Agger Flats

Tate says that in 1569 Anger flatt was held by someone called Metcalfe. He thought the name meant “Meadowflatt”, after Anglo Saxon eng, or German ang, meaning a meadow.

The field appears as Agger Flatts on Isaac Thomson’s map of 1760, and Thomas Wilkin’s map of 1773. It was mapped as gardens in 1788. By 1820 it was owned by the Duke of Northumberland, who also owned the adjoining fields to the West and South. William Newton and John Newton were the Duke’s tenants. At the time John Lambert owned the adjoining field to the East. This was where Belvedere Terrace would later be built: between 1827 and 1847.

In another neighbouring field, Ravenslaw was built in 1896 for William Hardy. William was one of the two brothers who established the famous fishing tackle company. By then, in 1850, the railway had cut through Agger Flats, dividing it into two.

After the railway arrived the part of the field north of the line became a nursery, which was named Agger flat. In 1889 the three houses in Aydon Gardens were built at the north end of this plot.

West of the railway the neighbouring fields developed first. Duke Street and Bridge street were built in 1884 as workmen’s terraced cottages with small front-gardens, and back yards. The same type of terraced development then filled the field between Agger Flats and Wagonway Road, when the Duke of Northumberland set up a housing association in 1897 to provide homes for “bona fide” working men and their families on Queen Street.

It was 1912 before the western part of Agger Flatt was developed. Ten cottages were built as Augur Place to provide “suitable accommodation at a reasonable rent for deserving members of the working classes in receipt of Old Age Pensions“. They were said to offer “ample accommodation for old couples“. The remaining part of this field west of the railway wasn’t developed until 1936, when Aydon Crescent was built.