Monday, 23 March 2009

Trueform Uncovered - and a couple from Kingston,




Many thanks to Sebastien Ardouin for putting me on to this one. I had recorded the presence of this Trueform ghost sign in Wimbledon High Street some time ago but Sebastian had noted that the modern poster had been removed. Sure enough the sign is now revealed in all its glory and the fact that the gantry has also gone makes me wonder whether it is going to stay that way for some considerable time. Anyway its worth getting a photo as soon as possible as you can never really tell what's going to happen next!
What's also clear is that the sign was originally painted before the smaller neighbouring shop had extended its frontage to cover the lower section of the sign, making it impossible to see unless you are at some very strange angles.Whilst I'm looking at a ghost sign, how about these two from Kingston to top it up. I spotted this one on the pedestrianised High Street. I would imagine there was originally a company name in a lighter typeface which has disappeared but the secondary text is still just visible below. It seems to say Local Arms China but that doesn't seem to make much sense unless there was a type of china called Arms! But is this a 'trick of the brick'? Does it actually say Rams ? Neither leap out as obvious suggestions though...
The last example must be well- known to everyone who has ever driven around the Kingston one-way system. I can't recall what it's called these days (or what goes on there either) but even with the original signage removed the Empire 'ghost ' is hard to miss.

4 comments:

CarolineLD said...

Perhaps the 'local arms china' refers to crested souvenir china? Very mysterious!

Seasbtien Ardouin said...

I'm glad the True Form sign is still visible and you could get a picture.

The sign in Kingston reads "Picture Postcards / Local Arms China". The fist line has almost disappeared but can still be made up with a bit of Photoshop tweaking. As for the second one, there's no doubt about it. Ever since I saw it, I have been wondering what it could have been. I was hoping you would provide an answer... Maybe one day I should look through the pages of "Kingston in Old Pictures" or similar books to see if I can't find out a clue... There are a few more ghost signs in Kingston but this one is certainly the most intriguing!

Yelfy said...

I'm impressed you could make out the first line, but the picture postcards link does seem to fit in with the 'Local Arms China'. I would imagine that at the turn of the century Kingston was a big place for a day out what with the arrival of the railway, the historic Saxon connections of the town and the popularity of the river (Three Men and a Dog type rowing trips). So I think I would agree with Caroline as I could imagine that there would be a demand for plates and cups with the Kingston coat of arms on as a souvenir of a good day out. I wonder if there's much information out there on Kingston as a Victorian excursion centre?

Anonymous said...

Re: Empire.

As a child, I remember this building as The Reject Shop. It sold all kinds of tat and stuff like that. If you look at the picture close up, you can still make out the word 'SHOP', from The Reject Shop.