NOSTALGIA: The mysterious case of the disappearing Portsmouth Guildhall

Here we have a pre-1936 view of Portsmouth & Southsea Station, once called the Town Station.

Monday, 25th December 2017, 8:00 pm
A pre-1936 photograph of Portsmouth & Southsea station.

The goods yard on the far left, full of box wagons, closed in 1936 and transferred to Fratton.

Part of it to the left of the gradient to the High Level is now carriage sidings.

The Low Level platforms are full of trains arriving or awaiting departure.

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The same scene today.

Semaphore signals ruled the road in those pre-coloured light days.

All the trains were steam-hauled: as you can see there is no third rail electrification.

The Guildhall dominates the scene with nothing of comparable height nearby. In fact the only building that came near it was the bell tower of St Mary’s Church a mile away behind camera.

The ‘today’ picture shows a relatively quiet Portsmouth & Southsea station.

Anyone recognise where this is? Could it be the old northern end of Commercial Road? Picture: Barry Cox collection

The Guildhall has disappeared completely behind high-rise blocks.

The fish dock to the right has been made into a car park for the Matalan store.

A massive signal gantry blocks much of where the High Level tracks descend to sea level. The former goods yard is now partly carriage sidings and a car park.

• My colleague Barry Cox supplied the final picture.

The same scene today.

He believes it is at the northern end of Commercial Road near Mile End, but I am not so sure.

I know it has all gone now, but can anyone remember where this scene might have been?

The building on the left is numbered 407.

Anyone recognise where this is? Could it be the old northern end of Commercial Road? Picture: Barry Cox collection