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Tuesday, 14 October 2008

The Blind Beggar

I recently read an article that the hand painted pub sign is disappearing. These signs are unique to UK pubs that goes back to Roman times. As with everything else pubs are becoming a part of the homogenised corporate structure and the pub signs are now mass produced.
So not only are the hand painted ones becoming harder to find, but the skill in making them is also being lost.

12 comments:

Greg Dimitriadis said...

That's a great pity. Having said that, people seem to prefer the trendy, new, franchised bars and pubs these days. There should be a place in the UK for both.

babooshka said...

That's not the famous Blind Begger pub associated with the infamous Kray twins is it? I do love old Lndon pubs Each used to be unique to an area. Times change and unfortunately the pubs do to. At least you have had the wisdom to photograph this little piece of history.

Mo said...

It seems so Babooshka. A very interesting history from Henry de Montfort, who went from landed gentry to beggar to the place where the Salvation army started, followed by Ronnie Kray murdering George Cornell in the saloon bar. I didn't have time to research all this earlier. I only recently discovered this area and intend to go back and see a lot more. I need to chat to a few locals, always the best way to find out about an area. One of the things I love about London is locals love to tell you about their local area. Let me know if there are places around Whitechapel I should seek out.

www.niamhphotography.com said...

real shame. these old pubs have so much character.

Professor said...

I think the old pubs lend so much to the aura of England, such a shame.

George Townboy said...

I was expecting to see a real blind beggar, lol. But I love the photo, and it is a shame hand painted signs are disappearing.

marley said...

I've spotted the vanishing pub sign round here too. Several old country pubs have become part of the dreaded pub chain and have lost their lovely old signs :(

This pub has a really interesting history.

JM said...

I love this kind of signs! We don't have them around here. Shame they are being mass produced...

Elaine Saunders - Complete Text said...

Pub signs are a pictorial record of our history - from Roman times, through the Crusades and the Dissolution of the monasteries to the present day. Their disappearance is almost like someone emptying the National Gallery.

They've been inspired by religion, royalty, lust, pride, murder, heroes and scandals and, together, they’re an often disregarded historical resource.

Let’s hope that these traditional pub signs can be preserved and remember to take notice of the sign above the door in your rush for the bar. It might not be there for much longer!

Elaine Saunders
Author : A Book About Pub Names
http://www.completetext.com

babooshka said...

Thanks for the answer. You really have captured a remarlable piece of 1960'2 British ganster lore.

Suzie Bee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Becky said...

That is so sad! I hope some of them still hold on to their roots and keep those fabulous hand-painted signs.

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