Monday, August 05, 2019

BRIGG COUNCIL HOUSES: OFFICIAL CONSTRUCTION DATES REVEALED FOR FOUR STREETS


Ongo, the social landlord for North Lincolnshire, has kindly carried out some archive research for Brigg Blog as we try to establish when the  town should be celebrating the 100th anniversary of the first council houses being built and rented out to grateful families.
A picture in a local history book about Brigg suggests that new homes on Woodbine Avenue - the first in the town - were under construction in 1920.
This prompted us to check with Ongo, despite realising that many properties across Brigg have since been purchased by their tenants under the Right to Buy scheme and are no longer classed as 'social housing'.
Although Ongo is unable to confirm a date for Woodbine Avenue's construction, it has given us a year for many others built in the town during the era of Brigg Urban District Council, as follows:

  • Hawthorn Avenue –  built 1924
  • Central Square – 1924
  • East Parade – 1924
  • Mill Lane – 1924.
So we are no nearer confirming when the properties on Woodbine Avenue were erected and let.
Our last hope is people who bought properties on this street kindly checking their deeds for a definite date.
However, we realise that if mortgages are still active, the householders won't yet possess the relevant paperwork.
We lived in Hawthorn Avenue (very briefly) and Central Square (from 1963 for many years) and always thought the Hawthorn houses were built circa 1930, so Ongo's 1924 date is of personal interest.
Our grandparents were certainly living at No 58 Hawthorn Avenue by 1930/1.
The architecture of Woodbine Avenue, and the row of houses directly opposite on Central Square, is different to the remaining properties on Central Square, East Parade and Hawthorn Avenue.
Brigg company Phillips built Woodbine Avenue, according to the picture caption in the local history book.  But did this family firm construct all the other council properties during the 1920s?
The name Woodbine Avenue was probably chosen because Woodbine Farm tilled land in this area before council house construction began.
Brigg Recreation Ground opened in the early 1950s on more former farmland, and the Springbank housing estate was also developed.
The original farmhouse, latterly occupied by Rec groundsmen, survived into the 1970s before being demolished, as did some of the farm buildings which were converted to provide changing accommodation for sports teams.
Hawthorn Avenue was probably a reference to the rows of mature hawthorn bushes/hedges prevailing in the area.
South View Avenue faces south. But what about those properties on Northern Avenue, West Square and East Parade?
There's no doubt about Central Square, though, as it is enclosed by adjoining streets - a fact that still causes confusion for some delivery drivers trying to locate addresses.
Even if it proves impossible to discover a construction date for the Woodbine Avenue properties, Brigg Blog feels that 2024 should see celebrations held  for the 100th anniversary of the other four streets listed above. 

Would this merit a small exhibition at Brigg Heritage Centre?
PICTURED ABOVE: A fine picture from Neil Stapleton featuring (from left to right) Woodbine Avenue, Central Square, East Parade, West Square and part of Hawthorn Avenue

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