Faded Greenwich 7

Today’s Faded Greenwich is fading before our very eyes. Lewis Coaches, who’ve been in Greenwich since 1919, have moved – albeit down the road to Charlton, though I’m suspecting that bumpy day trips in a coach, followed by a gut-retching hovercraft from Dover to Calais in back to get a few bottles of cheap plonk are not quite so high up on the agenda these days.

Nor are there regular coaches out to the country so that mums and dads can visit their evacuated children, as there used to be in WWII. Lewis were based out in Blackwall Lane in those days, but they’ve been in Denham St for about 30 years.

They started out exactly 90 years ago, when Charles Lewis came back from the Flying Squad after World War I and bought a lorry with some benches in the back. He stuck a chalk board on the side and organised different trips every weekend, and it grew from there. It was a Lewis coach that brought the triumphant Charlton team back with the FA cup in 1947. Sadly they’ve not had that honour since…

Anyone who lives in East Greenwich or who has had to battle their way to the shops on the peninsula recently, will remember the horrendous roadworks that have only just stopped. It seems to have been a mixture of gas works and a serious water-table problem – there was a pump slooshing out water on Woolwich Road for months. Denham Street was virtually impossible to get down.

This was, apparently, the final nail in the coffin of Lewis’s here – they had to move temporarily – and it seems that Charlton’s just easier (and probably cheaper to operate from now.) The buildings are up for sale.

I daresay they’re hoping to flog it off at a hot price for yet more hutches luxury flats – though looking at the inside of the place it might make a good workshop for light industry or a car mechanics.

These pictures were not taken by me – my camera is still very broken indeed. It’s the second Fuji that has died with exactly the same problem – a zoom that gets stuck half way in/out. Dazza, who lives round there and who took the pics for me, has also had a Fuji that died the same way. Fuji have offered to mend it for me – at ten pounds less than it would cost to replace it. So much for eco-dom. One thing’s for certain – my next camera will NOT be a Fuji…

Sorry – got a bit off-top there. Happy weekend…

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