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West Orchard

Camera No. 42

Without the title here, there are absolutely no landmarks to help the modern day folk identify the scene on the left. A close up of the original photo tells us that the pub on the corner is "Ye Olde Talbot Inn", and according to John Ashby's book "The Character of Coventry", the inn dates from at least 1756 when Alderman Hewitt took it upon himself to chronicle all the public houses in Coventry.

if you wish to see the images separately.

The street running off to the right in 1909 is West Orchard (note the singular) and this ran westwards, parallel to the main route Smithford Street, before turning to the left and rejoining the far end of Smithford Street just short of St. John's church. By rolling your mouse over the image, we can see that nowadays, of course, the short stretch of road only leads into the entrance of the (wrongly named) West Orchards shopping centre. Due to the Burges being widened after the war, the original line of the street has changed and the two views no longer line up. Rather misleadingly, the street leading to the shopping centre was renamed Ironmonger Row which is nowhere near its original position but rather behind the photographer.

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