Help and Frequently Asked Questions
If you can’t find what you’re looking for, click here to email Nick Hallard
Below is a list of questions to help you make the most out of this site. If you’d prefer, call Nick Hallard direct on 01903 213064 or 07730 911330, and he will answer any queries you may have about this site, the company or its products and services. You may click on any of the questions below to take you to the answer.
- Where can I find out about the origins of my pub’s name?
- What do you need to replace my existing sign?
- What if I don’t know what I want on my sign?
- Can you put my sketch / photograph / logo / painting onto my new sign?
- Do you use vinyl stickers?
- Do you use stock or library images?
- How long do your signs last?
- Does my quote include a sign bracket?
- Does my quote include installation?
- How long will it take to make my sign after the design has been agreed?
- Do you only make Inn Signs?
- How much will it cost to deliver my sign?
- Do you require a deposit up front?
- Who do I make my deposit or balance cheque out to?
- Where do I send my deposit or balance cheque?
- What units of measurement do you need?
- Does my quote / invoice include VAT?
- How do I find and send my company font to you for use on my pub sign?
- Why do I have to use a pen and paper to work out my estimate? This is the Internet!
Where can I find out about the origins of my pub’s name?
Nick Hallard will always use a number of resources to research your inn sign name to ensure maximum authenticity if desired. Other excellent resources may be found on the internet, for example at the Inn Sign Society, or Wikipedia . There is a database of 60 000 inn names and their signs at Green Lion Enterprises, which is currently under construction but useful information is still on accessible.
What do you need to replace my existing sign?
The exact measurements of your existing sign. This is very important if the sign is to fit within an exisiting frame or bracket. Also required is a good quality photograph of the sign that needs to be replaced.
What if I don’t know what I want on my sign?
Nick Hallard offers a complete design service to every customer, which can include proofs, pub name research and local history research if requested. If you are a new business, Nick Hallard also offers a logo design service for use on menus, stationary, staff clothing and any signage, ensuring complete design continunity throughout your business.
Can you put my sketch / photograph / logo / painting onto my new sign?
Yes. Anything can be hand-painted with excellent results onto your new sign, including photographs. The only limit is the combined imaginations of you and Nick Hallard!
Do you use vinyl stickers?
No. Every Eyebright Traditional Inn Sign has been painted by hand with brushes and paint, with the exception of the text on The Spotted Cow and The Ham signs, two of Nick Hallard’s first commissions. All Eyebright sign writing since then has been hand painted with brushes and paint. Vinyl stickers do not last as long as paint, fade in the sunlight and expand in the heat, as well as contracting in cold weather leaving messy glues outlines which pick up every speck of grime and dirt. Nick Hallard used vinyl letering on the two signs mentioned above in 2000, and will not do so again unless specifically requested by a customer.
Do you use stock or library images?
No. The only time you will see the same image on an Eyebright Inn Sign is when a duplicate has been ordered by the same customer (see the Crown & Kettle, Manchester). Nick Hallard will approach a common pub name, such as the Royal Oak, completely differently and from scratch for each and every customer who needs a sign with that name. Most Eyebright signs are designed from imagination; from a combination of copyright-free images; or from images supplied by the customer, but rest assured – you will never, ever see your Eyebright Traditional Inn Sign outside any other venue than your own. Other manufacturers of pub signs – even some hand-painted pub sign makers – use a stock of images so that you can never be sure your sign is unique.
How long do your signs last?
Eyebright has been making traditional inn signs since June 2000, so there is only a limited amount of time to gauge this by. The very earliest signs, which were not framed by wood or aluminium, are still structurally sound, and at the time of writing (summer 2006) look as fresh as when they were first painted. The wood is exterior grade plywood, one step down from marine plywood, and is so hardy it is stored outdoors untreated by Eyebright’s suppliers. By the time you get your sign it will have been coated with undercoat, primer, gloss paint and acrylics. Acrylic paints never fade as they are 100% UV light-proof. The gloss paint has guarantees of between five and ten years, depending on the manufacturer, but all evidence points to the gloss paint – if properly applied – lasting much longer than these conservative guarantees. To ensure as long a life as possible for your inn sign, yearly cleaning in autumn with a mild detergent solution is recommended to remove corrosive bird droppings and any mould or surface damp that may have built up. When drilling into the sign for fixings and brackets, drop PVA glue into the guide holes to ensure a watertight seal around any break in the sign’s surface.
Does my quote include a sign bracket?
Not yet. Nick Hallard is designing a unique Eyebright wrought iron bracket for inclusion as an extra option, to be made by James Godbold, a wrought ironsmith in the North of England. He makes bespoke sign brackets to any design, but will be able to make up Eyebright brackets one-by-one as required. The cost will be between £50 – £75 per bracket with a 3ft reach, and less for smaller brackets. Most often an inn sign is ordered as a replacement, and is these cases the sign will be made to fit your existing bracket. If you require James’ contact details, please click here to email Nick Hallard, or telephone 01903 213064 or 07730 911330.
Does my quote include installation?
No. Nick Hallard only makes signs, and cannot offer installation of any sign. This is what enables Nick Hallard to keep Eyebright’s prices so low, as he does not require the overheads needed to offer installation such as insurance or any of the costs associated with a large vehicle (or indeed employees – fitting a sign is a two-man job and Nick Hallard is a sole trader). However, Nick Hallard keeps in contact with sign post fitters and sign installers, mainly in the South of England, who should be able to install your sign for you at a very reasonable rate.
If you are a sign post manufacturer and think your contact details could help, or if you are a sign installer in the North of England, click here to email your details to Nick Hallard.
How long will it take to make my sign after the design has been agreed?
This depends on the time of year as much as the complexity of the sign. Like any business, there are periods of high and low workload. If you required a sign when no other job was pending in the workshop, turnaround can be as little as a week. At a time of high numbers of orders the turnaround can be as much as six weeks depending on your place in the queue. Another consideration is the weather, as extremes of heat and cold will affect gloss paint drying times. If you require a sign for a specific date, leave as much time as you can between ordering and expecting delivery.
Do you only make Inn Signs?
No. Eyebright supplies everything a pub, bar, hotel or restaurant could need in terms of signage except for installation and brackets. This includes all internal sign writing for directions and notices (including hand-painted BSS safety signs); A-boards of any size made from wood and sign written to your specifications; chalk boards for inside and out made from wood and supplied fully artworked; canvas paintings; murals; event-specific chalk boards or A-boards for sporting fixtures, Christmas bookings, weekly events or public holidays; even corporate logos for menus, stationary and staff clothing. Nick Hallard used to be a Marketing Manager before setting up Eyebright in 2000, so can also advise on getting your message across effectively.
How much will it cost to deliver my sign?
If your sign is the traditional English size of 3ft x 4ft, delivery anywhere in the UK is free. Signs smaller than this will cost up to £30. Delivery costs for signs larger than 3ft x 4ft or outside the UK will be included in any quote you request.
Do you require a deposit up front?
Yes. This is to cover materials costs and is 25% of the total quoted. It is payable by cheque.
Who do I make my deposit or balance cheque out to?
Please make all cheques payable to Nick Hallard.
Where do I send my deposit or balance cheque?
Nick Hallard, Eyebright, 65 Downlands Avenue, Worthing, West Sussex, BN14 9HE
What units of measurement do you need?
Nick Hallard works in metric or imperial, depending on your preference.
Does my quote / invoice include VAT?
Nick Hallard will not be charging VAT for 2006 – 2007.
How do I find and send my company font to you for use on my pub sign?
Fonts can usually found in C:\WINDOWS\FONTS as a .TTF or a .FON file on a Windows PC. They can easily be sent via email as attachmetns, just as you would any other item.
Why do I have to use a pen and paper to work out my estimate? This is the Internet!
Nick Hallard has designed and built this website himself, and at the time of writing does not have the relevant web design skills to create an automatic form to total up your estimate. However, this will be remedied in the coming weeks!
What’s the difference between acrylics and vinyl?
Acylics is the paint used by Nick Hallard to hand-paint all images on Eyebright Traditional Inn Signs. It is very versatile, and can be used much like oil paints, but has the capacity to be diluted and used like watercolours. The recipe has hardly changed in 100 years, yet it is very durable and perfectly suited to extremes of temperature, light and weather. It forms a kind of rubbery surface when dried. Drying times are between 15 – 30 minutes, so complete images can be hand-painted over the course of just a day.
Vinyl has a similar ruberised texture, but instead of being applied with a brush in the form of hand-painting, it has a glue back and is applied as one sheet or as individual lettering. Much used on company vehicle ‘sign writing’, it can shrink and expand with temperature. This has the nasty habit of leaving glue outlines around the sticker within a few seasons, which in turn picks up every speck of grit and dust. Vinyl also cracks and leaves a raised surface which too picks up dirt. As it is so quick to apply, it is used by many sign makers as a cheap alternative to creating hand-painted artwork, but this low cost is not usually passed down to the customer. Also, on pub signs that use vinyl stickers the image must come from somewhere, so stock images are used – any image can be printed straight onto a vinyl sheet and used on a pub sign, but will be used again if another pub of the same name requests a sign.