Story of Houghton Regis street names revealed in Sarah’s new book

A new book unveiling the history of Houghton Regis’s street names will be launched at the town library next Monday.

‘Up Above The Streets And Houses’ chronicles the weird and wonderful origins of many of Houghton Regis’s most familiar street names.

It has been written by Sarah Gelsthorp, who has worked as a communications officer for the town council for 13 years.

Sarah, 38, said: “What first got me interested was some of the minutes back from 1964which mentioned Fred Alsop who took part in three Olympic games, and how they named Alsop Close after him.

“There have been all sorts of very interesting stories. One that I read was about historic artifacts found at Easthill Farm in the 1950s which Central Beds Council has a file on.”

In the book, Sarah uncovered a host of little-known facts such as a Second World War cooking depot located on Easthill Road and Victorian business women who owned premises at Bedford Road

Sarah said: “I collated the street names used in previous town publications. Then, about a year ago, the head of the Houghton Regis Heritage Society asked if I was going to do anything with them and so I came up with the book.

“Houghton Regis is actually in the Domesday Book so it’s got a much longer history than a lot of people realise.”

Sarah is keen to keep references to the town’s past alive, and has submitted names to be considered for a new development at Bedford Road.

Even the Dunstable Gazette makes a cameo appearance in the book.

Sarah said: “The Gazette was ever so helpful! I was in the library going through old papers.

“I spoke to former editors Geoff Cox and John Buckledee and one of the articles printed in the book is about the finds at Easthill Farm.”

‘Up Above The Streets And Houses’ will have its official launch for members of the public at Houghton Regis Library on Monday, October 12 from 7.30pm.