Footsteps of Paddington Pollaky

Posted by Matt Kuhns on Mar 20, 2013

Though Ignatius Paul “Paddington” Pollaky, once one of the most remarked-upon detectives in the English-speaking world, is mostly forgotten there are a few people still taking an interest, beyond my own humble efforts.

One such chronicler has thoughtfully posted a photo of the great detective’s one-time headquarters (and perhaps the third-most famous address in detective history), 13 Paddington Green, at flickr. This is particularly considerate as, per the notes on the photo, Number 13 was pulled down just in the past few years after standing proudly for at least a century and a half.

A correspondent of this blog has kindly supplied another image of the site, post-demolition:

Fare thee well, old friend

Fare thee well, old friend

A bit sad. (Though time does move on, and in fairness much of central London strikes me as almost a Monument Valley, so I can’t get too worked up about the past being carelessly discarded.)

Pollaky’s final address, meanwhile, has also been photographed and shared on the interweb, for those interested. Though IPP actually spent more time in Brighton, during his long retirement, than at Paddington Green, he apparently returned to the general area for his last rest at Kensal Green Cemetery.

I can’t help recalling one of the many memorable lines in a story of certain other much-remarked figures in Victorian London criminology, Moore and Campbell’s From Hell. “That’s all done with though. That’s all gone. All that’s left is what people can read about. Chapbooks and tombstones… chapbooks and tombstones.”

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