Back in 2013, a search on the web for images of Roman Road returned zero results. A search of images at the local archive library returned very little too. Overshadowed by the bigger trade centres of neighbouring hamlets Whitechapel, Spitalfields, Isle of Dogs and Limehouse, Bow is poorly documented. As the older generation disappears, so too the opportunity to discover and save photos and memories of our past.

Roman Road Trust launched a Facebook group called Living in Bow, inviting past and present residents to share personal photos and memories of Bow. Many of the members of Living in Bow no longer live in the area but thanks to technology photos and memories can be shared across continents and timezones.

Through this social media platform we have unearthed photos and memories that may have disappeared forever, a precious resources for ensuring local history and heritage isn’t lost and to help create a sense of place and identify for the area.

36 Responses

  1. Gary Arber

    I have just noticed your reproduction of my uncle Albert Arber’s wedding, there is an error however, the smallboy in the picture is my cousin Derek Ives (now deceased). The photo has been trimmed down on either side, I was standing on the right in the same type of suit as Derek holding a horseshoe (cardboard not the real thing)
    Best wishes, Gary Arber.

  2. Keith Watkins(Sugarhood)

    Gary My mother Rachel Sugarhood lived at 192 Roman Rd born 1918 are there any pictures of this area.
    May have also lived there 1948


  3. Sandra Dunbar

    I was born in St. Andrews hospital and lived in Stansted House and then Biscott House in Devas St, attending Marner Street nursery. Mum and dad moved us to Dagenham around 1961 but they moved back to Bromley by Bow to be nearer family 2 years later. Mum lived in the flat in Huntshaw House Devons Road until her death in 2013 aged 91, which is where most of my memories were made, attending Old Palace Primary School.
    I moved to Stratford when I married and now live in Plaistow. My brother lives in Hackney, working at the London Hospital in Whitechapel but my sister’s moved to Essex.
    My dad had been a professional boxer in the late 1940s and early 1950s and served the area as a Coal man throughout the 1960s and 1970s. Dad died in 1992.

    • Jackie

      Hello Sandra. I lived at 2 biscott house with my large family The Bensons! Do you remember us. I was also born in St a Andrew sun 1964 but we moved away from London to Somerset in 1969. I was trying to find info on my old school Marner when I came across this website. Was so love my to read your words here.

      • Caron Lynch

        Hello Jackie.. i think my dad mentioned your dad is Eddy Lynch..he lived at 15 Stanborough Hse.. his brother Mickey sadly fell in the canal on 12 june 1962 and drowned.. dad married kathy lyne my mum.. do you remember them at all? I lost dad recently sadly. X

    • Caron Lynch

      Hello Samdra.. do you recall the Lynch family..15 Stanborough Hse? My dad is Eddy mum is Kathy nee Lyne she lived at 14. I recall dad mentioned a friend called Sandra!

  4. leonard draper

    my wife has a receipt of her dads for settlement of acounts for sum of 60pounds and9pence issued by james brooke and sons ltd of 19 -22 roman road E2 in 1953 she would like to know what the company sold her parents lived in stepney befor moving to basildon in 1954

  5. Ron neale

    Was your dad Billy clark and uncle charley (Alfie Clark) they came from reeves rd.

  6. Ed

    Does anyone have photographs of Campbell Road E3 from the 1960’s?

    • Mandy

      I’d also like some photos of Campbell Rd, 102 to be precise, can anyone help please?

      • Marian Self-Pierson

        I’m sorry I don’t have any photos of Campbell Road but I lived at 109 with my parents. We moved out in 1971 after which the houses were demolished. My single name was Brooks.

  7. Karen T-L

    My great grandmother Maria Rhodes had a shop on the corner of Devons and Blackthorn Road until the lease ran out in the 1920s.

  8. Brenda Gore

    Hi, did anybody know Peter Harvie – he came from Bow – I would love to know how is life turned out. Please message me if you have any information on Facebook Brenda Gore new Mills. Thank you

  9. Catherine Yates nee Regan,

    My family moved to 130 Knapp road ,bow in 1959, when I was 7years old,we moved to the maisonettes which had just been allocated as tenancies by the GLC.we previously lived at barnado gardens flats in Stepney.our dad worked at the gas works which were located in bow common lane adjacent to the sister and brother attended st Agnes rc primary school in Devon’s road.our mum worked at Dunn’s newsagent in Campbell road, we also attended our catholic church ,our lady and st Catherine of sienna, located in bow road, our nan grandad and aunt lived in a prefab in Tomlin’s grove, when I left primary school I went to Bishop Challoner secondary catholic school for girls christian st Stepney , we thoroughly loved our time in Knapp road, my sister and me used to go to the farthing bundle on a Saturday morning,I remember our mum used to keep farthings for us in a little tin.we enjoyed going up the roman shopping on a Saturday morning, and going into Woolworths was a real treat. During the holidays mum would take us to grove hall park,Vicky park,and wellington way paddling pool and we would have picnics,and call in the biscuit factory on the way home.our aunt Ann worked at bassets the boiler suit factory in bow road,I used to meet her after she finished work outside bow road station after school.these arexall great memories for me,ones I will always family all moved to bletchley bucks in 1967.sadly our mum and dad aren’t with us anymore,but the memories always will.I would love to hear from anyone who remembers,Alf Cath, Catherine Theresa and john Regan from bow .my very bestcwishes,keep safe and well during this bad time.god bless

  10. Catherine Yates new Regan.

    Does anyone remember the Regan family we lived in Knapp road in a maisonette adjacent to the gas works where our dad worked, we lived here from 1959-1967.our parents names were Alf ,cath, and my name is Catherine and my siblings were Theresa and john.we attended st Agnes rc primary, I moved up to bishop challoner secondary girls catholic school in 1964, Theresa went to st victories convent grammar school. Our mum worked part time at Dunn’s,the newsagents in Campbell road.

    • John Vivian

      Not sure if this is the same Catherine Regan that attended St Agnes School at the same time as me. I have vivid recollections of sitting in the same class as Catherine with two other girls, Katherine Turner and Helen Butcher. We were in Mr Donovan’s class (one of the top classes), I’m sure that he sat me on your table as a punishment!!!!

      It would be great to hear from you! If you are the same Catherine Regan.

  11. ANN Butler

    Reeves had a factory on Roman Road does anyone have any information

  12. Alan Clark

    Hi does anyone know where i can find old photos of Marner Street my mother’s maiden name was Millett.

  13. Cisco

    Broxbourne House, 2nd or 3rd floor (I was a nipper, so everything looked tall) from 1964-1970.

    I went to the toddlers school, which had a playground on the roof & the to the primary, St. Agnes.

    I visited St, Andrews hospital loads of times e.g. drinking bleach as it was in an R Whites lemonade bottle, stitches in my head etc & finally in 1982 after a motorbike crash!

    I remember the railway whilst looking out from the Broxbourne house balcony & the laundrette in the basement……scary to a boy! Also, the sheds where we played in the carpark area, as hardly anyone had a car!

    Great, but distant memories & then we moved to the Isle of Dogs.

    What was the name of the pub on the corner next to Broxbourne house?

    I hope life has been good to you all.

    • Caron Lynch

      Hello.. was it called the beehive? There was also the duke of Wellington. My awful drink grandad edmond Lynch was a drunkard show up..and was a terrible man to his wife and children. Im pretty sure it was the duke of Wellington..but Coventry cross estate had the royal oak?. Take care

  14. Marion

    Have just discovered this site, and wondered if there was any information available about my great grandfather, surname of Davis. He was a champion streetfighter and Punch & Judy man, I’m guessing early 1900’s. He lived in Bow at the time, and probably all his life. I know this is a long-shot, but if you don’t ask……………………

  15. Pauline McAllister (nee Gilbert)

    I was born in Parnell Road in 1952 and lived there until they compulsory purchased all the houses. My dad used to help out at the Out and Out Mission in Tredegar Road where I used to go to Sunday School. I went to George Lansbury School. I had a very happy childhood in Bow. My family name is Gilbert. Anybody on here remember my family or have any pictures ? Thanks

  16. Christine Lesley. Hardman

    Hi Pauline
    I live in 24 Parnell road and had a brother jamie went to George lansbury school and tell i move to Basingstoke Hampshire in 1966 i have photos of parnell road

  17. Christine Lesley. Hardman

    i would like to hear from any one from Parnell road or George lansburys school my dad was Jimmy Hardman and my mum was pat Hardman I loss my dad in 1971 and mum in 2011

  18. Stephen Harris

    Hi, I am trying to find some information about my grandmother and father Rose and Albert Spicer. My nan ran a newsagent in Bow Common Lane (Spicer ??) in the 1950’s I think. If anyone has any information (address, photos etc) it would be much appreciated.

  19. sandra groves

    I lived at 48 Bow road and attended wellington way school from 1965 Sandra Loynes

  20. david clifford

    I lived with mum dad brothers in 63 Appian Road Mr Mrs George Norton had the newsagents on old Ford road along with Mr Mrs Barton who had the grocery shop I used to do a paper round I can’t remember the mans name who sold them on the corner of Parnell Road he had one arm I was born in 1951 we moved when they purchased mum and dads house in about 1968 David Clifford would love some pictures

  21. Sandra

    Would love to see some photo’s of Parnell Road, if there are any? My gran’s family lived there from approx 1893 to 1922.

  22. Julia Crighton (nee Hare)

    Hi does anyone know where Glaucus Street was in Bow. My Grandfather Joseph Hare lived at 7 Glaucus Street. My uncle, who lived at 312 Devons Road, Bow was the witness when he died.

  23. Vanessa Bennett

    Hi there,
    Does anybody remember John Stevens of St. Stephens Road, Bow? he boxed for the Repton!
    He was my beloved Dad, Many thanks, Vanessa xx

  24. LEN Rixon

    Hi does anyone have any photos of Caxton grove bow E3 or know anyone that lived there back in the 50s 60s?

  25. Liz Marchal

    My mum and dad ran the grocers on the corner of Maritime Street from 1948. Does anyone remember them? We moved to Kent and mum and dad died some years ago but I still have fond memories. I went to Stebon school.

  26. Richard Harrison

    my relatives lived at number 12 Dace Road. the Toser family.
    my great Aunt, Harriet had 3 Children in the first world war. one , Thomas was killed in the Somme in 1917. His body was never found.
    Her daughter, Emily, married a soldier in 1916 who was killed a year later. Emily died of flu in Dace road in the epidemic of 1918.
    Her mother later told a newspaper, years later in 1933, that Emily had died of a broken heart and that she, Harriet, had never recovered after the losses to her family.
    The tragedy and sadness of war and its effects on a single family in Dace Road , Bow.

  27. Mandy

    My Mothers family lived in 239 Abbott road Poplar
    The family name Abrey
    David were the children’s name, my Mum was born to Annie in 1934 in Southend
    Mum ended up in a children’s home at 3 weeks old in Romford Essex.

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