12 June 2023

A large Hayward Brothers coal hole cover – size really does matter

There are lots of coal hole cover plates embedded into the streets of Marylebone. A large percentage show they were manufactured by Hayward Brothers of Union Street, Southwark. At the eastern end of Devonshire Street, outside what is now the Turkish Embassy at 69 Portland Place, there is this coal hole cover plate, also made by Hayward Bros:

But look closely near the centre and see that it a 21" coal plate. I can't say that I have ever seen one of these larger formats anywhere else. To put this into context, here it is in vague proportion with a collection of other Hayward Bros cover plates in the immediate vicinity, all of which have standard 12" plates, some of them set some within a ring/rim. 

And to further illustrate the size difference, here re shots that include my lovely trainers.

Cool huh – both the large cover plate and my Nike Internationalists!   

Question is, why was this building created with just one very large access/storage point for coal rather than a long bunker under the pavement with multiple standard size plates as I have seen outside many other large properties? I suspect it was a constructed as large family home, but I don't have access to the any info as to who lived there originally. Any additional info welcome. 

For more of my posts about coal hole covers, simply click here

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Thanks, Jane