Belvedere

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Albert Road

Prince of Wales, c. 1863

Second World War, when German bombs started a clearance of nineteenth century buildings. The greatest damage to Belvedere was done in the air raid of the night of the 19th/20th April 1941, when a heavy bomb blasted the shops and houses in Albert Road facing the Recreation Ground. 

Belvedere Green

This small triangular green, which has survived from Lessness Heath, is a focal point and gives a village atmosphere to Upper Belvedere. It is continued further west by a narrower green with a line of trees.

Gloucester Road


Heron Hill

Went from Lesnes Heath to Picardy. From Lessness Heath Heron Hill led downhill northwards to Picardy, sometimes called Herring Hill, was also the name of an ancient house standing on its slope, which was long held by the  Abell family. Sir John Abell accompanied Edward 1 at the Siege of Caerlaverock, and his son Walter owned Footes Cray Manor. Samuel Abell was the last of the family in the reign of James I, when the property passed to the Drapers, another prominent local family. In 1725 the property was sold and divided into three. The house was in the hands of the Gilbert family from 1770 until the death of Moses Gilbert's widow in 1882, after which in 1884 it was again sold, and the land developed for building.

Leather Bottle. The Building dates from 1643 but it was altered in the 18th and early 19th. It had a Home brew licence in 1740 and was called ‘The Bottle’. The ‘Leather Bottle’ name dates from 1803 when a full licence was granted. It is Highly attractive. a small east extension was added in the early 19th century but the pub is still standing today much as it was at the end of the 18th though it replaced an earlier which is said to have been there since the time of Henry VIII.

Lessness 

'woodland belonging to Lessness Abbey'. Lessness, also spelt ‘Lesnes’ on some modern maps, was the 'meadow promontory' projecting into the Erith Marshes. ‘Lesneis’ 1086:

Lesnes Abbey Woods

Lots of Daffodils, lots of bulbs, wild Service trees, tumulus in southern part of woods. Woodland from Lesnes Abbey. Sweet chestnut and oak.  Part of an extensive area of deciduous ancient woodland surrounding a ruined abbey which occupies a steep small valley next to the borough of Greenwich and overlooking Thamesmead new town. Belonging from the 12C to Lesnes Abbey and then to the charity of Christ's Hospital, the wood was coppiced to provide fuel and timber for repairs. The highest areas of the wood which contain heather suggest there has been some colonising of heathland. It was purchased by the London county council in 1930 and within a year was opened as a park. Ownership and managment passed to Bexley following the abolition of the GLC. The wood was identified by the habitat survey as being of metropolitan importance with the NW section designated as a geological site of special scientific interest. One of the most striking features is the startling appearance of primarily natural wild daffodils in the spring. The more general impression is of former coppice allowed to mature with fine examples of hornbeam, gean and field maple as well as oak. The edge of the valley is mostly on chalk and reveals ancient earthworks.

Lessness Heath

In the Domesday Book this is ‘Loisnes’ and had three fisheries. Lessness was a Hundred and this was the site of the meeting place.

Lies to  the west of Belvedere House and its park as an extensive and irregularly shaped piece of common land with a the parish gravel pit on the north side. there were a number of farms and cottages around the edges of the heath, some of them ancient. Enclosed in 1815 and given to Christ’s Hospital.   Area around owned by William Wheatley and Sir Culling Eardley who exploited it for building.

Lessness Park

Denehole recorded in the area ‘near the gates’

Napier Road

Nelson Road

Raglan Road

Victoria Street

2 Victoria pub. cheery. back-street local run in a traditional  manner. The L-shaped bar is split into a sports themed area to the left with sporting    memorabilia in the darts area, and local history holographs in the seated area

Wellington Road

Woolwich Road

33/45 interesting group; note in particular

33 fine Italianate house of 1879

43/45, large and distinguished, c. 1862.

50/64 four attractive and dignified pairs 1860s.

16a mysterious shaft opened up in the night

44 Eardley Arms attractive pub with nice decorative details; 1860s, on the site of an inn of 1789. Over the corner doorway is the coat of arms to the Eardley family, who owned Belvedere House a picturesque white walled inn with a tiled roof, much covered by creeper, which was replaced later in the nineteenth century by the present building. Pub called after Lord Eardley

building converted from the village smithy..


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