Preston Pub Sign Study The Continental

Photo taken by me – The Continental Pub sign – Preston
Preston, England
October 26, 2016 2:35pm CST
A lot of people recommended this 1911 pub to me on my arrival in Preston in August this year, so I was delighted when I finally saw it and had a quick pint inside. I should say I don’t drink in every pub I photograph, often catching dozens of shots on one walk. A great sign is no guarantee the pub itself is any good, and a pub with a poor quality sign or no sign at all might still be great inside. Pub signs turn the streets into an art gallery, making an urban walk as appealing as following a country trail or canal and riverside towpath. Of course, The Continental is a riverside bar, on the edge of the Ribble as it comes out of Avenham park. In Edwardian times you could hire rowing boats from the pub and the connected Continental Café ice-cream parlour and row on the water. Sadly the boats and ice cream café are no more but the pub still flourishes as a major entertainment venue and real ale mecca. The sign has a clever ambiguity to it. A tall glass of continental golden ale with a foaming head rests on what could be a boat paddle, but the paddle is also the shape of a flattened bottle, resting on a second bottle. The blue background gives the beer head the look of a cloud in a clear sky, resting on a refreshing beer. It’s a beautifully presented sign. Arthur Chappell
6 people like this
7 responses
@Jackalyn (7161)
• Oxford, England
26 Oct 16
If you are in Oxford and find yourself entering several Oxford pubs you will see walls of artwork done by my son. I keep saying he should also do the signs.
2 people like this
• Preston, England
26 Oct 16
@Jackalyn lovely that his talents get his work displayed round the city there - hope to visit Oxford one day
1 person likes this
@Jackalyn (7161)
• Oxford, England
26 Oct 16
@arthurchappell Let me know if you do.
2 people like this
• Preston, England
26 Oct 16
@Jackalyn Absolutely - thanks - same for you if you are near Preston
@Corbin5 (119412)
• United States
26 Oct 16
It is simple, yet it really does holds one's attention. The signs, no matter how simple, are created with a great deal of thought. Works of art they are, in my opinion.
2 people like this
• Preston, England
26 Oct 16
@Corbin5 that is very much how I see them too
2 people like this
@JohnRoberts (64997)
• Los Angeles, California
26 Oct 16
Yes, you are right. A bottle that is also a paddle. Clever.
2 people like this
@teamfreak16 (42042)
• Denver, Colorado
31 Oct 16
I thought the paddle was a bottle, for sure. Guess I was wrong.
1 person likes this
• Preston, England
31 Oct 16
@teamfreak16 it is angled to look like both a paddle and a bottle
1 person likes this
@glenniah (1201)
• Mandurah, Australia
27 Oct 16
I love the names on the pubs in England. Our favorite pub was in London it was called The Unicorn, food was great
1 person likes this
• Preston, England
27 Oct 16
@glenniah sounds great - there are quite a few pubs called The Unicorn
1 person likes this
@Jessicalynnt (47879)
• Centralia, Missouri
27 Oct 16
yeah I figured you didnt stop or drink at them all, still I would think that a super interesting sign would be more tempting
1 person likes this
@5thHouse (1692)
• Sheffield, England
26 Oct 16
I've never taken much notice of pub signs before but I can see what you mean about them turning the streets into an art gallery. I think I will start being more observant.
1 person likes this