Clements Hall
Nunnery Lane book cover

Clements Hall Local History Group

Exploring the Scarcroft, Clementhorpe, South Bank and Bishophill areas of York

Clements Hall Local History Group

Exploring the Scarcroft, Clementhorpe, South Bank and Bishophill areas of York

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Answers to last week's quiz

Queen Victoria St  with tram

These are the answers to the questions we set last week. Did you find them?

1. Why was The Knavesmire on Albemarle Road well placed for business in terms of transport until 1935?

Because it was served by a tram service which terminated nearby. There's more about the trams in our book about the history of South Bank shops.

2. What’s an accumulator?  Where might you have gone to recharge one in South Bank? 

It is part of a wireless that heats valves to receive broadcasts. There was a business on Trafalgar Street which charged them. 

3. What was the ‘making season’ for bricks in 1841? 

It was in the summertime. Earnings from a brickworks in Dringhouses probably helped to maintain Eliza Seymour.

4. There is a horse trough on Bishopgate Street – now filled with flowers, - what is its connection with chemical fertilizer?

The horse trough is dedicated to Henry Richardson, a local manufacturer of chemical fertilisers and who founded the York branch of the RSPCA. 

5. What happened to Lendal Bridge in the 1860’s?

It collapsed and had to be replaced. One of our local industries was involved 

6. Who made the ‘the most delicious sweetmeat you can buy’ in our area?

Backhouses Ltd of River St, Clementhorpe until 1935, when they went into liquidation.


7. What’s a beer-drop and where can you find one in our area?

It is a covered hole, usually in the pavement, which leads to a cellar and down which beer barrels can be lowered. There is one still at 1 Vine Street on Bishopthorpe Road and many more in our area.

8. How, in Bishopthorpe Rd, is Sicily connected to Teddy Boys, videotapes and cheap alcohol?

The premises now occupied by Trinacria used to house a gentleman’s outfitters called Leeming and Salisbury which sold fashionable Teddy Boy style clothing until the 1990s, later it housed a video shop, Inner Space Videos, and then Bargain Booze. 

9. In May 1916 what sadly killed Mr and Mrs Avison in Upper Price Street?

Damage from a WW1 zeppelin, which landed on their house in Upper Price Street. 

10. Why would the opening of The Knavesmire Hotel in 1932 have been such a disappointment for the late Canon Argles?

Although he died in 1920, Canon Argles had been a lifelong supporter of the temperance movement  

11. Why is the district known as South Bank so called when it’s clearly on the west side of the Ouse? (You will not find this answer on the website, indeed you may not find it all…speculate)

There is no answer to this. We surmise that it is called South Bank because the area lies south of the city walls.

12. What is an ostler? Where you find one in 1841?

An ostler was someone who looked after the horses of people who were staying at an inn. There were two ostlers living on Swann Street in 1841

13. Where might local schoolchildren have had practical experience of growing vegetables in 1917?

On the land adjoining Scarcroft School, where allotments were set up in WW1 to help the war effort. 

14. What do the following pubs, late of Nunnery Lane have in common? The Wheatsheaf; the Barleysheaf; The Crown; The Golden Ball

They are all the same pub on Nunnery Lane. It was most recently known as The Wheatsheaf and closed in 1938. 

15. Why should we be intrigued by lupins in our area?

George Russell, who lived in Kensington Street, bred and made famous the Russell lupin. There's more about him in our book about the history of South Bank shops.

16. Where would you have found a pawnbroker in our area in 1913?

At 88 Nunnery Lane, and many more elsewhere in our area. 

17. Why was The Trafalgar Bay on Nunnery Lane so named?

After a racehorse called Trafalgar. 

18. On the outside of which trading premises on Bishopthorpe Rd will you find golden grapes?

Outside the Angel on the Green and we would welcome any ideas about why they are there. 

19. On what South Bank street did a Halifax heavy bomber crash in 1945?

Nunthorpe Grove

20. Which pub had to be demolished in 1881 in order to build Skeldergate Bridge?

The Navigation Tavern.

Hope you enjoyed it!