Osborn Road

The name Osborne is used all other the south coast, but in this instance the Osborn (note the spelling) is Charles Osborn, who owned and developed the land. He saw that his named lived on both in this street and in Osborn Road South, which was originally named Charles Street.

Osborn Road perspectiveThe street is designed to give a view of the church - foliage permitting!

Before it was built in the 1840s, there was a path down to the church which still connects to Trinity Street today.

It starts where Wickham Road meets the High Street (the right turn ban here being an attempt to push exiting traffic on to Wallington Way) and snakes around St Peter and St Paul's Church. The terraced housing here is an early 20th Century addition, alongside a much newer property. The Ashcroft Art Centre was once the Fareham County Primary School (a girls' boarding school which cost 2p a day), which it served as until the 1990s. Archery Lane, and the double bend here and at Church Path, provides evidence of what would have been the path to and around the church.

From here it joints its true course, which is aligned to give a good view of the church building. The gap between the road and the path made for large plots of land on which large houses were developed, although not all immediately. The first two to open were vicarages for the church. On the south side, the land was left bare for allotments. Tennis courts were later placed here before the whole area gave way to Fareham's grand redevelopment plans in the 1970s, which saw this area turned in to car parking. The Osborn Road Multi-Storey car park was the first in Fareham to charge for its use, at 5p an hour. Locals claimed that no-one would use it, they were quite wrong, but it has seen better days. In fact the wide opening around the entrance to the car park, as well as the various car parks in the area, are signs that after it first opened in 1975, people would have queued all across town from all over Hampshire in order to reach it.

Palmerston Drive (named after the Palmerston Forts on the hill) was built in the 1920s. Some sort of house which was at the end of it doesn't seem to have been around for long, being swallowed up as part of the shopping centre complex. Westbury Road, now partly renamed as Westbury Path, once extended slightly north to meet the aforementioned church footpath, which, by the 20th Century, was being consumed by Harrison Road. Westborn Road, with its link through to Westbury Path, was built at the same time as Palmerston Road.

Here, the road would have turned sharply south, avoiding a line of houses by Prospect Place. With Charles Street being absorbed as part of Osborn Road, in 1959 the extension to Osborn Road and the remaining leftover became Osborn Road South. The vacant land north of here was eventually succumbed to car parking, while a nursery here shrank down but stayed on site until well in to the 1990s. The closure of the Trinity Brewery, and general redevelopment of Trinity Street in the 1960s, left a lot of space which was used by amenities such as the garden of remembrance and the United Reformed Church.

Aside from a few late 19th Century houses at the southern end, there is little to report on Osborn Road South. Osborn Cottage was one of these, which went on to become the police station and court house. The original police station still survives with the former sergeant's upstairs rooms clearly visible. In the 1940s houses were added along the eastern edge of the street, while the western edge was bounded mostly by gardens. These were briefly sold off to create more houses.

Malthouse Lane was built in the 1960s, and with little detail on its purpose we can only assume it was like it is today, to provide car parking. The street name has been referred to before, as a street paved entirely with malthouse tiles, but finding evidence for it is difficult - it appears to have once been a shortcut down to West Street.

The completion of Osborn Road paved the way for the creation of Fareham's one way system, which could have been immediately or a few years afterwards (instinctively I would say it wasn't done until Western Way opened, possibly when the shopping centre did). The traffic lights at the end of the road were likely to have been added in 1965.