Devon Mansions, Tooley Street

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Tuesday 4 August 2009 1.14pm
All the debate on the Peabody Buildings got me wondering whether anyone had any old pics/info on Devon Mansions.

I am aware of lots of it - i.e. built by James Hartnoll (sic) in the 1880s, originally called Hanover Buildings, a building was removed to make way for Tower Bridge in the early 1890s, a block was bombed in second world war and subsequently rebuilt, etc. but what I am particularly interested in is detail on the blocks before they were modernised between 1965 and 1981.

Of particular interest to me and has been for some time is the fact that there were originally 525 flats but by the time of the modernisation there were only 337. I know that many flats were combined into two (as many had no bathrooms, just a WC in the corner of the kitchen) and there are many 'lost' flats. Following the modernisation, the flats were renumbered. I would like to know where our flat fits in with that as its current door number would not have been the same before.

I have lots of (historical) photos of the exterior of the building and surrounding areas as well as some press cuttings and a booklet entitled "Devon Mansions: Past, Present and Future (or perhaps it's Devon Mansion: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow) but this doesn't shed any real light on the matter. Both the local studies library and the London Metropolitan Archive are a little scarce on stuff coming to Devon Mansions (well at least subsequent to 1965 when Southwark Council acquired).

As I say, I would be grateful to hear from anyone who lived in the flats pre-modernisation and, if anyone has any, some photos. That said any info would be appreciated.

Many thanks

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