signs of Hampstead, from the revival nameplates of Lambeth to the ghost signs of the no-longer existent NE postal district, this is a journey through the history of a great metropolis.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)
Alistair Hall is cofounder and art director of children’s literacy charity Ministry of Stories and its fantastical shop, Hoxton Street Monster Supplies. In addition to running the design studio We Made This, with projects including the Penguin Great Ideas series and clients such as London Cycling Campaign and the Crafts Council, Alistair also lectures on graphic design at The Cass and typography at Central Saint Martins.