Friday 31 December 2010

Happy New Year from !

A New Year's Eve special from As most of my postcards are topographic, I couldn't find any postcards that specifically celebrate New Year's Eve. So instead I present to you an evening's entertainment from approximately a hundred years ago. First up on the bill are Professor Howzeena's Wonderful Dwarfs. Can you just imagine what a night out it would be to be entertained by these artistes! I don't know much about them, but the back of the card provides a little tantalising info - just hand written text saying 'Freda Spencer, back left on end' and 'Swindon'. A quick look at the 1911 census for Swindon reveals that Freda May Spencer, a schoolgirl, aged 14, lived at 49 Brunswick St, Swindon. Assuming that this is the same Freda Spencer we can guess that this postcard was photographed between about 1915-1922. Click picture to enlarge.

Tonight's main attraction is Mr George White. Of course we all know and love his character impersonations, humorous songs and monologues and Scotch songs. All perfectly clean in every respect! A quick browse of the 1911 census reveals that George Percy White, age 23, lived at 1 Oakfield Terrace, Oakfield Road, Woking. He was a lodger and his profession was listed as an 'Agent and Canvasser' in the insurance industry. These days we would describe that profession as a door-to-door insurance salesman. I presume entertaining was a sideline. Click picture to enlarge.
Happy New Year from !

Thursday 30 December 2010

London, Albert Bridge c1915

This postcard by Card House shows Albert Bridge from the south side of the river. The small structures on either side are the old tollbooths, which were only in use for six years after the bridge opened in 1873.

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Here are a couple of postcards by R. J. Johns that show the bridge and embankment from around the same date as the Card House postcard:

Wednesday 29 December 2010

Lent Rise, Buckinghamshire c1913

Lent Rise was once a village south of Burnham on the Berks/Bucks borders. Now it is part of Burnham. The Lent Rise Post Office, run by W. Cornell, successor to C. H. Jarratt, is now the Burnham Bread 'n' Beer store.

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Tuesday 28 December 2010

Ewell, Surrey, Ruxley Splash c1910

Ruxley Splash is unrecognisable now. A watersplash is a ford - where a road crosses below a stream or river, in this case the River Hogsmill across Ruxley Lane. There are not many watersplashes left now, but they were a popular subject for postcard publishers a hundred years ago. This postcard is by Young & co of Teddington.

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Monday 27 December 2010

Langley, Berkshire, Elmhurst Road c1910

Notice the house on the left is still being built and the road has grass growing on it. Postcard by Young and Co.

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Saturday 25 December 2010

Hearty Xmas Greetings from Teddington 1907

This Christmas card was published by Richard Charles Young of Teddington in 1907 and is signed RCY. It shows St Marys (Teddington Parish Church), the lock, the weir and trees by the river.
Merry Christmas from postcards then and now!

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Friday 24 December 2010

Twickenham, York House, Rustic Bridge c1907

A suitably wintry postcard by Young & Co of Teddington. Unfortunately the rustic bridge is no longer there, but this is still a lovely part of Twickenham. In the distance is the famous White Swan pub. On the wall directly above the publisher's text 'Rustic' you can see some graffiti. Someone has written (probably in chalk) 'Alice Smith'. Perhaps it was the girl in the photograph? The diagonal line is a fault on the negative.

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Close-ups of the postcard:

Thursday 23 December 2010

Richmond Bridge, Surrey, March 18th, 1915

The message on the back simply states 'Chummy on point duty, March 18 1915'. One must assume that Chummy is the name of the dog, not the policeman. It would have been a common sight in 1915 to see soldiers on horseback in any part of the country. I can't remember the last time I saw a horse on Richmond bridge. The buildings on the left are part of the entrance to the Bridge House Hotel (see below). Richmond bridge was opened in 1777 and widened in 1937. I have quite a lot of postcards of Richmond bridge and nearby locations so expect to see more here in the future. This postcard was published by Talbot Studios of Richmond.

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Bridge House Hotel was a popular spot for day trippers and tourists to take tea overlooking the river. The hotel is no longer there.
People taking tea in Bridge House Hotel garden in about 1910:

Wednesday 22 December 2010

Knightsbridge, West London, Brompton Road showing Harrods c1918

Though unposted, the original owner of the card has written a message on the back that says 'This is where we do our shopping. You will notice Harrods Stores with the great dome. The Windows are lit up until 10 o'clock every night and are a wonderful sight'. The postcard was published by C. & A. G. Lewis of Nottingham. Their postcards are well known for their excellent photography. When the Google Streetview photo was taken Harrods was undergoing some restoration, hence the scaffolding and hoardings.
*Edit, December 30, 2013. The scaffolding and hoardings are no longer present on the updated Google Street View, but now the view is from the other side of the road. Scan of the back of the postcard added as requested.

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Tuesday 21 December 2010

Monday 20 December 2010

Colliers Wood High Street, South London c1928

High Street, Colliers Wood. Postcard published by Frederick Maycock. Maycock was the business partner of the prolific postcard publisher Richard Johns, but they appear to have separated around 1925.

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Sunday 19 December 2010

Hanworth, Middlesex, Main Street c1905

This postcard was very badly faded so I've had to edit it, although I haven't done a particularly good job. The building in the centre with half a roof was a beer house (like a pub, but only licensed to sell beer) - the Flower In Hand. I'm not absolutely sure the Google Streetview is showing exactly the right location, but the pub was definitely in Main Street and this is the only place where the road makes a sharp left turn. The postcard was posted in 1908 and judging by the caption this part of Hanworth was considered old back then. It is unrecognisable now of course. I have another Hanworth pub postcard on this blog - The Swan.

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Detail from the Hanworth postcard. The Flower In Hand is selling Ashby's Entire. Entire was a kind of stout. The young girls are playing with a skipping rope. Click on picture to enlarge.

Saturday 18 December 2010

Stoughton Barracks, near Guildford, Surrey c1912

Previously headquarters of the Queens Royal Surrey Regiment, now residential. A full history can be found on the Regiment's website and some more pictures can be found at Subterranea Britannica.

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The entrance keep has survived. Here are a couple more postcards showing other parts of the barracks:

Friday 17 December 2010

Clapham Common c1912

The Clock Tower, Clapham Common, South London by J. M. of Vauxhall. The tower is still there.

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In this magnificent view of the same area by Card House (probably taken from the roof of the Alexandra Hotel) you can see the Plough Inn (now part of the O'Briens chain) and an early cinema. It is interesting to see from the Google Streetview that the pub now has a mock-tudor exterior.

Thursday 16 December 2010

Brentford, Middlesex, Ealing Road c1913

All of the buildings on the right hand side of the postcard have gone. I wonder what all of the people in the postcard were standing around for. They don't seem to be interested in the bus coming towards them. I wish I could see what was happening on the far right, clearly it is of some note to the spectators in this postcard, but we will never know what it was. The two men with aprons (brothers?) don't seem to be impressed by it though.

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Close-up of the right-hand side of the postcard, click to enlarge:

Wednesday 15 December 2010

Cobham Village Club c1912

Postcard by W. H. Applebee. It is good to see there is still a village club in Cobham, though the building (on the right) is much-altered.

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Tuesday 14 December 2010

Hounslow, The Broadway c1912

As I've now made over one hundred posts to this blog, something slightly special today. In this view of Hounslow it is difficult to tell where everything is. There is almost nothing old left in central Hounslow today. However, the row of terraced houses on the extreme left can be seen in the modern Google Streetview. Notice the cinema on the left of the postcard too. That was called the Hounslow Coliseum Picturedrome. The building that makes up the centre of the postcard has long gone and was approximately where the non-descript office building partially obscured by the tree and the H22 bus is. If you move in towards this modern building you can see it is derelict. Postcard published by W. H. Applebee of Ashford.

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In this detail from the postcard there are several advertisements of note; above the Nosegay sign on the right is an advert for Polaire (Émilie Marie Bouchaud) appearing in 'Come Over Here' at the London Opera House, Kingsway. Polaire was famous for her tiny, corsetted waist. On the left is an early advertisement for Triumph bicycles. Johnnie Walker scotch whisky, Nestlés milk and VIM cleaning powder are still with us, but Pink's Marmalade is no longer available. Click picture to enlarge.

Monday 13 December 2010

Site Update

I have finally finished converting all of the earlier posts to have embedded Google Streetview. Also, all postcard scans on the site have now been updated to 200dpi, which means they are much larger on the screen. I recommend you have a look at the earlier posts again, they are considerably improved by the larger size. I recommend opening the postcard images in a new tab. If you have any comments, queries, suggestions or requests please get in touch.

Windsor Castle and High Street c1910

The statue is of Queen Victoria and was erected in 1887. Postcard by Young & Co.

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Sunday 12 December 2010

Sutton, Surrey, Cheam Road, c1910

Postcard by Young & Co of Teddington. The only reference point is the building in the center of the postcard, much altered now.

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Saturday 11 December 2010

Sipson, Bath Road, Three Magpies c1912

The rural scene depicted in this postcard has now been obliterated by Heathrow Airport. The Three Magpies is directly next to the airport. It is amazing it has survived. It would have been demolished if the proposed third runway had been approved. All of the other buildings in the postcard including the chapel on the right have gone.

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Friday 10 December 2010

Barnes, South-West London, Church Road c1910

Postcard by Young & Co of Teddington. Unfortunately the modern Google Streetview of Church Road does not show the exact viewpoint as the postcard, which is a little further back.

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Thursday 9 December 2010

Laleham, Surrey, Three Horseshoes c1910

This picture was taken just around the corner from the scene in yesterday's post. The pub is well-preserved. Postcard by Young & Co of Teddington.

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Wednesday 8 December 2010

Laleham, Surrey c1913

Laleham is a village on the Middlesex and Surrey borders close to Staines. This view is remarkably similar in the modern Google Streetview. In the centre of the picture you can see the sign for the Three Horseshoes pub, which will be featured in tomorrow's blog post.

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Tuesday 7 December 2010

Monday 6 December 2010

Sunday 5 December 2010

Teddington, Middlesex, Church Road c1920

Postcard published by R. J. Johns of Tooting. Curiously, rival postcard publisher Richard Young ran his business from a premises in Church Road, though it is likely that this photo was taken after Young had moved to the Isle of Wight in about 1920. The children in this postcard all appear to be playing some kind of team game.

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Saturday 4 December 2010

Esher, Surrey, The Mills c1912

A history of Esher Mills can be found on the Esher District Local History Society's website - click this link and scroll down to 'Monograph No. 8 : August 1980 - An Account of Royal Mills Esher by G.B. Greenwood'. Some more information can be found here.
The approximate site of Esher Mills today:

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Thursday 2 December 2010

Madame Jack, Court Dressmakers, Richmond Green c1915

Madame Jack's dressmaking premises shown in about 1915. Until recently the building was the offices of a property company. When they vacated it squatters moved in and vandalised the building. This is a shame because the interior retains many of its original architectural features.

18 Richmond Green today (with the 'to let' sign):

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Wednesday 1 December 2010

Amersham, Buckinghamshire, Town Hall c1912

Another Buckinghamshire pub, this time the Crown in Amersham. Amersham's High Street has retained its charm, albeit without the horses. Amersham today:

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Detail from postcard:


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