Then and now

TRAM tracks, gas street lamps and lost public houses, are all features of street scenes taken over a century ago by Ipswich photographer Harry Walters.

TRAM tracks, gas street lamps and lost public houses, are all features of street scenes taken over a century ago by Ipswich photographer Harry Walters.

This is the second look at Ipswich now and then comparing the changes to the street scenes of Ipswich.

Harry Walters was a professional photographer working from his home and studio at 11 St Margaret's Plain, Ipswich.

As well as thousands of portraits he took street scenes, many of which were used to produce post-cards.

Post-cards were a popular means of communication when there were several deliveries every day.

A card could be posted anywhere in the town with a simple message that would be delivered later in the day.

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It was a simple, quick and cheap way to send a brief message in an era when there were very few telephones.

These wonderful photographs have survived with Harry's family and my thanks go to Barbara Cutting of Stowmarket, one of his relatives, who let me use the photographs.

Among the scenes featured is Upper Orwell Street, Ipswich, near Major's Corner around 1900.

The buildings on the left were due for demolition when this photograph was taken. The new buildings were set back to widen the narrow street.

The lamp on the front of the building on the left was mounted on The Duke of Kent public house.

At the end of the street on the left is the Beehive public house which opened in 1899. It was demolished sixty years later.

On the right is Craig Court where there were four small houses. This is now an open space next to the closed St Michael's Church.

Annual events like the regatta on the River Orwell with swimming and boating races are also recalled by these delightful glimpses into the past.

Crowds packed onto a paddle steamer on New Cut near the lock gates for the event in 1896, and in the background the Cobbold brewery at Cliff Quay was working to keep the local public houses supplied.

The same scene at the end of New Cut looks a lot less charming today.

The junction of Princes Street and the Buttermarket has completely changed since one of the other postcards featured was taken.

The building of an electric tram service for Ipswich meant that several streets and junctions were widened to accommodate the service.

Lines of the earlier horse drawn service were in Princes Street, but plans to turn another line down Queen Street meant the sweeping 'S' bend needed more space so the buildings featured were demolished and the new ones set further back.

The Giles statue now stands where Beard's bedding store was.

The premises on the right of Beard's were Albert Bond's wine and spirits store.