Thank you to Sarah Sawyer of the Arodene Road Book Club in Brixton for allowing me to share this wonderful tour that takes in several landmarks that feature in the novel.
The Windrush landed at Tilbury docks on 21st June 1948. The Civil Service sent a black officer, Ivor Cummings, to meet the new arrivals. It was a big problem finding them somewhere to live. As a short-term measure, the Colonial Office was forced to house 230 Windrush settlers in a deep air raid shelter in Clapham Common. The nearest labour exchange to the shelter was Brixton. As a result, many of the settlers set up home there, making it one of Britain’s first Caribbean communities.
The images are shown in the order they appear in the novel
Page 7: ‘Jumping off at the Town Hall stop in Brixton’
Page 9: ‘The sorting office was only a ten-minute walk’
(Brixton Sorting Office, Blenheim Gardens)
Page 12: ‘He made a short detour home to pick up his bicycle and the package. Englewood Road was on the south side of Clapham Common’
Page 13: ‘Just before he reached Eagle Pond’
Page 18:’His eldest daughter had two of her own now and lived just off Lavender Hill’
(Beaufoy Arms, 18 Lavender Hill)
Page 20: ‘Evie nodded as they pulled on their coats and went downstairs emerging onto St John’s Road, just up from Clapham Junction’ (Vernon and Sons)
Page 24: ‘They decided to go along to Arding and Hobbs before they had to go back to work’
Page 160; ‘she knew they were passing Cedars Road, the imposing building where Evie had been born.’
The home was most likely to have been the Home of the Society of the Good Shepherd 35 Cedars Road, SW4 opened in 1896 for friendless and fallen women cost 7s 6d 25 places women aged 15 to 30 years.