Ups and Downs

Scribble300I was dipping into my Bradshaw’s Guide to the Victorian railways, as featured in Michael Portillo’s excellent Great British Railway Journeys on BBC2, when I got to a section on the London, Brighton & South Coast line where it describes passing the Crystal Palace. What a fantastic sight is must have been as you approached it – especially on a glorious sunny day! But I digress. That journey includes Croydon, and here Bradshaw’s discusses the origin of the name and says the ‘don’ part comes from Downs, meaning a range of hills (as in the South Downs). This has always puzzled me, because surely if anything a range of hills should be called ‘Ups’?!

The answer is apparently that the word ‘Downs’ comes from the old English word Dune/Dun meaning hill. Problem solved.

Good old Bradshaw!

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About ramblesofawriter

Writer, thinker, tea drinker.
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4 Responses to Ups and Downs

  1. I love it when i come across Bradshaw when reading Sherlock Holmes. I too really like the TV programme. Good viewing

  2. It is. I’d like to do a Bradshaw’s trip myself one day!

  3. chloefb says:

    I always wondered about that too. Now I know! There are lots of ‘downs’ around here that are all tops of hills!

  4. I suppose every up must have a down, when you think about it. I might put that on my other blog…

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