13 December 2016

Beans Express Carriers Ghostsign on City Road

This post has been updated
How long have I been walking and bussing past this and not noticed it?! I only spotted it in November when hunting for signs to use for my Angel Islington card. Has it been covered up or has it been there hidden in plain sight all this time?

I doubt the wording "BEANS EXPRESS CARRIERS" is about beans in the green or baked sense; perhaps this was a company called Beans who were offering an efficient courier/delivery service.
Look closely and see that EXPRESS is written twice here hinting that the sign has been repainted at least once. Also the smaller EXPRESS wording and CARRIERS are rendered in a different style to the larger BEANS EXPRESS; thay have drop shadows on a darker panel which may suggest that this part of the sign is a later addition, perhaps for a different company whose name has faded away over time.
Any further ideas and feedback welcome.
Lots more cards here


  1. Looks like Beans Express Carriers to me. The SS diagonals are hinted.

  2. Thanks Ann.
    Yes, of course! How did I not see that?
    A friend also suggested the same.
    I have amended the copy in the above post and its heading accordingly.

  3. Post Office London directory has Bean's Express Ltd., carmen at 319 City Road, at least 1910–21.

    They were still trading, although perhaps not from that address, in 1946 when they were involved in an interesting legal case regarding company liability when a driver gives a lift against company policy and the passenger ends up dead, as happened.

    Final thing I've found that in 1931 they were marketing themselves as carriers to the chemists' trade, offering fully serviced and driven vehicles branded with the name of the chemist. This was with an address at 122 Goswell Road.

  4. I have since found out much more about this company and it forms part of my ghostsigns walk around this part of Islington and the Regent's Canal


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Thanks, Jane