NOSTALGIA: Was this barge helping to build new Portsmouth estate?

The ketch-rigged barge Kate off Highbury, Cosham, possibly about 1930.
The ketch-rigged barge Kate off Highbury, Cosham, possibly about 1930.
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I must thank Colin Wills for sending me three of the four photographs here today. They are the ones all featuring the ketch-rigged barge Kate moored on the northern side of Port Creek east of Portsbridge.

They are the ones all featuring the ketch-rigged barge Kate moored on the northern side of Port Creek east of Portsbridge.

Kate on the northern side of Port Creek, Cosham, about 1920, next to a wharf made of wooden piles.

Kate on the northern side of Port Creek, Cosham, about 1920, next to a wharf made of wooden piles.

Colin’s late father took the pictures on glass plate negatives.

In the first photograph  – the one with the houses on the Highbury estate, Cosham, in the background –  Colin believes it is about 1930.

And quite possibly the wharf could have been used for transporting materials for the building of the estate.

Colin has asked me to publish the photographs in the hope that one of our more senior readers might know something about Kate.

The Kate alongside a wharf at high water believed to have been taken in the 1920s.

The Kate alongside a wharf at high water believed to have been taken in the 1920s.

Just visible on the extreme left in the mid-distance is a lorry which looks as though it is being loaded with gravel or sand which might have then been transported to the building sites. To Kate’s stern you can see a rowing boat tender.

Now to the second picture which was possibly  taken 10 years before the first. Again it is Kate on a previous visit to Highbury, this time at low water.

The fields  in the background to the rear is where the Highbury estate would be built. This part of the creek is now under the A27 between Eastern Road and the Portsbridge roundabout flyover.

Moored on the far side of  Kate is Ivy, a barge with a similar rig. Her masts have been lowered so she could pass under what was once spelled Ports Bridge.

Afternoon delight at Langstone crossing. A pre-November 1963 view along Langstone Road with traffic queuing to cross the level crossing. Picture: Barry Cox Collection

Afternoon delight at Langstone crossing. A pre-November 1963 view along Langstone Road with traffic queuing to cross the level crossing. Picture: Barry Cox Collection

I have captioned the final Kate photograph ‘alongside a wharf’ because I think it is a different location  to the other views.

Look up to Portsdown Hill and to the right of the mast between the rigging is, I believe, The George Inn on the summit of the hill with the chalk pit to the left of it.

This would then make the barge’s location to the west of Ports Bridge with the photographer looking north north-east. The barge is where the M275 turns off the M27 today.

I would very much like readers views on my comments please.

Today’s final picture was taken from a passing train on the Hayling Island branch line crossing Langstone Road. The traffic queue caused by the five-minute closure of the gates can be seen stretching back to Havant. The driver of the front car, obviously fed up with waiting, has got out of his vehicle to see the train pass. It is a summertime scene perhaps in the last year of the service running in 1963. The man in the bottom right hand corner is in a precarious position inside the  gate and just a few feet from the train.

A wider modern road runs to the left of this scene taking part of the pasture which remains green, but for how long is anyone’s guess.