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Camden

Banham, Camden, 2012

“Banham” burglar alarm, Camden • I’ve published lots of white Banham alarms, but here’s the first black one, complete with Dickensian villain. • Spotted: Rugby Street, Camden, London, WC1, England, 2012 • […]
Banham, Camden, 2012

Initial, Camden, 2004

“Initial” burglar alarm, Camden • Initial without the Shorrock – there’s one with the Shorrock (and some bird poo) here. • Spotted: Covent Garden area, Camden, London, WC2, England, 2004 • […]
Initial, Camden, 2004

Certes, Camden, 2012

“Certes” burglar alarm, Camden • Circular Certes; there’s a rectangular one with no roundel here. • Spotted: Percy Street, Camden, London, W1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency […]
Certes, Camden, 2012

Modern Alarms, Camden: algae

Modern Alarms "Modern Alarms" burglar alarm, Camden • As you can see, I'm posting a run of these clear-capped Eurobells at the moment. Not only does this have the logo both above and below the lid, there's a circuit board and an algae farm sandwiched between them, which is somewhat distracting. • Spotted: Frognal Way, Camden, London, NW3, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn
Modern Alarms, Camden: algae

FSE, Camden: smiley

FSE "FSE" burglar alarm, Camden • I love this. Who knows what it stands for, but it resembles a fat clownish smiley face, using a classic 1970s "go-faster stripes" font Stop, by Aldo Novarese. In fact this sounder was probably designed in the rave-tastic 1990s, when such "go-faster" styles came back into vogue; there's a learned article about it here• Spotted: Gordon Street, Camden, London, WC1, England, 2011 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
FSE, Camden: smiley

CAS Security, Camden: precursor

CAS Security "CAS Security" burglar alarm, Camden • Here's an earlier CAS from 071 phone code days – assuming this triangle is a precursor to yesterday's weird logo, maybe that was just a wonky triangle. • Spotted: Kings Cross Road, Camden, London, WC1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
CAS Security, Camden: precursor

Group 4 Falck, Camden: mixture

Group4Flack FortessRd nr NW5 2HP 10381_800 "Group 4 Falck" burglar alarm, Camden • This is boring, but it does have a little bird which, since the firm is called Falck, I am guessing is a falcon mixed with a bit of hawk. • Spotted: Fortess Road, Camden, London, NW5, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Group 4 Falck, Camden: mixture

Eagle Security, Camden: clawing

Eagle GtRussellSt WC1 nr WC1B 3LS 0039_800 "Eagle Security" burglar alarm, Camden • And now we move onto the fierce, hawkish birds so popular in urban areas. This one's a mite heraldic, but it also looks like it might claw you to death. Not, I have to say, the finest rendition of an eagle I have ever seen. • Spotted: Great Russell Street, Camden, London, WC1, England, 2010 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Eagle Security, Camden: clawing

Ivory, Camden: tusker

Ivory MapleSt nr W1T 4BE 70565_800 "Ivory" burglar alarm, Camden • It's a long time since I featured alarms with animals on, and since then I've come across several more sounders featuring wildly improbable guardian beasts. So here's a reboot of the "Crazy Creatures" theme, starting with this magnificent tusker, storming forward to trample intruders to death. • Spotted: Maple Street, Camden, London, W1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Ivory, Camden: tusker

Robot, Camden: serf

Robot "Robot" burglar alarm, Camden • And finally, the ultimate computer: a 1980s New Romantic-style robot. (I know I've included Robot before, but this is a slightly different logo.) Wikipedia pop fact: the word robota means literally "serf labour" in Czech. • Spotted: Well Walk, Camden, London, NW3, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn
Robot, Camden: serf

Amiga, Camden: picobyte

Amiga "Amiga" burglar alarm, Camden • Ancient home computer  alert – I seem to remember Amigas were popular with musicians in the early 1990s, because you could create a whole album using about one picobyte of memory. Thus adding relevance to the weird spotlight logo, which is probably meant to look like it's shining on burglars. • Spotted: Tavistock Place, Camden, London, WC1, England, 2011 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Amiga, Camden: picobyte

Morse, Camden: sleuthing

Morse Security "Morse Security" burglar alarm, Camden • A giant felon's fingerprint on a shiny light-up bell box – how great! The name suggests the sleuthing of Inspector Morse, but of course also evokes morse code - which is a kind of computing. So I stand by including it in my maths theme. • Spotted: Greville Street, Camden, London, EC1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Morse, Camden: sleuthing

Abacus Integrated Systems, Camden: iterations

Abacus Integrated Systems Ltd "Abacus Integrated Systems Ltd" burglar alarm, Camden • Abacus seem to have had about a million different designs and logos, most of which I found studded all over a building in Kings Cross which has just been knocked down. This one looked like the most recent iteration – quite a change from the naive abacus A of yesterday. • Spotted: Britannia Street, Camden, London, WC1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Abacus Integrated Systems, Camden: iterations

Telecom Security Direct, Camden: striking

Telecom Security Direct "Telecom Security Direct" burglar alarm, Camden • Now we move from tronics to telecoms, also quite a popular technical trope. The word Telecom gets bandied about quite a bit, so not sure if this striking old sounder is the same firm as the later Telecom box featured here• Spotted: Flask Walk, Camden, London, NW3, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn
Telecom Security Direct, Camden: striking

Clarion, Camden: shrill

Clarion "Clarion" burglar alarm, Camden • A clarion is a medieval brass trumpet, shrill in sound and popular with cavalries. Hence the term clarion call, and its suitability for a burglar alarm. I like the Chanel-style double C logo too; there seem to be quite a lot of double initials in these sound-based alarms. Maybe the kind of person who chooses musical names also responds to melodious alliterative repetitions (hey, deep). • Spotted: Covent Garden area, Camden, London, WC2, England, 2004 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Clarion, Camden: shrill

Trio, Camden: thrice

Trio Trio Trio "Trio Trio Trio" burglar alarm, Camden • It's a trio, and it's written three times, geddit? • Spotted: Richardson Mews, Camden, London, W1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
Trio, Camden: thrice

“Alarms 4 Scaffolding”, Camden: unlucky for some

Alarms 4 Scaffolding "Alarms 4 Scaffolding" burglar alarm, Camden • Can security firms only count up to four? This is the third to feature the number – which is considered extremely unlucky in China, where it signifies death. And it's the death of this numbers theme, because there's a new one tomorrow. • Spotted: Coptic Street, Camden, London, WC1, England, 2011 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
“Alarms 4 Scaffolding”, Camden: unlucky for some

“Decorum”, Camden: genteel

Decorum Alarms "Decorum Alarms" burglar alarm, Camden • Surely the most genteel name for a burglar alarm firm ever, and appropriate for the decorous Hampstead borders where I found it. Should belong in a posh little sub-genre with Kudos from Bath, which featured right at the start of this blog, and which has the same type of clock-radio-alike sounder. • Spotted: Finchley Road, Camden, London, NW3, England, 2007 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn
“Decorum”, Camden: genteel

“Ability”, Camden: generic

Ability Security Systems "Ability Security Systems" burglar alarm, Camden • Ability. Well, it's a form of excellence, albeit somewhat generic. "So, what particularly excellent quality does your firm have?" "Ability, mate." "OK, my good fellow, can't argue with that. You're hired!" • Spotted: Greville Street, Camden, London, EC1, England, 2005 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
“Ability”, Camden: generic

“Simply Quality”, Camden: scrolled

Simply Quality Security Systems "Simply Quality Security Systems" burglar alarm, Camden • I love this – the utterly boasty claim "simply quality", with a faux woodcut of a ribbon-bound scroll of excellence. Being a sad old graphic designer, I actually recognise it as a bit of early 1990s computer clip-art, no doubt intended for graduation invitations. • Spotted: Finchley Road, Camden, London, NW3, England, 2007 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn
“Simply Quality”, Camden: scrolled

“AAI”, Camden: red triangle

AAI "AAI" burglar alarm, Camden • Today I start the theme "monograms". The UK definition of a monogram is "a design composed of one or more letters, typically the initials of a name" (though in America I think it is defined as at least two letters); and the initials should be specially-drawn, generally entwined in some way. There are so many monogrammed sounders I can't show them all in one run - it would go on for months - so I've decided to start with nine of my favourites, taking us up to the end of the year. Honourary pole position must go to Hertfordshire-based AAI, whose boss Andy Gilmore is a regular commenter on this blog. I always reckoned the AAI monogram had been designed to fill up as much of the sounder as possible, which he confirms: "Our logo was designed by my [business] partner's daughter-in-law, who was studying art. When designing the logo, we wanted something which was clear and obvious even from a distance." Apparently it was inspired by the Nu-Tron design, another of my favourites, and AAI base all their company's branding round their logo's triangle – never changing the shape of the bell box, even when switching manufacturer. And though AAI, like most monograms, also falls into the "unexplained acronym" camp, Andy Gilmore confides that the initials were based on Andy, Adam, Ian - the latter pair his first (brief) business partners, when he was just 14. What a great story! • Spotted: Percy Street, Camden, London, W1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
“AAI”, Camden: red triangle

“Trade”, Camden: crosshairs

Trade Security Systems Plc "Trade Security Systems Plc" burglar alarm, Camden • This is a funny old logo. It's a bit hard to make out, as one of the colours has faded, and I'm not really sure what the design is meant to signify. However the thing it resembles most to me is the crosshairs of a gun sight, so into the "shooting" theme it goes. • Spotted: Warren Street, Camden, London, W1, England, 2012 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras
“Trade”, Camden: crosshairs

“Lee”, Camden: revitalised

"Lee Security" burglar alarm, Camden • This is probably named after a person, but as it's a popular sounder in East London, I like to imagine it references the fascinating River Lee (or Lea), a snaky waterway which branches into so many channels it's hard to keep track of. It used to be pretty much a ditch by the time it petered to an end at Bow Creek, but thanks to the Olympics has been totally re-landscaped and revitalised, and is now rather beautiful. • Spotted: Betterton Street, Camden, London, WC2, England, 2002 • Politics: In the Labour constituency of Holborn and St Pancras Above: the River Lee (aka Lea) at Bow Locks, London, where it meets Limehouse Cut
“Lee”, Camden: revitalised