Monday, January 25, 2016


Exploring the Central line from East to West this is the 14th station out of 49 that I have visited.
This station is part of a loop on the line. It is a 6.5 mile ring of railway built by the Great Eastern Railway in 1903. The iron roof supports have the initials of GER woven into the design.
It was the Metropolitan Railway that came up with the idea of the railway looping into the countryside of Essex to create suburban growth. Although it took longer than expected there was a huge increase of house building along the railway route throughout the early 20th C.

This station has a grander look to it than others on the loop. It is said that it owes its ornate look to the many Royal visitors who came to admire Dr Barnardo's Garden Village being built in Barkingside.

The station is now a Grade II listed building meaning it is a structure of architectural significance.

The name Barkingside was first recorded in 1538 and is derived from its location on the Barking side of Hainault Forest.

Alongside the station  is Redbridge Football stadium(big word for small stand) and training ground.

It is a short walk from the station to Dr Barnardo's Village and church. The church was built between 1892-3 to serve the Barnado's Girls' Village Homes. It is the only remaining children's church in the country with lower pews and child themed stained glass windows. The children visited the church 3 times a week, 10.30am and 6.30pm on Sunday and 7.30pm on Wednesday for Bible Study.
I was very disappointed to find the church closed and found no information on opening times. I will endeavour to find out more details about the church as I would dearly love to see inside.

In 1873 Dr Thomas Barnardo and his wife Syrie were married and set up home in Mossford Lodge, a property in the village of Barkingside. A 21 year lease on the Lodge had been a wedding present from a wealthy stockbroker. Having previously worked with destitute boys he started the first home for destitute girls near Mossford Lodge. His father-in-law bought them 13 acres of land on which his village homes were built. He had the idea of providing individual cottages for girls of different ages. Dr. Barnardo believed that orphaned children would be much happier living in smaller groups in houses surrounded by attractive gardens and space rather than the large dormitories that existed in orphanages.
The cottages were actually large 6 bedroomed houses and were supervised by a house-mother. Each house provided a home for 15-20 children. The houses were built around a green and by 1880 around 26 houses or cottages as they were known had been built. The cost of the houses had been met by individual donors and different organisations.
The first cottages were all named after flowers, Honeysuckle, Forget-me-not, Daisy, Rose, Primrose and so on.

By the 1930s boys were also admitted to the village. At its height, the Garden Village had 64 cottages surrounding 3 different greens over a 60 acre site and was accommodating approx 1500 children. The girls were trained in cooking skills; washing and laundry; dressmaking and knitting.Their future lay in working in service as maids, housekeepers etc or emigrating to Canada or Australia.

In 1964 it was decided to
reduce the number of children to 100 and to house them in small family groups. By 1986 there were only 44 children living in the village and in 1991 the village officially closed as a children's home as it was said to be outdated in terms of modern childcare.
Finding my way into the village had not been easy. Next to the church were huge boards around a building site advertising luxury homes in Barnado's Garden Village.

I walked all the way around the hoardings until I found a way into the village. The area now has a number of private estates with no public access. When I did find an open gate I was pleased to find that part of the village is still here and a village green still remains. It was a dull, drizzly day when I visited and the Green was empty. It was easy to visualise the children walking across from their houses to the Church.

The benches sporadically placed on the Green, all had small metal plaques on them in memory of a member of staff or resident of one of the cottages. I felt saddened by the change. No orphaned children here now enjoying the opportunities and love of being part of the Barnardo family.

With thanks -Albert -Kathleen- Mary - John - Geoffrey Swann. All ex-members of Barnados' big family.

The Cairns Memorial House in the Garden Village was erected in 1887 in memory of the first President of Dr Barnardo's Homes.

Dr Thomas Barnardo died in 1905 and his ashes were buried near Cains Cottage.

A memorial was built in the Village by Sir George Frampton . It is a 6 metre high granite monument topped with a bronze statue of 'Charity' sheltering two children. Below that is a portrait of Barnardo and 3 seated children who were modeled on children at the home.

Many of the old buildings have now been demolished and have made way for new developments. However the site has been designated as a conservation area,consequently, the church, Cairns House and the fountain have been renovated.
Close to the Village is the new Headquarters of Barnardo's charity

Across the road from Barnardo's Head Ofice is this row of  Cottages. Pert Cottages were built in the mid nineteenth century as artisan's houses. They are probably the oldest surviving residential buildings in Barkingside and are now Grade II listed.

In stark contrast to the beautiful Pert cottages is this ugly Brutalist structure built of pre-fabricated concrete in the 1960s. It is Barkingside Magistrates Court. 

Nearby is the police station, another building  lacking character. Although it does have the traditional blue lamp outside.

 Queen Victoria House is currently used as the Redbridge Registry Office where all births, deaths and marriages within the area are registered. It was built in 1903 as a 'Quarantine Home' for new arrivals to Dr Barnardo's Garden Village. In 1928 it became a training home for girls before they emigrated to either Canada or Australia.

This large pub was built in 1937-8 when it was thought that Fairlop Airfield was going to become an international airport. The Doctor Johnson pub has a bit of a mixture of styles and the interior is listed as of national significance. However it is currently closed and looks as though it has been closed for a while

Barkingside cemetries (there is one on either side of the road) have had a long association with Barnardo's Village Home and in 2008 a memorial was erected dedicated to the memory of 600 Barnardo's children and staff interred on the site.

Next to the cemetery is the Holy Trinity church built in 1839-40.

By now the rain was pouring down so it was time to return to the station and make my way home. I really enjoyed Barkingside and finding out more about Dr Barnardo's Garden Village.

Sharing with Our World Tuesday


  1. Hello, this was a lovely station and visit. I like th initials in the iron work, the clock and rail station. The Cairns Memorial house is beautiful and the row of cottages are cute. Thanks for sharing your walk, wonderful series of photos. Happy Monday, enjoy your new week!

  2. Very interesting. I know of the 'Barnardo Boys' who came to Australia but there were girls too? The village set up may have been seen as inappropriate as the 21st century approached but I wonder had it continued, what it would be like in 2016. At least some parts are being kept.

    It is an attractive station and good to see lots of chimney pots to keep people warm.

  3. Marvelous post and photos ~ Such fascinating history and buildings with a very meaningful service to child done in a very quality way. I love the names of station that you photograph and write about ~ Beautiful work!

    Wishing you peace in your week ~ ^_^

  4. Great photos and very interesting history. I remember money being collected for Dr Barnardos when I was first in school - a long time ago! Thanks for sharing.

  5. That looks like another pretty, historic area, and the name is awesome!

  6. Ich liebe deine Serie über die verschiedenen Stadtteile. da ist einer schöner als der andere. ich muss definitiv noch mehr zeit in london verbringen. noch längst habe ich nicht mal ein zehntel so viel gesehen wie du uns hier zeigst.

    liebe grüße

  7. What a funny name "Barking"side ! I wonder if there were many dogs there ? The place looks absolutely charming as if the time had stood still. These lined up houses all looking the same is so typical for England. I always admired the postmen when I saw pictures of these streets when I was a teenager ! What an interesting excursion you did !

  8. Such a pretty little train station and the architecture of the children's home is so attractive. I can't wait to see the inside of the church with its child-proportioned features. It always makes me sad to hear about the many children who had to grow up in institutions rather than loving homes in years past.

  9. Very interesting and magnificent architecture. It is good that structures and memories of things like these are preserved in this part of the world.

  10. Oh this was so interesting; someone should write a book about Doctor Barnardo and the children who lived there; it is a wonderful story. Thank you for persisting in finding the pathway into what is left of the village. (The plaque 'we love him because he loved us' is wonderful.)

  11. I am finding this series fascinating, thanks so much.

  12. Sad about the rain. It sounds a very interesting village. The Barnardo village looks beautiful. I hope they don't destroy any more. He did a great job for the children then.

  13. I don't need to tell you how much I enjoyed this post! I was working in the Barnardo's Head Office when the last children left. It is so sad that the new housing has been built around the statue. I remember when it had the village surrounding this. The church is lovely inside and we used to gather there if there was a fire drill. The Head Office is certainly more impressive than the 1960's building that I worked in. It looked very much like the Magistrates court and I can remember when Charlie Kray was being heard at the Court and we were on the fourth floor overlooking the entrance, there were helicopters everywhere and snipers... all pointing at us! The Dr Johnson I think was the Chequers when I was working there and was a great pop in pub with snooker tables around the back. The cemetery was lovely to see, partly because my brother was laid to rest there so it is nice to see that it is still well maintained. Thank you SO much for this stop off xx

  14. The Barnardo Village homes and church were interesting to see. I'm glad parts of the village have been made conservation areas as it is good to remember and honor the past, especially the good works this man did for children.


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