Tuesday, 27 October 2015
Jenny has been keeping an eye on a fire in Finchley Road and I wondered if this was the building I once lived in. In 1975 I moved into a sad little room at the back, taking the opportunity when it arose to move sideways into a sad little room with a window later. However I do not think this is the block I lived in, there is an entrance next to the yellow sign which is now closed but used to be wide open for all and sundry to enter. I think that was the doorway graced with my presence.
I lived there over the window, glad to have accommodation I could afford, happy to ignore the window in the bathroom that would not shut whatever was done to it and content to listen to the mice wandering about the floor as the skirting board left at least an inch space for them to pass through. The main problem was the train station underneath. Right outside the back the four lanes of busy Underground trains ran all day well into the night. The high pitched women's voice constantly giving out "This train is for Amersham, stopping at...." all day and changing with each arrival and then back again to the Amersham message. How easily I could have shot her!
The entrance was at the back and once inside it was the only way out. This meant if you were on the top floor you were stuck if fire broke out, and as with all badly maintained buildings, especially aged uncared for ones, that was always a fear.
Most of these today are offices but it may be some still house rich peoples, poor peoples cannot live in London these days! I canny mind what rent I paid to the chap on the top floor with the Sten gun on the wall but it was affordable. There again I was only earning £35 a week. Today I suspect I may have to pay around £4oo a week for such a position. At least it looks like it may have been done up but when I was there the block was not glorious. Somehow I don't expect this block to be in use for a year or so.
Having looked closely I note the new building to the right of the building and it appears the block I lived in may well have been demolished and replaced. I went through the entrance way and I think it was the second door along we lived at. Now it is the back end of Sainsburys! At least it looks safer.