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High Road, Vange, Shops, Houses, Businesses & Public Buildings

Shops, Businesses, Housing and Public Buildings: 1890s-1980s (North Side)

1) The Barge public house to the railway bridge

Shops, Businesses, Housing and Public Buildings: 1890s-1980s (South Side)

2) Clay Hill Road (formerly Timberlog Lane) junction to the railway bridge

Please note: These are work in progress.

     The first shops began to open in the High Road in the 1800s. Some shops were built in groups while others stood alone and it was not uncommon for the shopkeeper/s and their family to live above or within the premises.

     The High Road at Vange is unrecognisable to how it looked in its heyday when almost the entire length had some form of development providing a public service.

     The popularity of the High Road as a shopping centre probably peaked around the 1950s or early 1960s, as, following Basildon's designation as a new town, the High Road in its present form was not part of the eventual 'Master Plan' for Vange, and this left traders with a very uncertain future. Some closed altogether, while others like Stewards moved to the main town centre at Basildon around 1959 when the first shop units were ready for use.

     Basildon Development Corporation's housing estates that formed part of the 'Master Plan' for Basildon New Town changed the High Road beyond all recognition including, in the early 1970s, the re-routing of the A13, which from its inception had run through the heart of Vange to Pitsea and beyond.

     Today, the former Barge public house (closed in 2015) and Vange and Pitsea Working Mans Club are the only surviving pre-new town buildings along either side of this entire length of road.

Page added: 2009

Text researched and written by William Cox, 2009 with revisions and additions 2009-2013.
Copyright © 2009-2013, B. Cox - Basildon History Online. All rights reserved.
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