Sunday, February 19, 2012

Wolverton Street Names VII

The Southern Development 

As you can see from this 1932 map redbrick Wolverton had reached the limits of its development. There was still demand for housing and the council purchased some land from the Radcliffe Trust which mainly too some fields from Stacey Farm. The entrance to Stacey Farm at the time was at the end of Radcliffe Street and the two cottages which still stand at the beginning of Stacey Avenue were once late 19th century farm workers' cottages.

The curve of Stacey Avenue follows the line of the old farm access road and this road, with its mostly semi-detached houses (at the time an innovation) became the first road or street in Wolverton that did not follow a straight line.

Two other streets were built at this time and Windsor street was extended. The new streets were named Marina Drive and Gloucester Road. This appears to have been another outbreak of enthusiasm for the Royal family. The Dukes of Gloucester and Kent were younger brothers of King George VI.  Princess Marina of the Danish/Greek royal family married the Duke of Kent in 1934 and I believe she was a popular figure at the time. her husband, the Duke of Kent, was killed in an aeroplane crash in 1942.

Eton Crescent, shown pencilled in on the map, appears to have been an arbitrary choice of name.Eton is/was in the county of Bucks and it is adjacent to Windsor. There were other choices of Buckinghamshire place names - High Wycombe  (certainly the largest town at the time) and the Chalfonts, which had a close association with the old Wolverton barony, but neither of them made it to a Wolverton street name.

In the 1940s another crescent was developed behind Western Road. This time the council went to the ancient field name and called it Furze Way.

Further expansion came with the development of another Stacey farm field to the south of Gloucester Road. The approach road from Gloucester Road was named Woodland View, and the long road joining the Stacey Avenue extension was called Southern Way. In the middle was another crescent. This one was called St John's Crescent.

This last name I cannot explain. St John does not figure in any of the Wolverton or Stony Stratford churches, and Bradwell Priory, which it overlooks, was dedicated to St Mary. Any suggestions?

This concludes this series. The development of Milton Keynes brought a new dimension to the naming of streets.

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