Some history on London

Photographs of London

I am only an occasional visitor to London but have acquired some old photographs that have caught my eye. I will feature some of them here in random order because my knowledge of the city is rather sketchy. Still, hopefully there is something of interest.

London : Procession on Shepherdess Walk at Hoxton [c.1914]
© Image from author's photographic archive. DO NOT COPY

This photograph captured a procession heading along Shepherdess Walk at Hoxton. Clearly there is a religious aspect to the event so perhaps it was related to Holy Trinity Church a short distance away at the end of Alford Place, previously known as Edmond's Place. There had used to be an annual procession of the Guilds and various parish organisations at Hoxton,¹ so perhaps it was such an event?

London : Procession Banner at Shepherdess Walk at Hoxton [c.1914]
© Image from author's photographic archive. DO NOT COPY

I have included this zoomed-in image of the banner being carried during the procession in case it helps with identifying the event. Returning to the first image, the procession is heading southwards along Shepherdess Walk, having just passed Murray Street [seen to the right of the image]. This side of the road has been redeveloped but the long row of housing seen to the left has largely survived. The photographer would have been stood near the William IV pub on the corner of Edward Street, a thoroughfare now known as Micawber Street. In the photograph a row of shops can be seen along the eastern side of the road, between Murray Street and Edmond's Place. In 1902 the shop on the corner at No.62 was occupied by the corn dealer Charles George Austin.² By the time of this photograph, as seen by notices and lettering on the doors, the premises had changed into an emporium retailing oils, colours, varnishes and stains, along with china and general hardware. The manager of the store was William Thomas Dicks, who lived on the premises with his wife Elizabeth.³

London : Greenwich Observatory from Flamsteed House [c.1933]
© Image from author's photographic archive. DO NOT COPY

This inter-war photograph was taken from Flamsteed House, the original Royal Observatory building at Greenwich. The focus of the photograph is the so-called Onion Dome which was designed specifically to house the Great Equatorial Telescope. An earlier dome was a riveted iron frame covered with papier mâché. Taking some three years to produce to perfection, the casting of the 28-inch lens was undertaken by Messrs. Chance Brothers of Birmingham. Designed by Sir Howard Grubb, the lens cost around £4,500, though this included the work on the dome, all being completed in September 1893.⁴

Contemporary Photographs

London : Christ Church and Clock Tower at Highbury [2021]
© Photo taken by author on October 14th, 2021. DO NOT COPY

A view of Christ Church and the Clock Tower near Highbury Fields. The granite and cast-iron timepiece was donated by Alfred Hutchinson to the Islington Vestry in honour of Queen Victoria's diamond jubilee in 1897.¹⁰¹ Christ Church was erected to the designs of Thomas Allom in 1847-8 on a site donated by John Dawes. Based at Balham Hill, Thomas Allom had written "Constantinople and the Seven Churches" and "France in the 19th century" and his work was deemed to combine art and architecture to great effect. Built with Kentish ragstone and Bath stone dressings, the cruciform-shaped structure combines elements of Gothic within the decorated style of the early 14th century.¹⁰² Following the overheating of a furnace flue, the building caught fire in January 1866, causing considerable damage to the roof.¹⁰³ The nave was extended by two bays in 1872 and there have been several additions over the years.

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Related Newspaper Articles

"While cycling in Kennington Road on Saturday afternoon a young fellow attempted to pass between a heavily-laden coal cart and a train going in the direction of Westminster Bridge. A heavy shower of rain having made the road slippery, his wheels skidded. He was thrown right under the hoofs of the horses attached to the coal van, and one of the animals stepped on his chest, and when medical aid arrived life was extinct. Some cards on the body bore the name Charles Whitelow, but no address."
"London Cyclist Killed"
Tamworth Herald : June 9th 1866 Page 8

1. "Holy Trinity, Hoxton" : Islington News and Hornsey Gazette; October 15th, 1909. p.3.
2. "Post Office London Directory for 1902" London High Holburn : Kelly's Directory Limited; Page 748.
3. 1911 Census Piece No.1349 : London > Shoreditch > District 16, Enumeration District 04 Schedule 53.
4. "Completion Of The Great Telescope At Greenwich" : Westminster Gazette; September 6th, 1893. p.4.

101. "The Highbury Clock Tower" : Islington Gazette; January 11th, 1899. p.2.
102. "Consecration Of Christ Church, Highbury" : Saint James's Chronicle; October 14th, 1848. p.3.
103. "Fire At Christ Church, Highbury" : Islington Gazette; January 23rd, 1866. p.2.

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