Leeds nostalgia: Boar Lane - an old street with a new past

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This rather revealing picture of Boar Lane shows just how much that corner of the city has changed over the last 100 years.

The original picture was taken at some point during the 1920s and is looking toward the end of Boar Lane and the start of Briggate, near Duncan Street. Trams run alongside horses and carts but the streets throng, as they do now, with shoppers.

Note in particular the advertising on the sides of the buildings on opposite sides of the road. In this case, it would appear that with the advert for Schweppes Ginger Ale, one building simply was not enough, as it also took out a separate slogan on the building directly across the street.

Boar Lane itself has a long and illustrious history and over the centuries has had various spellings. In 1575 it was Bore Layne, in 1591 it was Boore Lane and even Bowre Lane just a few years later in 1594 and Ralph Thoresby referred to it as Bur Lane.

Some believe the name is derived from the Norse word ‘bor’, meaning farm or farmstead, while others believe the name came from peasants, who were locally known as ‘bore-men’ or ‘men of the borough’.

Whatever its derivation, back in 1207 when the city was founded, it was the lane which led to a new farmstead, or new part of the city.

By 1628, the street was lined with buildings and another 100 years thereafter it was considered a reputable, fashionable place to live.

If you have an old picture you would like us to feature in our ‘then and now’ blended picture column, please email it to neil.hudson@ypn.co.uk or write to Neil Hudson, Features, Yorkshire Evening Post, LS12 1BE. We will do our best to return all pictures. Please include a contact number.

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