A Southsea street in urgent need of a retail renaissance

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976
Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976
You might struggle with this scene but it is in fact looking across Waite Street, Cosham. The tram is heading for Spur Road.  Picture: Barry Cox Collection

NOSTALGIA: When trams ran through the fire station’s offices at Cosham

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It’s 39 years ago and we are in what is now one of Southsea’s premier boutique shopping streets.

It’s difficult to believe that this seemingly rundown road with its vacant and sorry-looking plots would become such a sought-after retail location within a generation.

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976

Of course, much of that desirability came with the arrival in Marmion Road of Waitrose on the site of St Jude’s School which has featured often on these pages.

Thanks to Philip Pyke, of Westwood Road, Hilsea, Portsmouth, for raiding his extensive collection for all five photographs today.

He took them in 1976, two years before Waitrose opened.

Of the picture at the top he says: ‘If you were to stand now where I was when I took that photo, overlooking the car, you would see Waitrose supermarket.’

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976

The landmark spire of St Jude’s Church dominates the westerly view of Marmion Road in two of the photos.

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976

Marmion Road, Southsea, 1976