Another long day of updates. I have been having issues with a certain old microsoft web designer which keeps crashing, and I have started to use a rather nice web designer called Brackets at the same time. It does not provide the WYSIWYG that I need but it does lots of pages without crashing very few minutes, brilliant; it is an html editor in code rather than “What you see is what you get”.
The London street directory continues to grow, and I have added and updated a whole host of streets starting with the letter B, e.g. Bishopsgate etc. I have not yet added the 1842 images, but I will. More streets starting with B to come still.
I continue to check where I am in google search and this is at about #22, which will improve. My pub history site is also at #4 for the same search. That is not bad for a an individual to be #1 for pub history in google and #4 for London street directory. It just does not pay any bills, sadly. Not that I have any specific issues.
I also received a plethora of Battersea pub history images from one of my brilliant contacts. Wow is the word, anything from 1870 to 1970, and these are slowly being added to the relevant pages, all in Battersea east, or SW8 and SW11 as modern post codes seem to work. Plus the road street name changes are being added as we speak.
This is nice, the Locomotive.
One last note, I noticed that my records of some of my early research have never really been used. I may post some of these on the street directory site as listings for an area; I have lots of research for Battersea which has never been published, and loads more for everywhere else, too!
I still have more images to add tonight, even though I seem to be working very long days since retiring!
This is an important use of the new (OLD) London street directory I am adding for 1832 with images of 1842. It sounds simple, and it is, but it works very well with all of the research I have been working on for the past fifteen years, along with many others.
Yesterday, I was adding Belton street, in Long acre. It quickly resolved to the Cross Keys, a modern pub now listed in Endell street; and looking at google maps etc, it is still open.
The query was where all the other pubs were – lots of them? The first part was simple, as Belton street was widened and renamed to Endell street in around 1846. If you are not interested in early Victorian pubs, then read something else.
The 1832 directory named several other pubs, and the 1842 directory also mentioned a beer house. After some work through early census records, many of which have been researched years previously, I managed to add a number of early Victorian pubs to my St Giles listing. Well, I was impressed; and excited by the whole days outcome.
All research is now on the various sites which I run about pub history, London history, well any history really.
The good news is that I am starting to move up the rankings for “London street directory” search in google search. The pub history site is #4, and the London history site is currently #18. This is pretty impressive as I do not use any maps, just good old text.
As part of the research in building this 1832 / 1842 London street directory I start to find gaps in the early pub history research. It is all based on early church boundaries, as I list pub history areas inside this remit. It makes it more difficult to find a specific location on modern street maps, but it does have positives when looking at very early London street maps – my favourite map is in 1746.
One area I spotted today was in the Cheapside area, specifically Bow lane & Watling street. I found a rather excellent blog on the area which someone has spent some time mapping old and new; well, modern photos linking back to what the past may have been like.
From one 1832 street directory of Watling street, led me on a search through old census records and my own site detail, to add just one pub, the Crown Tavern at 7 Bow lane, Cheapside, plus the Crown Tap, at 73 Watling street.
The first address is listed in census for 1851 to 1871; and the latter address is only noted in directories. Both are probably the same, and I will leave this to others to confirm.
Latterly today, I have continued to add more detail to this London street directory in 1832, with additional images etc. I probably need to upgrade the quality of these images; but I also need to consider the next steps in using bootstrap web technology to make this an inclusive design for mobiles, and not just for my old desktop mentality.
I am not planning on redesigning the pub history sites any further, as they are too huge; but I can play with a smaller London street directory of just a thousand pages or so.
My next job, how to make the site mobile-friendly, i.e. responsive.
I have been updating the London 1832 street directory again today, for about 14 hours so far tody. I am currently working backwards from Y, and now working on S. I am completing each letter for the quite inferior 1832 directory listings, and also adding 1842 images for ten years later which give considerably more trade detail etc.
I cannot believe the number of mistakes in the 1832 Robsons directory, I mean serious mistakes all the way through the directory. It is still an useful listing. As I have been working through this street directory listing the errors have become more and more apparent – I am not the greatest at proof reading; but this directory is really quite bad!
Anyway, nearly the entirety of S is now online, including many of the 1842 images, including the likes of Shoreditch High street, all the Smithfields, East, West, Lower etc; and Shadwell. It all starts to look rather good, and I am jolly proud of this.
Meanwhile, our tortoise, Fenton, has decided it looks like winter is coming and did not wake today. He has had a brilliant year this year with me being around all the time, and has doubled in size. I believe a tortoise does not just work on temperatures, but has a natural barometer built into his body system. A PhD suggestion for someone!
I will complete the London trip of the bridges at some stage, as there are still a lot which have been missed from the last post.
I received a book token earlier in the year for one of my birthdays. I am now retired, although long before my time!
A visit to Chelmsford on a very wet day for other reasons found me in all of the book stores in the City. I found a book by Peter Ackroyd which was selling in one of the major book sellers, at about £25, and just out of interest, I wondered how much cheaper this could be bought in Amazon land.
About a month later, a hard backed book, apparently second-hand, arrived from the USA. The cost was probably a quarter of the book I had seen in the shop previously. I don’t actually know the exact detail, as I don’t have an Amazon account.
As I often profess an interest in rivers and waterways, I quickly gobbled up the opening lines of this new book. The River Thames has 134 bridges, and a number of locks above Teddington. That’s good enough for me. I need to visit all of these bridges, when can I start?
As an aside, my visit to Whitechapel in June cost me £3 in rail fares for a day out.
So, with this detail in hand, how do I visit the Thames, do I drive or take the train?
I did a quick search on walks along the River Thames, and there are a number of footpaths which have been organised and mapped for anyone who wishes to partake in a little leisurely stroll. I am off for the first tomorrow.
Here’s the link for the Thames path – and lots of walks, of which I need many.
I will let you know how I got on.
I seem to be getting there slowly, if this makes sense. I cannot believe how long it is taking me to add a solitary street directory of London.
It will be useful once I have added this, and images of the 1842 street directory which give a considerable amount of detail as regards trade details for a street.
I am also adding links from this 1832 directory to the relevant pubs at the time. You can then see where these pubs addresses changed through time as street renaming took place in all of London to remove common street names.
Anyway, I am working through letters C & G at present, and all will be complete soon, mehopes.
I had a rather angry email earlier today about a pub, the Boars Head, Fleet street and the various claims about Guinness being available in the pub from a very early date, and being the first pub in England to provide this.
OK, after researching this claim on the internet, and then considering the relevant detail in this angry email, I actually agreed.
More importantly, as this is just an aside to this post, I the continued the research of this pub and changed the details quite a lot. I removed the detail which was clearly a wish list from the current pub at some stage in its life, well probably most of it.
I then went on to the most authoritive site for early pub history, the Access to Archives site. This threw up a weirdo record suggesting the Boars Head was actually in existence in 1441. That’s good enough for me.
Who cares whether Guinness were brewing here, this is an very early pub in London.