Portsmouth shops in their heyday '“ before The Blitz took them

Although the world has moved on since this photograph was taken, the junction of Commercial Road and Edinburgh Road remains as busy as it ever was.

Wednesday, 27th July 2016, 6:06 am
The junction of Commercial Road and Edinburgh Road, pre-1936 but perhaps as early as the 1920s

We are, of course, looking north across Edinburgh Road with C&A and LDB across the road on the right.

Both stores were destroyed in The Blitz on the night of January 10, 1941. Past those shops is Arundel Street.

The inclusion of trams means this is pre-1936 but by the dress of the day I should think it was the 1920s.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

n I have recently mention the converted Cunard liner HMS Ausonia, which is pictured below.

She finished her days in Fareham Creek before going to the breakers.

Tim King, former Evening News journalist, served time on Ausonia when doing his National Service and included this photograph in a write-up he did about his time on the ship.

It shows ratings sitting on bosuns chairs suspended from the top of the funnel while they paint.

No Health and Safety Executive in those days.

Just hang on with one hand and paint with the other. Safe as houses.

n Last Friday I published the picture, below right, and was told it was aboard Britain’s last battleship HMS Vanguard.

Alastair Campbell tells me the Admiral was Sir George Creasey. It was the evening of the 1953 Fleet Review at Spithead.

Chief Cook Andrews was the admiral’s chef aboard Vanguard, along with cook Jim Patey, the man who became Lord Mayor of Portsmouth.

The menu was Consommé Royal, Poached Fillet of Plaice Hollandaise and Roast English Leg of Lamb.

Alastair remembers Ausonia as his first and best ship.

n Taken from the driving cab of an incoming passenger train, the picture on the opposite page shows the tracks into the low level platforms on the right and the two up and down lines to the high level platforms at Portsmouth and Southsea Railway Station.

The platforms to the far right were filled in and a Matalan store and a car park were built on the site.