please empty your brain below

Reading comprehension always used to be an important part of any English Examination.

Along with the numerical counterpart of actually correctly interpreting statistics it is a skill that appears to me sadly lacking in much of the population.

(Not that I have any statistics to back that up - see sentences one and two of this comment).
Woodford originally had three High roads:
High Road Woodford Green
High Road South Woodford E18 and
High Road Woodford Bridge which was renamed as part of Chigwell Road in the 1960s.
This discussion on High Streets/Roads is interesting - how long before anyone asks that old chestnut "How many roads are there in the City of London?"

The answer, of course, is none - they are all Streets, Courts, Lanes, Alleys etc

Do keep up, Rob! Since a boundary change, the City of London includes part of Goswell Road.
Steve, High Road Woodford Green was previously named High Road Knighton for the last stretch from Bancrofts School to the Redbridge border (house #702, which has been renumbered from 219 - I lived next door at 1 High Road Buckhurst Hill which was then Chigwell Urban District Council many years ago)

It appears that the High Road Buckhurst Hill sign is actually sited in LB of Redbridge outside 702.
dg writes: indeed
I'm fascinated by the train of thought that went "we must rename this High Street; Newington Butts sounds like a perfect replacement and not at all amusing in any way."
Interesting to see that the commenter who accused DG of being a victim of the "Fallacy of shared context" uses this phrase. I was unfamiliar with it so Googled, which led to exactly one page - the commentor's own comment on Hacker News. I am still none the wiser but, sadly, my curiosity and available time are insufficient to delve further.
There are commercial datasets which identify the streets which are "retail" high streets/roads/parades etc. Trade press such as Retail Week references these data sets in their content. I'm not aware that any of these datasets are freely accessible.

And as the Hacker News comment stream points out, Google Maps picks out "retail" streets visually (probably determined by image analysis from streetview cameras and correlation to other data they have gathered)
There's also a High Drive in New Malden. Just to muddy the waters still more!
Main Street is a fairly common alternative to High Street in this part of Scotland. How many Main Streets does London have?
DG - take that salt back, one of the maps on the NLS site shows the section past the church as 'High Street'.

I'm not sure if the High Street was a closed loop - which is interesting in itself, or a long 'U' shape.

The cut in the 1850 map is in the worst place (as usual whenever I need to check something), the next panel shows the section before Bow Bridge as '???on Row', the panel you link to says 'Un????' - Unon Row?/Union Row?, there might be the dot of an 'i' there. So it may have been Union Row then High Street and finally just part of Bow Road - perhaps when the rest was renamed Bromley High Street.
So the mystery of why the tube station is called High Street Kensington when it's on Kensington High Street is partially solved.

It's not totally clear from Bruce Hunt's data whether the street had changed its name when the station name was changed from just Kensington.

The truth is out there.
Following another Hacker News comment overnight I've found an Ordnance Survey study from 2019 which attempted to locate and quantify all Britain's high streets (lower case). They calculated there are 1204 in London and over 6500 nationwide.

I've now updated today's post to contain this information.

I'm not sure I believe a study which claims Croxley Green has two high streets, but it's a lot of fun swooshing round their map.
So some High Roads are also high streets. Who knew?
Love it when you go viral! I always think of this blog as rather a secluded spot and it's always fun to watch when outsiders occasionally stumble in, shout a bit and then go away again!
I follow Ian Visits on FB and he has a catchphrase there: 'have you read the article?' They rarely have.
From Bruce Hunt's list, I can say that there were an awful lot of George Streets.
Ex-Streatham resident here. I do not think all of Streatham High Road can be considered a high street. It extends south to the borough boundary (and slightly beyond, into Outer London) and only the part north of Streatham Station, to me, would count as a high street.

Further, the high street area of Streatham extends north of the High Road, along Streatham Hill. But again only partially - the part of Streatham Hill to the north of Telford Avenue cannot, to me, be considered a high street.

I hope that helps.
So which areas have BOTH a named High Street and a High Road?

And if "high Street" is different from "High Street"... What is a "high road"? North circular overpass? Maybe Epping New Road is also a high road.
Swooshing around the OS maps looking at several places I know well and my gut feel is the data/algorithms are both erroneously excluding and including, so the 1204 number may be about right, in the sense of "all the right notes but not in the right order". Never risk an undoubtedly?
It is odd that most towns and many villages in the country have a High Street but High Road is rare outside London.
Rob Gullen - because of the Golden Lane Estate, the east side of Goswell Road is in the City of London, between Beech Street and Baltic Street West.
Stuck in a bed in isolation with the once ubiquitous -- but sadly still around -- Covid, this entire post (and comments thereon) has really cheered me up.

My thanks to all, and especially the Geezer that made it possible.
I think Streatham High road is pretty much what it says on the box. An ancient route having crossed the Graveney/Norbury Brook to get to and from London by horse or cart without getting bogged down or your feet muddy thanks to the Falconbrook or Effra. All the commercial stuff, like most other High Streets (which were probably not originally suitable for horses or wagons and therefore not called roads) would have come later. Our perception has changed over the centuries.
When I was growing up, it always struck me as odd that both Leyton and Leytonstone's High Roads were actually High Road Leyton and High Road Leytonstone, i.e. High Road Somethings, not Something High Roads like the others in your list (Balham, Chiswick etc.). Although, as Steve points out, there are also the Woodford examples so... maybe it's a former Essex thing? Or maybe there's no logic at all...
Peter Cameron To the best of my knowledge there is only one Main Street in London, in Hanworth.
Yesterday is no longer the 12th best day ever on diamond geezer.

It's now 13th, because today is 9th.
To continue the New Malden theme - some years ago (early 60s?), the "shopping" stretch of Malden Road north of The Fountain pub as far as New Malden Station was renamed "High Street". Could it be the newest High Street in London?
I today, belatedly, read the original piece about High Streets and was part way through thinking "Hang on, what about the High Street in Colliers Wood?!"

And I was just about to head to the comments box when I paused and thought "hang on, hang on Andrew, hang on." And of course it's officially High Street Colliers Wood, so didn't count. And, of course, DG had that covered. Because of course he did! I should have trusted DG would!

Of course I didn't make the mistake because... I read the article. Seriously people going full on into the "YOU'RE WRONG!" mode, have the decency to read the article properly, not just a short headline shown on social media. I mean, how much effort really is it?










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