The black and white photograph shows the remains of the former town hall, later a museum, alongside the Dolphin Hotel in Old Portsmouth. The photo was taken in the mid to late 1940s.
The old town hall was built in 1837 replacing an older building from 1738 which stood in the middle of High Street, Old Portsmouth, causing an intolerable obstruction.
When today’s Guildhall was opened in 1890 this building became the city museum. It was destroyed by the Luftwaffe on Saturday, January 10, 1941. The building housed a copy of the declaration of American Independence. Did it survive? The Dolphin also had a fourth floor with bedrooms for paying guests.
I find it strange, when looking at photographs of bombed locations in Portsmouth. The building to the left of the Dolphin has been demolished and the museum burnt out, but the Dolphin appears to remain untouched. Across the road many of the buildings that fronted the cathedral were also hit but the cathedral, again, remained unscathed.
Today’s scene shows the Dolphin without its top floor. The old museum was demolished and replaced by flats.
•Does anyone recognise this ship which has had its name obliterated for some reason?
She was flying a blue ensign and may be a tramper. Tramp steamers had no fixed schedule but took work as was required. They never had fixed ports of call either.
The term tramper is derived from ‘tramp' an itinerant vagrant.
Behind the ship is a bell tower and the roof of a crane but I just cannot put my finger on where it might be.
Regular correspondent Robert James tells me the photograph was taken by a local photographer, Mora, of Elm Grove, Southsea.
Picture: Robert James