In 1906, at 102 Whitechapel Road, Bill Rogers’ Dining Rooms for Carmen could be found. This establishment is ideal for transposition to Artillery Lane with all the goods depots nearby. Carmen were delivery drivers – the White Van Man of the period, and London’s roads were jammed packed with their horse-drawn, carts, wagons and vans. Nothing changes.

Rogers’ rooms appear to have aimed a little above the usual (eel) pie & mash shop, instead proudly serving plates of cold meat, chops, steak or steak and kidney pud with two veg, and not forgetting the essential large tea…and I’ll bet there weren’t any slugs in the lettuce either.

I was intrigued by the R Whites Lemonade board – Google surprised me by revealing the drink was first produced in 1845.

We’re firmly in Basilica Fields territory here; St. Mary’s station was opened by the East London Railway, and was also used by District Line trains, and is next door but one to the right. The station received a direct hit from a bomb in 1940, destroying it completely, and severely damaging the Rivoli cinema next door, and number 102 can be seen at the far right of the image.

Remarkably 102 still stands, now an Islamic book & media shop sandwiched between the Citroen garage and Alvin Lee.

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