By Christian Bird, Designer, Design Bridge


The best destination in London for foodie types, Borough Market has become a regular pilgrimage for me whenever I’m in need of a good crafted beer or wedge of cheddar. You’ll often spot me hanging around with pint in hand outside The Market Porter, The Rake or The George.

Borough Market is in quite an unusual location; situated directly under a number of elevated railways heading to and from London Bridge station just south of the Thames. This all adds to the charm of the place where a real buzz is housed by Victorian steelwork, holding these butchers, fromageries and gastronauts together.
 
As part of a branding project at Design Bridge, I wanted to explore the market to discover the graphic language of the traders, their produce and the market itself. For the design spotter there is a wealth of detail everywhere; from the witty signage guiding visitors around the many archways, to unusual imported beer casks and wonderful hand painted advertising boards.



LINKS
Borough market map

Editor’s Note: This is the first post of what I hope will be many by guest contributors like Christian. His view of Borough Market provides us with the evidence that the visual culture of the marketplace has not entirely died, and gives us encouragement to seek out those who will go beyond the marker pen scrawls, or more often these days, the  laminated Arial/Comic Sans prints on day-glo paper signs that festoon our not so well-off markets.

I am fascinated by this last image of a round of parmesan cheese; the clarity of the impression combined with the variation in the tone of the print, the traditional trade stamp logo against the ‘ticker tape’ style vertical lettering. This could be the start of a ‘foodie type’ section?

Do you have a market where you live? Go look at it again; let’s see what you’ve got on your doorstep. So what’s in your neighbourhood? I am putting out a request for contributors for the “my type of… place” section of this blog and would like you to put together your own typographic tour. If you are interested, download the contributors information sheet for more details, ideas and specifications here.

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