I wrote the original study of the Wedmore Estate about 1990. When I decided to put it on the locallocalhistory.co.uk website in 2009, I went along to see what it looked like about twenty years later. Wedmore road looked much as it had done from about 1879. Today the houses have been restored and look very well cared for. No doubt they have been completely modernised inside by they are still recognizably 1870 Victorian houses such as Mr. Pooter would have moved into when he took his new house in Holloway.
Wedmore Gardens from the Holloway Road end in 2009
Further along, the old five-storey blocks had been demolished and a new estate built in a completely different style. Here were low-rise houses designed for car users. It could be a commuter village anywhere in Southern England.
Clearly the old Wedmore Gardens blocks, over 140 years old and damaged by bombing (see map below) and lack of maintenance during the War, were not worth saving. However, the change from when I last saw them about 1990 came as a great surprise.
The new estate at the end of Wedmore Gardens
The modern electric hedge cutters have introduced topiary into small private gardens gardens. Bring on the peacocks.
The Wedmore Gardens car park
In the early days, in 1904, there were no car parks on this estate as nobody had a car. Very few had even bicycles. Later, when the Overcrowding Regulations were changed, the original estate which had been built at a density of 1.6 persons per room, was considered overcrowded. The small flats had to be enlarged by converting three flats into two and the number of families on the estate was reduced. When an extra area became available it could not be used for housing as the estate was still overcrowded and it was suggested that the space should be used to give a few parking spaces.
During the Second World War Wedmore Gardens was very badly damaged. Today its bombsite has been converted into a car park for this new estate. Behind the trees are the railway lines and beyond them is the new Whittington Park . I do not know the density of the estate today but it is clearly far smaller than the density forced on the LCC when it was built all those years ago.
The 1939-5 Bomb Damage Map of the Wedmore Estate area in Upper Holloway
The bombing map of the Wedmore Street area 1939-1945
The Key to the Bombing Map
This colour key explains the degree of damage suffered by each building
|Colour Key References|
|Black -Total destruction|
|Purple - Damaged beyond repair|
|Dark Red - Doubtful if repairable|
|Light Red - Seriously damaged, but repairable at cost|
|Orange - General blast damage, not structural|
|Yellow - Blast damage, minor in nature|
|O||V1 flying bomb||large circle|
|o||V2 long range rocket.||small circle|
There will be slight variations in the colours because the original maps
are old and the colour balance on computer monitors will vary
Uses of the Bombing Map on this website