Filling the Gaps in Wedderburn Road

Map of Wedderburn Road showing development up to 2012
Map of Wedderburn Road showing development up to 2012
(based on Google satellite image)

The early house-building filled in most of the vacant areas near the top of Wedderburn Road but further down there was still plenty of space.

After the Second World War, owners of houses with substantial land saw a way of raising money by selling off pockets of land for infill building. Other property developers bought up unused agricultural land. Bungalows began to appear from 1951 onwards and the 1960s saw the development of more detached houses.

The most recent houses appeared in this century: one near the top of the road, then an eco house near the bottom and lastly, 4 new houses have been built on land belonging to No 21 and are now called “Diary Close”.

Despite the infill, the road retains a spacious feel as the houses still have larger than average gardens.

Should there have been more houses?

View looking East down Wedderburn Road showing the modern house filling the gaps between the older ones.
View looking East down Wedderburn Road showing the modern houses filling the gaps between the older ones.

If you walk up and down the road, you will find gaps in the sequence of house numbers. For example, number 31 is next to number 41.  The large plot of land between number 21 and number 43 had belonged to Annie Stanton’s family. Originally it was an orchard and used for pigs.  In 1951 a bungalow was built next to number 43 and the plan was to sell the remaining land for the development of eight semi-detached houses.  In fact only four detached houses and another bungalow were built, and they followed the numbering from house number 21.

Originally the eight houses on the south side were numbered consecutively. As more properties were built, many were given names instead of numbers. This system eventually leads to much confusion and in fact the numbering only reached 10, (present day number 24).  All the houses lower down the road and on the other side were known by their house names. Some time between the publication of Stevens’ Directory 1935 and Kelly’s Directory 1950, the houses were re-numbered. On the south side the houses were given even numbers and the north side has odd numbers, note there is no number 13! We think that when the houses were numbered, the road was divided into approximately equal-sized plots. As the detached houses and bungalows were built, some took up more than one plot and this explains the gaps in numbering. Agencies like the Post Office or the local authority may have been involved in guessing how many houses could be erected in the gaps before resuming the later numbering.