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JUNE
21
2024
The Underground Map is creating street histories for the areas of London and surrounding counties lying within 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.

The aim of the project is to find the location every street in London, whether past or present. You are able to see each street on a present day map and also spot its location on older maps.

There's a control which looks like a 'pile of paper' at the top right of the map above. You can use it to see how an area has changed on a series of historic maps.

FEBRUARY
28
2020

 

Coombe (Kingston)
Coombe is a historic neighbourhood in the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames. Coombe appears in Domesday Book as ’Cumbe’ and centres on what was the now-demolihed Coombe House which dated from the 1750s.

In 1215 King John gave the estate of Coombe to Hugh de Nevill, and the area became known as Coombe Nevill by 1260. The estate was located at the intersection of the current George Road and Warren Road. The present-day cul-de-sac known as Coombe Neville is in the same location.

In the early 1700s a public house known as the Fox and Coney was established at the intersection of George Road and Kingston Hill. It was rebuilt in 1728 and renamed the George and Dragon. It 1985 it became the Kingston Lodge Hotel.

By 1761 Coombe was owned by John Spencer, 1st Earl Spencer.

At the time of the 1865 Ordnance Survey, the area west of Warren Road was countryside.

By 1911 two golf courses were here: Coombe Wood and Coombe Hill.

Coombe is now a prestigious residential location.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
27
2020

 

Richmond Road, SW20
Richmond Road - now part of Raynes Park - was one of first roads laid out on the Cottenham Park estate. In 1831, the local estate was bought by Charles Pepys, the Earl of Cottenham and later Chancellor. He died in 1851 and the estate was broken up. Most of it was laid out with roads, one of which was Richmond Road. Development of the area was slow until after 1891 when Worple Road was extended to Raynes Park station.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
26
2020

 

Argyll Street, W1F
Argyll Street was named after John Campbell, 2nd Duke of Argyll, owner of the land in the 18th century. Sixty acres in the parish of St Martin in the Fields were granted in January 1560 by Queen Elizabeth to William Dodington. In 1622, Richard Wilson sold some 35 acres of them to William Maddox, a merchant taylor of London.

Maddox’s estate comprised 11½ acres called Millfield. Millfield, which took its name from Tyburn Mill, was on ’the east side of the highway from Charing Cross’ (i.e. Swallow Street).

The western portion of Millfield was bisected by a footpath leading from the north-west corner of the field to the gate on the north side of Six Acre Close. This footpath later became Kingly Street. Benjamin Maddox’s lease of Millfield to James Kendrick in 1670 marked the beginning of building development. Kendrick sub-let the ground to various tenants who began to build. At the end of the seventeenth century, Abraham Bridle and John James had a sub-lease of land fronting Tyburn Road, where they started building. Bridle gave his name to a passage o...
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FEBRUARY
25
2020

 

Cottenham Park
Cottenham Park is a district in the London Borough of Merton named after the 1st Earl of Cottenham (1781–1851), who served as Lord Chancellor. Prospect Place was a grand mansion on Copse Hill. Its estate was created just after 1800 by James Meyrick when he bought Prospect Place and added to it all of the land between Copse Hill and Coombe Lane. The grounds was landscaped by Humphrey Repton and a model farm built. In 1831 the estate was bought by Charles Pepys. When he died in 1851, Prospect Place was broken up - 40 acres were acquired by St George’s Hospital.

Developers bought most of the rest of the estate in 1851 after the death of Charles Pepys, now entitled 1st Earl of Cottenham.

New roads were laid out and given aristocratic names that had associations with the estate.

Few building plots were bought before the 1890s, except those along Copse Hill and Richmond Road.

Development of the area did not get underway in earnest until after 1891 with the extension of Worple Road to Raynes Park and the coming of the trams in 1907. By the start of the First World...
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FEBRUARY
24
2020

 

Mcleod Road, SE2
Mcleod Road is part of the Bostal Estate. The Bostal Estate was developed from 1900 onwards by the Royal Arsenal Co-operative Society (RACS).

Alexander McLeod, (1832-1902) was the first secretary of the Society which had been set up in 1868 by the Royal Arsenal munitions works at Woolwich.

In 1903 a statue of Alexander McLeod was added to the RACS building in Woolwich.

The first brick of the Bostal Estate was laid on 28 May 1900. A tablet to commemorate the occassion was erected at the corner of the new Mcleod Road and Bostall Lane. When the RACS Abbey Wood CoOp was built on the spot some time later, the tablet was moved and fixed to the wall facing Bostall Lane.

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FEBRUARY
21
2020

 

Barking Riverside
Barking Riverside is a ’brownfield’ development being partly built on land once occupied by Barking Power Station, with planning permission for 10 800 homes. Barking Power Station had closed in 1981 - prior to being drained for the power station, it was tidal marshland. In the early 1990s, the UK Department of Environment sought brownfield sites in the area for development.

Bellway Homes constructed 900 houses on the site between 1995 and 2000. Barking Riverside Ltd provided infrastructure such as roads, utilities and community facilities.

It was announced in 2014 that the London Overground Gospel Oak to Barking Line would be extended to Barking Riverside to allow the development to be completed as planned. The new station was planned to open in 2021. The first new homes were occupied in 2012.

In 2016, the housing association L&Q bought Bellway’s 51% stake in the scheme. The same year, L&Q entered into a joint venture with the Greater London Authority to deliver the remaining new homes. There would be three neighbourhood centres when complete, with a population of approximately 26 000.»more


FEBRUARY
19
2020

 

Scrattons Eco Park
Scrattons Eco Park is a small nature reserve in the Dagenham area. The park is owned and managed by the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham.

The area had previously been allotments which had by the late 1990s had become overgrown and inaccessible.

It was decided to convert them into an ecological park and now has blocks of bramble with grass paths, preserving existing trees and shrubs.
»read full article


FEBRUARY
18
2020

 

Hornchurch
Hornchurch is a suburban area in the London Borough of Havering. Historically it formed a large ancient parish in the county of Essex that became the manor and liberty of Havering.

The earliest recorded use was in 1222 as Hornechurch - ’church with horn-like gables’. A horned bull’s head mounted on the eastern end of St Andrew’s Church dates from the 18th century.

During both world wars, nearby Hornchurch Airfield was an important RAF station, home to a number of Spitfire squadrons during the early 1940s. The land has since been reused for a large housing development.

Like many London suburbs, Hornchurch had been entirely rural until the arrival of the railway which spurred property development during the early 1900s. Development was fuelled further by the arrival of the District line during the 1930s.

Hornchurch station was originally opened in 1885 as part of the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway. The station was completely rebuilt in 1932 as an additional pair of platforms we...
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FEBRUARY
17
2020

 

Black Prince Road, SE11
Black Prince Road’s origin is derived from Edward of Woodstock (Edward the Black Prince) who lived in Lambeth during the 1300. As the eldest son of Edward III, the Black Prince’s presence in the area resulted in much of the freehold land in Lambeth to remain under Royal ownership. This is true even today.

Edward seems neither to have been particularly cruel by the standards of his time nor to have worn black armour.

Edward of Woodstock’s main residence near London was a manor house at the Kennington end of what is now Black Prince Road. Edward celebrated his victory over the French at Poitiers in 1356 by tearing down the Kennington house to build a palace near Kennington Cross (the triangle formed by Kennington Lane, Sancroft Street and Cardigan Street).

In 1531, King Henry VIII ordered much of Kennington Palace to be dismantled and taken across the Thames to Westminster for the building of a new royal palace of Whitehall. The track along which the Kennington Palace masonry was carted to the river was known as Lambeth Butts.

Lambeth Butts was di...
»more


FEBRUARY
15
2020

 

Stonebridge Park
Stonebridge Park is an area of north London in the London Borough of Brent. Stonebridge Park station was opened by the London and North Western Railway as part of their "New Line" project on 15 June 1912. It closed on 9 January 1917 and reopened for Bakerloo line trains on 1 August 1917. Stonebridge Park was not the name for this area before the arrival of the railway.

The current station platforms and associated buildings were first built by the London, Midland and Scottish Railway in 1948 and designed by John Weeks following destruction of the original structures by bombing in the Second World War.

From 24 September 1982 to 4 June 1984 it was the northern operational terminus of the Bakerloo line - London Underground’s Stonebridge Park Depot is 500 metres to the north-west of the station.
»read full article


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
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.
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FEBRUARY
11
2020

 

Haarlem Road, W14
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
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.
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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
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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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