Edwardian Forest Gate - a photographic essay (1) - street life

Saturday, 10 September 2016

The Edwardian era (1901 - 1910) was a fascinating one - wedged between the end of Victorian Britain and the outbreak of World War 1. Locally, it saw the first reversal of population growth, after a century of continuous expansion (numbers fell from 60,892 in 1901 to 51,071 by the time of the census a decade later).

The decade co-incided with an early boom in the post card trade; and the many survivors enable us to paint a vivid street and social portrait of the district, perhaps for the first time.

In this, the first of two posts, we reproduce a number of Edwardian postcards showing Forest Gate streets, a little over a century ago. They are presented, somewhat unimaginatively, in alphabetical order. 

For a flavour of life in and around these streets at the time, we would refer you to three previous posts on this blog, taken from a 1907 publication, by social commentators, Howarth and Wilson, in their book: West Ham - a study in industrial problems.

The posts refer to the three then local authority districts:

Forest Gate Ward
Park Ward
Upton Ward

In the second post in this "photographic essay" of Edwardian Forest Gate, we will reproduce postcards illustration recreation and entertainment, religion, education, transport and politics of the time.

Street life in Edwardian Forest Gate

See how your road has changed over the last century - absence of traffic and litter and abundance of healthy trees are among the most obvious differences between now and then.

Atherton Road - 1910
Broadway (with fire station and ladder
 in front of what is now the semi-
dilapidated dentist) - 1904

Broadway - 1908
Capel Road - 1906

Chestnut Avenue - 1908

Chestnut Avenue - 1910
Claremont Road - c 1910

Dames Road - 1906

Earlham Grove - c 1910
Ham Park Road (163) - 1905

Hampton Road - c 1901
Osborne Road - c 1907
Romford Road - 1904

Romford Road - 1904
Romford Road (with Congregational
 church) - 1905
Sebert Road - 1908
Upton Lane - 1910

Upton Lane, corner of Whyteville Road,
 1902 - old steam laundry, on site of
 what is now petrol station
Windsor Road - 1908
Woodford Road - 1904
Woodgrange Road - 1903

Woodgrange Road - 1907
If you have copies of Edwardian postcards of other Forest Gate streets you'd like to share, we'd be delighted to revive them and add them to those above. Just let us know, via the contact points, shown on this site.

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