Southsea in old picture postcards

Southsea in old picture postcards

Auteur
:   A.W. McAvery
Gemeente
:  
Provincie
:   Hampshire
Land
:   United Kingdom
ISBN13
:   978-90-288-3108-7
Pagina's
:   80
Prijs
:   EUR 16.95 Incl BTW *

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Fragmenten uit het boek 'Southsea in old picture postcards'

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Beach and Canoe Lake from Sou th Parade Pier, Southsea

39, Looking inland with a bitd's eye view the gentleman is standing on the balcony of the pavillon which stood on Sou th Parade Pier. Here we can see quite clearly the close proximity of Canoe Lake to the Pier and in point of fact it is Iess than a two minute walk away. Although in this picture the gentleman has an unobstructed view across to the Lake, today along this stretch of the promenade are shops, a restaurant, small cafés and a coach booking office. A sight which will not been seen, regrettably, are the bathing machines which are standing at the water's edge in the middle of this view. Continuing along the promenade one enters Eastney or in the days of this photograph East Southsea which is a long stretch of beach fronting the Royal Marine Barracks.

40. Canoe Lake must be one of the most photographed features of Southsea but it was not until May 1884 that the Corporation turned its attention to a disused piece of marshy land, strewn with rubbish and litter, located near to the end of South Parade that the idea of an ornamentallake took shape. Work began on clearing the site later that year and on 17th June 1886 Canoe Lake was presented to the people. Measuring some 650 ft in length and having a surface area of approxirnately three and a half acres the Lake cost the Corporation i3,000 but every penny of it was well spent as it has proved to be a tremendous tourist attraction and people living in Southsea have always found it a pleasant spot to visit for picnics, sailing model boats or just for taking a pleasant stroll.

41. Following on from the last view of the Lake here we are looking inland away from the sea. The building in the middle of the Lake which housed the swans has been gone a long time. The first four swans to grace the Lake were presented to the City by King Edward VII in March 1902. Wild fowl are still attracted to the area and a pleasant and popular pastime is to visit the Lake to feed the birds. If you look across and over the swans home you will see the beginning of the tennis courts. At the outset 27 courts were constructed along with three croquet lawns and a bowling green and for one penny per hour per player you could participate in the sport of your choice. An added attraction was a miniature golf links which had been designed by a well-known golf professional of the time.

42. On the opposite side of the road to Canoe Lake is a very well-known and much sought after residential area commanding some of the highest prices for housing in the whole of Southsea and its surrounding areas. Taking its name from the fact that Cranes used to once nest on the piece of land on which these houses now stand, 'Craneswater' has a splendid view across the ornamentally laid out gardens and Esplanade to the sea. One of the first plots of land was auctioned by a firm of Estate Agents well-known in the area and sold for !840 to a Mr Besant. Most of these houses have been retained today but some have been turned into flats and apartments probably due to the prohibitive costs of running such large and grand houses and because most of them had been built to specific requirements for the larger Victorian family.

43. Although many large hotels were built in Southsea the Royal Beach Hotel, or Beach Mansions as it was also known by, stands alone opposite South Parade Pier on the corner of Alhambra Raad. No other hotels were built to the east and therefore it attracted a lot of custorn. 1t was opened in 1866 and had 140 rooms of which 85 were bedrooms. The hotel was furnished luxuriously and the rooms in the front of the hotel commanded clear views out to sea. Here we see it in less happy circumstances when on the 13th July 1911 the hotel caught fire. Luckily the damage was contained to the top floors of the hotel and it still managed to operate whilst refurbishing works were being carried out. The people who are attracted by the sight of the firemen tackling the blaze are standing on the opposite side of the road on Southsea Promenade.

44. Running almost parallel with the Castle Esplanade but on the opposite side of the Rock Gardens at -the edge of Southsea Common and facing the sea is South Parade. Here many large four-storeyed houses were built in long terraces broken only by residential roads which lead inland to the more densely populated areas of Southsea, Most of these large dwellings have become hotels and guesthouses. The grassed areas in front of these terraces were in later years enclosed by a low ornamental stone wall and the whole area has been turned into an attraetive garden with shrubs and flowerbeds generally known as the Italian Gardens where people ean sit or stroll at their leisure.

45. Immediately facing some of the principal hotels, guesthouses and apartments for hire, one part of Southsea Common had become fameus as "The Ladies Mile'. This was a long level stretch of delightfullawn. Especially after Church on Sundays it was the rendezvous of thousands of residents and visitors and in many respects it rivalled Hyde Park in London for its popularity. Hundreds of hammock chairs lined Ladies Mile and between the rows ladies wearing the latest creations in dress and millinery promenaded in company with their naval, military or civilian friends. Here we can see such a Sunday afternoon and indeed it makes a picturesque and animated sight. Today, regrettably Ladies Mile does not attract such elegance and is mostly used by people walking dogs or as a short cut to another part of the Common although its own attractiveness has remained.

Ösborne Road from Southsea eo~mon

46. Southsea had a perponderance of large hotels and here can be seen four of the better known ones, The large building on the left of the picture with the striped awnings is the Grosvenor Farnily Hotel on the corner of Western Parade, the Queens Hotel is on the opposite corner where Osborne Road meets with Clarence Parade and in the background as one looks up the length of Osborne Road to the left one can just make out the Sandringharn Hotel on the corner of Nightingale Road and the Westminster Hotel a little further down. The gentleman in the straw boater pushing the baby-carriage has just crossed Southsea Common from the direction of the Sea Front and is coming to the junction of Gordon Road (now known as Duisburg Way) to the left with Clarence Parade to the right,

47. Castle Road runs north to south between Kings Road and Southsea Terrace and leads southwards out onto Southsea Common. lt mostly contained small shops, tea rooms and its own sub post office and proved a busy shopping area due to its close proximity to many of the larger houses which had been built in the area around it. lts most striking feature must be the well-known Clock Tower which adorns the building standing on the corner of Castle Road and Great Southsea Street. Here we have a splendid view looking up from the Common end towards the Clock Tower. At the turn of the century these premises were occupied by Ernest Smith who dealt in antiques, furniture and so on. Today the premises are still used in a similar way as they are occupied by one of Southsea's better known antique dealers.

'JI; 50lTIlSF.A. - Jillgs Road and Elm Gro-re. -

48. Journeying along Kings Road in an easterly direction one comes to the point where it merges with Elm Grove. No physical boundary actually exists but the two roads join at approximately the crossroads of Green Road on the left hand side and Castle Road on the right. Walking on past the shops and the Baptist Church one enters Elm Grove which up to the early 1880s was a predominantly open residential area with detached houses set in large gardens fronting onto a tree lined road. However, as the need for retail premises became even greater it was necessary to claim these houses and most of them were either demolished or converted into shops. The trees on either side of Elm Grove managed to hold on a little longer but sadly were felled around the 1920s.

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