Posters

Poster; A message from Billy Brown to guards and platform staff, by David Langdon, 1941
Simple name : Poster
Date : 1941
Collection : Posters
Object location : Acton Depot
Reference number : 1983/4/10489
Size : H 400mm, W 248mm
Print code : 1241.4085GX. 500
Publisher : London Transport : 1941
Printer : The Baynard Press : 1941
Descriptive size : Panel poster
Content text : A message from Billy Brown to Guards and Platform Staff Says Billy Brown, 'When I go out / I find it hard to get about: / The window net and blackout light / Puzzle me - please put me right! Call out the name at every station, Non-stop points, and destination'
Title : A message from Billy Brown to guards and platform staff
Printed by : The Baynard Press
Related person
Record completeness :
Record 84% complete
By 1914 the Underground Group ran most of the Tube lines, three tram systems and the main London bus company, the LGOC. The posters publicise all these transport modes. Outside the Underground Group were the Metropolitan Railway and London County Council (LCC) Tramways, which ran separate poster campaigns. All these companies were merged into London Transport (LT) in 1933. The four main line railway companies also used posters to promote their London suburban services. Transport for London (TfL) replaced LT in 2000 with wider responsibility including taxis, streets, river services and some overground rail.
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Staff have featured in posters in different ways over time. They have often been included in campaigns to publicise London Transport's commitment to service and customer care. At times of staff shortage, particularly in the 1950s and 60s, there were a large number of recruitment posters, especially for operating staff. During the war many posters were morale boosters, reassuring the staff that they were doing an important job in difficult circumstances.
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The Underground Group, and later London Transport, produced a wide variety of public information posters during the First (1914-18) and Second (1939-45) World Wars. The majority of wartime posters advised staff and passengers on emergency rules and regulations. Others were more overtly patriotic, often focussing on the valuable war work undertaken by transport employees. Some First World War Underground posters even urged onlookers to enlist with the armed forces. During the Second World War, posters were also used to explain tube 'etiquette' to the vast numbers of war workers and servicemen using the underground for the first time.
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LT's war posters used modern design to convey essential information to passengers and staff. Thoughtful passenger behaviour was encouraged in the humorous cartoons of Fougasse and David Langdon. More direct appeals for co-operation, or advice on sheltering and the 'blackout' were expressed in easy to read layouts. Other posters celebrated LT's contribution to the war effort and London's resilience. These included the striking series of images produced by Fred Taylor (1942), Walter Spradbery (1944) and Eric Kennington (1944).
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The Underground Group, and later London Transport, produced a wide variety of public information posters during the First (1914-18) and Second (1939-45) World Wars. The majority of wartime posters advised staff and passengers on emergency rules and regulations. Others were more overtly patriotic, often focussing on the valuable war work undertaken by transport employees. Some First World War Underground posters even urged onlookers to enlist with the armed forces. During the Second World War, posters were also used to explain tube 'etiquette' to the vast numbers of war workers and servicemen using the underground for the first time.
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Wartime conditions called for new posters advising passengers on changes to the transport system. Hans Schleger ('Zero'), James Fitton and David Langdon produced designs during the Second World War concerning the blackout, air raids and anti-blast window netting on buses and tubes. Other regulations related to the threat of gas attack and the use of public transport to evacuate children and others from the city.
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Cartoon : Cartoons have regularly featured in Underground posters over the last 100 years. The cartoon style has primarily been adopted for instructional posters, lending a friendly tone to the necessary conveyance of rules and regulations. The travelling public would have been familiar with the work of many of the leading cartoonists commissioned.
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Panel poster : Panel posters were produced for display in Underground car interiors, as well as on the inside and outside of buses and trams. Because they did not have to fit a standard frame or wall space, they are smaller than other poster formats and vary slightly in size.
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