Newhaven in old picture postcards volume 5

Newhaven in old picture postcards volume 5

Auteur
:   Peter S. Bailey
Gemeente
:  
Provincie
:   Sussex, East
Land
:   United Kingdom
ISBN13
:   978-90-288-4840-5
Pagina's
:   80
Prijs
:   EUR 16.95 Incl BTW *

Levertijd: 2-3 weken (onder voorbehoud). Het getoonde omslag kan afwijken.

   


Fragmenten uit het boek 'Newhaven in old picture postcards volume 5'

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INTRODucnON

Rather than give a lengthy account of the History of Newhaven, I have attempted to incorporate much of it in the explanatory captions to the photographs, whereby certain facts and incidents can be readily associated to the present day scene.

Ncwhaven. like so many other coastal towns, had its defences on high ground from ancient times, with emphasis on the proteetion of the bay and the river estuary. At some time the river moved to Seaford and made an exit at the eastern end of the coastline. During the reign of Queen Elizabeth I this Iimb of the Cinque Port of Hastings, became choked and finally broke out in an area west of the 'Buckle', this was named the New Haven. The whole district was very marshy and many channels were formed and deserted, one of these later becoming the creek to Tidemills. This sluggish situation led to much flooding in the Ouse valley up to Lewes, the low land at times being unusable for grazing, even in the summer. This situation became so serious that the length south from the present swing bridge was straightened and cut to the sea, emerging under Castie Hill, This is believed to be the course of the Ouse in Roman times. The canal works eased the flooding upstream and a fixed harbour entrance was eventually established. The old Saxon name of 'Meeching' was dropped and the fishing village by the river band became Newhaven. The coming of the railway in 1847 was directly connected with the introduetion of a steam packet service to Dieppe. The routes were extended over the years to include St. Malo, Honfleur and Caen. Also, there were regular cargopassenger services to this harbour by steamers from St. Nazaire and the Clyde. The freights handled by all these vessels, added to the regular passenger and cargo sailings to and from Dieppe resulted in the 1880's with Newhaven becoming the sixth

most important port in the United Kingdom in terms of revenue earned.

Three other milestones were to fellow, the first was the New Cut made in 1863, when yet another canal was made, this time north from the area of the first swing bridge (yet to be built) later to become North Quay. As a result of this work Denton Island was formed. With the spoil from the New Cut, Pennants Eye, a backwater reaching almost to the town railway station, was filled in. These extensive alterations created an increased flushing effect by the faster moving water. The next major happening was in 1879 when the creek to Tidemills was closed allowing the building of East Quay and in this year began the dramatic Harbour Works which included the widening ofthe harbour mouth, the building of new east and west piers and the reclaming of the area under the Fort Cliffs to create the promenade, this whole massive enterprise culminating in the construction of the remarkable breakwater and the establishing of a cross channel service free of ti dal restrictions.

With the diverting of the railway track supplying the breakwater , to a new course around Sleepers Hole at the turn of the century, the causeway running from the lifeboat station to the Green Light was removed for a considerable length and with much dredging an area of this slob land was deepened to allow for a lay-by berth to accommodate two cross channel steamers abreast and moorings for two dredgers plus any yachts which could squeeze in. Destroyers were moored here during the First World War and a loading area for tank landing cr aft in the Second World War.

The deep mud to the south and north was not removed until the yacht marina development of the 1960's. Apart from the re-

newal of quays and piers (and a new swing bridge in the 1970's) there were few other changes in the port scene in the period covered by this book.

The growth of the town went hand in hand with the progress of the port. Industry was not encouraged, there were small concerns like the chalk quarry and the even smaller 'blue boulder' trade, when hand picked beach flints were collected and sent to Runcorn for use in glass and pottery glazing processes. The building of sailing ships of several hundered tons had taken place in the shipyards between the 'old river' and now Robinson Road, but after the heyday of John Gray the quest for steam driven iron craft, put the trade into decline by the mid-1800's. A small fishing industry has fortunately survived.

Newhaven town has been stripped of all its old properties and its few impressive houses have been demolished, leaving but the record of the one time existence of a Roman villa in the area of the present police station, and apart from the possible inclusion of the 'Bridge Inn' of 1623 there remains only the delightful old Parish Church of St. Michael as the sole reminder that once a place called 'Meeching' was hereabouts.

The greatest 'incident' of the last war occurred at 5 a.m. on 22nd November 1944, when a barge carrying 180 tons of a very high explosive broke from its tow and came ashore on the west stone beach, here it hit a mine and blew itself up and but for the cliffs, much of Newhaven would have followed it. Windows were broken in Lewes 7 miles away ...

The mess in Newhaven can be imagined, an additional problem was the loss of so much rationed food through the contamination by splintered glass both in the hornes and the shops. Emergency feeding had to be introduced. Injuries were numerous with

many of the population being awakened by their ceilings joining them in bed, yet only one person was killed, a wall fell on an unfortunate naval rating.

Compiling these volumes of 'Newhaven in old picture postcards' has been a most pleasing task, tinged with the sadness at having to reject so many other lovely or constructive pictures. I have attempted to concentrate on scenes of places which have gone or been greatly altered, this will explain the omission of our parish church and the restored Newhaven Fort. Reference is at times made to other volumes and a picture number. This is to help readers who have the other books link up the cross references. Early volumes may be reprinted if there is sufficient demand. Since the formation of the Newhaven Historical Society in 1969 thousands of photographs have been given or loaned for copying. This unique collection is housed in the Society's Museum at the West Foreshore and from these archives I have made the selection of pictures featured in this book. May I take this opportunity to thank all of those who have so kindly contributed towards this store of local history . Several of the photos will have passed through many hands, so that it would be impossible to be sure to whom to give acknowledgement and likewise there is always the fear of accidently infringing on some reproduetion rights. I hope sincerely that this has been avoided.

Lastly may I thank all of the members of this Society for their support which has ensured our survival after many years and my sineere appreciation to the officers, past and present for their work and generous sacrifice of their free time. I think it can be justly said: 'We have done Newhaven proud!'

Peter S. Bailey

1. A west to east air view of about 1932, looking down the Brighton Road towards the town. On the left vacant plots in the Murray-Evelyn Avenue area. Further east, the slaughter house and field between Folly Hili, Lewes Raad and Lower Place. Still further, St. Luke's Lane, joining Essex Place with the Hight Street. To the right of the main raad, near, a large expanse where now is the Rose Walk area and the 'Southdown' School. The 'Brazen' memorial can just be seen in the church yard and to the right of the chapel (now the Library) in Church Hili, is the Convent Field, now Neil's Close. East ofthe harbour, many more houses in Railway Raad, also the Gas Works and 'Valentine' Pen Coy.

2. An earlier view than on the previous page, from the grounds of 'The Union' (now the Downs Hospital) towards Newfield Road and Church Hill. Trees abound.

3. Looking up Church Hili, ne ar tbe Rectory. Tbe numerous trees provided shade (and beauty) for the upward climb.

4. Junction of Church Hili with South Way (previously Meeching Avenue). Now the Conservative Club, but in this picture, the 'Cromwell' Tea Rooms, Cyclist's Rest and Coffee Tavern. A similar venture appears in volume 2 picture 28, which shows it then in Bridge Street. The period would appear to be pre-1914.

5. High Street, 1930's. Percival Robert Gray (F.B.O.A. Hons.) was the first qualified optician in the town. (Spectacles had been provided earlier by local chemists who had also extracted teeth.) He had the premises built, which was mostly managed by his son Robert Stanley, a popular young man, who became an offieer in the war time fire brigade. The wool shop next door, can best be remembered as 'Hilda Green's'. The telephone exchange at this time was to the left, where is now the post office.

6. A typical shop front in Upper High Street in the late 1920's-early 1930's. Miss Dorothy Funnel stands in the doorway of No. 47, Dalladays boot store.

7. In Upper High Street, looking down as far as 'Corbett's', now 'Newhaven Pharmacy'. Below the shed, left, was 'Hannagans' boot repairers and generalleather work. The shed can just be seen on the right, in picture5.

8. J.S. Funnells Bakery, High Street, 1920's-1930's. Apart from all of the services c1early offered, Sunday joints could be taken there for roasting and when the Cats Whisker arrived, accumulators could be left for reeharging and as radio developed, a repair and sales service followed, but this did not mean that you were not stiJl able to get your cornI In fact much ofthis agreeable mixture was carried on by the grandson, in other premises until not many years ago. Television of course, being added to the list on offer!

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