Allerton Terrace

Photo:Allerton Terrace ~1930

Allerton Terrace ~1930

Bells Postcard

Photo:Railway Tavern with Allerton Terrace in the background ~1920

Railway Tavern with Allerton Terrace in the background ~1920

Bells Postcard

Photo:Plan showing the area of land purchased by GNR in 1890

Plan showing the area of land purchased by GNR in 1890

Photo courtesy of the Chelmsford Record Office

Photo:Rear view of Allerton Terrace ~ 1950s

Rear view of Allerton Terrace ~ 1950s

Brian Pepper

Photo:Allerton Terrace in 2010

Allerton Terrace in 2010

Tim Gane

Allerton Terrace, High Street, Meldreth

Railway Cottages built by GNR in 1910 to house railway employees

By Tim Gane

Allerton Terrace consists of a block of six terraced cottages numbered 14 to 24 High Street, Meldreth. The cottages are believed to have been built shortly before 1910 on land purchased by the Great Northern Railway Company (GNR) in 1890. The cottages were built in order to house railway workers. Each cottage had a rear extension with a small lean-to toilet and shed on the back of the extension.

The houses are not shown on the 1910 Land Valuation map (LVD), but the name of the terrace has been handwritten onto the map and the return lists six men who occupied cottages in the High Street owned by GNR. These cottages are likely to be those making up Allerton Terrace as all of the occupants listed in the 1910 return were occupying the cottages in the 1911 census, with the exception of Chas Disbrey.

The occupants of the cottages were: 

  1. Wm Knott
  2. ? Hagger
  3. Geo Fincham
  4. Chas Disbrey
  5. Wm Vellum
  6. Alf Gray

Five of these occupants are listed as living in Allerton Terrace on the 1911 census, and one cottage is unoccupied. 

In the census we can see the following occupants in the cottages:

  1. Alfred Gray aged 64 with his wife and 2 sons (plus 3 other family members - a son and his family - who were listed as visitors).  Alfred was born in Hitchin and worked as a railway signalman.
  2. William Vellum, 41, with his wife, 2 sons and 2 daughters.  William was born in Lincolnshire and worked as a railway porter.
  3. unoccupied
  4. Frederick Hagger, 42, with his wife and 2 sons.  Frederick worked as a house painter.
  5. George Fincham, 34, with his wife and son.  George was born in Linton and worked as a railway porter.
  6. William Knott, 59, with wife and boarder.  William was born in Stevenage and worked as a signalman.

Both Alfred Gray and William Vellum were living in Meldreth in 1901, Gray in Chiswick End and Vellum in the High Street.

If you know any more about Allerton Terrace we would be interested in hearing from you. Please add a comment at the bottom of the page.

This page was added by Tim Gane on 11/03/2011.
Comments about this page

My family lived at 24 Allerton Terrace in the 50s.  My father worked as the porter at the station.  The other families in the terrace then were Mr & Mrs Bidnell & family, Mr & Mrs Pepper, Mr & Mrs Mead & family, Mr & Mrs Brazer and Mr & Mrs Frost. 

By john foggo
On 17/06/2011

I believe the family was called Fost not Frost. Sid Fost was a signalman at Shepreth station and his daughter Enid was a well known post lady in Meldreth.

By Gloria Willers
On 20/06/2011

My grandfather and grandmother, Tom and Susan Winter, moved into No.6 Allerton Terrace in May 1936. They lived there until my grandfather died in April 1957.

The house had two bedrooms and downstairs a front room which was for show only. We were not allowed in there. The living room was dark and I remember that there were always 20 to 30 flies flying around the centre ceiling lamp. (I think this was the same in many houses.) The scullery had a mangle and sink. The water supply was piped from the well at the back of our house at Station Hill.

At the back of the house was an extension. It was dark inside and housed the toilet and an even darker coal cupboard. In the coal cupboard, which had a large door, was a bogeyman!! My grandfather would take us to see the bogeyman. He would open the door and fend off the bogeyman using a hoe or rake, shouting "get back, get back!!" This was quite terrifying.

When I was older (9 or 10) and was staying the night I was asked to take the torch and get a bucket full of coal. I got the coal and remember it as one of the scariest things I had ever done.

Outside at the back, every house had a well maintained vegetable garden with maybe a few flowers. But in the late 1950's Mr and Mrs Brazier moved into No.2 and Mr Brazier errected a large shed which he used as a mechanical workshop for his motorbike and sidecar. Things were begining to change.

By Ken Winter
On 26/06/2011

I am investigating my family tree and I believe that my great grandfather was the Gray living in Allerton Terrace in the 1911 census. I know my grandfather was born in Meldreth and I am very interested in finding out more about my Meldreth connections.

By Laura Gray
On 26/08/2014

Hi, I and my family live in Allerton Terrace - we too would be very interested to find out more about the history of the buildings/row!

By Helen Ogilvie
On 09/09/2014