Hamilton, Guest & Sedgwick Rd.

(Produced from presentations compiled by Allen Guille and Chris Humby in 2014, 2015 & 2016)

The arrival of the railway and decision to construct the Carriage and Wagon Works for the London and South Western Railway at Bishopstoke in 1890 created employment. The lower part of the village, then known as “New Bishopstoke”, was created to house the workers and families that arrived to take advantage of the employment available. The County of Hampshire Land and Building Society acquired land to the south of the Longmead Estate from Colonel Henry Best Hans Hamilton, the then owner. Hamilton Road, shown in these pictures was named after him.

Houses were built according to social status. Cottages to the south of Hamilton Road were built in terraces for industrial workers, as were some of the houses on the north side towards Spring Lane. Between Upper Scotter Road and Guest Road some of the houses were detached and semi detached to accommodate supervisors and members of the “Professional” classes.

William Henry White lived at Dutton Villa, 41 Hamilton Road in the early 1900s, and was known as “The Builder of Bishopstoke”. It is believed that he built the houses in Hamilton Road, Guest Road and Scotter Road. He was also appointed by the London and South Western Railway to build the railway cottages in Campbell Road, Eastleigh around 1903.

These cottages in Campbell Road, built by William Whitehead, are believed to be some of the first accommodation in Eastleigh to be provided with a bathroom. The temporary rail track, running down the centre of the road, was used to bring building supplies to the houses.

An early Hamilton Road carnival tableau, date unknown.

A Hamilton Road street party, probably to celebrate V.E. Day in May 1945. Note the absence of men, and an air raid shelter extending to the middle of the road. 

Hamilton Road 70 years later.

The first record of this shop at 52 Hamilton Road, on the corner with Scotter Road, is when it was run by Miss M. Pointin in 1903. It became the Eastleigh & District Industrial Cooperative Society around 1912 before moving to new premises on the corner of Hamilton Road and Spring Lane in 1926.

This shop, whilst having a succession of owners is the only shop in Bishopstoke to continually trade in the same type of business since it first opened over 100 years ago. In the early 1900s there was also a shop on the opposite corner of Scotter Road, which was owned by William Palmer who also ran a bakery in Spring Lane.

This house in Hamilton Road is opposite Scotter Road. The track on the right was originally called Upper Scotter Road. The family are dressed for Bishopstoke Carnival and the banner “Help the Hospitals” refers to collections from the carnival being donated to support local hospitals before the introduction of the National Health Service.

The same house sometime later. Upper Scotter Road has been widened. At No 1 Upper Scotter Road, Mrs Kate Cousens is recorded as running a laundry from 1916 to 1926.

In September 1930 Mr and Mrs Cousens celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary surrounded by their family.

A crimping machine from the laundry, still in possession of the family.

Sedgwick Road

In the 1950s the Longmead Estate was sold to Eastleigh Borough Council and it was developed as an estate for social housing, to replace the large amount of substandard housing that existed following WWII. Upper Scotter Road became Sedgwick Road. The Labour Hall was built near where the laundry had been located.

Behind the site of the new Labour Hall are the house in Malvern Close.

Opposite was a green corrugated complex which, in the 1960s housed an engineering machine shop and later a motor vehicle workshop. It is believed that originally the premises were constructed to house a foundry.

Today the old workshops site has been developed as flats.

The site of the Labour Hall has also been redeveloped for housing.

Sedgwick Road was appropriately named after Sidney Newman Sedgwick M.A., Rector of Bishopstoke from 1905 to 1922. Unusual for a clergyman at the time, he had a reputation of being a man of pronounced left wing views and was a champion of working-class values. He was also an interesting and talented person, being the author of numerous novels, books, plays, operettas, and a host of books on nature and wildlife, many of which were illustrated with photographs he had taken.

A new Bishopstoke Methodist Church was constructed in Sedgwick Road, which opened in 1957. The congregation of this new church were formed by merging congregations from the Tin Chapel in Spring Lane and the Garden Chapel at Stoke Common, which were both closed.

Near to the site of Bishopstoke Methodist Church stood Longmead House. Built in 1866, in the Gothic style, it was designed by the leading architect in Britain, George Edmund Street. His designs for Longmead House were submitted as part of his portfolio when he was awarded the privilege of designing the Royal Court of Justice, Strand, London. West Drive was the tree lined carriage drive to Longmead House.

These houses in East Drive are opposite the Methodist Church and were constructed to a high national standard. In the early to mid 1950s this quality of accommodation, with bathroom and indoor toilet, was palatial compared to many people’s previous accommodation.

The family that lived in this house, No. 43 Sedgwick Road, also opposite the Methodist Church, had raised their children in a Nissan Hut on the Velmore Camp at Chandler’s Ford before moving to Bishopstoke. Trees in West Drive can be seen in the background.

The back garden at No 43 was sizeable and used mainly for growing vegetables. Houses in West Drive can be seen in the background.

When the Longead Housing Estate was envisaged in the 1950s, car ownership for the working man was not a consideration. By the early 1960s, car ownership along with a television became a common feature within many households.

Guest Road

The houses in Guest Road, built as detached or semi-detached were regarded as the posh houses, occupied by foremen and engine drivers from the railway, and teachers. There are some trees planted in the pavement outside some of the houses. Apparently when first built, occupiers could pay a small charge to have a tree planted in the paved area outside their property as an added enhancement.

Guest Road is believed to have been named after Montague Guest, a director of the London & South Western Railway. Other roads in new Bishopstoke built around 1900 were also named after directors of the railway. This picture, taken in 1922, shows Edward Knight on his milk round. Note the milk churn, his hand milk cart and delivery book in his jacket pocket.

This picture was taken over 90 years later. Milk no longer gets delivered by handcart. Gas lighting has been replaced by electric lighting, although some of the trees are still there. Nowadays motor vehicles dominate the road.

To the left of this picture are the backs of the houses in Guest Road, and Hamilton Road was terminated by a farm gate between the last two houses. To take this picture today, you would be standing in the middle of Hamilton Road near to its junction with Sayers Road. In the 1940s all this part of Bishopstoke was farmland.

Underwood Road

This view of the Longmead Estate was taken from the back garden of a house in Fair Oak Road looking north across the fields towards Stoke Park Road, which is on the brow of the hill. Stoke Park Woods can just be glimpsed to the right beyond the foliage in the foreground.

Underwood Road is named after Ivor Basil John Underwood, a Southampton builder and property developer, who brought the from the Longmead Estate in 1928. The land was intended to be developed for housing and roads named after towns in Essex, but apart from Colchester Avenue and Malden Close the estate remained undeveloped due to WWII. The land was acquired by Eastleigh Borough Council In 1952, and building work commenced in 1953. When the estate was developed for housing in the 1950s it was unusual that no shops or pubs were incorporated. If you compare with other housing developments from this period you will generally find that shops, church, and a public house formed the centre for the new community. Whilst the Methodist Church in Sedgwick Road is built near the site where Longmead House once stood, there were no public houses included in the development and the only shops created around this time were outside the boundary of the old estate. The reason for this may well lay in the title deeds from 1904 which, when bought by Mrs Gubbins, stipulated by restrictive covenant, that no premises were to be: “used as a brewery, distillery, inn, ale house, beer house, or beer shop, or for the sale thereon for the consumption on the premises of any wines, spirits, ale, beer, porter, cider or other fermented spirituous or intoxicating liquors”. There was one other restriction, which insisted that premises were not to be used as: “a house of ill fame or brothel”. These covenants still apply and are written into the title deeds of any property built on the old estate. What prompted such restriction to be put in place is not clear, although it is probable that these conditions were imposed by The Ecclesiastical Commission, who had at one time owned the land. Perhaps it was feared that Bishopstoke, with a large influx of the working classes around 1900 was destined to become a den of iniquity of biblical proportion.

The old Victorian Schools in Church Road could not cope with the influx of children brought about by the baby boom following WWII and the huge increase in housing being built in the village on this estate. By 1956, some pupils were being taught in village halls and temporary accommodation as the classrooms in the old Victorian schools in Church Road were overflowing. Some children were sent by bus to be taught in portacabins near Merdon School, Chandler’s Ford.

When the new Bishopstoke County Junior school opened in April 1958, it had 343 pupils and 8 classrooms, a growing population, and an average class size of around 42. Within a year, plans were developed to add a further 4 classrooms and this work was completed during Autumn Term 1960. By the early 1960s there were 530 pupils and an average class size of 45. Some classes had over 50 pupils. Today, serving a larger general population there are around 360 pupils at Stoke Park Junior School.

In January 1960, the school was renamed Stoke Park Junior School. At the start of autumn term in 1960, the additional four classroom extension to the school, although not completed, were being used due to increasing numbers of children.

Teaching and support staff at Bishopstoke County Junior School in 1958.

Kitchen Staff at Stoke Park junior School in the early 1960s.