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Featured · Greenwich ·
MAY
9
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...
Greenwich
Greenwich is a town, now part of the south eastern urban sprawl of London, on the south bank of the River Thames. Greenwich is notable for its maritime history and for giving its name to the Greenwich Meridian (0° longitude) and Greenwich Mean Time. The town became the site of a royal palace, the Palace of Placentia from the 15th century, and was the birthplace of many Tudors, including Henry VIII and Elizabeth I. The palace fell into disrepair during the English Civil War and was demolished to be replaced by the Royal Naval Hospital for Sailors, designed by Sir Christopher Wren and his assistant Nicholas Hawksmoor. These buildings became the Royal Naval College in 1873, and they remained a military education establishment until 1998 when they passed into the hands of the Greenwich Foundation. The historic rooms within these buildings remain open to the public; other buildings are used by University of Greenwich and Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance.

The town became a popular resort in the 18th century and many grand houses were built there, such as Vanbrugh Castle es...

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APRIL
17
2021

 

West Smithfield, EC1A
West Smithfield is the oldest street of the Smithfield area Smithfield and its market was founded in 1137. The ancient parish of St Sepulchre extended north to Turnmill Street, to St Paul’s Cathedral and Ludgate Hill in the south, and along the east bank of the Fleet (now the route of Farringdon Street). St Sepulchre’s Tower contains the twelve ’bells of Old Bailey’, referred to in the nursery rhyme "Oranges and Lemons". Traditionally, the Great Bell was rung to announce the execution of a prisoner at Newgate.

A livestock market was in the area as early as the 10th century.

As a large open space close to the City, Smithfield was a popular place for public gatherings. In 1374 Edward III held a seven-day tournament at Smithfield. Possibly the most famous medieval tournament at Smithfield was that commanded in 1390 by Richard II.

The Priory of St Bartholomew had long treated the sick. After the Reformation it was left with neither income nor monastic occupants but, following a petition by the C...
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APRIL
16
2021

 

Old Ford Road, E3
Old Ford Road stretches two and a quarter miles from Bethnal Green to Bow Old Ford Road represents two separate ways from different points to the sometime passage across the Lee, one being from the west, the other from the south, which in meeting converged with a third from the north which is known now as Wick Lane, the communication with Hackney.

In ancient times the estuary of the river Lee extended as far as Hackney Wick, and during the period when the Romans were in Britain the marshes which lay above it and on either side were crossed in the direction of Leyton by a stone causeway of which portions have been found, but of any contemporary road leading to it no traces have been discovered, although Roman remains were unearthed in 1868 in the coal and goods yard attached to Old Ford Station. The probability is that there was no military highway of massive construction such as those found elsewhere, but a track formed by use which led through woods and over the open fields to the first fordable place on the river Lee or Lea, a name derived ...
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APRIL
15
2021

 

Crossharbour
Crossharbour is a station on the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) Bank-Lewisham Line in Cubitt Town The station opened as ’Crossharbour’ on 31 August 1987 but was renamed in 1994 to ’Crossharbour and London Arena’. After the neighbouring London Arena was demolished in 2006, the original name was reinstated. Just to the north of the current station, the London and Blackwall Railway built Millwall Docks station. This operated between 1871 and 1926.

The ’cross harbour’ name refers to the nearby Glengall Bridge across Millwall Inner Dock. The bridge’s construction was a neccessity for the developers to obtain planning approval for the dock when it was built in 1868.

In 1969 Tower Hamlets council completed the St John’s estate on the Cubitt Town side of the station. The project was begun 17 years earlier by Poplar Borough Council.
»read full article


APRIL
14
2021

 

Narrow Street, E14
Narrow Street is a road running parallel to the River Thames through the Limehouse area Many archaeologists believe that Narrow Street represents the line of the medieval river wall. This wall was built to reclaim riverside marshland and to protect it from the tides.

A combination of tides and currents made this point on the Thames a natural landfall for ships. The first wharf was complete in 1348. Lime kilns or oasts (’lymehostes’) used in the production of mortar and pottery were built here in the fourteenth century.

Houses were then built, on the wall itself at first, but then outwards onto the foreshore by a process of encroachment. Indeed, the eastern end of Narrow Street was previously known as Fore Street.

The area grew rapidly in Elizabethan times as a centre for world trade. The neighbourhood supplied ships with ropes and other necessities; pottery was also made here for the ships. Ship chandlers settled here building wooden houses and wharves in the cramped space between street and river.

By the t...
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LATEST LONDON-WIDE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE PROJECT


Comment
Carol   
Added: 7 May 2021 18:44 GMT   

Nan
My nan lily,her sister Elizabeth and their parents Elizabeth and William lived here in1911

Reply

   
Added: 4 May 2021 19:45 GMT   

V1 Attack
The site of a V1 incident in 1944

Reply
Comment
David Gibbs   
Added: 3 May 2021 16:48 GMT   

73 Bus Crash in Albion Rd 1961
From a Newspaper cutting of which I have a copy with photo. On Tuesday August 15th 1961 a 73 bus destined for Mortlake at 8.10am. The bus had just turned into Albion Road when the driver passed out, apparently due to a heart attack, and crashed into a wall on the western side of Albion Road outside No 207. The bus driver, George Jefferies aged 56 of Observatory Road, East Sheen, died after being trapped in his cab when he collided with a parked car. Passengers on the bus were thrown from their seats as it swerved. Several fainted, and ambulances were called. The bus crashed into a front garden and became jammed against a wall. The car driver, who had just parked, suffered shock.

Reply

Richard Eades   
Added: 3 May 2021 11:42 GMT   

Downsell Primary School (1955 - 1958)
I was a pupil at Downsell road from I think 1955 age 7 until I left in 1958 age 10 having passed my "11plus" and won a scholarship to Parmiters school in bethnal green. I remember my class teacher was miss Lynn and the deputy head was mrs Kirby.
At the time we had an annual sports day for the whole school in july at drapers field, and trolley buses ran along the high street and there was a turning point for them just above the junction with downsell road.
I used to go swimming at cathall road baths, and also at the bakers arms baths where we had our school swimming galas. I nm y last year, my class was taken on a trip to the tower of london just before the end of term. I would love to hear from any pupils who remember me.

Reply
Lived here
   
Added: 1 May 2021 16:46 GMT   

Cheyne Place, SW3
Frances Faviell, author of the Blitz memoir, "A Chelsea Concerto", lived at 33, Cheyne Place, which was destroyed by a bomb. She survived, with her husband and unborn baby.

Reply

James Preston   
Added: 28 Apr 2021 09:06 GMT   

School
Was this the location of Rosslyn House prep school? I have a photograph of the Rosslyn House cricket team dated 1910 which features my grandfather (Alan Westbury Preston). He would have been 12 years old at the time. All the boys on the photo have been named. If this is the location of the school then it appears that the date of demolition is incorrect.

Reply
Comment
Tricia   
Added: 27 Apr 2021 12:05 GMT   

St George in the East Church
This Church was opened in 1729, designed by Hawksmore. Inside destroyed by incendrie bomb 16th April 1941. Rebuilt inside and finished in 1964. The building remained open most of the time in a temporary prefab.

Reply
Comment
   
Added: 21 Apr 2021 16:21 GMT   

Liverpool Street
the Bishopsgate station has existed since 1840 as a passenger station, but does not appear in the site’s cartography. Evidently, the 1860 map is in fact much earlier than that date.

Reply
MARCH
31
2019

 

Leadenhall Street, EC3P
Leadenhall Street - historic home to both the East India Company and Lloyd’s of London. Leadenhall Street links Cornhill and Bishopsgate in the west to St. Botolph Street and Aldgate in the east.

It dates from Roman times - the second century ’Leadenhall Street Mosaic’ was discovered during building work on the East India Company premises but taken to the British Museum in 1880.

In 1879 a telephone exchange was installed at No. 101 Leadenhall Street by The Telephone Company (Bells Patents) Ltd. – one of the first in London.

The street was home to East India House from 1729 until demolition in 1861 when replaced by Lloyd’s of London. The London Metal Exchange is also on the street.

The Aldgate Pump is located at the east end of Leadenhall Street.

»read full article


MARCH
30
2019

 

Camomile Street, EC3A
Camomile Street is a short street in the City of London Camomile Street runs west from Bevis Marks, continuing that street to Houndsditch.

The houses on the north side are on the site of the wall of London and a plaque on a house at the north-east corner of the street marks the former site of Bishopsgate.

It is possible that the land immediately within the wall was waste land and covered with the chamomile plant.

On a corner of Camomile Street is the Heron Tower skyscraper.
»read full article


MARCH
29
2019

 

Blessington Road, SE13
Blessington Road dates from the mid-Victorian period. The railway arrived in Lewisham in 1849 and by the 1850s, the first houses were appearing on the new Blessington Road.

Constructed as single middle class family houses complete with accommodation for servants, by the Second World War most houses in the street had been subdivided into flats.

Blessington Road suffered during the Second World War with a deadly bombing taking place on 29 June 1944 destroying houses and lives.

The Mercator Estate is a mixture of a terraces of houses facing onto Belmont Park and another eight houses north of Saxton Close. There are a series of blocks: Chesney House, Ericson House and Clavering House, on Mercator Road and Blessington Road; along with the Rawlinson House tower block.
»read full article


MARCH
28
2019

 

Turners Wood, NW11
Turner’s Wood, built in 1916, was the final road of the original Hampstead Garden Suburb before the First World War brought work to an end. It was the last work of architect G.L. Sutcliffe who died soon after its completion. The architecture varies greatly.

Turner’s Wood was very successful architecturally - red brickwork being a major feature.

The road is backed onto by a private woodland of the same name.
»read full article


MARCH
26
2019

 

Clarendon Road, W11
Clarendon Road is one of the W11’s longest streets, running from Holland Park Avenue in the south to Dulford Street in the north. The area was largely open country when Clarendon Road was created during the second great wave of development on the Ladbroke estate in the 1840s. The estate was still owned at that time by the Ladbroke family in the person of James Weller Ladbroke. It was a time when the population of London was growing rapidly and developers saw rich profits to be made in providing the expanding population with housing.

James Weller Ladbroke had detailed plans drawn up for the western part of the Ladbroke estate, including Clarendon Road, in 1843 and 1846. Ladbroke did not undertake the development himself; instead he signed agreements or building leases with builders or speculators under which they undertook to build a certain number of houses on the plot of land covered by the agreement. Once the houses were built, Ladbroke would then give either the builder or a person nominated by him (usually the person who had provided finance for the construction) 99-year leases of the houses....
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MARCH
24
2019

 

Glengall Grove, E14
Glengall Grove was named after a major landowner in the Isle of Dogs. Margaret Lauretta, Countess of Glengall was the wife of the 2nd Earl of Glengall. She was the daughter of William Mellish and inherited her father’s considerable estate on the Isle of Dogs in 1834. Many places and buildings on the Island made use of the Glengall name.

One of those was Glengall Road. Glengall Road ran from Westferry Road in the west to Manchester Road in the east, crossing the Millwall Docks. It was renamed Glengall Grove shortly before the Second World War. When road access through Millwall Docks was stopped in 1963, the western half of the road was renamed Tiller Road.

Glengall Road/Grove was probably laid out in the 1850s since it appears first on an 1861 map but not on an 1850 one.

Football club Millwall Rovers’ first ever fixture was held on Glengall Road on 3 October 1885.

Other locations taking the Glengall name included:
- The Glengall Arms. A pub formerly located at 367 Westferry Road.<...
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MARCH
21
2019

 

Basing Street, W11
Basing Street was originally Basing Road between 1867 and 1939. Basing Street might have acquired its name from the railway developer landowner James Whitchurch from Southampton, near Basingstoke. Alternatively it could have been named in honour of the 16th century landlord, Sir William Paulet or Pawlet, Lord St John of Basing and Marquis of Winchester, Lord High Treasurer in the reign of Elizabeth I.

The foundation stone for a congregational chapel, was laid by the Nottingham Liberal MP Samuel Morley in July 1865, "at a time when all this part was little more than open fields."

Waxwork models produced on Basing Street for Madame Tussaud’s included the local serial killer John Christie from 10 Rillington Place. In the late 1960s the building had another famous reincarnation as the offices and studios of Island Records. Chris Blackwell’s first memory of the premises is being freaked out when he found himself in a room full of dummies. Led Zeppelin began recording their fourth album, including ’Stairway To H...
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MARCH
20
2019

 

Russell Square, WC1B
Russell Square was laid out from 1800 by James Burton following the demolition of Bedford House, which originally stood on the site surrounded by gardens and fields. Its name comes from the family name of the Dukes of Bedford.

The east side was the first to be built, between 1800 and 1817; the south side followed, then the gardens, and finally, the west and part of the north side were built.

Bolton House predated the development of the square; it was built in 1759 as Baltimore House and renamed after a later occupant, the Duke of Bolton and after the Square was developed, it became integrated into its numbering scheme

Towards the end of the nineteenth century, further houses were built on what had been the gardens to the north of Bolton House; these were nos 68–70 Russell Square

It was a prestige development of big houses in a very large square - larger than any residential square previously built in London.
»read full article


MARCH
19
2019

 

Camden Square, NW1
Camden Square is a long green space running north east to south west parallel to Camden Road. This area was laid out over fields in the 1840s but was only finally completed around 1880.

It had been determined that Camden Square should be a higher class development. The earlier portions of Camden Town were already deteriorating socially. Hence there was a generous provision of green space and to deal with spiritual matters, St Paul’s Church, a neo-gothic structure, was consecrated in 1849. A contemporary lithograph by C.J. Greenwood shows the church with cattle in the foreground, and a view stretching along the emerging Cantelowes Road towards St Paul’s Cathedral. Large houses were concentrated around Camden Square with more modest buildings leading from the Square, loosely following the example of Covent Garden.

Upmarket ambitions faltered as high density housing was placed to the north east, as Camden Terrace, North Villas and South Villas.

Then, the Midland Railway arrived in 1864. Cut-and-cover construction bisected Camde...
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MARCH
17
2019

 

Bayswater Road, W2
Bayswater Road is the main road running along the northern edge of Hyde Park. Like Oxford Street to the east, Bayswater Road follows the course of the old Roman road linking London with Silchester.

The eastern end of Bayswater Road starts at the Marble Arch junction, and in the west continues into Notting Hill Gate. It is mostly within the City of Westminster but a small portion of the road’s western end lies in Kensington and Chelsea.

By 1828, the main road (then known as Uxbridge Road) facing Kensington Gardens, had been built up between St Petersburg Place and Porchester Terrace. Along the west side of Black Lion Lane there were houses as far as the corner of Moscow Road and more spacious villas, at first called Westbourne Terrace, farther north almost reaching Pickering Place at the southern end of Westbourne Green. The east side of Black Lion Lane was still open, apart from a few large houses at the Uxbridge Road end, and villas lined Porchester Terrace only as far as the corner of Craven Hill, which itself had cottages only...
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MARCH
14
2019

 

Ainger Road, NW3
Ainger Road lies along the boundary of St John’s Hampstead, a parish which saw rapid development in the nineteenth century. The name commemorates Thomas Ainger, vicar of St John’s from 1841 until his death in 1863, who provided clinics, schools and churches to go with the new houses in the area. Until 1882, this was Windsor Road.

George Pownall was the builder/developer responsible for developing the street. In 1868 Pownall proposed to build several new roads. After building in Albert Park and Oppidans Road, Ainger Road was built in 1869. By 1879, Pownall had built 38 houses, three stables and a workshop.
»read full article


MARCH
13
2019

 

South Square, NW11
South Square is the name of the southern part of Central Square, Hampstead Garden Suburb. Raymond Unwin’s 1905 proposals for a garden suburb at Hampstead showed a central core near to the location of what became Central Square. This point was the highest in the suburb and thus its proposed buildings would become the focus in views from surrounding streets. There was to be a library, a hall, an Anglican church, a chapel and shops. The east side of the square was to be filled with housing.

As 1908 dawned, Edwin Lutyens was appointed consulting architect to Hampstead Garden Suburb (HGS) and was directed to focus his energies on the central area, including the Institute. Lutyens’s drew a sketch plan for Central Square and presented to the General Purposes Committee of the HGS Trust on 18 February.

Henrietta Barnett, whose idea the suburb had been, was known not to approve it and suggested an alternative arrangement in a letter of 24 February. This plan captures what would become the final form of the Central Square, with the Institute and rel...
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MARCH
12
2019

 

Latymer Upper School
Latymer Upper School is an independent selective grammar school which accepts boys and girls between the ages of 7 and 19. Latymer Upper School was founded by Edward Latymer in 1624. It is coeducational with over 1200 pupils.

Edward Latymer, a wealthy lawyer and puritan, left part of his wealth for the clothing and education of “eight poore boyes” from Hammersmith. In 1657, a parochial charity school was set up and was rebuilt in 1755. A new facility was built on what is now King Street in Hammersmith in 1863, and was replaced in 1890 with a new building between King Street and the Thames. This structure persists to the present day as the core of the Upper School. The site also includes Latymer Prep School, which takes pupils aged 7 to 11.

The school became fully private in 1975 after being a direct grant school. The Sixth Form has been co-educational since 1996, and in 2004 the main school started to become co-educational.
»read full article


MARCH
11
2019

 

Hatton Garden, EC1N
Hatton Garden is a street and area noted as London’s jewellery quarter and centre of the UK diamond trade. The name ’Hatton Garden’ is derived from the garden of Ely Place, the London residence of the Bishop of Ely, which was given to Sir Christopher Hatton by Elizabeth I in 1581, during a vacancy of the see.

The area surrounding Hatton Garden has been the centre of London’s jewellery trade since medieval times. The old City of London had streets, or quarters, dedicated to types of business, and the area around Hatton Garden became a centre for jewellers and jewellery. Nearly 300 businesses in Hatton Garden are in the jewellery industry and over 55 shops represent the largest cluster of jewellery retailers in the UK. The largest of these companies is De Beers, the international family of companies that dominate the international diamond trade. De Beers has its headquarters in a complex of offices and warehouses just behind the main Hatton Garden shopping street. The area also plays host to a large number of media, publishing and creative businesses, including Blinkbox ...
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MARCH
10
2019

 

Lower Marsh Market
Lower Marsh Market is in the Waterloo area of London. Lower Marsh Market and a variety of vintage shops, pubs, bookshops, art galleries, independent coffee spaces and a variety of restaurants featuring food from many ethnic origins.

In 2015, the market was reported as having 77 stalls.

»read full article


MARCH
9
2019

 

Television Centre
Television Centre is a complex in White City that was the headquarters of BBC Television between 1960 and 2013. The first BBC staff moved into the Scenery Block in 1953, and the centre was officially opened on 29 June 1960. Parts of the building are Grade II listed.

It was announced in 2010 that the BBC would cease broadcasting from Television Centre in 2013. Property developers Stanhope plc bought the complex for £200 million.
»read full article


MARCH
8
2019

 

Coppock Close, SW11
Coppock Close is part of the Kambala Estate. The Kambala Estate was named after a former road that the estate covered - Kamballa Road. It is part of a scheme of low-rise brick-built houses and flats, built between 1976 and 1979.
»read full article


MARCH
7
2019

 

St Luke’s Hospital for Lunatics
St Luke’s Hospital for Lunatics was founded in London in 1751 for the treatment of incurable pauper lunatics by a group of philanthropists. It was London’s second public institution in London created to look after mentally ill people, after the Hospital of St Mary of Bethlem (Bedlam), founded in 1246.

In 1786 the hospital moved to purpose-built premises on Old Street, between Bath St and what is now the Old Street Roundabout. The building had a magnificent frontage of brick, 500 feet long and had a central entrance, with the male wards to the left and female wards to the right.

There wered single cells for 300 patients, each with small windows set high in the wall.

All patients were transferred in 1916, and the buildings were acquired by the Bank of England to become the St Luke’s Printing Works, used for printing bank notess. The building was demolished in 1963.
»read full article


MARCH
6
2019

 

Thames Tunnel
The Thames Tunnel connects Rotherhithe and Wapping and was built between 1825 and 1843. There had been an increasing need for a new connection between the north and south banks of the Thames to link the expanding docks on each side.

In 1818, the Anglo-French engineer Marc Brunel had patented the tunnelling shield, a revolutionary advance in tunnelling technology. Five years later, he produced a plan for a tunnel between Rotherhithe and Wapping, which would be dug using the shield. Financing was found from private investors and the project began in February 1825.

The tunnelling shield was built at Henry Maudslay’s Lambeth works and assembled in the Rotherhithe shaft. Its main innovation was the support for the unlined ground in front and around it to reduce the risk of collapses. Many workers, including Marc Brunel, fell ill from the filthy sewage-laden water seeping through from the river above. The main engineer himsef, John Armstrong, fell ill in April 1826. Marc’s son Isambard Kingdom Brunel took over at the age of 20.
...
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MARCH
4
2019

 

Talbot Yard, SE1
Talbot Yard used to host one of the most famous inns in English literature. The Tabard was immortalised by Chaucer when he selected it as the starting place of the pilgrims in his celebrated Pilgrims Progress. He sets the scene at the Inn on the night before the pilgrimage:

‘Byfel that in that sesoun on a day,
In Southwark at the Tabard as I lay
Ready to wenden on my pilgrimage
To Canterbury, with ful devout courage,
At night was come into that hostelrie,
Wel nyne and twenty in a compainye.’
The Tabard as it stood in 1875 was not the inn that Chaucer knew of 1388; the original was destroyed by fire in 1628.

The inn first appeared on the scene in 1304 when the Abbot and Convent of Hythe became the owner of two houses purchased from William Latergareshall. On the site of these houses the Abbot built a dwelling house and a hostelry and erected the sign of the Tabard, a sleeveless leather coat. It was probably the first of the High Street inns and the forerunner of a multiplicity of inns,...
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MARCH
3
2019

 

Brunel Museum
The Brunel Museum is a museum at the Brunel Engine House in Rotherhithe. The Engine House itself was designed by Sir Marc Isambard Brunel as part of the infrastructure of the Thames Tunnel. It contained steam-powered pumps used to extract water from the tunnel.

Since 1961 the building has been used as a museum displaying information on the construction of the tunnel as well as other projects by Marc and Isambard Kingdom Brunel.
»read full article


MARCH
2
2019

 

Mercator Road, SE13
Mercator Road was at first called Marlborough Road and was first laid out in the 1850s. Ten deaths occurred in Mercator Road as the result of a Nazi raid on 29 June 1944 which destroyed most of the houses.

After the war, the road was cleared and over 80 prefabs were temporarily built on Mercator Road with some on Blessingham Road. This was a stopgap measure and in 1964, the Borough of Lewisham approved the building of the 14 storey Rawlinson House along with the rest of the Mercator Estate. This was built by the Tersons company, who were part of Balfour Beatty.
»read full article


MARCH
1
2019

 

First Avenue, EN1
First Avenue is an unusual instance of the numbering as opposed to the naming of roads. The area called ’The Avenues’ were built in different years, outside of the sequential order that might be expected.

Fourth Avenue and Fifth Avenue were built first in 1880 with Sixth Avenue begun in 1883. Seventh Avenue dates from 1884

First Avenue and Second Avenue date from the 1890s but Third Avenue did not appear until 1927.

In 1974 Enfield council compulsorily purchased properties north of Main Avenue and demolished Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh Avenues to put up a housing estate.

First Avenue appears on the 1896 Ordnance Survey map with houses on the east side only.
»read full article


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