Images Through Time
This view shows the heart of Gravesend at its Victorian and Edwardian zenith – a busy scene with the electric trams plying their trade exactly as the buses do now. On the left is Bryant & Rackstraw’s high class drapers and other fancy goods with Caddel’s the printers next door who produced many (but not all) of the Gravesend Street Directories which are such a valuable source of information about the town in the days before telephone directories or on line sources. The Gravesend Free School, founded in around 1580 is the fourth building on the left in its second building dating from the 1830s and which was demolished in 1928. The large building is the King’s Head and neighbouring shop which were rebuilt and completed in March 1896 – architect was W H Archer of Gravesend. George Matthews Arnold (1826-1908), who was eight times mayor of Gravesend owned the premises and paid for the new building in an attempt to improve the image of the town.
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