Then and Now (5)
Okay, a bit of an oddity today, folks. Wouldn’t your first guess, looking at this old postcard, be that this was the view from Tunnel Avenue, somewhere up between the old fire station and Shopping Cart Valhalla? But the caption is very clearly Blackwall Lane, East Greenwich. The weird thing is that I’ve trudged all the way down both roads and, unless it was taken where the new tunnel approach road now slices the old Blackwall Lane in two (unlikely since the gas holders would be too close) I have absolutely no idea where it was taken.
Sadly no one ever sent this card, and there’s no other identification on it, other than it’s by AES & Co, SE15, so I don’t know when it was taken. It’s a slightly random subject for a postcard, but I guess people used them like phone calls then, so any subject went. I’m delighted this shot was taken as it’s completely fascinating.
The gas holders provide the anchor, but because we don’t have two of them any more, it’s harder to get the exact angle any more. Nothing else appears to exist any more, unless the building peeking between the trees on the right is the old school that still lives on the peninsula.
I’m guessing this is 1920s or early 30s, judging from the clothes of the people (the woman and the little girl look a little later, but the chap walking along’s flat cap and the young gent catching a lift on the back of the truck imply earlier. If I were a tram or mortorbike expert I might be able to date it more accurately. Don’t you wish we still had lamp posts like that in East Greenwich?
The houses on the left look quite pre-fab-y, but I am having a lot of difficulty working out what they were replaced with. Let me show you what I mean.
This is the scene right up near the Vanbrugh Hill/Woolwich Road cross roads.
As you can see, we’re nowhere. You can’t even see the gas holders and even if you could, they’d be far too far away.
Okay, moving on down:
This is getting more like it. I mean these flats are definitely post the postcard and the gas holder is just behind it. Only trouble is that so is Rothbury Hall, which would have been in any picture from this angle:
So, we have to take it further down. Funny, I thought these buildings were older, too:
And, frankly, that gas holders are still too far away, not to mention the angle of the road I’d have to stand at to get the same pic.
Ah, now this is getting better, but no, the angle’s all wrong. Of course, the road itself would have changed over the years, though.
Let’s nudge a little further down.
No – we have the distance about right-ish, but when I look at the postcard, the angle’s all akimbo again.
One last pic today, I promise, folks. This, from Tunnel Avenue, just where it meets Blackwall Lane. Closer, but still not what I’m looking for.
So – after a conversation with Mary Mills, to whom I am grateful for for the following photos, I now believe that it’s actually somewhere around that bodgy bit where Blackwall Lane and Tunnel Avenue collide with the A102(M)
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