From a stained glass window at the Storey Institute, these painted letters commemorate famous scientists, artists and writers.
This memorial stone commemorates Anne Gillison, benefactor in 1781 of land and money for the building of Gillison’s Hospital, a set of eight alms house that once stood on Common Garden Street, and which were for the benefit of destitute and unmarried women. The memorial stone, cut with expressive serif lettering, is now found at Lindow Square, at the site of modern residential housing named after Gillison.
Location: Lindow Square, Lancaster. UK.
These classical serif letters are form part of the sculptural work of Alexander (Sandy) Stoddart (1959-). Born in Edinburgh, his work is mainly Classical in style as seen in this piece entitled Mercury, one of a series of sculptures created in 1996 for Merchant City’s Italian Centre, the others representing Italia; Mercurial; and Mercurius.
Location: Merchant City, Ingram Street, Glasgow.
These letters form part of a 300 metre typographic pavement connecting the railway station with the Morecambe sea front. Created by Gordon Young in 2003 in collaboration with Why Not Associates, the lettering includes content from the Bible, Shakespeare’s works and the writing of, amongst others, Spike Milligan, Burns and Milton. The pathway was constructed from granites, concrete, stainless steel, brass and bronze.
Location: Morecambe Promenade, UK
Our first stall, held at the Storey Vintage Festive Market. Lots of interest in Fast Foot’s publications and merchandise and quite a few sales – thanks to everyone who gave over their hard earned cash and for all the kind words of encouragement.
As my partner is a Londoner, and everyone knows that all Londoner’s have stall-holding in their DNA, I feel like I have undergone some sort of right of passage!
This unusual, large letter S (for Storey), is cut in relief on the roof pediment of the Storey Institute. The terminal endings of the letter are lobed and bifurcated. It is a simple, but bold statement from a family that had an immense influence on the architectural, industrial and cultural history of the city of Lancaster.
The building of the Storey Art Institute began in 1887 and was completed in 1891, with an 1906 extension by the same architects, Austin and Paley. The Storey is a remarkable and historically important building, having been a centre for learning and the arts since its inception. The Storey and its immediate predecessor, The Mechanics Institute, included several renowned scientists amongst its staff and patrons, notably William Whewell (Mineralogy; coined the term ‘scientist’ and recommended the terms ‘anode’ and ‘cathode’ to Michael Faraday), Edward Frankland (Chemistry; father of the concept of Valency, and credited with inventing the idea of the chemical bond) and William Turner (Anatomy).
A Lancaster Alphabet: Letterforms from the Stones of the City, is a study of Lancaster’s hidden architectural lettering that uses these often neglected and largely unseen elements to explore the social history of the urban environment. The twenty-six letters of the alphabet span almost 1800 years of Lancaster’s history, with each letter and its location providing insights into the development of Lancaster’s industry and socio-political development, as well as discussion of the design features of the letters themselves and reproductions of historical documents.
Printed on Fedrigoni stocks, perfect bound and stitched, with a dust cover, the work was part of a two year study of architectural lettering in the the city. The book includes photographs of each of the twenty-six letterforms, a guide map to their location, and a glossary of architectural and design terms.
“An elegant volume it celebrates the architectural and commenorative lettering of Simon’s adopted city. Each letter of the alphabet is represented with its own spread showing where it was found and the social/design back-story to its location.”
Richard Weston, Acejet170
A Lancaster Alphabet: Letterforms from the Stones of the City is available online at Fast Foot Press, or from Waterstones, King Street, Lancaster. Price £11.99.