Way back in the dim distant past, in November 2008 (wow and ouch, that's almost 15 years ago!) I took some photos of a huge hand-painted sign on the side of Woolverstone House, 45-47 Parsons Green Lane. The sign is painted on the rear of what was originally a beer retailer/ publichhouse and faces north across the District Line railway on the other side of the road to the station. In 2008 the sign looked like this:
The sign is an advertisement for variety nights at The Victoria Palace Theatre, the Grade II* 1911 Frank Matcham building topped by a gilded statue of Anna Pavlova.
I have returned to my first batch of pics and created this over-enhanced image to better illustrate
the content.What is immediately evident by the patchwork effect here, is the amount of different panels that have covered this wall throughout the decades and, as such, helped to protect what still exists.
Top left, within a panel across 2/3rds of the wall:
VARIETY AT ITS BEST
(time) TWICE NIGHTLY (time
OPPOSITE VICTORIA STATION
6.15 TWICE/NIGHTLY 8.50
I think what we have here is a build up of signs over time with the earliest one at the top left, its letterform is distinctly early C20th. It reminds me of the sign for the Palais de Danse that used to be visible from the Dictrict Line plaforms at Hammersmith until that marvellous music venue was demolished in May 2012.
And finally, at the extreme bottom right, under the rule, it reads LONGMANS – this is probably the signwriter and, if so, could be the largest 'signature' I have ever seen on a hand-painted sign, the letters being three bricks high! There looks like there might be some other smaller letterforms to the right of that name and this could have been a telephone number, but being as the mortar between the bricks has been replaced across the whole wall, this is very hard to discern now.
Does anyone have any better pics?