Then & Now

Leicester’s Building – Then & Now

This then and now image comparison of Leicester’s Building is so gratifyingly unchanged, we might as well have converted the ‘now’ image to black and white just to cheat you all! There is very little difference between the two images, apart from the shadows showing the time of day the two photos were taken. Leicester’s… Read More Leicester’s Building – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Duck Race – Then & Now

The undated ‘then’ photo above shows the Boxing Day Duck Race, nowadays a firm fixture in Kenilworth’s calendar over the Christmas period. The image shows officials from the Kenilworth Lions Club dumping a huge sack full of numbered plastic ducks into Finham Brook from the parapet of the Ford’s foot bridge. The banks are packed… Read More The Duck Race – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Banqueting Hall – Then & Now

This wonderful old postcard captures the spirit of what it must have been like to visit Kenilworth Castle back before the age of mass tourism. The ruins look wild, ivy clad and untamed. Many a visitor must have been enticed to come and explore for themselves by such a postcard. Although undated, a similar postcard… Read More The Banqueting Hall – Then & Now

Then & Now

Mrs McEwan’s School – Then & Now

This pair of then and now images evocatively captures the end of the era from before universal state education was available to all. The ‘then’ image shows the pupils of Mrs McEwan’s day school at Upper Ladyes Hills. The ‘now’ image was photographed in 2019, with the kind permission of the then owners of the… Read More Mrs McEwan’s School – Then & Now

Then & Now

St Nicholas’ Churchyard – Then & Now

This undated image of St Nicholas’ Churchyard, was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. It shows the path running down from the High Street from the north-west towards the Norman west door of St Nicholas’ Church, which was rescued from the Abbey and inserted into the church’s tower by Robert… Read More St Nicholas’ Churchyard – Then & Now

Then & Now

School Lane Alley – Then & Now

This ‘then’ image comes from the photo collection of Rob Steward. The alleyway shown here runs from behind number 2, Bridge Street and behind all of the houses on the eastern side of the road down to Finham Brook. On modern maps it is addressed as being part of School Lane itself. From the front,… Read More School Lane Alley – Then & Now

Then & Now

St Nicholas’ South Chapel – Then & Now

This undated image of St Nicholas’ Church, was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. It shows the east end of the chancel, the south chapel and the south transept, presumably taken some time in the nineties or noughties. The ‘now’ image is mostly unchanged, save for some additional undergrowth present… Read More St Nicholas’ South Chapel – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Godcake – Then & Now

This undated ‘then’ postcard shows the junction of Castle Green, Castle Hill and Castle Road opposite the Queen & Castle pub, known locally as ‘The Godcake’. The ‘now’ images was photographed in early Autumn of 2018.  First, a few words about the term ‘godcake’. I confess, I first came across the term amongst the writings… Read More The Godcake – Then & Now

Then & Now

Oxpen Meadow Marsh – Then & Now

This image of Oxpen Meadow, was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. In the distance (left) is the Castle, and in front of it can be seen 38 Castle Road, beside the Ford. The meadow beneath Little Virginia can be seen to the rear. A few trees have come and… Read More Oxpen Meadow Marsh – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Stone House Courtyard – Then & Now

This image of the Stone House’s courtyard, was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer.  This image pairing shows the courtyard belonging to the grand Stone House on the High Street, to the west of the main house itself.  The house itself has large grounds to the rear, including a tennis… Read More The Stone House Courtyard – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Stone House – Then & Now

This image of The Stone House, was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. This image shows the garden wall and eastern end of The Stone House. This imposing dwelling was Grade II listed as early as June 1949, which is very early indeed for a listing, presumably reflecting the grandiose… Read More The Stone House – Then & Now

Then & Now

50 – 62 High Street – Then & Now

This image of 50 – 62 High Street was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer.  The ‘then’ image is undated, but presumably taken some time in the nineties or noughties. The ‘now’ image was taken in the autumn of 2018. Little has changed between the two images, save for a… Read More 50 – 62 High Street – Then & Now

Then & Now

Kenilworth Junction – Then & Now

Sometimes it is almost impossible to match a then and now view, and this is most definitely one of those scenarios. This then and now pairing shows what was known as Kenilworth Junction, situated in The Common. The bridge shown is that of Common Lane, as it crosses the railway from east to west. Kenilworth… Read More Kenilworth Junction – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Malthouse – Then & Now

This early photo of the southern end of Malthouse Lane is notable for two reasons. Firstly, it shows the road as a rural lane, surrounded by fields, long before the modern housing estates built in the 1950s and 1960s existed. Secondly, it also shows the actual Malt House, which gives the road its name.  Today,… Read More The Malthouse – Then & Now

Then & Now

Priory Road Fields – Then & Now

This fascinating Then & Now comparison shows a view of Priory Road at a time when the west side of the road was yet to be built upon. A pair of girls, dressed in smart white smocks and wide brimmed hats, look on curiously at the photographer. Behind them, fields stretch as far as the… Read More Priory Road Fields – Then & Now

Then & Now

Oxpen Meadow – Then & Now

This image of the lake at Oxpen Meadow, Abbey Fields, was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. Formerly a fishpond belonging to the Abbey of St Mary up until the dissolution, Robin Leach dates its draining to become the oxpen meadow as c1650. Harry Sunley tells us in A Kenilworth… Read More Oxpen Meadow – Then & Now

Then & Now

Abbey Fields Playground – Then & Now

This Then & Now comparison is one which, at first glance, appears to be little changed, due perhaps to the relatively small timescale between the two images, but on closer inspection the differences begin to appear. The undated ‘then’ image may perhaps have been taken some time in the late nineties or early noughties, the… Read More Abbey Fields Playground – Then & Now

Then & Now

Bridge Street from High Street – Then & Now

This image of the junction of High Street, Fieldgate Lane, New Street and Bridge Street was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer.  The ‘then’ image is undated, but the ‘now’ image was taken in the summer of 2018. At the time the ‘now’ photo was taken, the former Abbotsford School… Read More Bridge Street from High Street – Then & Now

Then & Now

Upper High Street – Then & Now

This image of the upper High Street and its environs was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. The ‘then’ image is undated, presumably having been taken some time in the early 2000s, whereas the ‘now’ image dates from Summer 2018. Little has changed between the two images. In the distance… Read More Upper High Street – Then & Now

Then & Now

Lower Ladyes Hills and Allotments – Then & Now

This image of Lower Ladyes Hills and allotments was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. The images were both taken from the Manor Road bridge, looking towards Lower Ladyes Hills. The allotments shown here sit on the former site of the Woodmill Pool, a mill pond used to feed the… Read More Lower Ladyes Hills and Allotments – Then & Now

Then & Now

Abbey Hotel – Then & Now

This image of the old Abbey Hotel wall was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. It shows the Abbey Hotel in the late 1980s or early 1990s, now converted to flats. Betty Sunley wrote in Kenilworth History 2006 / 2007 of the hotel’s predecessor, based on information from Robin Leach’s… Read More Abbey Hotel – Then & Now

Then & Now

Manor Road Bridge – Then & Now

This image of the surviving part of the Manor Road bridge was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. It shows a view from Manor Road looking towards Park Road taken some time in the late 1980s or early 1990s, matched to an image taken in the Summer of 2018. David… Read More Manor Road Bridge – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Keep – Then & Now

This image of the Kenilworth Castle’s Keep was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. It shows the Keep some time in the late 1980s or early 1990s, and again in the summer of 2018. According to the English Heritage history of the Castle, “Henry I (reigned 1100–35) granted land from… Read More The Keep – Then & Now

Then & Now

Abbey Gatehouse Archway – Then & Now

This image of an archway adjoining the Abbey Gatehouse was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. The comparison shows two images of the archway into the sunken chamber beside the Abbey Gatehouse, sadly showing visible signs of deterioration to the stone work between the two images. The ‘then’ image above… Read More Abbey Gatehouse Archway – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Old Council House – Then & Now

This image of the Old Council House was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. According to Harry Sunley’s A Kenilworth Chronology (Odiborune Press, 1989) the Old Council House was built on Upper Rosemary Hill in 1885, at a cost of £1600 including the land.  Robin Leach, however, has a slightly… Read More The Old Council House – Then & Now

Then & Now

Rebuilding the Lapidarium Wall – Then & Now

These images of the restoration of the Abbey’s Lapidarium Wall were provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. A lapidarium (from the Latin lapis, meaning stone) is defined as a place where stone monuments and fragments of archæological interest are exhibited. The images show the rebuilding of the wall in 1984,… Read More Rebuilding the Lapidarium Wall – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Chapter House Wall – Then & Now

This 1980s ‘then’ image of the surviving part of the Abbey’s chapter house wall was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. The ‘now’ image was taken in the Summer of 2018. The area of the Abbey is a scheduled ancient monument under the Ancient Monuments and Archæological Areas Act 1979.… Read More The Chapter House Wall – Then & Now

Then & Now

Lower Bridge Street – Then & Now

This undated image of Bridge Street was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. It shows Bridge Street looking north, taken from the hump of the former air-raid shelter on Rosemary Hill. In the distance we can see the distinctive white, Grade II listed, late 18th Century Kenilworth Hall, former grand… Read More Lower Bridge Street – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Sally Port – Then & Now

This Then & Now comparison pairs a 1960s ‘then’ colour image of what is possibly the castle’s Sally Port with a 2018 ‘now’ equivalent. The images have both been taken with a zoom lens from Echo Meadow to capture the stretch of the castle’s curtain wall between Leicester’s Building and Mortimer’s Tower from the outside.… Read More The Sally Port – Then & Now

Then & Now

Abbey End 1980s – Then & Now

This 1980s image of Abbey End was provided to KHAS from the collection of the late Reg Palmer. It shows the section of Abbey End which was redeveloped post-war, to replace the row of residential and commercial properties destroyed in the Blitz. The site of the Bluebell Cafe (extreme left) is now occupied by Pizza… Read More Abbey End 1980s – Then & Now

Then & Now

Buck Print of the Abbey – Then & Now

This Then & Now comparison attempts to match the view of St Mary’s Abbey, Kenilworth as captured an engraving by brothers Samuel and Nathaniel Buck in 1729. The engraving is taken from their work Views of Ruins of Castles & Abbeys in England, Part 2, 1726-1739. Prolific antiquarians, the Yorkshire born Buck brothers travelled the… Read More Buck Print of the Abbey – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Square and Lord Leycester’s Lodge – Then & Now

This then and now comparison shows a pre-war view of the clock tower at Abbey End. It can be identified as pre-war simply because it shows part of Lord Leycester’s Lodge (extreme right) which was destroyed by the Luftwaffe parachute mine of November 1940. We can also see the steps beneath the clock tower, later… Read More The Square and Lord Leycester’s Lodge – Then & Now

Then & Now

Hollar Print of the Castle – Then & Now

This then and now pair of images shows part of an etching by Wenceslas Hollar of Kenilworth Castle, matched with a modern view from 2017. Hollar, properly known as Vaclav Hollar in his native tongue, was born in Prague in 1607 and died in London in 1677, having first travelled over with Lord Arundel to… Read More Hollar Print of the Castle – Then & Now

Then & Now

High Street Aerial View – Then & Now

This Then & Now image is a cropped portion of aerial photo EAW025675 taken from the wonderful Britain From Above website. If you have a moment, I can highly recommend registering for free on the website, because doing so enables you to zoom into their high resolution images to examine details close up. This particular… Read More High Street Aerial View – Then & Now

Then & Now

12 – 16 Warwick Road – Then & Now

This ‘then’ view shows the east side of Warwick Road between Station Road and Talisman Square, once the site of The Tannery. Most interestingly in this view, is a glimpse of a row of old cottages, which survived until the demolition frenzy of the 1960s. The History of Warwick Road Tannery, Kenilworth (Gould & James,… Read More 12 – 16 Warwick Road – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Ford – Then & Now

This old postcard of a horse and cart crossing through The Ford is instantly recognisable, despite subtle changes in the scene over the years. The good citizens of Kenilworth have had ample opportunity to build a bridge here over the years, given the disruption it causes when in flood. The reluctance to do so seems… Read More The Ford – Then & Now

Then & Now

Whateley’s Nursery & Railway – Then and Now

This week’s Then & Now comparison comes courtesy of local historian Robin Leach, who has written extensively on the town’s history, including books focusing specifically on the railway such as Rails to Kenilworth and Milverton (Rookfield Publications, 1999). This remarkable photograph is part of the London & North Western Railway Society archive (which is based in Kenilworth) and… Read More Whateley’s Nursery & Railway – Then and Now

Then & Now

Buck Print of the Castle – Then & Now

This Then & Now comparison attempts to locate the vantage point of a famous engraving, entitled The East View of Kenilworth Castle in the County of Warwick by Samuel and Nathaniel Buck. The Buck brothers set out around England in 1724 to record numerous antiquaries, including abbeys, castles and townscapes, usually under the patronage of… Read More Buck Print of the Castle – Then & Now

Then & Now

Prince of Wales Visit to the Castle – Then & Now

This pair of Then & Now images shows the visit of Edward, Prince of Wales to Kenilworth Castle. The ‘then’ image is an artificially colourised version of another black and white photograph held by Warwick County Records Office. Whoever did the colourisation was evidently unsure which of the Gatehouse windows were bricked up and which… Read More Prince of Wales Visit to the Castle – Then & Now

Then & Now

Carnival on Castle Hill – Then & Now

This Then & Now comparison shows the Carnival of 1978 as it climbs up Castle Hill towards the High Street, matched with an equivalent image taken from last year’s carnival. The ‘then’ image is 40 years old this week. Perhaps some readers may recognise themselves amongst the crowds? For once, your author can be certain… Read More Carnival on Castle Hill – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Fairy Bridge – Then & Now

This Then & Now comparison shows what is variously referred to on old postcards as either the ‘rustic bridge’ or ‘fairy bridge’, which once connected Mortimer’s Tower to the outer bailey. This allowed visitors inside the castle to cross outwards to visit Mortimer’s Tower at a time when it was otherwise inaccessible from either inside… Read More The Fairy Bridge – Then & Now

Then & Now

Turner’s ‘Kenilworth Castle’ – Then & Now

It is testament to the fame that the romantic ruins of Kenilworth Castle attained in the early 19th century that an artist of J. M. W. Turner’s calibre chose to paint the scene shown here.  The painting of circa 1830, in watercolour, bodycolour and graphite on paper, is now in the Fine Arts Museums of… Read More Turner’s ‘Kenilworth Castle’ – Then & Now

Then & Now

Site of Lord Leycester’s Lodge – Then & Now

This Then & Now comparison shows the site of another casualty of the night of the 21st of November 1940, when a lone Luftwaffe bomber dropped a parachute mine over Abbey End. This is where a centuries old timber framed building known as Lord Leycester’s Lodge stood until it was fatally damaged during the tragic… Read More Site of Lord Leycester’s Lodge – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Site of the Globe – Then & Now

On the night of the 21st of November 1940, a lone Luftwaffe bomber dropped a parachute mine over Abbey End. The above-ground explosion destroyed a swathe of the densely packed shops, houses and pubs and resulted in the tragic deaths of 26 people, many of whom were refugees from Coventry who had come to Kenilworth… Read More The Site of the Globe – Then & Now

Then & Now

The Tannery Pits – Then & Now

This week’s Then & Now comes courtesy of prolific local historian Robin Leach, whose recent research on Kenilworth’s involvement with animal skin processing, in particular on two major sites in the town centre and at Mill End, will soon be available in his new book Kenilworth People and Places, Volume 3  (Rookfield Publications, 2018) which is due to… Read M