Meet the man behind those honest Night Tube etiquette posters
‘Priority Seat for people who ar too drnk to raed ths sygn porperly’
The Underground is the lifeblood of London: three million people of all ages and walks of life use it every day to get across the city. The introduction of the Night Tube, though, will assist predominantly one type of person – drunks coming home from a night out.
Bryn Jones-Walters realised this, and decided to create some alternative TfL etiquette posters that tell you how to behave towards your fellow passengers.
We spoke to the man himself about how he came up with the idea, how many tubes the signs are currently on, and what the reaction has been from commuters.
Hi Bryn. What made you decide to start putting signs up up on the tube?
I think it started with the priority seats: me and my work partner Liv were talking about how there aren’t really going to be any pregnant or elderly people on the tube past midnight, but there are going to be passed out drunks or degenerates singing Let It Go.
We thought we better do something to reflect that.
How long did it take you to make the signs?
We basically took over one end of our office for the afternoon, working out what the signs should say, then individually cutting them out. It was pretty intense, just like art used to be in primary school.
How many did you make and how many tube trains did you put them up at?
I think we had a few hundred in the end, with 15 or so designs! We went on the Victoria line from Brixton to Tottenham for a few laps, then took to the Central line.
Did you have people helping you or was it a solo effort?
We’re really lucky that where we work we have a professional designer that could knock them up on Photoshop so much quicker than we could.
In terms of putting the signs up, that was just me and Liv. No-one else was up for riding the tube for that long on a Friday.
What has been the reaction from people?
Within minutes of putting the signs up we had people laughing and taking photos, which was exactly what we were after.
I think the one that got the best reaction was: “Polite notice, do not call your ex.” everyone can relate.
What do you hope to achieve with the signs?
We really just wanted to put a smile on people’s faces. When you see your drunk mate sat next to a priority seat sign that says: “Priority Seat for people who ar too drnk to raed ths sygn porperly,” you’re probably going to take a photo.
It was a great moment for London becoming a 24-hour city, so we wanted to put our twist on it.
Have you had any opposition from TfL? Have they started taking them down or do they seem to find them funny too?
Well I went up the Victoria line the next day and didn’t see any left. We can always hope they were taken as souvenirs.
Which is your favourite sign?
My personal favourite is: “You repeat yourself when you’re drunk, you repeat yourself when you’re drunk.” That one was dedicated to a mate.
Have you got any more plans to do more signs?
We’re always on the lookout for stuff to do. The best things are the cheapest but still get everyone talking. There’s so much stuff going on, it’s best when you can put a spin on something that is in the zeitgeist.
Have you done any stunts like this before?
We had a few failed attempts. We tried to address the high-street inequality of charging women more for the same products, like razors.
We put headlines like: “I wasn’t born to pay more” on a load of XXL pants and set up an installation in Carnaby street. Someone had cleared it up within the hour.
What do you do in your normal life?
Me and my partner Liv are a creative team on placement at an advertising agency called Crispin, Porter + Bogusky in King’s Cross, and also avid train spotters. My favourite tube line is the Northern line, it’s poetry in motion.
What’s your opinion of the night tube?
I think it’s great, the more drunk people we can ferry around London the better. I think they should set up a club night on the Central line, call it RedTube.