Saturday, January 5, 2019

Four Historic Views

Dave and I went to the Black Lion, one of our local pubs, on Wednesday with some of our pals from school. At one point I noticed the staircase was adorned with old photos of West Hampstead, including several areas I frequent. It was cool to see images of the 'hood from 100 years ago!

Above, for example, is Achilles Road, one of the "Greek Streets" adjacent to Fortune Green. (None of the pictures are dated, unfortunately.)

Here's the same view today. Cars, cars everywhere!

This is West End Lane, right near the West Hampstead tube station. In fact, you can see the "Underground" sign between the two ornately gabled roofs.

Here's that view today. Different "Underground" sign, but the buildings are pretty much the same.

This is Mill Lane, at the corner of Aldred Road. Again, no cars!

And here's the view today. The Tiffin Tin, which has replaced the "Elliott" shop on the corner, is a good place for Indian food. I can't tell from the old photo what "Elliott" was, but a sign in the window says it sold both Rowntree's Chocolates and Fry's Chocolate. Was it a grocer, or specifically a candy store? Hmmmm...

And finally, here's Fortune Green itself. I think the child on the right is pushing a hobby horse.

And here's Fortune Green today. Lots more trees! The area to the left is now a fenced, dog-free football field, while to the right are some dog-friendly grassy areas. I take Olga here for a romp fairly often.

It's remarkable how little the streetscapes have changed, overall.


Frances said...

I love those " before and after photos". Amazing how the buildings are all largely still the same.
In the early 80s I was standing on a bridge over the River Lea by the ford with my 2 young sons, when a man appeared with a camera and asked if he could take a photo with us in it. He was producing a book of photos of Harpenden " Old and New". He subsequently sent us a complimentary copy of said book !

Yorkshire Pudding said...

An interesting post. It's funny how everything was black, grey and white in the past but today everything is in colour.

crafty cat corner said...

So interesting. I notice the lack of cars in all of the photo's but the tree looks as thought its still there in the first lot of pictures. Also of course, no road markings.

ellen abbott said...

much better without all the cars. Fortune Green seems the most changed. if this was Houston, none of those buildings would still be there. Houston loves to tear down and rebuild.

Anonymous said...

I love seeing these comparison photos. What a wonderful idea. The juxtaposition of the past and present is really beautiful.

Ms. Moon said...

The tiny little area where I live in Lloyd would probably look much the same in two photos a hundred years apart but that is so very rare here in the states. As you well know.
What a nice post, Steve! I bet it was fun, angling up your shots to match the old ones. Good job!

Fresca said...

How fun--well done, you!
I spy a bike.

Red said...

Interesting comparisons. I'm surprised that most buildings are still there. They keep them up well.

Vivian Swift said...

I love side by side comparisons, and I love your photos. You chose the perfect time of day. Dusk, especially in Winter, is so moody. They could be paintings, the light is so lush. Very nice.

Sharon said...

I have to agree with you about how little the landscape has changed. It's actually pretty amazing. Maybe that's a nod to good old fashioned construction. These comparisons are great. Thanks for seeking them out and sharing them with us.

Catalyst said...

It is amazing to me how those buildings built over 100 years ago remain pretty much the same today. London must be a fascinating place to live.

e said...

It is a testament to the idea of preserving rather than destroying that there are places still recognizable from a century ago. That seldom happens here by comparison, at least from what I've seen. It is nice to see the old and the new together. Thanks for sharing.

Sue said...

I love the sense of living with and being a part of history. It's something we don't get a lot of in most places here in the US, as you know. I wonder how it influences the way we think and feel?

Steve Reed said...

Frances: How cool to be featured in a book! It's nice that the guy asked, AND sent you a copy!

YP: Yeah, I'm so happy those mid-century scientists invented color. LOL

Briony: I can't really tell whether it's the same tree, but yes, there's still a tree on that corner. (I couldn't get the tree trunk into the picture without standing in traffic and being blocked by a light pole!)

Ellen: I think the central, downtown areas of American cities are constantly being rebuilt -- but then, Central London is being rebuilt too. It's more the outer neighborhoods and residential areas that tend to stay the same, and that's often true in American cities too, don't you think?

Robin: I had fun putting it together!

Ms Moon: It WAS fun. I wonder if Lloyd was actually BIGGER a hundred years ago? The fally-down house probably had people in it!

Fresca: Yes, I saw that bike! It's fun to look at the details -- the clothing, the children, the little dog in the Mill Lane picture.

Red: Yeah, the buildings that managed to survive the Blitz are maintained well, at least in wealthier areas!

Vivian: I have to confess the timing had more to do with when I was able to shoot the pictures, given that I work full time. Ha!

Sharon: I do think the construction of many of these houses is very solid.

Catalyst: And yet, some parts of town are completely new. It just depends on where you go.

E: There are legal protections designed to preserve the character of these neighborhoods. Someone can't just come along and knock down one of those houses to put in something ultra-modern, for example -- not without planning permission. So yes, preservation of the streetscape is a big concern. On the inside, I'm sure almost all those houses have been heavily modernized.

Sue: It is cool. And yeah, I wonder if it makes us feel more connected to the place or the people who once lived here? Maybe gives us a sense of continuity with the past?

jenny_o said...

I love looking at old/new pictures of the same places, so I thoroughly enjoyed this!

37paddington said...

What a cool exercise to photograph the now versions of those historic images. The buildings seem to still be in great shape.