This series of posts is a real labour of love.  I hope you appreciate the effort and danger involved.

The quality of pub toilet signage becomes more important as you get older. Just ask Mrs RM.

It’s both a matter of finding them (particularly in Spoons), and then finding the right one.  Just ask Simon;

To be fair to Simon, ambiguous signage like this one doesn’t help, particularly given modern trends in fashion;


We need a Campaign for Unambiguous Toilet Signage, like the example near Hull Minerva at the top, or this sterling effort from the Bell in Barton Mills;


If the words don’t help, you’ll see the man is smiling as his will be the shorter queue.

It’s the attempts at humour I can’t stand.  Five points if you can guess what the male equivalent in the Fox in Rutland is called;


And this old favourite is fine if you can tell left from right and east from west;


While in the Stags Head confusion must reign if you’re a bloke needing to phone home;

Stags Head, London W1

As so often, the Germans and Poles do this sort of thing properly.  How can could this go wrong ?

I ended up in the ladies.

Finally I see some pubs have started putting up some economical special signage just for Simon.  The likeness in uncanny.


Just don’t get me started on micropub loos. Or unisex ones.


  1. I’d have to go back to check for certain, but I’m sure I’ve been in one Fox & Hounds where the gents’ was labelled “Foxes” and the ladies’ “Hounds”. The opposite would be a bit objectionable, but that’s just weird.


  2. I had a problem along these lines at the weekend. The pub had two toilet doors labelled ‘Standing’ and ‘Sitting’. I assumed that behind one door there would be a bank of urinals only whilst behind the other would be a unisex row of cubicles, failing miserably to recognise that the labels were a ‘humorous’ attempt to signify Male & Female. Unfortunately for me, I was in need of the ‘sitting’ facilities and therefore blundered into the female toilet (thankfully empty), before realising my error. There’s a lot to be said for unambiguous toilet signage!
    Another one I encountered recently simply had the silhouette of cat on one door and a rooster on the other – took me a while to figure that one out too.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Nah, spoons in easy. 70% of the toilets are upstairs, 20% downstairs and the rest on the ground floor. I suspect it’s this rogue 10% they have been selling off.

    Finding the things in the first place is tricky in a lot of pubs, you used to be able to see where the locals walked off to, but now of course they’re heading off for a smoke.

    Liked by 1 person

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