Posts Tagged ‘graffiti’

Pride, Class War Protest and Paedophiles

Monday, June 27th, 2022

Pride, Class War Protest and Paedophiles – Saturday 27th June 2015 in London. And a rather fine stencilled grafitti which I’ve not seen elsewhere – and I suspect was very quickly removed. Banksy couldn’t have done a better job, though I could perhasp have got the bottom of the image in my picture. And I would have preferred a red bus, though at least the blue one means the bus stop stands out better.


Pride Parade – Baker St

Pride in 2015 had a little more political edge than in recent years as this was the 30th anniversary of the support it gave to the miners strike and there were rather more trade union and other groups trying to reclaim the event as the radical festival it was until around the late 1990s.

My photographs from 2015 reflect this, and as usual I paid little attention to the large corporate groups who now provide sponsorship which enables them to dominate the parade and advertise their services to the crowds who line the route.

Despite this, as I wrote in 2015, ” It seems a long way from the event when I first photographed it in the early 90s when Pride was a protest.”

Pride is also a considerably over-photographed event, with people with cameras and yet more with mobile phones swarming over the area before the parade starts. I don’t object to this as photography is very much a democratic medium, but it would be nice if rather more of them were polite enough not to walk in front of me when I’m taking pictures.

I note in one of the captions, “I got the queen to pose for me with a friend. And found I now had collected another ten photographers at my shoulders“. This is one of the few events where I do occasionally ask people to pose. This is something I think has little or no place in photographing protests and documenting events, but at Pride many pose as soon as they see the camera pointed at them, so I feel OK to sometimes ask them to perform a little differently, perhaps with a different background, as in the picture above.

I didn’t stay as long as usual photographing people before the parade began as I wanted to go and meet Class War who were planning a little diversion.

Pride Parade


Class War protest ‘corporate pinkwashing’ – Piccadilly Circus and Pall Mall

While many criticised the corporate takeover of Pride, and some had tried to oppose it by joining in the march as protesters, Class War had decided it was time for a more direct approach.

I met them outside a pub close to Piccadilly Circus and photographed them as they protested outside Barclay’s Bank at Piccadilly Circus against corporate sponsorship of Pride in London, briefly closing the branch as the parade approached. After this short protest which hardly attracted the attention of the police, they rolled up the banner and ran, following along the route and looking for opportunity to protest at the march itself.

On Pall Mall they found a place where the crowds were thinner and they could take over a section of the barriers along the road for the event. And as the flag bearers at the front of the parade came in sight they pushed those barriers aside and rushed out onto the street with their banner.

I rushed out with them and photographed them as for a minute or so they led the parade until Pride Marshals and police guided them back behind the barriers again.

They continued to protest with megaphone and banner for a few minutes as the parade arrived, but when they saw a squad of officers heading towards them they rolled up the banner and hastened away. I followed some down into the subway where they lost the police, coming out at another subway entrance. They began to discuss further interventions at the event, but I think probably went to a nearby pub after I said goodbye and left. Later I heard police had continued to follow some of the others for half an hour or so, but made no arrests.

Class War protest ‘corporate pinkwashing’


Victims & Survivors call for Justice – Downing St

It’s hard to assess some of the claims made by conspiracy theorists about paedophiles in high places and the activities of the family courts. Clearly the activities of people such as Jimmy Saville and Sir Cyril Richard Smith MBE MStJ DL have provided plenty of fire behind the clouds of smoke and many of those at this protest had very disturbing personal stories to tell.

So while many prominent claims have been found to be false, there also seem to be many cover-ups and failures to properly investigate; all too often the response by the authorities appears to be to close ranks, make false claims against the complainants and deny the realities.

Someone once said that around 30% of conspiracy theories turn out to be true. I’ve no idea whether this figure is accurate, but certainly it reflects the truth that some are. Its just very difficult to decide which.

While we can be confident that there are no chem trails (just atmospheric conditions that make normal combustion products visible), that Magna Carta doesn’t give us much in the way of freedoms now, that 9/11 actually happened and Trump lost the election some others are less certain. And while there are clearly not 76 paedophile MPs, there may well be a handful or so still lurking in the House of Commons, and certainly there have been some very questionable decisions made by family courts – or at least they would be very questionable if we were allowed to know about them.

Victims & Survivors call for Justice


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


South Hackney Walk 1988

Thursday, April 21st, 2022

South Hackney Walk 1988
It was not until Sunday 18th September 1988 that I had the time for another walk with my cameras around London, taking a train and tubes to Bethnal Green Station and walking north up Cambridge Heath Road to Mare St in Hackney.

Victoria Buildings, Mare St, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-53-Edit_2400
Victoria Buildings, Mare St, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-53

I stopped to take another photograph of the fine late Victorian commercial building with its row of shops at ground level and a bricked up doorway, particularly attracted by the multiple identities of No 7 as Aarons Van & Car Rental with Doris Car Service partly covering yet another. In the top left corner of the shop window it tells us ‘UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT’ while a rather drunken notice lower down states ‘YOU DRINK WE DRIVE’. Above Simply Seconds at No 9 were peeling posters and the upper floors appeared largely unoccupied.

Rich Scum out of Hackney!!, Westgate St, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-56-Edit_2400
Rich Scum out of Hackney!!, Westgate St, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-56

A little further up Mare St I wandered briefly down Westgate St, to record the graffiti on its railway bridge, which above the advert for LEATHER MERCHANTS gave the clear message ‘RICH SCUM OUT OF HACKNEY!!’. The bridge has been regularly repainted over the years, but I think later graffiti has been non-political.

King Edwards Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-43-Edit_2400
King Edwards Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-43

On King Edwards Road off to the west of Mare Street I came across a fine piece of architectural decoration with peeling paint and shrubs growing from it at No 6. The house next door, No 8 had a similar feature in better condition and a little more ornate which I also photographed but is not on-line.

Synagogue, Ainsworth Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-31-Edit_2400
Synagogue, Ainsworth Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-31

The South Hackney Federation Synagogue or Yavneh Synagogue at 25 Ainsworth Rd was founded in 1904 and was an Ashkenazi Orthodox synagogue incorporated into Clapton Federation Synagogue in the 1990s. It was demolished and replaced by a block of flats.

Church Crescent, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-21-Edit_2400
Southborough Road area, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-21

I often made use of framing a view through some kind of arch – in this case of trees – which had been emphasised by the writers for Amateur Photographer when as a grubby teenager I spent hours perusing it in my local library. And while it can be a useful device it is certainly a cliché and is often used ironically in my work. I’ve also here carefully joined together a 22 storey tower block and the rather grand porch of an older house.

I think the block could be Clare House in Hawthorne Avenue, on the other side of Victoria Park where I was standing on a street corner, somewhere not far from Church Crescent where I made a previous exposure and the next on the corner of Southborough and Lauriston Roads. But I cannot find its precise location

Derby Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-24-Edit_2400
Derby Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-24

These houses were on Derby Road, awaiting demolition as well as those in the image below. There is now a modern two-story housing development on this side of the street.

J Roler, Derby Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-25-Edit_2400
J Roler, Derby Rd, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-25

J Roler was at the corner of Derby Rd though I think its address as No 6 may have been in Rutland Road. It appeared long closed when I made this picture. Perhaps someone reading this will remember visiting the shop and tell us all more in a comment to this post.

Shelter, Victoria Park, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-26-Edit_2400
Shelter, Victoria Park, Hackney, 1988 88-9c-26

A curiously organic shelter in Victoria Park with a generous coating of graffiti, none of any interest. In the background people are sitting beside the lake. I don’t think I walked far into the park and although I can’t identify and of the buildings in the background I think this is somewhere close to Victoria Park Road on the north side of the lake.

I suspect I sat here or somewhere close by drinking a cup of coffee and eating my sandwiches for lunch. Back in 1988 there were still relatively few places you could rely on getting a decent cup of coffee and my camera bag always included a space for a thermos. After a short rest I will have continued my walk – and there will be more pictures in a future post.


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


Canonbury, Green Lanes and Balls Pond Road

Friday, March 25th, 2022

My next walk on Wednesday 3rd August 1988 began on a train going over the River Thames at Strand on the Green, the North London Line, taking me to Highbury & Islington from where I walked through Canonbury to Green Lanes, where I photographed an interesting pair of houses and found some rather poetic graffiti on my way to Newington Green and went on the the Balls Pond Road.

Highbury Grove, Highbury, Islington, 1988 88-8c-14-Edit_2400
141 Grosvenor Ave, Canonbury, Islington, 1988 88-8c-14

In my dreams last night I was sitting in front of my computer and just turning it off after searching for the location of this house, which on my contact sheet is simply given as ‘?Highbury Grove’, and it flashed onto Google Streetview as the application closed. I was just coming round and wasn’t sure whether this was dream or memory, so as soon as I got back in front of the screen today I looked up where I thought it had been – and found no such street existed. However a few more minutes searching – and looking at the next image on the contact sheet helped – I recognised it as 141 Grosvenor Ave in Canonbury.

The house next door in the semi-detached also had those distinctive vertical brick panels in the colums of the porch and at the side of the windows, but they have been disguised I think by white masonary paint, and possibly others have suffered a similar fate.

But the dream got me thinking more about taking these pictures and about my photography generally as I lay half awake in bed. I think I had walked around half a mile before making my first picture on this walk, past many other houses and shops I might have stopped to photograph but had not done so and I reflected on this. I’ve always been a rather timid photographer and often find it difficult to start taking pictures until something jolts me out of this, and once I’ve got going my reluctance fades. Making a photograph exposes not just the film (or these days the sensor) but also the photographer.

Green Lanes, Highbury, Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-65-Edit_2400
Green Lanes, Highbury, Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-65

I can’t remember the exact route I took to Green Lanes, perhaps up Petherton Road, as the few pictures I made (not on-line) are typical of the area but not easy to locate, but I then walked south towards Newington Green, but a grid reference written on this frame of the contact sheet together with the street name Green Lanes suggests this shop window was near Aden Grove.

The curling notices suggest that Enright & Co Ltd m(established 1875) had left the building some time earlier, and although they say Houses Wanted, the upper left ‘Sorry Nothing’ was probably more appropriate. I rather liked the rather ghosty reflections in the glass, including my legs in the centre of the frame.

Roughly one in four of the pictures I made on this walk are on-line, and four of the ten from this particular film are these consecutive images from this section of Green Lanes.

Green Lanes, Highbury, , Islington, Hackney, 1988 1988 88-8d-66-Edit_2400
Green Lanes, Highbury, Islington, Hackney, 1988 1988 88-8d-66-Edit_2400

There are still several of these ‘Mid-Late 19c’ houses on Green Lanes, roughly oposite Aden Grove and they are locally listed at 57-63 for their ‘truncated Dutch gables’. The bars on the windows at right have gone but they still otherwise look much the same.

Graffiti, Green Lanes, Highbury, , Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-51-Edit_2400
Graffiti, Green Lanes, Highbury, , Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-51

Two writers appear to have taken advantage of this long stretch of white wall, probably empty industrial premises of some kind. Possible the “BIRD Turning in the sky air below the clouds’ there is no corner…” got in first complete with its extra apostrophe and the later writer (perhaps F. Ratttttl)tadded a line above and below, with some other additions including from an Arsenal fan.

Green Lanes here is on the border of the two London Boroughs of Hackney and Islington and I’ve included both boroughs in the captions even when I’m sure which side of the border I took the pictures on.

Graffiti, Green Lanes, Highbury, , Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-52-Edit_2400
Graffiti, Green Lanes, Highbury, Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-52

On the side of a boarded up shop, just off Green Lanes on the corner of Springdale Road was a more organised piece of writing, possibly advice to Fred to build a cradle for his baby. The reflecttion at left clearly shows the two buildings still on either side of Pegasus Close.

Annette Works, Halliford St, Ecclesbourne Rd, Islington, 1988 88-8d-31-Edit_2400
Annette Works, Halliford St, Ecclesbourne Rd, Islington, 1988 88-8d-31

For once a picture which includes precise information on its location, the Annette Works on the corner of Halliford St and Ecclesbourne Rd in Islington. The house at 61 Halliford Street was or had been home to Multi-Print Co, and this side of it has now been extensively rebuilt. I wondered briefly if there might be some connection to Annette Crescent, a listed crescent not far away on the Essex Road, but failed to find any further information. It seems unlikely as Annette Crescent was named for its developer, Thomas James Annett, only picking up the ‘e’ in later years.

Southgate Rd, Kingsland, Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-36-Edit_2400
Southgate Rd, Kingsland, Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-36

Southgate Road is another street on the Hackney/Islington border. There were no Vacancies at No 81, which is now together with No 83 ‘The Sydney Building’ a ‘warehouse conversion’ into flats with a rather prettier garden, roses replacing the buddleia.

Balls Pond Rd, Kingsland, Islington, Hackney, 1988 88-8d-26-Edit_2400
Mildmay Rd, Canonbury, Islington, 1988 88-8d-26

This picture appears to show a woman looking out of a upper floor window but this is actually a painting on the wall. But there was a real woman coming along the street towards me. There is still a mural visible on the wall which can be seen rather better from Wolsey Road, but is largely obscured by an overgrown tree. I’m not sure if this upper part above and behind the main painted wall is still there.

The mural was painted in 1981 by Carolyne Beale for Mildmay Housing Action Area and is now in very poor condition, cracking badly. You can see a good colour picture of it all before the tree grew online, with a second picture of this lady at the window. I don’t think I photographed the mural properly, though I may have done.

More from the Balls Pond Road and Dalston in another post.


Click on any of the images in the post to see a larger version in my album 1988 London Photos, from where you can browse other images.


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


Coventry Cross, Gandhi, Graffiti, Drag Balls …

Thursday, March 10th, 2022

Coventry Cross, Gandhi, Graffiti, Drag Balls …

Stanstead House, Devas Street, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets 1988 88-8a-53-Edit_2400
Stanstead House, Devas Street, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets 1988 88-8a-53

My previous walk on 31st July ended at Bromley-by-Bow, and I returned there the following day to continue my wanderings, starting on Devas St and the Coventry Cross West Estate, built by the LCC in the early 1950s, and in 1988 it had recently passed from the GLC to Tower Hamlets. Like all council housing it was very much compromised by the opposition under Thatcher to social housing, with the ‘right to buy’ policies selling off properties to tenants on the cheap and local authorities being largely prevented from building more as well as being starved of cash.

The estate serves as a reminder of an age where councils were able to provide large numbers of socially rented homes before we moved to an era dominated by private profit. Many council tenants who bought their own properties found it very impossible to pay back the loans they had taken on, and sold them as soon as they were able, with many of them now privately rented as ‘buy to let’ properties with rents several times social housing rates.

The six-storey Newmill House at left is linked to the four storey Stansted by a massive archway, with another the west linking to another six storey block, Brimsdown. The estate is now managed by Poplar HARCA and has been renovated around ten years ago.

Stanstead House, Devas Street, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets 1988 88-8a-54-Edit_2400
Stanstead House, Devas Street, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets 1988 88-8a-54

A portrait orientation view of the same arch into the estate. When built Newmill House at left, a long block running parallel to the Blackwall Tunnel Approach, contained 55 flats.

Gandhi plaque, Kingsley Hall, Powis Rd, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets 1988 88-8a-42-Edit_2400
Gandhi, plaque, Kingsley Hall, Powis Rd, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a42

North of the railway line, my walk took me to Patrick Connolly Gardens, now rather lost in the Devons estate, and then on to Powis Road where I made this picture of Kingsley Hall.

Kingsley Hall was opened in 1928 by philanthropists and peace campaigners Muriel and Doris Lester who opened the centre using the legacy from their brother Kingsley who died in 1914 when only 26. They had previously helped to set up a Children’s House on Bruce Road nearby in 1923. Muriel Lester (1883-1968) was one of the world’s leading pacifists, and is thought to have been unsuccessfully nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in the 1930s.

The building had previously been Zion Chapel built by Strict Baptists but was then disused. The sisters were also Baptists, but of a very different nature, they were radical and committed to a social gospel and justice issues and the hall became a centre for their community work with Muriel also serving as its pastor. They donated their wealth to serving the people of Bow and lived a simple and humble life.

Muriel had met and travelled with Mahatma Gandhi often in her work as Travelling Secretary of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation and when he came to London as the representative of the Indian National Congress Party to argue in a conference for independence he rejected the suite offered him by the government at the Hilton Hotel, saying he would rather stay with Muriel Lester at Kingsley Hall. He stayed there for three months, living in a cell on the roof in the same simple style he did in London.

Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988
Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-44

I doubt if I would have photographed this street corner were it not for the message ‘big Love’ in large letters on the corrugated iron sheeting. Though it does look as if the writer went on to write something beginning with HATE. This was somewhere fairly close to Kingsley Hall.

Edgar Rd, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-46-Edit_2400
Edgar Rd, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-46

The fence here has several messages as well as some peeling posters. The longest text reads ‘AS LONG AS WE HAVE NOT SMASHED EVERYTHING THERE WILL BE RUINS!!’, an exceedingly philosophical example of graffiti which I’ve not seen elsewhere, though I wonder if it could be from a song lyric.

Considerably more common is the ‘VICTORY TO THE MINERS’, and I think the Female Sign – the planetary symbol for Venus ♀ – may mean the painter was a woman.

Tudor Lodge, Bromley High St, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-31-Edit_2400
Tudor Lodge, 85, Bromley High St, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-31

This may have had some connection with Tudor House, whose grounds were bought in 1898 by the LCC to make a public park, which is now Bromley Recreation Ground a couple of hundred yards away, but more likely just with the Tudor family who lived in Tudor House and in the Old Palace closer to where Tudor Lodge used to be.

The archway informs us that this was Tudor Lodge Sports and Social Club, catering for Weddings and Funerals; over a door at left it tells us the ‘Bow Bridge Sports & Social Club Meets Here’. It was by then a large men’s social club, but the impressive cross above the doorway suggests that this was originally a Christian institution of some kind, perhaps a convent or priory

In the 1980s it became a venue for Drag Balls which had begun as the Chelsea Arts Ball, before moving to the Parchester Hall and then on to here. Later in the 90s was the home of Ron Storme’s Transvesti Extrodinaire club.

There is now a completely different modern Tudor Lodge at 95 Bromley High St on the corner with St Leonard’s Road.

How Memorial Gateway, St Leonards Priory, St Leonard's St, Bromley-by-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-33-Edit_2400
How Memorial Gateway, St Leonards Priory, St Leonard’s St, Bromley-by-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-33

The only part of the parish church of St Mary with St Leonard to survive following bombing in 1942 and the building of the Blackwall Tunnel Approach Road. The church was built in 1843 to replace the former chapel of St Leonard’s Priory, a Benedictine nunnery first recorded in 1122 and destroyed after the dissolution of monasteries in 1536, after which its chapel had been used as a parish church. Chaucer wrote of the nunnery as the “Scole of Stratford atte bowe“.

The How Memorial Gateway was erected in 1893 as a memorial to the Rev G A How, vicar of the church from 1872-93. It is Grade II listed and in poor condition.

Bromley High St, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-34-Edit_2400
Bromley High St, Bromley-By-Bow, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-8a-34

There is still a large tree and a telegraph pole on the corner of Bromley High St with St Leonards Street, but the lower buildings on the left of the picture were demolished a year or so ago.

Just visible in this picture is the coat of arms of the London County County on 72-4 Bromley High St (Barry wavy of six Azure and Argent on a Chief of the last the Cross of St. George charged with a Leopard of England. The Shield is ensigned with a Mural Crown Or – though it’s too small on the photo to see any details) announcing this as the Bow Bridge Estate, which was completed in 1934. I hope Poplar HARCA kept this when they demolished the building.

My walk through Bow will continue in a later post. Click on any of the images above to see a larger version in my album 1988 London Photos, from where you can browse the album.


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


Limehouse, Horses, Graffiti & Canal

Thursday, January 13th, 2022
Commercial Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7n-23-positive_2400
Commercial Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7n-23

Limehouse, Horses, Graffiti & Canal

This terrace at 582-588 is still there, considerably restored, with the wrought iron railings now continuing in front of 588, but the two storey building beyond the traffic lights for Branch Road, here with a sign GEC Mowlem Railway Group and on its roof the former occupants, scrap metal firm 600 Group has been replaced by a tall I think 12 storey block, the Zenith building, one of the new buildings on Commercial Road with views over Limehouse Basin. Mowlem had presumably been there for the conversion of the old railway line along the viaduct next to the basin into the recently opened Docklands Light Railway.

Clemence St,  Limehouse,Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7n-11-positive_2400
Clemence St, Limehouse,Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7n-11

My notes say that this slender detached house with doorway and detailing that could have graced a rather grander residence was on Clemence Street, and I’ve no particular reason to doubt them, but it may have been in a neighbouring street. I didn’t hear any neighing from the two horses heads in the picture.

G Fawkes Is Innocent, Turners Rd, Limehouse,Tower Hamlets, 1988  88-7n-12-positive_2400
G Fawkes Is Innocent, Turners Rd, Limehouse,Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7n-12

‘G.FAWKES IS. INNOCENT’ is I think a play on the iconic East End graffiti about George Davis, who was framed by Det Sgt Mathews for an armed robbery at the London Electricity Board’s offices in Ilford, Essex in 1974, for which he was sentenced to 20 years in jail. Eventually in 2011 he won his appeal against that verdict. He was imprisoned for other crimes, but never protested his innocence after being convicted. Guy Fawkes, often said to be the only person to enter Parliament with honest intentions was tortured terribly and fell from the scaffold on which he was to be hanged, breaking his neck and thus avoiding being hung, drawn and quartered but is celebrated by being burnt on bonfires every 5th November in an anti-Catholic celebration.

Rhodeswell Rd, Turners Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7o-61-positive_2400
Rhodeswell Rd, Turners Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7o-61

The same building as the picture above but showing its Rhodeswell Rd side and terraced houses down Turners Road. The terrace has surviced, but the building at the left and the empty site at right have both been replaced by new housing.

Turners Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988  88-7o-62-positive_2400
Turners Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7o-62

All of the houses on the north side of Turners Road here have been demolished and replaced by new housing. The terraced houses have equally small but much neater front gardens. No 43 here has the house name ‘City View’.

Copenhagen Place, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988  88-7o-56-positive_2400
Copenhagen Place, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7o-56

One of several small alleys leading off from Copenhagen Place which I think have disappeared, although there is a short cobbled section leading off to Carmine Wharf, and another yard – clearly not this one – at the rear of properties on Pixley St. But most of the area has been completely redeveloped since I made this picture.

Limehouse Cut, Burdett Rd, LImehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988  88-7o-41-positive_2400
Limehouse Cut, Burdett Rd, LImehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7o-41

The Limehouse Cut is the oldest canal in London, first dug in 1770 but widened a few years later to allow barges to pass each other and travel in both directions. Later it was widened to the current width. It provided a route from the Lea Navigation to the River Thames avoiding the convoluted meandering of the tidal Bow Creek and initially had its own basin and entrance lock to the Thames in Limehouse, although the canal was still tidal, at the level of Bow Locks. In 1854 the basin was linked to the nearby Regents Canal Dock but after a legal dispute because bargees didn’t like the Regents Canal terms this was filled in a few years later and only restored in 1968, after which the lock and short length of the cut leader to the Thames were filled in.

Last's Wharf, Burdett Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7o-42-positive_2400
Last’s Wharf, Burdett Rd, Limehouse, Tower Hamlets, 1988 88-7o-42

310 Burdett Road is now the Royal Mail Delivery Office in Docklands, on the large site of Last’s Wharf leading down to the Limehouse Cut. The picture of the Cut from the Burdett Road Bridge above is looking roughly west, and the different constructions of the bank of the canal remains recognisable but nothing else in the picture from 1988 remains.

My walk will continue in a later post.


Clicking on any of the images will take you to a larger version in the album 1988 London Photos, from where you can browse the other pictures, though in a different order to this post which has them in the order I made them.


FlickrFacebookMy London DiaryHull PhotosLea ValleyParis

London’s Industrial HeritageLondon Photos

All photographs on this page are copyright © Peter Marshall. Contact me to buy prints or licence to reproduce.


Sculptors, Homes, Graffiti and Blaises, 1988

Tuesday, August 10th, 2021

Dora House, Sculptors, sculpture, Old Brompton Rd,  South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-36-positive_2400
Dora House, Sculptors, sculpture, Old Brompton Rd, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-36

Dora House at 108-10 Old Brompton Road was originally built in 1820 by builder William Blake as 7 & 8 Gloucester Terrace, but they were considerably adapted and the frontage here and in the next picture dates from 1885-86, when the house became the studios of portrait photographers Elliot and Fry of Baker St. The firm employed a number of photographers and as well as Baker St (which they left in 1919) had several other studios and a printing works in Barnet. Many of their early negatives were destroyed by bombing in the second World War, and the rest are now held by the National Portrait Gallery. They photographed many of the leading personalities of the Victorian era.

Dora House, Sculptors, sculpture, Old Brompton Rd,  South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-36-positive_2400
Dora House, Sculptors, sculpture, Old Brompton Rd, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-36

Stonework on the new frontage was carved by John McCulloch, wrought iron by Alfred A. Newman and the architect was William Flockhart. The building is Grade II listed. The house was leased and later bought by sculptor Cecil Walter Thomas in 1919 and later he set up the Dora Charitable Trust, named after his late wife, to make the house available to the Royal British Society of Sculptors after his death. They have occupied it as a studio museum since 1979, opening it to the public with family activities and temporary exhibitions.

Clareville St, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-22a-positive_2400
Clareville St, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-22

Clareville St, off the Gloucester Rd and the Old Brompton Road, was developed after 1820 when the landowner, Catherine Lee let the ground to William Blake of Pear Tree Lodge, Little Chelsea, a builder and bricklayer, on a 99 year lease to build houses that at least met the London Building Act of 1774 for ‘fourth-rate’ houses.

Along the two main roads, Blake built rather larger houses – including what is now Dora House, but in the two back streets there were smaller houses to varied designs, including detached villas and terraces. As the Survey of London says, these “gave the estate a distinctly intimate character which it still retains, despite much subsequent rebuilding and infilling.”

Clareville St, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-23-positive_2400
Clareville St, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-23

When built the streets here were named Gloucester Grove, Gloucester Grove East and Gloucester Grove West, but were later renamed Clareville Grove and Clareville Street after Clareville Cottage which was a short distance further west outside this estate.

Imperial Hotel, Queens Gate, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-24-positive_2400
Imperial Hotel, Queens Gate, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-24

If you go to see the Imperial Hotel on the corner of Harrington Road now all you will find is an empty plot surrounded by fences and used as a car park. The demolition of the hotel was completed in 1992 after the borough of Kensington & Chelsea had granted planing permission for this use “pending redevelopment.” Permission for the redevelopmentof this listed building, I think a part of the Harrington estate and dating from the 1860s, had been granted by the GLC in 1975 for the provision of a new cultural centre for the Islamic Republic of Iran and twenty self-contained flats but with the development to be behind the existing facade. I don’t know whether later planning permission allowed full demolition or whether this was carried out illegally.

No development has taken place on this very expensive piece of land since, and I wonder if it is still owned by Iran but sanctions against that country have prevented any building. The hotel was better known in earlier years for its basement club Blaises, a music venue where among others The Byrds, John Lee Hooker, Ike & Tina Turner, Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richard, Jimi Hendrix, Chuck Berry, Pink Floyd, Bo Diddley, Gladys Knight & The Pips, Captain Beefhear and The Pretty Things played.

St Augustine's Church, Queens Gate, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-26-positive_2400
St Augustine’s Church, Queens Gate, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-26

The demolition of the Imperial Hotel next door to St Augustine’s Church means we can now see the north side of the church; when I made this picture only its frontage was visible from Queen’s Gate. This II* listed building is said to be the second-best surviving church by William Butterfield; it opened for worship in 1871, but was only completed in 1876. The listing text is brief, probably because it was listed in 1949, but mentions its yellow brick with red and black bricks and stone as well as the Gothic western bellcote with flanking pinnacles.

The building replaced an earlier temporary iron church built in the garden of its priest in Gloucester Road in 1865, where services were said to be “Popery itself under the thinnest guise of the Protestant name” (Wikipedia.) Plans to build a larger replacement were blocked for some years by the Bishop of London, probably because of this extreme Anglo-Catholicism, but also because there were already plenty of churches in the area already, and the building could only begin after he moved away to become Archibishop of Canterbury. The listing text and some other sources wrongly give the date of the church as 1865.

Roland Gardens,  South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-53-positive_2400
Roland Gardens, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-53

In the 1890s this house at 43 Roland Gardents was the home of Mrs Ada Freeman Gell, (aka Mrs Newman Gell, Miss Ada Evershed) (1849-1929) a solicitor’s daughter from Brighton who became an artist who apparently exhibited both sculpture and paintings from around 1888-1898. Several of her sculptures are in the Brighton Art Gallery though I think not on public display.

The development of the site was diverted in the 1970s by the craze for roller-skating and an open-air rink was opened on a large site here in 1876 and soon covered over to enable all-weather skating. In 1889 the site was sold to the firm of Aldin and Plater who had developed other houses in the road. They obtained a licence from the London County Council to build “private Studios for Painters” and sold the site on to a local builder who completed Nos 43 and 45 in 1891-2.

Graffiti, art, Cranley Mews, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-62a-positive_2400
Graffiti, art, Cranley Mews, South Kensington, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-4p-62

This graffiti was on a large and rather dirty stone-faced wall, on Cranley Mews, on the section of the street leading down from Cranley Gardens to the main mews street behind the houses. The wall on the side of 54 Cranley Gardens was repainted in 2014 and the cracks no longer show, but there was no trace of the graffiti remaining before that. The rather utilitarian light fitting was replace some years earlier by a more ornate lantern on a fancy iron bracket. But no, I didn’t think it was art, though I have seen some even sillier things that were accepted as such.

Click on any of the images to go to the album where you can see large images and browse others on-line in 1988 London Photos.

Notting Hill – Notting Dale – 1988

Monday, May 10th, 2021
Nottingwood House, Clarendon Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-62-positive_2400
Nottingwood House, Clarendon Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988

Notting Hill – and the London Borough of Kensington & Chelsea – is very much a place of two halves and these two pictures illustrate this, with the large block of council housing built on the site of the Notting Hill brewery and other industrial buildings shortly before the war.

Houses, Blenheim Crescent, Clarendon Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-61-positive_2400
Houses, Blenheim Crescent, Clarendon Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988

This picture was taken from roughly the same place as the previous picture, but from the opposite side of the road. Houses in Blenheim Crescent are currently on sale for £4 million. Of course many of the social housing tenants in Nottingwood House took advantage of Thatcher’s social housing giveaway ‘Right to Buy’, though quite a few then found themselves needing to sell these properties, with many becoming ‘buy to let’ properties – now at perhaps £2000 a month, and other flats on sale for perhaps £800,000, so the difference here is rather less real than when I made this picture.

Bramley Arms, Bramley Rd, Freston Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-53-positive_2400
Bramley Arms, Bramley Rd, Freston Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988

I think the pub had closed shortly before I took this picture. The building is still there but is now offices with flats on the upper floor. The pub has appeared in at least five major films including Sid and Nancy (1986), Quadrophenia (1979) and The Lavender Hill Mob (1951) as well as TV series.

This area was cut off on two sides by the construction of the Westway and the West Cross Route in the 1960s and became very run down and what had been the southerns section of Latimer Rd was renamed Freston Road. Oddly, Latimer Road station (on Bramley Rd) was not renamed, though it is no longer close to Latimer Road. In 1977 squatters occupied houses and flats the GLC planned to demolish in Freston Road and declared the Republic of Frestonia. The GLC granted them temporary leave to remain and the area was developed more sensitively by the Bramley Housing Co-operative from 1985. You can see the ‘Underground’ bridges in the distance on both streets in this photograph.

Freston Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-52-positive_2400

This neat and unpretentious factory building is still present on the corner of Freston Rd and Evesham Rd, but now surrounded by a large redevelopment and painted a dull grey.

Mural, Harrow Club, Freston Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-45-positive_2400
Mural, Harrow Club, Freston Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988

Although the area around and under the Westway was fairly desolate in 1988, attempts had been made to brighten the area with a number of well painted murals. The Harrow club was set up by former pupils of Harrow School in 1883 as The Harrow Mission Church “to improve the quality of life for local people, aiding harmony and promoting opportunity” for the people of Notting Dale and continues to do so.

Freston Rd, Westway, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-44-positive_2400

More graffiti.

Freston Rd,, Stable Way, Westway, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-35-positive_2400

The caravans are around Stable Way. The car is coming down a link road from the Westway which runs across the top of the picture to the West Cross Route. This is the edge of a BMX cycle circuit at the north end of Freston Rd.

Freston Rd, Westway, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-32-positive_2400

Another picture from the BMX track beyond the end of Freston Road, close to the Westway junction with the West Cross Route.

Freston Rd, Westway, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-31-positive_2400

This picture gives a more informative view of the location, though I can find no trace of this oval now, but it was I think a part of the BMX circuit at the north end of Freston Rd.

Freston Rd,, Westway, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-23-positive_2400

The landscaped area here is at the end of Freston Rd, with the Harrow Club at left.

Westway, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-14-positive_2400

Underneath the Westway and the links from the West Cross Route.

Westway, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1988 88-1e-13-positive_2400

Various sports facilities underneath the motorway junction. Opened in 1970 as the A40(M) its status was downgraded in 2000 to an all-purpose road. There were plans to include a separated cycleway on parts of it announced in 2013 but these were scrapped in 2017. However Kensington & Chelsea Council have opposed all protected cycle routes on their streets, and even scrapped a temporary route which was implemented during the Covid lockdown.

More from the other half of Notting Hill in another post.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


More from West London: 1987

Tuesday, October 6th, 2020
Horse, Craven Hill, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987 87-7i-55-positive_2400
Horse, Craven Hill, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987

One of William the Conquerers companions in his 1066 invasion was Ralph Baynard, and among the rewards for his services was an area of land in Paddington. Bayswater was in the 14th century Baynard’s Watering Place, where the River Westbourne or Bayswater rivulet passed under the Uxbridge Rd and horses could drink from it.

Lord Craven bought Upton Farm close to here in 1733 and soon after called the area Craven Hill. The Westbourne rises in Kilburn but springs on Craven Hill added to its flow. Large houses – like this one largely Grade II listed – were developed on Craven Hill and the surrounding area in the early 19th century and in the 1830s it became fashionable as a place of residence, particularly for the literary and artistic. The grand town houses here date mainly from the 1830s to 50s. The horse is an appropriate decoration for the area, but I can tell you nothing more about it or when it disappeared.

Devonshire Terrace, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987 87-7i-63-positive_2400
Chilworth St, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987

This ornate doorway is in Chilworth St, and not as the note on my contact sheet suggested in Devonshire Terrace, which is just around the corner. There is more carved brickwork on the frontage of this building, which is rather grudgingly Grade II listed for its ‘group value’.

Westbourne St, Paddington, Westminster, 1987 87-7i-21-positive_2400
Westbourne St, Paddington, Westminster, 1987

This area of London has been home to many ethnicities and nationalities at least since the Victorian era.

The Fountains, Hyde Park, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987 87-7i-35-positive_2400
The Fountains, Hyde Park, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987

The River Westbourne used to emerge into the open in Hyde Park, and Queen Caroline had a dam built to make the Serpentine Lake in 1730. By the 1830s, with Bayswater being developed the river had become a sewer, and water was instead pumped from the Thames – and is now from deep boreholes into the chalk below the park. One borehole is in the Italian Gardens, which were built in the 1860s when Prince Albert decided it would be nice to have something here like those which he had made at Osborne House. The pavilion which held a pump for the fountains was designed by Sir Charles Barry and the gardens by James Pennethorne with sculpture by John Thomas.

Bayswater Rd, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987 87-7i-46-positive_2400
Bayswater Rd, Bayswater, Westminster, 1987

This rather ugly truncated column on the corner of Lancaster Gate marks the service road in front of the building at left (now the Columbia Hotel) as a private road, running parallel to the Bayswater Rd. Planned in 1856-7, this was one of the grandest developments in London and took around ten years to complete. The architect for the two long terraces facing Hyde Park was Sancton Wood (1815–1886) who worked for his cousins Robert and Sydney Smirke and also designed many railway stations.

All Saints Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987 87-7j-25-positive_2400
All Saints Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

‘DOC ALIMANTADO SAY FREE SOUTH AFRICA’. Dr Alimantado, born in Kingston Jamaica in 1952 as Winston Thompson and also known as ‘The Ital Surgeon’ is a Jamaican reggae singer, DJ and record producer, best known in the UK for his ‘Born For A Purpose’, made after he was knocked down and injured by a bus and for his 1978 album Best Dressed Chicken in Town. He gained success for his ‘toasting’ over the work other singers and his own recordings as a vocalist were less successful.

All Saints Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987 87-7j-26-positive_2400
All Saints Rd, Notting Hill, Kensington & Chelsea, 1987

‘REMAIN CAREFUL OF YOUR TRUE CONDUCT, DIGNITY, STEER AWAY FROM TRASHY INTEGRATION, BE WORTHY OF THE BEST’

This graffiti on one of Notting Hill’s best-known streets was based on advice given given to the young Dr Martin Luther King:
Remain careful of your conduct. Steer away from ‘trashy’ preachers. Be worthy of the best.”

More on page 5 of my album 1987 London Photos.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.


1986 Complete – Page 2

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2020
Varden St, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets 86-5d-11_2400

Images in this post are embedded from Flickr where you can view them at a large size by clicking on the image. You will need to use your browser back button to return to this post. Or you can right-click and select ‘Open link in new tab’.

My album 1986 London Photographs is now complete on Flickr, and this is the second of a short series of posts pointing out a few of my favourite images from the year.

Fashion St, Spitalfields, Tower Hamlets 86-4r-16_2400

Several things come out strongly to me as I look through these pictures, mostly taken around Brick Lane and other areas of Whitechapel. One of the major themes that has run through much of my photography is the writing on the wall, whether graffiti or signs and posters. Language is such an important aspect of our social interactions and its inclusion in these images makes them into a record of how people lived and thought.

Brick Lane, Spitalfields, Tower Hamlets 86-5a-01_2400

In 1984 London was rapidly becoming the multicultural city we now know, though of course it had been so on a lesser scale for many years if not centuries. Spitalfields where some of these pictures were made had long been a home for new communities moving to London and there was still abundant evidence of its Jewish population as well as the Bangladeshis who had by then largely replaced them.

Commercial Rd, Whitechapel, Tower Hamlets 86-5c-64_2400

Housing, then as now, was an important issue in London in particular, and some of these pictures reflect this and other issues such as racism. Although I think some of these pictures are well-composed and even attractive compositionally, I’ve always considered the formal aspects – line, shape, tone, texture, form etc to be the means to communicate a message rather than an end in themselves. I aimed to make photography that had something to say and said it well rather than to produce well composed, attractive or even striking or popular images.

Limehouse, Tower Hamlets 86-5h-66_2400

There are another 95 pictures on the second page of the album, all with a location, taken from the usually rather incomplete information I recorded on the contact sheets. I’ve tried to check these before posting, but corrections and other comments are always welcome. I’m happy for these pictures – with suitable attribution – to be shared on social media, but they remain copyright and any commercial or editorial use requires a licence from me.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.

There are no adverts on this site and it receives no sponsorship, and I like to keep it that way. But it does take a considerable amount of my time and thought, and if you enjoy reading it, please share on social media.
And small donations via Paypal – perhaps the cost of a beer – would be appreciated.


Tags: 

Old Street New Photos

Wednesday, March 4th, 2020

I live just a couple of miles outside the Greater London boundary, two miles that cost me around £1500 a year in travel costs, though I might be saving a little in council tax. I live in the only area of what used to be Middlesex which wasn’t included in Greater London when the boundaries were established in the 1960s, though the town I live in is fairly typical of outer London. But the posh Tories down the road who ran the local council at the time rose up against becoming a part of the London Borough of Hounslow and opted the whole area to become part of Surrey with their wealthy chums across the river.

So while Londoners of my age got a Freedom Pass, now valid at all times on London Underground, London Overground, Bus, Tram, and Docklands Light Railway services in Greater London as well as rail services between 9.30am and 11.30pm, instead I got a national bus pass, giving free rides only on the buses. And where practicable my normal mode of travel around London is by bus.

When time is limited or bus journeys far to slow I do use the Underground (or Overground or Rail) to get around London and pay. And on days where the traffic is paralysed by large-scale protests or sporting events I’ll take the tube as well, either using a London-wide Travelcard or using a contactless card.

Other than cost, and for some journeys speed (though it can be quicker to use the bus or walk) there are some advantages to bus travel. Thanks to most London routes being served by double-deckers you are treated to some splendid views of the capital from viewpoints that would otherwise be impossible. It’s a poor man’s cherry-picker, and these pictures of the Old Street roundabout and some nearby locations show this well.

The Old Street roundabout was constructed at the height of brutalist architecture in the 60s, with some very odd concrete shapes at its core on top of Old Street Tube station, some underground shops and a public toilet in an area known as St Agnes Well. It’s an area I’ve often visited for convenience and travel, and sometimes for photography over the years.

Work has been going on for some time to replace the roundabout by a smoother two-way traffic flow with improved cycling and pedestrian routes and a new public open space and is due for completion later this year. The area around the roundabout has also changed in recent years with new large blocks on the south side as well as a gigantic suspended advertising block. A cluster of software houses in some of these new buildings have led to a new name, Silicon Roundabout.

I was able to photograph from the bus going through the now ex-roundabout both west to east and in the reverse direction along Old St after photographing a protest not far away. And with various traffic lights and queues in operation the bus stopped several times at convenient locations for my pictures.

More pictures at Clerkenwell Road & Old St.


All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.

There are no adverts on this site and it receives no sponsorship, and I like to keep it that way. But it does take a considerable amount of my time and thought, and if you enjoy reading it, please share on social media.
And small donations via Paypal – perhaps the cost of a beer – would be appreciated.