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Featured · Queen’s Park ·
JANUARY
16
2022

The Underground Map is a project which is creating street histories for the areas of London and surrounding counties lying inside the M25.

In a series of maps from the 1750s until the 1950s, you can see how London grew from a city which only reached as far as Park Lane into the post war megapolis we know today. There are now over 85 000 articles on all variety of locations including roads, houses, schools, pubs and palaces.

You can begin exploring by choosing a place from the dropdown list at the top left and then clicking Reset Location.

As maps are displayed, click on the markers to view location articles.

You can also view historical maps of London - click on the "pile of paper" control on the top right of a page's map to change to a particular decade.

Latest on The Underground Map...
The 1912 streets of Spitalfields
The fascinating story of one man’s random walk in 1912 On Saturday 20 April 1912, a man by the name of C.A. Mathew - a resident of Brightlingsea, Essex - came out of Liverpool Street Station carrying his camera. There’s no telling why he decided to walk the streets of Spitalfields and take photographs on that day - it may well have been a commission but, over a hundred years later, nobody really knows.

NOTE: Many writers about C.A. Mathew’s tour of Spitalfields, including the gentle author, have assumed Liverpool Street station’s involvement in the story. This is a safe assumption - the London terminus of the route from Brightlingsea but is not a definite! But we’ll run with it too...

Matthew only took up photography in 1911, the previous year. Eleven years later, he died. He produced no other known work and little else is known about him.

»more

NOVEMBER
16
2021

 

Suffield Road, SE17
Suffield Road was laid out after the demise of the Royal Surrey Zoological Gardens The Royal Surrey Zoological Gardens grew out of a menagerie started by Edward Cross in 1831 - he had previously exhibited at Exeter Change in the Strand.

The gardens were designed by Henry Phillips and highly praised - they were compared favourably with the Regent’s Park Zoological Gardens. The land of the zoo had previously been the 19-acre Lorrimore Common.

Cages for lions, tigers and other animals were enclosed within a glasshouse, 300 feet in circumference.

The gardens covered roughly the area between Suffield Road on the north, Lorrimore Road to the south, Penrose Street and Borrett Road on the east, and Chapter Road/Delverton Road to the west.

Edward Cross retired in 1844 and, under the new management of William Tyler, fell under hard times. He sold the animals in 1855 in order to keep the enterprise afloat but in 1856 seven people were killed in a stampede during a sermon by a local Baptist minister. The resulti...
»more


NOVEMBER
15
2021

 

Bow Locks
Bow Locks is a set of bi-directional locks in Bromley-by-Bow Bow Locks link the tidal Bow Creek to the River Lee Navigation.

The first recorded mention of water control at the site was during the reign of Edward I. Henry de Bedyk of Halliwell Priory and owner of the nearby tide mills erected a structure some time before 1307. A description of its operation in 1416 indicates that it consisted of a dam with a navigable 18 feet wide channel through it. The owners of the mills rebuilt the structure - now referred to as a lock - in 1573.

With the river was important for trade, an engineer called John Smeaton was asked to recommend improvements in 1765. He suggested a cut from Bow Locks to Limehouse. The Limehouse Cut was opened in 1777, but the lock was not altered.

A pound lock was constructed between 1851 and 1852, to accommodate barges up to 108 by 20 feet. The trustees imposed a toll for using the lock but this was unpopular with the bargees. A compromise was reached, where use of the lock required t...
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NOVEMBER
14
2021

 

Highams Park Estate, IG8
The Highams Park Estate was an estate of 176 prefabs which existed between 1947 and 1961 In 1947 Walthamstow Council erected prefab homes in Highams Park - some of the layout of the roads is still visible in the park. These were erected in order to address the local post-war shortage of homes after bombing.

Three years earlier, the Churchill coalition government introduced the Housing (Temporary Accommodation) Act to provide temporary houses - there was an anticipated shortfall of 200 000 homes. The proposal was to address the shortfall by building 500 000 pre-fabricated houses with a planned lifetime of ten years within a five year period. These became popularly known as ’prefabs’.

At the end of the war, the Labour government of Clement Attlee, agreed to deliver 300 000 units within a decade, within a budget of ÃÆ’Æ’Æ’ÃÆ’¢â‚¬ÅÃâ€...
»more


NOVEMBER
13
2021

 

Folgate Street, E1
Folgate Street, formerly White Lion Yard and White Lion Street, has 17th century origins The development of Folgate Street by the St John and Tillard Estate did not involve building a new street but repurposing an existing one - this older street ran from Wheler Street to Norton Folgate and had probably been developed from a yard, perhaps at about the same time that Wheler Street was built. In the late seventeenth century, Folgate Street was known as White Lion Yard.

The western end of the street is shown in the Hollar map dating after the Great Fire. In the 1675 tax returns, sixty houses were listed as being in White Lion Yard. The street was most likely completely rebuilt by the mid-eighteenth century.

One of more building leases were granted in 1697 and in 1704 White Lion Yard was "a certain place - commonly called White Lyon Yard intended to be rebuilt and called White Lyon Street". On plans of 1711-12, the lower part of Blossom Street, shown as Sote’s Hole, is in existence. Some of the buildings on the north side of White L...
»more





LATEST LONDON-WIDE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE PROJECT

Comment
   
Added: 14 Jan 2022 03:06 GMT   

Goldbourne Gardens W 10
I lived in Goldbourne Gardens in the 50,s very happy big bomb site

Reply

Chris Nash   
Added: 10 Jan 2022 22:54 GMT   

Shortlands Close, DA17
Shortlands Close and the flats along it were constructed in the mid-1990s. Prior to this, the area was occupied by semi-detached houses with large gardens, which dated from the post-war period and were built on the site of Railway Farm. The farm and its buildings spanned the length of Abbey Road, on the south side of the North Kent Line railway tracks.

Reply

Roy Batham   
Added: 7 Jan 2022 07:17 GMT   

Smithy in Longacre
John Burris 1802-1848 Listed 1841 census as Burroughs was a blacksmith, address just given as Longacre.

Source: Batham/Wiseman - Family Tree

Reply

Roy Batham   
Added: 7 Jan 2022 05:50 GMT   

Batham Family (1851 - 1921)
I start with William Batham 1786-1852 born in St.Martins Middlesex. From various sources I have found snippets of information concerning his early life. A soldier in 1814 he married Mary Champelovier of Huguenot descent By 1819 they were in Kensington where they raised 10 children. Apart from soldier his other occupations include whitesmith, bell hanger and pig breeder. I find my first record in the 1851 English sensus. No street address is given, just ’The Potteries’. He died 1853. Only one child at home then George Batham 1839-1923, my great grandfather. By 1861 he is living in Thomas St. Kensington with his mother. A bricklayer by trade 1871, married and still in Thomas St. 1881 finds him in 5,Martin St. Kensington. 1891 10,Manchester St. 1911, 44 Hunt St Hammersmith. Lastly 1921 Census 7, Mersey St. which has since been demolished.

Source: Batham/Wiseman - Family Tree

Reply
Born here
sam   
Added: 31 Dec 2021 00:54 GMT   

Burdett Street, SE1
I was on 2nd July 1952, in Burdett chambers (which is also known as Burdett buildings)on Burdett street

Reply
Lived here
John Neill   
Added: 25 Nov 2021 11:30 GMT   

Sandringham Road, E10 (1937 - 1966)
I lived at No. 61 with my parents during these years. I went to Canterbury Road school (now Barclay Primary) and sang as a boy soprano (treble) in the church choir at St Andrew’s church, on the corner of Forest Glade.
Opposite us lived the Burgess family. Their son Russell also sang in my choir as a tenor. He later became a well-known musician and the choirmaster at Wandsworth Boys’ School.
Just at the end of WW2 a German rocket (V2) landed in the grounds of Whipps Cross Hospital, damaging many of the houses in Sandringham Road, including ours.

Reply
Comment
Tim Stevenson   
Added: 16 Nov 2021 18:03 GMT   

Pub still open
The Bohemia survived the 2020/21 lockdowns and is still a thriving local social resource.

Reply
Comment
STEPHEN JACKSON   
Added: 14 Nov 2021 17:25 GMT   

Fellows Court, E2
my family moved into the tower block 13th floor (maisonette), in 1967 after our street Lenthall rd e8 was demolished, we were one of the first families in the new block. A number of families from our street were rehoused in this and the adjoining flats. Inside toilet and central heating, all very modern at the time, plus eventually a tarmac football pitch in the grounds,(the cage), with a goal painted by the kids on the brick wall of the railway.

Reply

JULY
31
2015

 

Belsize Lane, NW3
Belsize Lane is a thoroughfare linking Rosslyn Hill with Swiss Cottage. Belsize Lane is very old, being marked between hedges in Rocque’s 1745 map, and shown as leading to the grounds of the manor-house.

Baines says that about 1839 "Belsize Lane was long, narrow, and lonesome; midway in it was a very small farm, and near thereto the owner of Belsize House erected a turnpike gate to demonstrate his rights of possession."

While still an attractive road, the road is slightly too narrow for the modern buses which run along it. Traffic tends to buildup behind them.
»read full article


JULY
30
2015

 

Harrow Road, Kensal Green (1900s)
The corner of Ravensworth Road and Harrow Road in NW10.
»read full article


JULY
29
2015

 

St Charles’ Square Training College (1908)
St Charles’ Square Training College/Carmelite Convent. This photo was taken from the bottom of St Marks Park which was open land all the way to Highlever Rd at this point. Pangbourne Avenue where the Princess Louise Childrens hospital was (and is now the Argyll development) was not built until the 1920s.
»read full article


JULY
27
2015

 

The Crown
The Crown was situated at 57 Princedale Road. This pub was established in 1851 and this magnificent photo was taken by a photographer from Maxilla Gardens, Notting Hill.

It featured in a couple of episodes of ’Minder’, which was filmed on location in this area.

This pub became a bar/restaurant called The Academy in 1987.
»read full article


JULY
26
2015

 

Barnet Grass Speedway
Barnet Grass Speedway was active between 1929 and 1936, next to the recently constructed Barnet By Pass. It was the North London Motor Club that negotiated to run speedway on a twenty acre grass track that was adjacent to the Barnet Bypass. It was thus so convenient to travel to with plenty of room for spectators and their transport. The track was originally grass-covered rather than the more usual cinder or shale. The track was opened for the first meeting on the 27 July 1929.

The site remained the venue for open meeting through to 1936 although by 1934 the grass was all but worn away and cinders were added to the bends. The name for its final year was changed to simply ’Barnet Speedway’.

Closing in 1937 when the North London Motor Club failed to achieve an extension on the licence after having successfully completed eighty seven meeting meaning that speedway was lost to the area however the NLMC moved their speedway operation to High Beech leaving the owners of the land free to sell it on for building.

Once the circuit had been s...
»more


JULY
24
2015

 

Colville Terrace, W11
Colville Terrace, W11 has strong movie connnections. Colville Terrace began the 20th century well-to-do but some time before World War Two the houses became multi-occupied. The street suffered some bomb damage in the Blitz and hosted the local communists’ headquarters. In the late 50s numbers 2, 9, 10, 19, 22 and 24 were Rachman houses occupied by West Indian immigrants and prostitutes, including Majbritt Morrison who wrote the ’Jungle West 11’ book.

In the 1958 riots they became targets for the fascist-influenced local mob. In 1960 the basement of number 24 was put under police surveillance and duly established to be a brothel. Michael de Freitas, who was living on the top floor, was arrested but the police couldn’t prove he was the landlord.
Colville Terrace also hosted several West Indian blues clubs including Sheriff’s gym and the Barbadian La Paloma. In the early 70s number 42, at the east end of Powis Square, became renowned as the gay hippy commune, which was evicted and re-housed by Notting Hill ...
»more


JULY
21
2015

 

Buses in Shenley Road
A 292 and 358 in Shenley Road. Facebook user Maureen Sullivan has worked out the following from the clues in the photo:

This photo was probably taken in August 1968 (the advertised film was released in July that year).

The green Route 358 in the background is the 12.53 departure from St Albans, running about 5 minutes late according to the clock on All Saints Church tower.

The 292 is for some reason displaying the Saturday only intermediate blind for Route 292A.

Buildings on the right are still being finished off, on the site of the old Baptist Church, once home to the 1st Borehamwood Scouts.
»read full article


JULY
18
2015

 

Hayden’s Place, W11
Haydens Place is a small cul-de-sac off of the Portobello Road. Hayden’s Place is a short mews is just off the Portobello Road between Westbourne Park Road and Lancaster Road. It was built in the 1860s. Its original name was Hayden’s Mews; it was only by the time of the 1901 census that was described as Hayden Place. The apostrophe seems to have crept in much later – it was still described as Hayden Place on the 1935 Ordnance Survey map.

In 1871, John Hayden, described in the census return as “contractor employing 6 men” was living at 1 Hayden Mews, and it must have been named after him. He may well have been responsible for building the mews.

Originally, the mews had 19 numbered dwellings in it, so it probably extended right down as far as Elgin Mews, between the back gardens of the houses in Westbourne Park Road and Lancaster Road. But by 1891, no more than three households are recorded in the census (five in 1901). It seems that sometime around 1890 the western end of the mews was built over to form a b...
»more


JULY
14
2015

 

Kilburn Bridge
Kilburn Bridge once marked the spot where the Edgware Road crossed the River Westbourne. Kilburn Bridge, which was recorded in 1398 and thought to have been built in the mid 13th century by the prior of Kilburn, carried Edgware Road across the Kilburn brook (the Westbourne River).

In 1826 the original stone bridge with a Gothic arch survived, flanked by brick portions added at two different periods. By that date repair was shared between the trustees of Marylebone turnpike and of the Kilburn Road.

In more modern times, as the river has been culverted and sent underground, there is no trace of the structure.

»read full article


JULY
12
2015

 

Apollo Victoria Theatre
The Apollo Victoria Theatre is a West End theatre, across from London Victoria Station. The theatre was built by architects Ernest Wamsley Lewis and William Edward Trent in 1929 for Provincial Cinematograph Theatres, a part of the Gaumont British chain. The theatre was built with two identical facades on Wilton and Vauxhall Bridge Roads. Construction is principally of concrete, with strong horizontal banding along the exterior sides of the auditorium. By contrast the entrances feature a cantilevered canopy, and are framed by vertical channelling, with two black marble columns rising to the roof line. The entrance is simple, making use of chrome trimmings, this leads to a nautical themed interior in the original Art Deco style that makes extensive use of concealed lighting, decorated with scallop shells and columns that burst into sculptured fountains at the ceiling.

The theatre had a 74 feet by 24 feet stage and was equipped with 10 dressing rooms and two suites for principals. The theatre was Grade II* listed on 28 June 1972.

The theatre op...
»more


JULY
11
2015

 

Dollis Avenue, N3
Dollis Avenue sprung to life in the Edwardian years. Early attempts to build up Olders Hill in the south-west corner of Finchley proved abortive. The National Standard Land Mortgage and Investment Co. bought the estate in 1880 but few lots had been built on by 1897.

Part of Grass farm, which adjoined Olders Hill to the north, was offered for building along Hendon Lane with similar lack of success in 1894. In 1901 that part of Finchley, while providing excellent sites, was thought to be undeveloped because of poor transport, which would be improved by trams.

After the arrival of trams in 1905 housing spread quickly.

There was building in 1906 on Grass Farm estate in Dollis Avenue, where Woodway Lodge, designed by Messrs. Bennet & Richardson, was one of several detached houses.
»read full article


JULY
10
2015

 

Barham Avenue, WD6
Barham Avenue was constructed on the site of two historic houses. A large house called Hillside once stood at the entrance to the future Barham Avenue.

Barham House stood to the east of Hillside. There had been a house on this site since about 1600 which had changed occupants many times and was renamed over the years. The last owner, famous publisher Andrew Chatto, was there in 1897. His son sold the property. In 1931 a local Estate Agent bought and demolished the house. He divided the ground into lots and this was the origin of Barham Avenue, built 1932.
»read full article


JULY
10
2015

 

East End Road, N3
East End Road was originally the route from the hamlet of Church End Finchley to the old Great North Road when it ran through Muswell Hill. Although apparently not so named until the late 19th century, it probably dated from the 14th-century growth of East End.

The road has had various names such as Manor Lane (19th century) and Finchley Road (18th century). In the medieval period a triangle of waste, called Hunts Green (1437), which stretched from Stanley Road to the Junction of Church Lane, was the location of the first hamlet of East End Finchley (1365).
»read full article


JULY
8
2015

 

Victoria Bus Station
Victoria bus station is a bus station outside Victoria Station in Terminus Place. Victoria Station was built in 1861, after Victoria Street had been built a decade earlier through a slum dubbed "Devil’s Acre" by Charles Dickens. It connected Westminster Abbey with this part of Pimlico which gained the name Victoria instead, after the station which the growing suburb surroounded.

Quickly becoming one of the busiest stations in London, the forecourt outside quickly became an important hub for omnibuses. By the 1930s, it had a substantial roof canopy spanning all lanes - this was demolished in April 2003 as part of a station refurbishment.

Victoria is now London’s busiest bus station. In 2015 it had 19 bus routes using the station, with 200 buses per hour passing through in the peak.

It services bus services managed only by Transport for London, and is not to be confused with Victoria Coach Station, a few hundred metres away.
»read full article


JULY
2
2015

 

Middle Row School
Middle Row School was established in the late 19th century to provide education to the children of Kensal New Town. Kensal New Town was a 19th century greenfield development of terraced workers housing sandwiched between the Grand Junction (now Union} Canal and the Great Western Railway, next to the Western Gas Company Gas Works.

The first schooling for the new settlement was provided by the church of St John's, Kensal Green (built in 1845. north of the Canal). St John's School was erected close to the church in 1850. and it was here that any child from Kensal New Town who wished to receive an education would have attended. There was also an early Ragged School in Kensal Road adjacent to the Canal where poorer children may have received a rudimentary education.

The passing of the 1870 Education Act brought about fundamental changes in British education, as the state started to replace the church as the main source of elementary education. From 1880 education became compulsory until the age often or when a certain standard of education was achieved, and by 1899 the mini...
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