You what?

Mr Crownfolio brought this to my attention with the description ‘sense of proportion failure’ and he’s not far wrong there.

1978 railway poster chessington zoo from eBay

This delectable image from the late 1970s is on offer to you for the grand sum of three hundred pounds.  Yes, £300.  And that’s the starting bid, not even a Buy It Now.  I was going to say that I’m lost for words, but I’m not, I have found them.  Not all railway posters are worth a lot of money. Especially not this one.

But in trying to find out who was responsible (for the poster, not the eBay listing), I did come across a couple of rather fine Chessington items.  They’re both by Bromfield, the first from 1962, the second two years later.

Bromfield vintage British railway poster chessington zoo 1961/2

Bromfield Chessington Zoo vintage railway poster British Railways 1964

And if you go fiurther back, to somewhere in the late 1930s, there is this, by Burley.

Chessington Zoo poster Burley 1930s Southern Railway

If you like it, one of the same series, featuring an elephant this time, is up for sale from Dodo Posters.  And for £375.

Chessington Zoo seal poster Burley 1930s vintage railway Southern

But ifor a complete overview of how railway poster design went downhill from these designs to the 1970s, as Chessington changed from a Zoo and Circus to a World of Adventures, then this is the page for you.

Chessington leaflets

The above is just a short excerpt; sadly, there is a lot more where they came from.  I dare you to take a look.

Finally, though, I have to say I’m grateful to the eBay seller in the end.  The poster is part of a whole trove of Chessington memorabilia, including this programme.

Chessington Zoo programme 1975

Which is so good – and so much cheaper – that we bought it.  When it arrives I may be able to tell you who the graphic designer is; then again I may not.  Why didn’t the posters look like this then?

  • Ah yes I saw that programme ( and the overpriced poster) as you say the programme is so much nicer – it is the way the N is just kicked out of place by the foot and the colours are really nice – possibly (a wild guess) Steve Dwoskin?

  • I genuinely don’t know, it’s an interesting one. But I am hoping very much that all will be revealed when it arrives. And if it is, I will let you know!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.