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“Locktec”, Tower Hamlets: ultra boring

“Locktec Security Systems” burglar alarm, Tower Hamlets • Why do so many dull typographic lock-related designs use blue-and-white Gill Sans Ultra Bold? This is the third example I’ve found that’s set in the 1920s font – see also Bath Key Security and Strathand – and all three are ultra boring. There’s a more interesting recent Locktec design depicting a roaring lion, but I’m saving that for a later category. To compound the tedium, it’s a blurred photo – always a sign that I was feeling a mite exposed when taking the shot. • Spotted: Fairfield Road, Tower Hamlets, London, E3, England, 2010 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Bethnal Green and Bow

4 replies »

  1. Well 2 of the unexplained font choices are from the same manufacturer so maybe the design department at Texecom have the Gills Sans Ultra Bold set as default in Paint?

      • This one (Odyssey 3\3E) and Strathand (Odyssey 1\1E).

        Now this font choice has been pointed out it does look familiar, I’m going to have to check the manufacturer\font choice relationship from now on. I’m just glad my font is not Gills Sans Ultra Bold now!

        • There’s nothing particularly wrong with the font, it’s just that it’s used boringly. The designer Eric Gill was a famous 1900s-40s sculptor controversial for his erotic works; it turned out later he was a complete old goat who had sex with his children, his sister and his dog. Which hasn’t stopped Gill Sans being one of the most popular fonts ever – for instance it’s the typeface in all those “Keep calm and carry on” type posters.

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