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Creative Pub Sign Ideas For Your Shed & Garden Bar

Through the pandemic we lost access to our pubs: the crisps, the beer, the sticky floors. But in loss, hope was born again… at the end of the garden. A lot of home bars were created to recreate that pub feeling at home. Some lucky few went as far as installing real taps and massive projectors to watch the match. The luckiest few even got their own custom bar sign from us at Two Fat Blokes.

Seeing all your quirky personalised pub signs and risqué garden bar signs got us thinking about all the other funny names we could come up with, as well as the best ones across the country. So, we did you all a favour and compiled this blog to help you think of an apt name for your lockdown pub signs.

Starting off, the top 5 pub names in the UK aren’t a surprise. We all know at least two of these

  1. The Red Lion
  2. The Crown
  3. Royal Oak
  4. White Hart
  5. The Swan

If you’re asking yourself, why were pub names always so similar and landlords didn’t call their pub something like “John’s Pub”, allow us to enlighten you. Back in ye olde days, very few people could read. So, if the pub did say “John’s Pub” no one would be able to read it anyway to understand it was in fact a pub. This meant that landlords would have to mark their pub with pictures on their pub signs so people could identify the pub by the picture outside. Any illiterate olden day’s drinker could tell you what a red lion looked like, or a swan. Pub signs started as advertising for the pubs and meant all manner of person could come in and order a beer. So, the names have stuck as tradition and admittedly they are a lot easier to identify if you can see a big hanging picture of a crown outside.

However, if you’re feeling something a little different to the above, we personally enjoy a funny play on words or something a bit rude (but don’t we all). The UK does have a few cheeky pub names we like and we’re hoping you find some inspiration for your own personalised bar signs and garden bar signs as the funny ones do make our day.

Starting off strong, we’ve got The Polished Knob in West Yorkshire. Absolute 10/10, enjoy saying it, enjoy hearing it. It was first the Black Swan before getting its great new name in 2011.

Kidderminster have also got a great one, The Rank Turd. Could be a favourite personalised bar sign for anyone with bowel issues or a seriously bad hangover? Its original name was the Grand Turk and its new name was only temporary, so it is up for grabs if your garden bar doubles as an outhouse.

Kent next for the very lovely named The Cat and Custard Pot. Not a cheeky one but it definitely is unique. Apparently, it was originally meant to be called the cat and the mustard pot, but a sign maker made a mistake and the name stuck anyway.

The Drunken Duck in Cumbria is also a favourite. Perhaps a nice name for you Midlands folk looking for that personalised pub sign in the garden. The origin of this one is very interesting. Apparently, the landlady found all her ducks dead in the yard one day. She wasn’t going to waste them though and began to pluck them ready to cook. Apparently, while she was finishing, the ducks began to spring back to life. Upon further inspection of their pond, she found a leaking barrel and countless webbed footprints. They were just drunk! She was very upset however and knitted the little buggers some jackets to keep warm.

A very unusual one from Cornwall, The Bucket of Blood. The name apparently comes from a story 200 years ago where the landlord drew water from a local well and found his bucket filled with blood. Supposedly from a mutilated corpse found at the foot of the well, or alternatively the water was tampered with and was being dyed red. You can decide what you think…

And finally, we’ve got a cracker again in Cumbria. Formally The Oak Three but now The Legend of Oily Johnnies. The name change was inspired by a regular patron called Johnnie who used to sell paraffin oil on the pub’s premises.

Still stuck on something different for your custom bar signs? Our website has a few suggestions for garden bar signs but Two Fat Blokes are more than happy to make personalised pub signs too!

Below we’ve got a few from our own noggin but we’d love to hear yours! Check us out for custom bar signs and garden pub signs.

The Staying Inn pub sign

Read our previous post on 'The rise of the home bar'