[Tagging] Road hierarchy

Paul Allen pla16021 at gmail.com
Tue Aug 6 14:42:06 UTC 2019

On Tue, 6 Aug 2019 at 15:16, Philip Barnes <phil at trigpoint.me.uk> wrote:

[Back alleys]

> They have these where I used to visit my grandmother in South Wales,

All over the UK, I suspect.  If you're old enough to remember the early
days (late 60s/
early 70s) of "Coronation Street" the houses on the street had a back alley
and most
still had outside toilets although many had upgraded to indoor sanitation.

> called Gullies locally (excuse spelling, have never seen it written)

I'd not even heard it.  And if I had I'd have spelled it completely
differently.   Because,
after some digging, I see they're called gulleys but pronounced "goleys."
In fact, that digging
shows these things are all over the UK, with different names, although we
can only
conjecture their original purpose.


> As you say, people use them to access garages and back in the 70s and 80s
> a tipper lorry would come around every few weeks and  tip a pile of coal
> outside the gates of miners and retired miners.

Ah, I'd forgotten about coal deliveries.  Along with an outside toilet
there was often a coal
house, and you wouldn't want people carrying coal or night soil through
your house to/from
those.  Coal because it might spill.  Night soil because of the smell,
whether it spilled or

That made the garages inaccessible for a few hours until the coal was moved.

Garages were an afterthought, though.  You'd have moved the coal into the
coal house long
before morning when your outhouse was emptied.

I'm not saying that was the original purpose of all the alleys we map, but
if the houses are
of a certain age, in a slightly-more gentrified part of a town, that was
probably why they were

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