Early London pub history & 1832 street directory

As you may know, I write sites about pub history. I am always looking to find new ways to advertise this, and to be honest, I often struggle to find the pubs I am searching for. This is not the fact that they are not on the site, just with a differing address; or sometimes the search engine just cannot find the pub.

Over the past few weeks or so, I have been looking at early street directories of London . My idea of an early directory was in 1839, now I am looking at 1833, 1811 and 1805 etc. All these directories are pre-Victorian, i.e George III was on the throne from 1760 to 1820; then George IV until 1820; and William IV until 1836.

And with this in mind, and the fact the search engine on the site often struggles to find early addresses in London, why not create an early street directory? It is a great idea, and keeps me busy in my retirement! Plus, there are very few sites in which you can search by pub or address, usually just surname.

As usual, most people would think this is mad, but this is what I do.

So, the site is building slowly, and it will take a few weeks / months / years; but here is an excellent example – Borough High street, Southwark.

More in a few weeks.


London pub history and mobile phones

I have spent the last few weeks trying to get round google and their prolific issues with mobile usability on my London pub history site. I do have a mobile phone, but I would rather use a desktop rather than a mobile and / or laptop, it sort of goes over my head a little.

Anyway, as I am struggling with understanding what the issues are according to “google webmaster tools”, and I am getting fed up with all of the morons emailing me who say they can fix me, I thought I would actually try it myself, on a real mobile phone. I have one, it is normally plugged in to recharge the battery, but I have a phone.

First impressions on the pub history site, via mobile, it’s crap – too many adverts! I know they pay for the site, but it is pointless having a site where no one visits. So, these are going shortly. I shall do this now, and then continue with this rather random chat. What I could actually do is add the links to the top level navigation with a drop down, this would probably work.

OK, so a few fixes made, and more tomorrow when I will add all of the Counties into a dropdown menu. I cannot do this at the moment, as I am tired.

So, what has this all to do with London history? WELL, rather a lot. I spend up to 16 hours a day, sometimes more adding new (old) detail to the site about pub history, mostly London; I have a host of sites all linked which follow this same trend. The sites are amazing, I just don’t get the visitors I was hoping for, probably because I cannot write decent articles about a place, but just add additional detail which is amazing.

That’s what I do. BUT, tomorrow, I will revisit the main site, and get it mobile friendly.

And well done England, what a great world cup this is turning out to be.




London Pride, history, pubs and womens rights

A lot to cover in one post, but I don’t waffle much. Good luck to the lovely people at London Pride march tomorrow, and much love to you all. A good time to listen to some George Michael.

I am continuing to add sites about London history now I am retired.  a relatively new site is london19 which is actually now posting street directories for 1832, I need to update the title. An example is Holborn Hill in Holborn Hill in 1832; I think my amazing pub history site already covers this, but hey ho.

And women, well I received an email earlier about the Gunmakers Arms, in Old Ford road. In 1915 this closed and was turned into a nursery by Sylvia Pankhurst and the suffragettes.

The good thing is that there is a blue plaque commemorating this important site; it’s a shame they got it on the wrong side of the junction of St Stephens road.

Hey ho.


Early pub history of London

I have to write this about my research, and others who have helped me in this. The Early pub history of London is continuing to grow in stature.

Basically, what I am saying, is that it is amazing the amount of detail which is now listed on my sites/s on pub history for London and many other areas.

Just find a page, NOT one of the holder pages for the other additional counties, and enjoy the amount of detail listed. It is all very personal to the relevant publican / licensee of an individual address, and I cannot change this; or make it more interesting to others who are not linked to this family.

What the site is slowly starting to list is the proof that these establishments actually existed, and naming bodies in the buildings through that time, and they are usually live bodies. The other main area I am addressing is the old streets that originally existed and were devolved into new areas as they were redeveloped.

I am very keen to endorse the London pub history site as a major development in mapping old street names which no longer exist. I have not worked out how I am going to do this, but it will happen.

Enough for this post.



London Holden commercial directory 1811

Well, it is 1.53 in the morning, and I usually fall asleep on the computer about this time of morning. I think, I don’t actually know the time I fall asleep!

The Holden directories of London are rather special. They are really early, and also list lots of victuallers, wine and brandy merchants, named pubs etc etc. This is quite rare for early directories.

The only thing I am not sure about at present is whether the year is actually correct. I know most directories are a year out of date. The Holden directories are strangely organised, and I do not have an answer to this at present.

What has become apparent when searching on some of the very early entries, is that Whitechapel can mean Aldgate; there is no special code to work out where a public house or victualler is; and the addresses are also often quite short in detail.

The beauty of my pub history site is that there is masses of detail already added by myself, and Stephen and Ewan – particularly for these early entries, and this new detail can be compared to see if there is a pattern.

And life goes on, but with a better understanding of early London publicans and licensees, and also I am always looking  to add those long lost streets and pubs that disappeared two centuries ago.

Anyway, i am still awake, and its 2.01 am; and enough for tonight.

Sarah Wise – The Blackest streets – of London

I am quite excited. I have a new book by Sarah Wise to read. I have not even read anything about it, even though I do have this new book in my hand.

I have read a previous book by her,  the Italian Boy. I will tell you more about this in a minute. I have also read a second book, Lunacy, Liberty, Mad Doctors  … which I did not even realise was by her! Call me simple, I have this book on my desk, and only just realised my complete ignorance, what a wally I am!

Back to the Italian Boy, this book I have read twice. I was first introduced to it by a young doctor who wrote about the Anatomy Act of 1832  as part of their degree course. My interest was the numbers of old London pubs visited during the story telling, and I love a story about Old London, as I said, I like to keep things simple.

I am very excited to read her (Sarah wise) new book on my holidays shortly. I will post some feedback at a later stage. I can already predict it being absolutely brilliant.


London street directory 1919 or thereabouts

There is a new site which is building, along with many other sites. It is simple, it is a street directory of London from the 1921 directory, which is always a year out of date, so about 1920; and next year is 2019.

So, a site is growing, which is london19.com which lists street detail for the last hundred years, and should be ready by 2019. That is the background detail.

This new site will initially list street directories, and links to pubs and previous pubs in that timeline or earlier. Then it will move on to list details of street name changes over that time period. Well, that is the current plan.

Excited? Every time I research any of this form of data, it is nearly always on a purchaseable ebook. This is all very well, as people have spent their own time creating this data, but it is NOT in the public domain. There are also many freely available ebooks which are sold by people, I should do this too, but I cannot  be bothered.

I am aware that everything I post is stolen by others, hey ho, it’s the internet age.

BUT, I am certain that this site will make a difference, eventually, somewhere. And one of the people I have helped out will come back and click on some of my advertising links. You can only live in hope.