Kings Cross local history – send us your pictures etc

The BBC documentary about the history of the Cally Road is on Wednesday at 2100 BBC2. I thought I would share a few archive pics I dug out from the Islington Local History Centre when researching the history of Rufford Street.  If anyone has any old local pics they’d like to share let me know via the comments or email them to and we’ll stick them up.

This is Rufford Street in 1903 it was an extremely poor area then.  Here you can see the backs of 4 and 5 Rufford with a shared yard.  The 1901 census showed about 30 people in each house i.e. 60 living around this yard.  Each house probably had one privy and a tap.  Zoom in to see the Edwardian women and children at the back left.

This is the front of 2-3 Rufford Street, 4-5 in the pic above are just behind and to the right of the cart. If you zoom in you can see children staring out of the window at the presumably strange site of a photographer with tripod, brass camera and cape-hood.  The cart is carrying feed for the carters business that traded under the arch.  The arch complex  at 1 Rufford Street either fell down or was rebuilt for the current set of buildings on that site.

This is the carters and warehousing business through the arch at 1 Rufford Street in Brewis Yard (the carters were called Brewis Bros. Ltd).  The huge freight terminus and interchange just down the hill at Kings Cross required many carts and horses to trans-ship and deliver goods arriving on the rail and canal.

To see what Rufford Street looks like today follow this Google Street View link.

About William Perrin

Active in Kings Cross London and South Oxfordshire, founder of Talk About Local, helping people find a voice online and a trustee of The Indigo Trust , Good Things Foundation and ThreeSixtyGiving as well as Connect8.
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2 Responses to Kings Cross local history – send us your pictures etc

  1. Stephan says:


    Would it be possible to make a general call for pictures of the entire King’s Cross area, and post them on Picassa, with a link from our Bulletin Board?

  2. Margaret Baum - Hayward says:

    I’d like to meet up in the New Year with others who lived in Beaconsfield Buildings, who’d like to join me?

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