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Maryland Point, Stratford, London

(Redirected from 1 Leytonstone Road)

Maryland Point was the historical name given to the southern end of Leytonstone High Road as it enters Stratford.

Specifically, Maryland Point appears to have been the section between the junction with Forest Lane and Windmill Lane and the junction with Chobham Road and Gurney Road.

By 1895, maps of the area no longer name the section separately and simply name it as Leytonstone High Road.

The Hitchcocks

The exact year in which Charles Hitchcock began his fishmongery business in Stratford remains uncertain, but by the time of the 1841 Census, he is listed as residing on Maryland Point. After his death in 1858, his widow Sarah is listed at the same property in the 1861 Census, although the address was named as "1 Leytonstone Road" — by this time, the shop was a greengrocery.

The Census returns between 1841 and 1861 all indicate that the Hitchcock's shop was close to "Gilby's Alley", which appears to have been the local name for Gilbert's Place (later named Gilbert's Court), a side street towards the southern end of Maryland Point. This alley, and many of the back streets beyond it, were comprised of overpopulated houses with highly unsanitary conditions, and outbreaks of cholera due to unsafe drinking water were reported in the press during the 1850s and 1860s. It was on one of these back streets where Irish-born labourer Sylvester Mahoney lived with his family and it is possible that the death of his son Dennis in 1851, aged 15, was as a result of their living conditions.

In November 1857, several newspapers reported on a visit made by the President of the Board of Health, the Right Honourable W. Cooper, to West Ham which included a visit to Gilby's Alley, one of the suspected sources of the recent cholera outbreaks:

No language can can depict the state of these hovels, without water supply, except of the foulest description, with small back yards only a few feet square, with accumulations of putrid matter, sodden by wet. The court is only about four or five feet wide, and the water fouled by privy drainage, and therefore always a source and centre of disease.

That the Hitchcock's lived so close to the alley perhaps indicates that Charles began his fishmongery business with little money and the location was the best they could afford to lease.

Much of the Maryland Point has seen periods of redevelopment and period maps indicate the shop was likely demolished sometime before the 1950s.

Archive Maps

On this archive map from 1868, the most likely location for the Hitchcock's shop is shaded red. However, the map indicates that a programme of house clearing and demolishing was already taking place in the back streets.

See Also...

Google Maps

Approximate former location of the Hitchcock's shop on Maryland Point:

Nearest Locations


Notes & References