Harringay online

Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Gipsy Beer House, Muswell Hill Road,c1905

The Gipsy beer house was on Muswell Hill Road, just to the west of Wood Lane and Southwood Hall, the one-time home of John Hill (builder of the Salisbury pub and The Gardens). The hall is hidden by the trees in the photo. The Gipsy was up and running in the middle of the 19th century and probably opened after the 1830 when restrictions on opening beer houses were considerably eased.1

After numerous instances of gaming and out of hours drinking at the premises, the licence was revoked in 1907 and The Gipsy never reopened as a beer house. Renamed as Gypsy Buildings, it was used as the premises for several shops.

The building was demolished in the last century. However, the terrace of houses to its west (left) still stands today. Number 10, on the far left of the photo, has a claim to fame as the childhood home of Peter Sellers.

Below is a photo looking west along Muswell Hill Road, with Southwood Hallon the right, taken c1890. The Gipsy is just past it, also on the right. The photo was taken only three or four years after Gravelpit Wood (on the left) was taken over by the City of London and renamed Highgate Wood. It looks possible that the fencing showing in the foreground on the first photo had yet to be erected, The most westerly gate to the wood is today called Gypsy Gate, I assume after the The Gipsy beer house.

I noticed recently that another reminder of the past remains. The wall that runs along the curtilage of the Southwood Hall flats, that replaced Southwood Hall is the original wall for the hall. In one case the whole gateway survives, along with the old house name.Shown below in a snippet from Google Street View. I think it’s the gate on the far right of the photo.

Finally, is a picture of the hall itself.

1. The issue of nineteenth century licensing and working class drinking establishments is covered in more detail in the Hornsey Historical Society's forthcoming publication, Flouch, H. Abyssinia:Hornsey's Hidden Village.

Views: 193

Tags (All lower case. Use " " for multiple word tags): muswell hill
Albums: Historical Images of Nearby London

Comment by Hugh on June 28, 2023 at 12:11

Another picture from Ken Stevens:

Comment by John Shulver on July 11, 2023 at 20:08

Such wonderful old photos of time not-so-long-gone, really.  And much sadness to see such magnificent buildings lost forever.   But spare a thought for those 3 little children behind the lamp post in Ken's photo.  In my mind they appear to be dreading return of a father the worse for drink.  We say "the good old days" (viewed through rose tinted specs) but life was harsh for many ordinary folk.

Add a Comment

You need to be a member of Harringay online to add comments!

Join Harringay online


© 2024   Created by Hugh.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service