The ever-changing view at the foot of a Portsmouth tower block

A rare shot of the Fratton/Somers Road area taken in 1976 from the top floor of Edgbaston House
A rare shot of the Fratton/Somers Road area taken in 1976 from the top floor of Edgbaston House
jpns-19-08-17 retro Aug 2017
Waterlooville - More than 1,000 homes go up in Waterlooville as it expands to cater for young families

THIS WEEK IN 1980: The expansion of Waterlooville

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You have to study this picture closely for some time before you get your bearings. It is a classic example of how much Portsmouth has changed in a relatively short space of time.

It was taken in 1976 from the top floor of the Edgbaston House tower block and looks down on a Fratton and Somers Town area which is hardly recognisable today.

Neither the Fratton Bridge nor Bradford Junction roundabouts were built and almost all the houses in the centre of the picture were demolished around 1982-1983.

I’m grateful to Matt Spanner for sending it to me. He says: ‘The roads lost in the redevelopment were Abingdon, Froddington, Carlisle, Cumberland, Northumberland, Morpeth, and the north side of Bradford Road.’

He adds: ‘A few shops still remained in Somers Road. The Blackfriars Road area had already been heavily bulldozed by the time of the photo, and replaced with the new Winston Churchill Avenue as shown in the bottom left.

‘Traffic was fast becoming a problem, despite only two cars and a solitary double decker approaching Bradford Road. The inevitable destruction then ensued.’

Matt is now hoping readers might be able to satisfy his search for old pictures of Nightingale Road, Southsea.

If you can help please send them to me and I’ll publish them before passing copies to Matt.