Very little of this next scene now remains as you stand under the new Whittle Arch and look up Hales Street towards Corporation Street. It has seen many changes throughout the 20th century; two Hippodromes and an Opera House have come and gone on the right hand side of the street and the left side now stands empty in 2004, awaiting further development. It is perhaps no longer surprising to us in Coventry that one of the only surviving buildings in this ever changing scene is also the oldest.... but only by around 600 years!
The place to which I refer, of course, is the Old Grammar School, across the road at the farthest end of the street.
Here, in a break from the usual, is a triple "now and then... and then again" set of photos, to better demonstrate the changes that have taken place: The years pictured are 1912, 1938 and 2004.
Sadly, from there on, the building saw out its final few years as a bingo hall before demolition in 2002 to make way for Millennium Place. It's a shame that the people of Coventry didn't give better support for this fine building which seated an audience of 2000, boasted one of the biggest stages in England and could easily host the most ambitious performance. I've even performed there myself, as part of the Coventry Scout Gang Show in 1977 (Silver Jubilee year) and 1978. Acts that I've watched there include Tommy Cooper, Mike Yarwood and Basil Brush in the early 70s and many Coventrians still have fond memories of the place.
In early 1901 this street would've more easily been travelled by boat, and was even reported in the London Daily Graphic at the time.