'One of the worst slums in Watford'

Writing from Rancho Santa Margarita, in Southern California, Doreen Lung has some information about the Ballards Buildings.

She said: “Ballards Buildings on New Street were not Victorian buildings. They were built in the 1700s by Dyson's Brewery for its workers.

“The building were demolished in the 1920s.

“The buildings were one of the worst slums in Watford and many people were crowded into one home. Disease was rampant due to open cesspools and the crowded conditions.

“My parents were both born there in the early 1900s and some of my great grandparents lived there as well. They were very poor at that time.

“After the 1920s, there were some small shops and businesses on New Street before it was demolished in the 1960s to make way for the Church Car Park.

“Even though I now reside in Southern California with my children and grandchildren, I love Watford. My family, who still reside in Watford, send the Watford Observer to me here in Southern California.”

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