Saturday, 13 April 2013


A to Z Challenge – travels round Leicester with my camera No 12.

As many of the buildings I've been photographing are ‘listed’ I thought I’d just explain briefly what the term means.

The listing of buildings began during World War II as a way of deciding which buildings should be rebuilt if they were damaged by bombing. After the war The Town and Country Planning Act of 1947 led to the compilation of the first list of buildings of special historical or architectural interest.

In England the list is kept by English Heritage but other parts of the UK also have similar systems for designating important buildings. Listing does not guarantee that a building will never be altered or demolished but it must be taken into account when making planning decisions.

There are three categories of listed buildings:

Grade I – buildings of exceptional interest. Very rare.

Assembly Rooms, Hotel Street. 1792. Architect J. Johnson of Leicester.

Grade II* – buildings that are particularly important with more than special interest.

Engineering Building, University of Leicester (1961-63) by James Stirling and James Gowan.

Grade II – buildings that are nationally important and of special interest. Most listed buildings are Grade II.

Top: Petrol filling station canopies, Loughborough Road (Red Hill), late 1960s by Eliot Noyes for Mobil. The pumps aren’t included in the designation. This picture was kindly leant me by a friend. The canopies have since been repainted.

Middle (l-r): Former weighbridge office, now a taxi station, centre of the road in Humberstone Gate. Mid to late nineteenth century, Gothic style building.

Lancaster Road Fire Station, 1925-27. Designed by A.E. and T. Sawday.

Two type K6 Telephone boxes outside the station on London Road. Designed 1935 by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott.

Bottom (l-r): Leicester Prison Gatehouse. 1825-8 by William Parsons the County Surveyor, with addition of 1844-6 by M.J. Dain.

Shop premises, Granby Street. 1930s by Symington, Prince and Pike.


  1. Wonderful photographs and interesting subjects for A to Z! Have fun with the rest of the challenge.

    Jenny at <a href=">Choice City Native</a>

  2. Thanks for this little lesson! I made it to England (London and Southampton, for a conference at the university there) for the first time two years ago. It's so interesting, because while in the US, we talk a ton about WWII, and how the US was in WWII, we weren't *in* WWII in the same way. Thinking about things like this, and seeing buildings or seeing the notes about how they were rebuilt after the bombings really gives me a lot of perspective that is just utterly missing on this side of the pond.

    1. Thanks for commenting. Buildings across Britain were lost in the war (I believe Southampton suffered quite badly) but a lot more were destroyed in the mad dash to modernise afterwards war especially during the sixties when the car became king.

  3. Blunts Hoes makes me laugh whenever I pass it - that's one sign you'd think they'd be itching to fix! Great post :)

  4. That's a wonderful post and information. :)

    -Fellow blogger from A to Z!

  5. Very interesting. I learned something new today. Glad I stopped in. I wondered how some buildings were spared, rebuilt, or demolished. Love those British phone booths!

    Play off the Page

    1. Thanks. Telephone boxes are becoming a bit of a rarity.

  6. Very interesting. Great pictures! New follower here. I'm stopping by from the "A to Z" challenge and I look forward to visiting again.


  7. Fabulous post again Sally, its like a local history lesson. When are you getting your 'Blue Badge?'

  8. Hi,
    I’ve found your blog thanks to the A to Z Challenge, and am enjoying it immensely (today's lesson was particularly good for an American living in England!). So much so, that in order to help some of my readers find you as well, I’ve nominated you for a Liebster award in my post at You are free to accept or not, I just wanted my little corner of the world to know what has caught my eye lately. ☺