Memories of Southsea (Albert Road)

Memories of Southsea (Albert Road)

Published by the WEA Portsmouth Local History Group, 48 pages. A5 size booklet (N7207X1)

This booklet provides a fascinating insight into the history of part of Portsmouth, and includes lots of memories and recollections of what life was like in years gone by. The booklet covers Albert Road in Southsea, and is a must read for anyone who lived or grew up in the area, and will delight anyone with an interest in the history and development of Portsmouth

From the first inside page: Albert Road was originally a lane marking the southern boundary of 'solid' ground at Froddington, now forming Kings Road, Albert Road and Highland Road, which runs from east to west roughly parallel to the seafront. South of the lane were springs feeding into the Great Morass on Froddington Common (Southsea Common) and marshes. The lane was known as East Heath Lane from 1763 to 1857. On the 1833 map a few buildings are shown; on the north side near what is now Albert Road junction but was then known as Wish Gate. Further along are a few more at Gauntlett's Lane now Wish Place and finally on the south was Dockmill. Just to add to the confusion one of the terraces in the road was known as Wish Place so in older books it is difficult to know to which they are referring. In the first, 1841, census the area around Dockmill and Gauntlett's Lane is listed as Wish Village.

By 1870 the lane had been named Albert Road in honour of Prince Albert and the roads to the north were being developed as New Southsea. Roads in the area to the south of Albert Road are named in three themes:

One area was known as Nelsonville and included Collingwood Road, named after Admiral Collingwood; Exmouth Road, named after Lord Exmouth; Duncan Road, named after Viscount Duncan, First Lord of the Admiralty in 1782, commander of the North Sea fleet in 1795 against the Dutch Fleet which he defeated in 1797, he died in 1804; Napier Road, named after Vice-Admiral Sir Charles Napier; and St Vincent Road named after Admiral Jervis, who later became Earl St Vincent.

Waverley Road and St Ronan's Road are named after the Waverley novels by Walter Scott. Beatrice Road named after Queen Victoria's youngest daughter and Leopold Street after her youngest son. On the north side are Albert Grove and Victoria Grove after Victoria and her husband.

Other roads on north side are Chelsea Road; Goodwood Road; Oxford Road; Boulton Road, named after Mr Boulton who had a brickyard nearby; Harold Road, possibly related to nearby Graham and Trevor Roads; Francis A venue, named after local farmer and landowner Francis Francis; Henley Road, named after the Lord Chancellor Robert Henley. Other roads pose a problem as there are two possible sources of the name: Lawrence Road, named after Sir Henry Lawrence who fought in the Indian Campaigns or Henry Lawrence a local builder who laid out Waverley Road which is a continuation of the road; Fawcett Road, named after the General Postmaster, 1880-1884, Henry Fawcett, or Lieut Alexander Fawcett of the Indian Campaigns...

The condition of the booklet is generally very good. The cover is clean and tidy, the staple spine is intact, and all pages are clean, intact, unblemished and tightly bound