Old postcards from the early 20th century, compared to the same view shown on Google Street View today. The postcards come from my own collection. Almost all of them are from England, mainly showing West London, Middlesex, Surrey, Berks and Bucks. Click on the postcards to see enlarged versions. There are also links to the modern equivalent on Street View. Street View images on this site are the copyright of Google. Comments, questions or requests are very welcome, registration is not necessary.
Saturday, 12 November 2011
Chelsea, London, Dr Phene's House Of Mystery, c1916
Chelsea, London, Dr Phene's House Of Mystery, circa 1916. Dr. John Samuel Phene, a well-known resident of Chelsea, started to build this bizarre house in about 1901. Apparently it was regularly 'pulled to pieces' and rebuilt again. It never approached anything near completion. Dr Phene owned many properties in Chelsea and must have been quite wealthy. This house was apparently based on Phene's ancestoral home in France. The front was plastered in statues and painted in bright colours. The text above the front door reads 'Renaissance du chateau de Savenay' - rebirth of the house of Savenay. The house was never lived in. Dr Phene died in 1912 and the house was demolished by the early 1920s. Pictures of this little-known house are hard to come by, this is probably the best one you'll find on the Internet at the moment. More information on this fascinating building can be found here, here, here and here. Postcard by Johns. For more old photos please visit the Sepia Saturday blog.
Click the postcard to see an enlarged version. If you right-click the enlarged image you get an option to save it at the original 300dpi size, worth seeing if you want to see all of the detail.