How I Miss BR Rail Blue (and the use of Rail Alphabet on All Station Signs)

Why, oh why, does our rail franchisees insist on liveries inspired by 1990s football strips?

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Dignified: the BR Rail Blue scheme seen on a Class 304 bound for Stoke-on-Trent in 1992. Photograph by Hugh Llewellyn (Creative Commons License – Attribution-Share Alike).

Call me old (well, I’m almost 37 years old for goodness sake anyway), but I hanker for the smooth, smart, yet strikingly modern liveries of the British Rail era. I hanker for their discipline and adherence to the Rail Alphabet typeface, and other wonders from the Design Research Unit. I miss seeing the yellow text on red signage of the BR Travellers’ Fare outlets and the design language, used on all railway stations from Abererch to Yeovil Pen Mill. Continue reading “How I Miss BR Rail Blue (and the use of Rail Alphabet on All Station Signs)”

Zen and the Art of Making Great TV Mocks

Ways to make effective television mocks, in static or animated forms.

My attempt at creating a mock. This is based on a 1984 programme rundown for Granada Television, albeit with a 2012 schedule.

According to one YouTube video, the internet is supposedly made of cats. If like myself you tend to have a penchant for old television programmes and graphics, you will find that old TV idents or programmes tend to feature highly in cyberspace. As well as being a portal for forgotten sitcoms and continuity, this has inspired many users to create mocks. Often they are reconstructions of old TV station mocks, if for example, ATV continued to be the West Midlands’ ITV franchise (rather than as the reconstituted ATV a.k.a Central Independent Television). Sometimes they may be for fictitious channels. Continue reading “Zen and the Art of Making Great TV Mocks”

Typography On The Buses: Greater Manchester’s Buses (1966 – 2011)

Typographic styles used by Greater Manchester bus operators since the 1960s.

Technological advances and the need to present a modern outward image saw greater use of typographic styles over the last 50 years or so of bus operation. For the most part of the 1970s and 1980s, Helvetica was the dominant style on Greater Manchester’s buses, from publicity to indicator blinds. It may be overly simplistic to name the typefaces used by SELNEC, Greater Manchester Transport and so on; for the purpose of this post, there is reference to the font itself and a bit of background history. Continue reading “Typography On The Buses: Greater Manchester’s Buses (1966 – 2011)”