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Ross-on-Wye

Alton Street

Alton Street, Ross-on-Wye, runs from Copse Cross Street right down around the south side of the town where the road changes direction to run up the east side of the town where it becomes Alton Road. This then runs on until it meets Gloucester Road. The names "Alton Street" and "Alton Road" come from "Old Town Street" and "Old Town Road" and these were the original main roads into and out of the town in the middle ages.

The start of Alton Street looking across Copse Cross Street.

The start of Alton Street
Looking east down the start of Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

The Workhouse and Community Hospital

Alton Street is home to the Ross Community Hospital and Alton Street Doctors Surgery that moved here in 1997 when the Cottage Hospital on Gloucester Road closed.

Ross Union Workhouse
The front of the Ross Workhouse on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

This used to be the site of the Ross Work House. There were two workhouses on this site. The first one was built somewhere around 1788 and in 1834 there were 18 adults and 5 children housed in there. This was then demolished and the second workhouse was built around 1850 to house up to 200 people.

In an 1881 census there were 147 people living there made up from the Master and Mistress of the Workhouse, a nurse, a teacher and a porter and around 65 female and 77 male 'inmates'. These were aged from around 5 months to 84 years old, were a mixture of married and unmarried people doing various trades. There were also 7 'idiots' and 1 'imbecile' in residents because the workhouse also housed the mentally ill.


More details on the Ross Workhouse and its residents can be found [ here ].

After the workhouse closed in 1930, it became the Poor Law Institution and subsequently several other Institutions until in 1948 it became the Alton Street Hospital and then the Dean Hill Hospital which in 1976 had 113 beds and was used as a home for people with old age related problems during the 1970's and early 1980's. In fact, my grandfather was a resident for a while. It then closed and was eventually redeveloped into the Ross Community Hospital and Alton Street Doctors Surgery, as seen below, which opened in 1997.

The Ross Community Hospital and Alton Street Doctors Surgery on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

This map extract, show the Ross Poor Law Institution on Alton Street as it was in 1937. The red highlights are the buildings on the site and the blue line, just visible at the bottom left, show the remaining frontage that can be seen on Alton Street today.

For old photos click here.

Poor Law Institution Ross-on-Wye
The Poor Law Institution, Alton Street
Reproduced from the 1937 Ordnance Survey map. Crown copyright

House on Alton Street
House on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

This house is adjoined to the end of The Harp public house and in the 1950s/1960s was occupied by Mr.Seaborne and his wife.


The Harp

Harp Inn
Site of the "Harp" on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

The site of what was "The Harp" which was one of the only pubs on Alton Street. It was originally accessed from a main entrance that opened straight onto the street that has since been closed up.

When the pub ceased trading the landlord was Mr Jack Hadaway and he remained there for a time after the closure.


The view west back up Alton Street from the junction with Kent Avenue. These houses, called Gable Cottages, were built in around 1912.

View west on Alton Street
The view west on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

Site of doctors surgery
The site of the old doctors surgery
(Click for a larger image)

This building was the site of the old doctors surgery on Alton Street. It was run by Mr. Marner Lloyd and although he was known as 'Doctor' he was actually a 'Mr' as he was a respected surgeon in London but unfortunately he lost his hearing and so became a G.P. in Ross. He worked at the practice with his wife, Dr. Jean Lloyd, and Dr. Jones Roberts. Mr. Lloyd used to do some surgery in Ross as he used to operate when people had appendicitis or to remove tonsils. Mrs. Lloyd used to ride a Corgi motorbike around the town and it was regularly to be seen parked up when she was doing house calls and shopping etc.

Corgi motorbikes were the kind that the armed forced used to jump out of airplanes with so they were small, light and above all distinctive. More details on Corgi motorbikes can be found [ here].


I have heard stories of the dangers of these ex-doctors steps. Several people are known to have come out of the surgery and fallen down the steps, resulting in various injuries such as broken legs and arms resulting in Mr. Lloyd coming out of the surgery and having to help them.

When they retired, they had a bungalow along Merrival Lane built.

Doctors steps on Alton Street
The doctors steps
(Click for a larger image)

The house of Mr. Lloyd
The house where Mr. Lloyd lived
(Click for a larger image)

This building in the middle of the shot, which is now flats, was Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd's house.

The field behind the house is known as Doctor Lloyds field.


The view west along Alton Street from outside Alton Lodge.

Another view west of Alton Street
The view west on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

Alton Lodge
Alton Lodge on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

This is Alton Lodge and it is probably the most grand house on Alton street.

The house next door used to be owned by Mr. Onion.


The view east along Alton Street from outside Alton Lodge looking down from the brow of the hill.

Another view east on Alton Street
The view east on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

Houses on Alton Street
Houses on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

Houses on Alton Street looking back up hill from just below the point where Chase Road joins Alton Street.


This building is "Alton House" and this also used to be a doctors surgery and it was owned by Dr. Middlecoat.

Alton House
Alton House on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

Alton Street houses
Houses on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

Houses on Alton Street and the point where Merrivale Lane joins Alton Street.


The view looking west up the hill from the junction with Merrivale Lane. Behind the houses on Alton Street, called Woodview Cottages, is the grounds of the Chase Hotel.

Alton Street Ross-on-Wye
Houses on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

The bottom of Alton Street
Houses on Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

Houses on Alton Street.


The view back up Alton Street from the bottom of the hill around the fish ponds area. The junction to the right is where Chaseside meets Alton Street.

The view west back up Alton Street
(Click for a larger image)

These are views from Penyard Lane at the bottom of the hill, around the fish ponds area, where ALton Street becomes Alton Road. The left hand shot is looking back west up Alton Street and the right one is along Alton Road towards the area where the road changes from running east - west to running north - south.

Views along Alton Street from Penyard Lane
(Click for a larger image)



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[Page updated: Mar 01 2014 22:42:10]






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