Colomb St

Pauline and John ask:

Any idea how Colomb Street came by its name?, I lived there for 26 years and never did find out.

The Phantom replies:

I don’t know for sure, no. The little ‘What’s in a Name’ book only covers streets named after local councillors, not weird-named older roads.

But I do have a couple of theories. Not a very good theories, but it’s the best I can come up with at the moment.

Sir John Charles Ready Colomb is my first thought. He was a naval strategist, born in 1838, died 1909, and he went to the Royal Naval College, but apart from that I can’t see any connection he has with Greenwich. And he seems a little ‘young’ for the name – I don’t know the street’s age but I’ll wager it’s older than any reason people might have for naming it after him.

His older brother, Vice-Admiral Philip Howard Colomb, (1831-1899) is another contender, also being a naval man. Their father, Major General George Thomas Colomb was an amateur artist and member of the Royal Academy, but I’m not sure I buy him for the street name either.

Actually, at the end of that lot, I still don’t have a clue.

Over to you chaps.


the attachments to this post:

John_Charles_Ready_Colomb,_Vanity_Fair,_1887-03-26
John_Charles_Ready_Colomb,_Vanity_Fair,_1887-03-26


5 Comments to “Colomb St”

  1. Richard says:

    The Prussians were on our side.

  2. Jameson says:

    There are several Colomb streets elsewhere in the world, but generally named after Christopher Columbus, which doesn’t seem a fit here.

  3. Adam says:

    It just so happens that I asked the same question today at the Greenwich History museum in Woolwich. The chap looked it up in their filling system and it mentioned it was changed in 1891 and was named after Philip Howard Colomb.

    The slight flaw with the card is that it does not state what its source is…

  4. valley_girl says:

    On my old OS map for 1867, the street was called George Street. By 1894, my next map, it had been renamed Colomb Street. It may well have been changed under the GPO/LCC renaming and renumbering of streets undertaken in 1888 to eliminate duplication of names throughout the LCC area.