Old Newspaper Throws a Light on Victorian Putney

Rent a terraced house for ten shillings a week and learn to play the banjo

The Wandsworth Borough News looks back to 1893. Picture: Hugh Thompson


Festing Road's Endless War with Squirrels

Local Author Brings Romance To Regenerate Rise

A Putney Cleaner From Ukraine Tells Her Story

Old Style Romance from Hugh Thompson

Good for You, Gavin

Sign up for our weekly Putney newsletter

Comment on this story on the

Life time Putney man, Derek Wood discovered a Wandsworth Borough News from August 1974 where it devoted a page to what was in the paper in October 1893.

It shows what was of interest to Putney dwellers from those Victorian times.

The front and back pages were ads. Tobacconist Mr Jehu of 114 High Street advertised his brands which included Melachrino, Pride of Egypt, Mahomet, Crescent City, Richmond Gems, Duke’ Straightcuts and Ottrode Rose.

The White Lion had a large room for public meetings which was used by the Royal Commemoration and Earl Spencer Masonic Lodges; The Cromwell Music Society; Putney Rowing Club; Putney Cycling Club and the Albion Male Voice Club. The pub also offered “magnificent American bowling saloons”.

Elsewhere gin was offered at 12 shillings and brandy at £1 a gallon, ale was four old pence a pint and coal twenty five shillings a ton.

Madame Portia of Grand Parade, Putney offered to make ball gowns for ladies at 2.5 guineas; only 18/6 if the customer supplied her own material.

Mr Stevens on the High Street sold ventilators which he claimed would cure a house of “ consumption”.

John Sangers Royal Circus, Hippodrome and Menagerie was at the Half Moon Fields but only for one day.

Lots of men offered to reach the art of playing the banjo which was considered a vital part of the art of courtship.

The (local) news was dominated by court cases many for assault and wife beating was high on the list. A cab driver who didn’t clean his cab after taking a child to hospital with diphtheria was fined five shillings. A lady described as a laundress was arrested for the fiftieth time for being drunk and disorderly and had kicked in the windows of the Putney police station.

In the Jobs Vacant section a house on Oakhill Road had a vacancy for a housekeeper where the wages were “£14 a year and beer”. London Rowing Club was looking for a “respectable young woman”. There was a lot of demand for “strong lads”.

Lots of houses for let ,a terrace cost 10 shillings a week, and among the miscellaneous small ads were bicycles, pianos and ponies for sale. As well three nanny goats and a “single Brougham to suit medical men” were on the market.

Hugh Thompson

Like Reading Articles Like This? Help Us Produce More

This site remains committed to providing local community news and public interest journalism.

Articles such as the one above are integral to what we do. We aim to feature as much as possible on local societies, charities based in the area, fundraising efforts by residents, community-based initiatives and even helping people find missing pets.

We've always done that and won't be changing, in fact we'd like to do more.

However, the readership that these stories generates is often below that needed to cover the cost of producing them. Our financial resources are limited and the local media environment is intensely competitive so there is a constraint on what we can do.

We are therefore asking our readers to consider offering financial support to these efforts. Any money given will help support community and public interest news and the expansion of our coverage in this area.

A suggested monthly payment is £8 but we would be grateful for any amount for instance if you think this site offers the equivalent value of a subscription to a daily printed newspaper you may wish to consider £20 per month. If neither of these amounts is suitable for you then contact info@neighbournet.com and we can set up an alternative. All payments are made through a secure web site.

One-off donations are also appreciated. Choose The Amount You Wish To Contribute.

If you do support us in this way we'd be interested to hear what kind of articles you would like to see more of on the site – send your suggestions to the editor.

For businesses we offer the chance to be a corporate sponsor of community content on the site. For £30 plus VAT per month you will be the designated sponsor of at least one article a month with your logo appearing if supplied. If there is a specific community group or initiative you'd like to support we can make sure your sponsorship is featured on related content for a one off payment of £50 plus VAT. All payments are made through a secure web site.


October 8, 2021

Bookmark and Share