Faded Greenwich (6)

Prince of Orange Lane, SE10

Benedict may have left us in body, but in spirit he still haunts Greenwich almost as much as I do. He told me a few days ago about this very hidden piece of faded Greenwich, which he’d always meant to photograph but never got around to doing before moving to forn parts.

Prince of Orange Lane is a very strange little truncated street just round the back of Bellucci’s pub – which, of course, used to be the Prince of Orange before dodgy 1980s-style pub names became all the rage, even though it only got its current moniker a couple of years ago. (I’ve already forgotten its tedious 1990s/early 2000s incarnation…)

The lane would be cut off by the railway anyway, but the wooden site-gates at the end imply some sort of development being shoehorned into the two centimetres of land left between road and rail.

To be honest the lane itself isn’t very exciting – much has been altered – and when I got there to take the pic, I thought Benedict’s sign must have gone the way of all paint – until I turned around to go back – and looked up.

I’m assuming that this sign was intended to be read by train travellers – there can’t have been enough footfall round the back of a grubby old lane to make it worthwhile for locals.

For once, the wording doesn’t take much working out – “Justice’s Bread, Cakes and Pastries.” The mystery is why they painted it where the window in the middle would cut through. The obvious suggestion is that the window was added later – though it is cut very neatly around the lettering. Another possiblity is that the window had a shutter, now lost, that carried the rest of the message.
When I searched for “Justice’s Bread” I was two results short of a googlewhack – I got just three answers – which in itself is pretty rare these days. Sadly none of the three had anything to do with our Justice’s Bread. I tried “Justice’s Bread,” Greenwich, and got nothing at all. Sadly, if anyone geeky enough as I am was type that phrase in now, they still wouldn’t get that elusive GW with my one result, because it’s a three-word search.

Blimey. I can’t believe I just typed that last paragraph. Note to self: Get a life, you sad Phantom.

The downside of almost getting the aforesaid GW means that I have no information whatsoever about Justice’s Bread, even after resorting to several likely books – but, just to reassure Benedict – the sign’s still there, mate. Thanks…

2 Comments to “Faded Greenwich (6)”

  1. Nick says:

    Adding to Valley_Girl's excellent research, I've found entries in the London Telephone directories up to 1927 for J Justice, Baker, 195 Greenwich Road, SE10. The phone number was GRE 0651, incidentally.

  2. Nick says:

    Further to my last post, I've found the family in the 1911 census, still at 195 Greenwich Road. In 1911 James Justice was 61 years old, and his son William (31) is shown as a "Bakers Manager". So I guess it was William that kept the bakery business going until 1927 (and maybe beyond), with James in retirement.