John Oram

John Oram

Posted on 01/20/2016

Photo taken on January 20, 2016

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3-5 Stakes Hill Road, Waterlooville (2) - 20 January 2016

3-5 Stakes Hill Road, Waterlooville (2) - 20 January 2016
Hidden away in most of our towns and cities are the most delicious echoes of the past. Hidden, that is, unless you look up which is something I always advise the photographer to do. Waterlooville is a town in Hampshire which comes close to making Havant look vibrant and that is a sad indictment of what urban retail decay has done to both. Our streets are scarred by predictable and often unattractive shop fronts but just look up and you will often see the most tantalising clues to how the buildings in which they are placed once were.

I was very taken by the building at 3-5 Stakes Hill Road and especially the stonework above it. I entered the Classique Dance Centre to find out more and learned from a very helpful receptionist that its former uses (including the upstairs) have been as diverse as a RAFA Club and an abattoir. I have not deciphered the inscription on the 1886 dated stonework which is shown in detail in this picture.