Hello! I’m Jenny and this is my first attempt at blogging so I hope you will bear with me.
As current High Street volunteers will know, when we started the High Street Project we divided the street into ‘chunks’ (for want of a better word) to make the research more manageable. Each chunk consists of a block or two of properties, usually on one side of the street.
The exception to this is Chunk 4 which takes in both sides of the street between New Street/ Castle Streetand New Orchard / Old Orchard, the area known as the Corn Market. This area looks very 21st century now with Sainsbury’s Local and theOrchardPlaza block of flats, but has strong associations with the visit of Charles II in 1665. It also housedPoole’s naval HQ in World War II, besides being the site of the ancient corn market as its name suggests.
Then there is Chunk 9, the area near the railway crossing, known as ‘The Parade’ (perhaps because it was a drilling ground for soldiers as one time?). This was quite undeveloped when Samuel Rolles built his grand mansion Beech Hurst here in 1798. Today, the house presides over a very different scene.
How about Chunk 9, which consists of the museum and 3 pubs, the Spotted Cow, the King’s Head and the Antelope, a former coaching inn, all older than they first appear. The modernPooleMuseumentrance is on the site ofPoole’s first library of 1830, and probably near to the ancient inlet known as Measurer’s Gap (bridged in 1618 to extend the Quay).
Chunk 13 (nos. 78-88) includes among its present day shops the site of the High Street’s last thatched cottage, the London Tavern Hotel (now the Globe Café) where coaches used to stop, and the scene of a bombing raid in World War II.
Volunteers have been teasing out the history of their chosen chunks and I hope that future posts will tell us some of what they have discovered.
There are still some chunks left if anyone feels inspired to have a go. Let us introduce you to:
Chunk 2 Nos. 17-27 Includes some of the older properties in the street.
Chunk 6 Nos. 91-121 The heart of the Victorian High Street, covering Boones, Hawkes’ shoe shop premises and Thompson / Volcano (one of Poole’s old mansions?)
Chunk 11 Nos. 24-36 Includes the 17thcentury Cinnamon House and other old property, disguised by later facades.
Chunk 12 Nos. 58-76 Bowling Green Alley divides these properties which include the Brewhouse, former micro-brewery.
Chunk 13 See above
Chunk 15 Nos. 108-118 Includes the site of the High Street’s lost church, St Paul’s (near present Macdonalds)
Chunk 16 Nos. 120-132 Edwardian and modern premises and the Poole Methodist Church with a rich story of its own.
If you would like to be involved, click on Contacts and Contributions and get in touch with us.