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Thursday, 26 January 2017

Morritt Avenue

Quite a while ago I did a rather self indulgent blog posting about the houses in which I had lived:
Re-looking at it I realise I need to finish it but I shall spare you that for now.

It is always great to get feed-back to items on this Blog and frankly I did not expect that one to attract any but I was wrong.

The house that prompted comment was my childhood home of 7 Morritt Avenue in Halton, Leeds.

When built Morritt Avenue was quite a sight, sufficiently so that postcard images of it were made and presumably sold.   Present and long-time resident of Morritt Avenue Phil Driscoll has sent me some very newsy updates about Morritt Avenue's comings and goings included among which were early postcard images featuring number seven, no less:

click to enlarge (recommended)

As Victorian semis go Morritt Avenue's were magnificent - huge and ornate in the extreme.   Each pair was different - not hard to achieve with that amount of detailing.   Some succumbed to 'modernisation' over the years with cement rendering and so on but I am glad to report that some have been restored to their original appearance based on the evidence of pictures like these - and what is being rediscovered behind rendering and cladding.

Number 7 is the second semi on the right in the lower picture, part of the pair in the foreground.

Not only was Morritt Avenue as built a gated road, it was intended to be tree lined once the saplings matured.   There are no trees there now, nor during my time there in the 1950s and 60s.   Perhaps they fell victim when electricity arrived in the avenue and cables had to be laid?   Certainly number 7 was lit by gas when first built, evidenced by tiny pipes in what would nowadays be regarded as outrageously dangerous places.

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