The Underground Map


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The Underground Map

MAP YEAR:1750180018301860190019502020Remove markers
Castelnau ·
September
30
2020

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...
Barn Elms Farm
Barn Elms Farm sported majestic elm trees - hence the name. Barn Elms was recorded in 1540 and was formerly the manor house of Barnes. The land and manor belonged to St.Paul’s Cathedral and in 15th century was the home of Sir John Saye, Chancellor of the Exchequer.

The manor house was later the home of Elizabethan spymaster Sir Frances Walsingham. The house was rebuilt by Thomas Cartwright in 1694.

Barn Elms Farm was variously the residence of William Cobbett (a political writer), Abraham Cowley (a poet) and of Heidegger (Master of the Revels to George II). Jacob Tonson lived in the old house called "Queen Elizabeth’s Dairy". He placed here a gallery for the Kit-Cat Club.

William Cobbett was an innovator of cultivation - experimenting with the growing of maize and the practice of self-supporting husbandry.

He saw himself as a champion of traditional rural society against the transformation due to the Industrial Revolution.

The Lobjoit family, Huguenot refugees, ha...

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SEPTEMBER
16
2020

 

Parkway, NW1
Parkway is one of Camden Town’s older roads - originally called ’The Crooked Lane’ Parkway, a tree-lined street, was developed from Crooked Lane in the 1820s and 1830s with three-storey houses on both sides. Until 1938, Parkway was known as Park Street.

Just after the Second World War, a Camden Town local reminisced:
“Park Street, which we now call Parkway, was full of shops instead of architects’ offices and estate agents as it is now. By eight in the morning the shop boy was busy cleaning the windows and polishing the outside brasses, sweeping and burnishing inside ready to open at nine and close twelve hours later for seven shillings and sixpence a week. Shops were graded. Fenn’s, the grocers at the corner of Delancey Street and Park Street, was a cut above the others, wrapping all purchases in brown paper, while most used newspaper.”

The street now has a mix of retail and restaurant uses with some small businesses.
»read full article


SEPTEMBER
14
2020

 

Downham
The Downham Estate dates from the late 1920s The Downham Estate arrived on the scene in 1926, but its name originates in 1914 when the London County Council (LCC) agreed to build three large housing estates. The land was acquired in 1920. Downham covered the lands of two farms, Holloway Farm to the west and Shroffolds Farm to the north. Before the Estate was built, there had been little building south of Whitefoot Lane - many local residents took weekend walks over the ’Seven Fields’.

The name ’Downham’ derives from Lord Downham who, as William Haynes Fisher was a former chairman of the LCC. Many of the road took their names from Tennyson’s ’Idylls of the King’. Other roads took their names from places in Devon.

By summer 1930, 6000 houses had been completed by builders Holland, Hannen & Cubbits. An additional section of just over 1000 houses was developed at Whitefoot lane in 1937 by builders Higgs & Hill and generally known as ’North Downham’. On completion, some 30 000 people l...
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SEPTEMBER
11
2020

 

Harold Hill
Harold Hill is an area in the London Borough of Havering and a district centre in the London Plan The name Harold Hill refers to Harold Godwinson who once held the manor of Havering-atte-Bower. Romford was incorporated as a municipal borough in 1937 and governed by Romford Borough Council, which was the local authority during the construction of the Harold Hill estate.

The housing development of Harold Hill was conceived in the Greater London Plan of 1944 in order to alleviate the housing shortages of Inner London. Before construction of the estate - completed in 1958 - it was the location of Dagnam Park house and grounds.

Most of the land for the estate was purchased in 1947 by the London County Council. The area was within the designated Metropolitan Green Belt, but an exception was made for the development because of the housing need in London following the Second World War.

Construction of 7631 permanent homes, housing 25 000 people, began in 1948 and was complete by 1958.

The development is fairly low density with ...
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SEPTEMBER
10
2020

 

Alexandra Crescent, BR1
Alexandra Crescent was known for its 1926 ’Downham Wall’ Alexandra Crescent was built as a private (unadopted) road in late 1925 by the developer Albert Frampton. In a last-minute change of name, it was called after Queen Alexandra of Denmark who had just passed away in November of that year.

As the Downham Estate was being built to the north in 1926, those who were just moving into the new Alexandra Crescent appointed Frampton to build a dividing wall. The private home owners wished to prevent the working class people of Downham from accessing their neighbouring middle-class area. The Alexandra Crescent residents also wanted to prevent the development of an access route into the centre of Bromley.

Frampton made a formal application to Bromley Council on 16 February 1926 to build the dividing wall. The council refused to take a decision but the seven-foot-high brick wall was built nonetheless. It was constructed across Valeswood Road at its junction with Alexandra Crescent.

The ’class wall’ ...
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FEBRUARY
14
2020

 

Central Drive, RM12
Central Drive was built pre-war on the lands of Hacton Farm. Hornchurch council built 548 homes just before and some just after the Second World War. Many of the roads on what is called the Hacton Lane Estate are named after racecourses.

The estate is a grid of 1930s semis of which Central Drive was designed to be the core. The River Ingrebourne is the dividing line between suburbia and a remnant of Hornchurch countryside.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
13
2020

 

Fountains Abbey
The Fountains Abbey was opened in 1824 and quickly became a popular meeting place for locals. The name of the pub comes from two different sources; ’Fountains’ from the nearby sites of springs and wells, which were essential sources of water to the local inhabitants; and ’Abbey’ which comes from Westminster Abbey, and which owned the manor of Paddington in Saxon times.

It was rebuilt in 1895 and later Sir Alexander Fleming was reputedly a regular customer at the pub.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
12
2020

 

Praed Street, W2
Praed Street was named after William Praed, chairman of the company which built the canal basin which lies just to its north. Praed Street was laid out in 1828 being built up from the Edgware Road end. Leases for the first houses were granted in 1826.

There were already shops in Praed Street before it came to form the chief approach to Paddington station. The original station opened on 4 June 1838 on a site to the west of what is now Bishop’s Bridge Road. It was not until May 1854 that the station was fully operational in its current location.

St Mary’s Hospital was founded in 1845 on Praed Street as a voluntary hospital for ’the deserving sick poor’ and opened the Medical School in 1854. Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin there.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
11
2020

 

Haarlem Road, W6
Haarlem Road runs from Dunsany Road to Augustine Road in West Kensington, It is unknown how it received its Dutch name. Haarlem is a city in the Netherlands and the capital of the province of North Holland.

During the Dutch Golden Age, many artists and craftsmen migrated to Haarlem. Artists like Frans Hals, Jacob van Ruisdael, Lieven de Key and Jan Steen went to live there.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
10
2020

 

Bow Road
Bow Road is an Underground station located on Bow Road and on the District and Hammersmith & City lines. The station was opened in 1902 by the Whitechapel and Bow Railway - later incorporated into the District line.

Ownership of the station passed to London Underground in 1950.

The station building has been Grade II listed since 27 September 1973.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
9
2020

 

Bow Road, E3
Bow Road, part of the A11, runs between Mile End and Bow. To the west the road becomes Mile End Road, and to the east is Bow Interchange on the A12.

Both Bow Church and the College of Technology London became located here as is Bow Road underground station and Bow Church DLR station.

Bow started to develop in the 14th century, a small village that was very prone to flooding from the river Lea. This flooding also meant that locals couldn’t always get to the closest church in Stepney. In the early 1300s, Edward III gave permission for a chapel to be built on the road over the bridge.

Bow Church was hit by one of the last bombs dropped by the Germans in the Second World War. The damage to parts of the church weren’t fully restored until the 1950s.

The Electric House carries a memorial clock to Minnie Lansbury, whose father in law George Lansbury also lived on Bow Road

»read full article


FEBRUARY
8
2020

 

Fawood Avenue, NW10
Fawood Avenue is one of London’s more eccentric namings. F.A. Wood lived at ’Hurworth’ (now called Sankofa House) in Morland Gardens. Wood was Chairman of Willesden Local Board (the then Council for the area) for much of the 1880s. He did a lot for the local area - he was an important local historian, whose collection is now available to see and use at the Brent Archives.

Later in a 1970s redevelopment, Fawood Avenue was created from his initials and surname.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
7
2020

 

Ruislip Manor
The construction of a halt on the Metropolitan Railway in the area in 1912 led to the development of Ruislip Manor on what was rural land. A developer called George Ball purchased 186 acres to the south of the railway line from the owners, King’s College, with construction of a new estate taking place between 1933 and 1939.

Ball hoped the new housing would be available to the working man who wished to purchase his own home. The original plan under the Manor Homes name had been for 2,322 homes which Ball agreed would not number more than 14 per acre.

The total number of houses was gradually reduced by 50 in 1934, then a further 35 in 1935, to allow the inclusion of Lady Bankes Primary School, St. Paul’s Church and the Black Bull public house.

The Metropolitan Railway (Harrow and Uxbridge Railway) had constructed the line through Ruislip Manor between Harrow on the Hill and Uxbridge and commenced services in 1904 with, initially, the only intermediate stop being at Ruislip. At first, services were operated by steam trains, but track electrification was completed in ...
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FEBRUARY
6
2020

 

Bear Gardens, SE1
Bear Gardens is the site of a medieval pleasure ground. Bear Gardens lay on the south side of the River Thames, west of Southwark Bridge. It included part of Bankside, buildings on the east side of New Globe Walk, the north side of Park Street, the west side of Rose Alley and the street of Bear Gardens itself.

The street pattern of the area still recognisably derives from its medieval and post-medieval development, with narrow lanes and alleys and densely-packed buildings lining the river.

Bear Gardens is one of these alleys and widens in the approximate location of the last bear baiting ring.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
5
2020

 

Blackmoor Street, WC2B
Blackmoor Street was in the Drury Lane slum. Blackmoor Street was a crowded narrow street opposite Clare Street. The Drury Lane end of Blackmoor Street was the beginning of Clare Market
»read full article


FEBRUARY
4
2020

 

Earnshaw Street, WC2H
Earnshaw Street was at first called Arthur Street. Earnshaw Street runs south from New Oxford Street and was built as a result of, the construction of New Oxford Street in 1844–1847. The new street followed a path which went from New Oxford Street to St Giles’s Church.

Arthur Street was renamed after Thomas Earnshaw, a Bloomsbury-based maker of chronometers.

Its original buildings were demolished and replaced by large Ministry of Defence premises, occupying the whole area between Earnshaw Street, Bucknall Street, St Giles High Street, and Dyott Street. In 2007, these buildings in turn were demolished to make way for the St Giles Court development.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
3
2020

 

Argyle Street, WC1H
Argyle Street, originally Manchester Street, was named after the former Argyle House. On Tompson’s map of 1803 this area was laid out as fields - there were no previous streets or buildings here.

Argyle Street had been planned by its developers Dunstan, Flanders, and Robinson in 1823–1824 but was begun in 1832. Cruchley’s map of 1827 shows its extent only planned as far as Dutton Street. The whole street was finished by 1849.

It absorbed the former Manchester Street and was then renumbered.

Charles Dickens’s sister Fanny and her husband Henry Burnett, a singer and music teacher, lived here in 1839.

The development was aimed at the working classes. However, it was decidedly middle-class in the 1841 census, with many resident barristers, clerks and a solicitor.

By 1848 the entire area was reported to be overcrowded and squalid. When G. H. Duckworth walked round the area in July 1898 as part of an update of Booth’s poverty maps, he noted the existence of a ’home for fallen women’ at t...
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FEBRUARY
2
2020

 

Junction Road, N19
Junction Road dates from 1813. Junction Road was built at the same time, and as part of the same scheme as the then-new Archway Road and laid out as an area of working class housing. The early residents were largely those who had to move from the St Pancras area as that station was built.

Junction Road is now home to Archway Tower, a building whose appearance is locally divisive.

Junction Road railway station stood on the corner of Junction Road and Station Road until its closure in 1960 as a good line. Passenger services ran from 1872 to 1916.

In 2004 Junction Road was branded “the worst street in the borough” for its level of grime, graffiti and “festering rubbish” but has since improved greatly due to the efforts of Islington Council.

The street has a number of notable restaurants, bars and pubs.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
1
2020

 

Oxendon Street, W1D
Oxendon Street, after Sir Henry Oxendon, husband of Mary Baker, daughter of Robert Baker who built the former Piccadilly House nearby. Panton Street and Oxendon Street stand on the site of the close of land marked on the plan of 1585 as Scavengers Close. The area of Scavengers Close was three acres, but discrepancies in measurements were of frequent occurrence at this date.

Scavengers Close was bought by Henry VIII from the Mercers’ Company and described in a list of the "Kynges new purchest landes" as "iii acres of pasture in a close ny to the muse" in the tenure of Thomas Wood.

The plan of 1585 shows a building marked "Gynnpowder howse" in the north-west corner and three other small buildings, one of which may have been the conduit referred to in various deeds. In 1619 Richard Wilson, a descendant of Thomas, sold extensive property in the parish of St. Martin-in-the-Fields to Robert Baker, whose widow, together with her daughter Mary and her son-in-law, Henry Oxenden, in 1637 granted a 32 years’ lease of "a messuage, a cookhouse, a tennis court and 4 acres of ground" there to Simo...
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1900 and 1950 mapping is reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) licence.