Ratcliffe Highway

Ratcliffe  Highway, now known as The Highway, was a notoriously tough area of bawdy houses, pubs, rough lodgings and ship’s chandlers, south of the Thames in Stepney. The song was collected by George Gardiner from Isaac Hobbes, of Micheldever (a more serene place in Hampshire) in June 1906.

The atmospheric paintings, better seen full-size, are by John Atkinson Grimshaw.

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