Portsmouth street as it was before Luftwaffe blew it apart
Up and coming artist Neil Marshall has produced another marvellous portrait of Portsmouth in time for the Christmas market. It is of the Hard, Portsea, on a crisp night in 1936.
He has a great eye for detail and all the buildings are spot on for the time, even the unusually-named Bedford in Chase pub on the corner of Clock Street (on the right) is correct. Sadly, this pub was bombed into oblivion on the night of December 22, 1940.
Artistic licence allows Neil to place the new moon in the northern hemisphere and behind HMS Victory’s masts! It works to good effect though.
One thing no photograph or painting can ever achieve is the aroma of wet pavements. If there had been no rain for several weeks and then a downpour, this marvellous smell rose up.
This, and Neil’s other works, are available from [email protected], by phoning him on 07469 711 700 or can be seen at the Southsea Gallery, 5, Albert Road, Southsea; Stoke Gallery, Gosport, and Finishing Touches in Lee-on-the-Solent.
•Perhaps not windjammers in the full sense of the word but these sailing vessels alongside in The Camber, Old Portsmouth, are certainly a romantic memory of the way things were.
Perhaps the men in bowler hats are the ships’ owners? Whoever they are, the towering masts and bowsprit certainly illustrates the skills seamen had to have to achieve a safe journey back in the halcyon days of sail.
The photograph comes from Gower Lloyd’s new book on Point due out next month.
• The third picture today was posted on the Memories of Bygone Portsmouth Facebook page. In it are Portsea lads and a girl protecting their bonfire in 1979.
It appears the girl in the front is named Karen. She was skipping school and gave a lame excuse for being absent.
However, the following day this photograph appeared in The News. It was seen by her parents and the game was up.
Can anyone name any of the boys in the photograph and tell me where it was taken?
• The photo of the rowing boat appeared in the same Facebook group and was posted by Angela Bartron. Her grandparents are in the middle with her uncle Laurie, then a boy.
If I am correct, the houses to the rear have been demolished and new stores and restaurants built. Between the boat and the houses is the service road to Tesco’s car park and behind camera would be Port Solent.
One other point, doesn’t the skyline of Portsdown Hill look strange. This part of the hill is now Paulsgrove of course.