Anlaby Road history—part 20

Turnpike Gate

The toll-bar on the Anlaby Road was known as the Wold Carr Toll Bar, and was situated east of the line of Walton Street, at a point that marked the municipal boundary. In January 1871 the local press recorded meetings (held at The Wold Carr Inn) regarding the removal of the toll-bar, where appeals were heard from many local developers and landowners. Many in attendance were those who had difficulty getting their carts, often heavily loaded with building materials, past the awkward gates and the rapid development of Newington, beyond the toll bar gates was being hindered by the disruption the gates caused; the same arguments were still being reported in the press in December of the same year. Accidents at the gates were not uncommon and the Hull Times reported an unfortunate incident in September 1857 when the 12 year old daughter of the Toll Bar keeper Mr Sexton ran out to take the name of the young lad taking a cart of ashes through the bar. She was caught and her neck crushed under a wheel of the cart and died later. Despite the width of the gate being more than 14 feet the inexperienced driver, a 13 year old local lad, still found the manoeuvre difficult and did not know when to stop his cart.

Removing the gates required government intervention, but locals could not understand why the gates in Hull remained, when the vast majority in other areas had been removed by this date. The tolls were finally abolished in 1874. The next toll-bar on the Anlaby Road was at Grove Lodge on Hull Road in the village of Anlaby, some two miles further west. The “turnpike gates” were still recorded in Kelly’s 1872 directory, but the site of the toll-bar and house had been partially built upon by 1873, with the construction of Cumberland Terrace, a row of four, three-storey properties, purpose-built as shops, with accommodation above. The corner property, at the junction of Walton Street, was an off-licence for most of its life, but was sadly demolished in 2003, when this section of Walton Street was widened to accommodate traffic from the new KC Stadium.


Historically, the huge district known as Newington began at the line of Walton Street. Thomas J Monkman, writing in the Hull News, Saturday 2nd June 1900, gave a colourful contemporary account of “The Rise and Growth of Newington”: -

“If Newington’s growth and expansion is not exactly a matter of leaps and bounds, it is however, making rapid strides in development, and at present is almost abnormally increasing under the transforming hand of the busy and ever enterprising builder. The sound of the trowel is continuously heard in the land, and the conveyor of mortar to miniature Alpine heights pursues his up and down occupation in North Newington from early morn till dewy eve, week in, week out, save Saturdays, when mid-day marks the disappearance of his tribe. It is not so many years since Newington, that is the Anlaby Road district, was known as Wold Carr, and its residences were represented here and there only by an odd farmhouse, the house of the brickyard man, or premises where lacteal fluid was extracted from the browsing kine, and eggs and butter were developed with an eye to the Hull market. True, as long as memory serves. Newington Hall has stood where it stands for the last half century, rearing its columns in gigantic fashion amongst the then two or three humble cots in the vicinity.

At that time there were no other houses, and everything was rural in an extreme degree. Today Newington boasts a population of some 35,000 souls. These important and pregnant figures give us considerable pause, and indicate forcibly the impressive and wonderful growth of this western wing of the city. The late Mr James Beeton, the basket maker, whose establishment was opposite the King William, close by Messrs E Davis’s, was the first, or nearly the first, settler in this direction, and I believe his house, named Willow Glen, still asserts its presence in Walton Street. From Mr Beeton, the district took the name of Beetonsville, and this name is still officially recognised by the postal authorities. To witness its present expansion one must mark the operation near Newington Hall. New streets here are being laid out, and in some of these high-class residential property is in the course of erection, the houses finding tenants and purchasers almost before completion. Scores upon scores of houses for the accommodation of the artisan classes are being built in the vicinity of Hawthorn Avenue, and for the manipulator of bricks and mortar it appears to be a veritable Tom Tiddler’s ground. The only drawback up to time of Newington’s onward march to eminence and prosperity has been the closing of the Waggon Works Company’s premises, which recently gave employment to numerous hands. Beyond the second set of level crossings of the North Eastern Railway Company the work of the builder has not yet commenced and from these up to the residence of Mr Jameson, Eastella, there is but one house. This is a milk and dairy farm, and its antiquated architecture indicates that the day of its creation was of yore. Jameson’s Lane is the extreme western boundary of the city, and over the northern end of this lane crosses the line of the Hull and Barnsley Railway Company. The suitableness of this site for a station has already been pointed out in the columns of the “Hull Daily News”. The Newingtonians who wish to travel on the iron road created by Sir Gerald Smith have either to make their way to Beverley Road Station or the one at Cannon Street, both of these being distant from the western end of Newington, something approaching two to three miles. Would it be too much to ask the Hull and Barnsley Railway to furnish us with a way-side station? Many of Newington’s 35,000 inhabitants would help to swell the passenger receipts of the company.

More than once it has been suggested that this district should possess a “Covent Garden”, or early morning market, either similar to the one held in the field of the Corporation in Park Street. If the Corporation purchased the land for the purpose it would not be a bad investment, as in years to come it would probably double its value. This course would render a valuable service to many who find it inconvenient to go so far a-field as Park Street for their vegetable and other purchases, which arrive on market days from the country district.

In the matter of health, Newington may be said to be almost at the foot of the East Riding wolds, from which come zephyrs in spring and summer laden with the fragrance that usually associates itself with wood and pasture and cultivated gardens. Then again, when a southern or south-easterly breeze is blowing, it is not difficult, when the first grey dawn of the morning is beaming, and the Chanticleer is proclaiming in clarion notes the advent of another day, to detect a refreshing presence of brine in the atmosphere wafted in from the Humber and the Northern Sea. That the air of Newington is constitutionally good and inductive of longevity can be attested by several residents who have passed the age of 80, and still appear as fresh as the proverbial daisy, and as beaming as the rose in bloomfull June. To say that people of never die at Newington would be incorrect, but here, like the hamlet of Kilham, near Driffield, the business of the undertaker has never any special strain upon its engagements.

While writing of Newington it may not be inopportune to draw the attention of our Lowgate legislators to the condition of the Springhead Road, say from Albert Avenue to the farmstead at Chanterlands. This road, when the rains and fogs of November and the frosts and snows of December visit us, is simply neither more nor less than a quagmire, and almost impassable for man, vehicle or beast. The time is not far distant when residences will obtain on either side of the way, and one would think the special attention of the authorities to construct a decent and navigable thoroughfare ought to be promptly given.

Continue to part 21