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Featured · Hampstead Garden Suburb ·
December
8
2021

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...
Elephant Field
The grazing elephants of Hampstead Garden Suburb... One of the last occupiers of nearby Park Farm was the circus proprietor Lord George Sanger, who retired there in 1904, and was notoriously murdered by a farm hand in 1911. His descendants continued the circus in operation until the 1960s.

When the circus was not touring, Sanger would put his elephants out of pasture in what would become, in a few years, Hampstead Garden Suburb.

An elderly former resident of Denman Drive - constructed in 1908 on what was once Westminster Abbey’s land - used to recall ‘elephants grazing’ in the field between Big Wood and Little Wood, before Denman Drive North and Denman Drive South - constructed in 1912 on what was once the Bishop’s land - were completed.

»more

OCTOBER
22
2021

 

East Street, SE17
East Street, famous for its market, is likely to have been the birthplace of Charlie Chaplin, although no birth certificate exists There had been street trading in the Walworth area since the 16th century, when farmers rested their livestock on Walworth Common before continuing to the city.

In the 17th century, the area through which East Street now runs was rural fields and common land where people could graze their animals. The area to the north was known as ‘Lock’s Field’ and, even in 1878, was described as little more than ‘a dreary swamp’.

Most of the land in the area was owned by the Church, but some was eventually sold or leased. By the 1770s, some land near the junction with Old Kent Road (known then simply as The Kent Road) was cultivated as a flower nursery by the Driver family, who were also responsible for commissioning the grand buildings at nearby Surrey Square.

A legal document from 1780 describes the sale of the land which led to the creation of East Street as a public highway, connecting Walworth Road wit...
»more


OCTOBER
21
2021

 

George Street, TW9
George Street is the high street in Richmond and was one of the first streets to be developed in the town Previously known as Great Street, George Street was renamed after King George III in 1769.

Buildings on the street include the Grade II listed Greyhound House, formerly the Greyhound Hotel in a building dating from the 1730s. The facade of the former General Post Office building at 70–72 George Street, now a retail store, incorporates the coat of arms of the former Municipal Borough of Richmond, which existed from 1890 to 1965.
»read full article


OCTOBER
20
2021

 

BT Tower, W1W
The BT Tower is a communications tower, previously known as the GPO Tower, the Post Office Tower and the Telecom Tower The main tower structure is 177 metres high, with a further section of aerial rigging bringing the total height to 191 metres. The building was designed by the architects of the Ministry of Public Building and Works: Eric Bedford and G. R. Yeats.

The structure was commissioned by the General Post Office (GPO) and its primary purpose was to support the microwave aerials then used to carry telecommunications traffic from London to the rest of the country. It replaced a much shorter tower which had been built on the roof of the neighbouring Museum telephone exchange to provide a television link between London and Birmingham. The taller structure was required to protect the radio links’ "line of sight" against some of the tall buildings in London then in the planning stage.

The narrow cylindrical shape was chosen because of the requirements of the communications aerials: the building shifts no more than 25 centimetres in high wind speeds. Initially, th...
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OCTOBER
19
2021

 

Kilburn Toll
The Kilburn Toll Gate dated from 1710 The main road out of London towards the northwest was Watling Street. It had fallen into serious disrepair given its important status. A new source of funds was needed to maintain the highway. In 1710, a turnpike was established improving the road quality tremendously. There was a toll gate at Kilburn Bridge to charge road users at the entrance to Willesden parish.

Kilburn Toll Gate was situated at the southern end of Kilburn High Road beside the junction with Kilburn Priory.

After 1827, the Metropolitan Turnpike Trust was the body responsible for maintaining the main roads in the north of the conurbation of London. The commissioners took over from fourteen existing turnpike trusts, including the one at Kilburn, and were empowered to levy tolls to meet the costs of road maintenance.

Later the tollgate was moved to Shoot Up Hill before the turnpike was abolished altogether in 1872 as the Metropolitan Turnpike Trust was disbanded. The toll s...
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LATEST LONDON-WIDE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE PROJECT

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.

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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

STEPHEN ARTHUR JACKSON   
Added: 14 Nov 2021 17:12 GMT   

Lynedoch Street, E2
my father Arthur Jackson was born in lynedoch street in 1929 and lived with mm grandparents and siblings, until they were relocated to Pamela house Haggerston rd when the street was to be demolished

Reply

Sir Walter Besant   
Added: 11 Nov 2021 18:47 GMT   

Sir Walter adds....
All the ground facing Wirtemberg Street at Chip and Cross Streets is being levelled for building and the old houses are disappearing fast. The small streets leading through into little Manor Street are very clean and tenanted by poor though respectable people, but little Manor Street is dirty, small, and narrow. Manor Street to Larkhall Rise is a wide fairly clean thoroughfare of mixed shops and houses which improves towards the north. The same may be said of Wirtemberg Street, which commences poorly, but from the Board School north is far better than at the Clapham end.

Source: London: South of the Thames - Chapter XX by Sir Walter Besant (1912)

Reply
Comment
   
Added: 6 Nov 2021 15:03 GMT   

Old Nichol Street, E2
Information about my grandfather’s tobacconist shop

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Comment
tom   
Added: 3 Nov 2021 05:16 GMT   

I met
someone here 6 years ago

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Comment
Fion Anderson   
Added: 2 Nov 2021 12:55 GMT   

Elstree not Borehamwood
Home of the UK film industry

Reply

FEBRUARY
29
2016

 

Sellon’s Farm
To the east of Harlesden, there were still several farms, Elmwood, Haycroft, Upper Roundwood, and Sellon’s until the late 1890s. Sellon’s Farm stood at the current location of the point where Springwell Avenue meets Park Parade.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
23
2016

 

High Road, N11
High Road was formerly Betstyle Road. Between 1867 and 1896 New Southgate underwent a growth spurt. The area between High Road and Station Road had been completely developed, and workmen’s housing was beginning to appear in the shadow of the gasworks. Late Victorian and Edwardian lower middle-class housing was under construction in Springfield Road, Palmers Road, and The Limes Avenue.

Betstyle Road, once a country lane leading to Wood Green, had become New Southgate’s High Road and boasted in excess of ninety shops. High Road is now merely an insignificant backstreet. Until a phase of redevelopment began in 1974, it was the main road from Betstyle Circus, the large roundabout, through to Bounds Green Road and the North Circular Road. Victorian shopping parades, virtually all of which have now gone, lined both sides of the road.

The Northern Star opened in the 1860s and last century boasted a skittles alley, which was removed when the pub was refurbished in 1898. The Sir John Lawrence, an...
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FEBRUARY
22
2016

 

Wilsham Street, W11
Wilsham Street was formerly known as St Katherine’s Road. Charles Booth’s poverty map placed the Kensington Potteries among the "criminal and irreclaimable areas", largely on account of the overcrowded condition of its unsuitable and derelict houses.

Five short streets in the district became known as the "Special Area.": Bangor Street, Crescent Street and three roads that have been renamed. St. Clement’s, now called Sirdar Road, St. Katherine’s Road, now Wilsham Street, and William, now Kenley Street.

In 1899 an enquiry was undertaken at the instance of the London County Council, and it was found that nearly half the babies born in this area died before they were a year old.

In 1904 there was a public-house to every twenty-five dwellings in these streets, and about twenty-three common lodging-houses provided accommodation for over seven hundred persons, at a nightly charge of fourpence or sixpence.

Greater however than the evil of these licensed lodging-houses, was that of t...
»more


FEBRUARY
19
2016

 

An introduction to Hampstead by G.E. Mitton (1902)
This text originates from "The Fascination of Hampstead" by Geraldine Edith Mitton (published 1902) The name of this borough is clearly derived from "ham," or "hame," a home; and "steede," a place, and has consequently the same meaning as homestead. Park, in a note in his book on Hampstead, says that the "p" is a modern interpolation, scarcely found before the seventeenth century, and not in general use until the eighteenth.

Lysons says that the Manor of Hampstead was given in 986 a.d. by King Ethelred to the church at Westminster, and that this gift was confirmed by Edward the Confessor; but there is an earlier charter of King Edgar of uncertain date, probably between 963 and 978. It granted the land at Hamstede to one Mangoda, and the limits of the grant are thus stated: "From Sandgate along the road to Foxhanger; from the Hanger west to Watling Street north along the street to the Cucking Pool; from the Cucking Pool east to Sandgate."

Professor Hales, who thinks, whether genuine or not, this charter is certainly of value, interprets Sandgate as North...
»more


FEBRUARY
14
2016

 

Galton Street, W10
Galton Street lies within the Queen’s Park Estate, W10. Because of its townscape and architectural quality and its historical interest, the Queen’s Park Estate was designed as a conservation area in 1978. A number of properties had been sold and many of them had
already been "improved" in such an insensitive way that the visual unity of whole terraces was threatened.

The designation enabled the City Council to safeguard the character of the Estate and give guidance to
owner-occupiers on suitable improvements. The conservation area was extended in 1991 to include parts
of the Grand Union Canal and the Harrow Road Library (part of this extension was transferred to the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in 1994).
»read full article


FEBRUARY
12
2016

 

29 Rackham Street, W10
29 Rackham Street lay about halfway along on the north side of the street. Frank Hatton, who lived at 29 Rackham Street remembers:

Our house, and its neighbours, were known as tenement houses, in that each floor of the four story house was occupied by different families. There was a front door to which each family had a key. There were no door bells in those days, but each front door had a ’knocker’, and if you wished to call on the family on the first floor, you would knock once, if it was for the second floor, you would knock twice, and three times for the third floor, and four for the fourth or top floor.. There were just two toilets to serve the whole house, and the families would take turns in keeping them clean. There was no bathroom at all, so each family would have a large moveable metal bath, and once a week this would be be filled with hot water, which was boiled up in the kettle (no running hot water in those days) and it took around 20 to 30 kettles to fill the bath, and then the whole family would take turns to use the same...
»more


FEBRUARY
11
2016

 

Exmoor Street, W10
Exmoor Street runs from Barlby Road to St Charles Square, W10 St Charles Hospital was built in Exmoor Street in 1879.

The hospital was built by the Board of Guardians of the Poor Law Union of St. Marylebone as an infirmary for the sick poor of that parish, no site being then available in St. Marylebone itself.

Until 1922 it was known as St. Marylebone Infirmary. In 1923 it was renamed St. Marylebone Hospital, and when it was taken over in 1930 by the London County Council under the Local Government Act of the previous year it was given its present name of St Charles Hospital.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
10
2016

 

Silvester Mews, W11
Silvester Mews was a mews off of Basing Street, W11. On the 1900s Charles Booth map, Silvester Mews was marked as extremely poor. By the tme that the 1950 Ordnance Survey was released, the Mews had been redeveloped and replaced by Silvester House.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
9
2016

 

Golden Mews, W11
Golden Mews was a tiny mews off of Basing Street, W11. It was redeveloped in the twenty first century and renamed "Golden Cross Mews", becoming a gated community.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
8
2016

 

Blackburn Road, NW6
Blackburn Road is a cul-de-sac off of West End Lane. It was first laid out by the builder it was named after in 1885, a Mr. Blackburn.

F. R. Napier, had opened a plating shop behind West Hampstead fire station in 1919, took the site for his Hampstead Plating Works, which was founded in 1940.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
2
2016

 

Lavie Mews, W10
Lavie Mews, W10 was a mews connecting Portobello Road and Murchison Road. Lavie Mews was a tiny mews with bends in it, serving a warehouse.

It disappeared as part of the Wornington Estate redevelopments in the early 1970s.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Bangor Street (1911)
Bangor Street was a street in Notting Dale which disappeared after the Second World War. This photo of the people of Bangor Street was featured in the London City Mission magazine from 1911:.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Acklam Road protests
Acklam Road was the centre of much action during the building of the Westway Flats in the Acklam Road section of the Western Avenue Extension are decorated with banners put up by residents, protesting against the new road, on the day of the opening ceremony at Paddington Green.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Graffiti along Acklam Road (1970s)
Acklam Road was the centre of much action during the building of the Westway North Kensington was, for a while in the early 1970s, a centre for activist graffiti.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Fowell Street, W11
Fowell Street, W10 was redeveloped in the 1970s. James Fowell a builder from Gray’s Inn Road, moved to Ponders End with the profits from Fowell Street, which he built.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Corner of Caird Street and Lancefield Street (1910)
The corner of Caird Street with Lancefield Street.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Corner of Bangor Street and Sirdar Road
The location became the Dolphin Pub. This picture is captioned in the London City Mission magazine
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Counters Creek sewer
The effluent society Although the march of new housing was approaching North Kensington by the 1820s, there was a serious practical impediment to development. The upper classes no longer expected to throw their human and household waste out of the windows, or into local streams. Closed sewers were an essential requirement for a successful building enterprise, but they were expensive to create.

However, a piece of good fortune came along. In 1836 the Birmingham Bristol and Thames Junction Railway was set up to provide a railway line between Willesden and the Thames. Railways were the “internet bubble” of the age and started up and went bust in rapid succession. The proposed route ran just to the west of the Norland Estate and through the Holland Estate near Addison Road. This happened to be the route of Counter’s Creek, a stream which served as the local sewer and rubbish dump. The Commissioners of Sewers insisted the railway company had to divert the stream and build a covered sewer f...
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FEBRUARY
1
2016

 

Bangor Street (turn of 20th century)
The St Agnes soup kitchen was situated on the corner of Bangor Street that this photo was taken from. The precise date of the image is unknown.
»read full article


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