23 CommentsBlogfests, Photography, Sundays in My City, Travel

Did you know there was another London, besides the one in England? Well, there is, and it even has a river named The Thames running through it! Where is it? In Ontario, Canada, about 2 hours’ drive south-west of Toronto.

The Other London (in Ontario, Canada)I lived there from 1959 to 1965 and recently went back for a visit. It was beautiful then and still is, now. What I like, especially, is that it has chosen to remain relatively small for a city (under 500,0000). You don’t see any of the crazed new developments like we have here in the Toronto area – row upon row of ugly, narrow, three-story townhouses. Most homes in London are refurbished rather than torn down.

Click on images to enlarge them:

Overall, the trip back to London was enjoyable, but there was one little downside. My old house looked neglected and sad. There were cars in the driveway, so apparently, someone lives there, but the garage door was broken and rusty and the front yard severely overgrown. I didn’t take a photo, preferring to remember how it appeared when I was young.


Have you ever re-visited an old hometown?

Had it changed much, for better or worse?

Looking forward to your comments!


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Debbie D.

Canine Innkeeper in suburban Toronto, Canada, known as “The Doglady”. Writer/website owner, photographer, animal lover, music fanatic, inveterate traveller. History, literature and cinema buff. Eternal “hippie/rockchick”. Binational, German/Canadian and multilingual. Looking for the next adventure!

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    1. Yes, the old house was a disappointment, but the rest is still beautiful. 🙂 Thanks for the nomination! Apologies for my late response, but I’ve been spending more time offline these days.

  1. Some neat architecture in those photos, DEBBIE.
    Too bad about your former residence.

    I’ve gone back many times to visit my former neighborhoods and I always enjoy that walk down Amnesia Lane.

    The last time I visited the house in which the majority of my “growing up years” took place, it was the opposite of your experience. I was raised in a lower income neighborhood in a cramped box-like house. The new owner had done so much renovation that I LITERALLY would never have recognized it. It now looked like a bright yellow, miniature French chateau or something.

    The owner was super-cool and let us tour the inside. It was amazing to see the bedroom from my teenage years. It was now a wine cellar. I kid you not!

    ~ D-FensDogG
    Ferret-Faced Fascist Friends

  2. Debbie,

    I haven’t been to my hometown in a long time. There’s really no need for us to go since my parents (they live in south western VA) moved a year after we got married and when we travel to southern WV it’s to visit my FIL. Things have changed. The old schools we attended are no longer standing. The county built a super school that now houses what once two rival schools, Iaeger High School – our old school and Big Creek High. This just seemed so odd. The new school looks cold and impersonal, almost like a correction facility without the fence. Glad you got to revisit your old hometown. It looks lovely.

  3. I still live in my hometown. But occasionally, I drive by grandma’s old place just to see if the house that built me is still standing. It is, but only barely. That old evergreen she planted – the one they said would never last in the desert – now hides the house from immediate view from the street!
    Love those pics, so pretty. The wall mural is beautiful.
    By the way, one of your blogs actually prompted me to create a bucket list!

  4. London is actually a beautiful city overall and I would like to revisit it again. I think it is often best not to revisit ones old digs because it brings back memories…good and bad. My hubby grew up( one of his spots) in Port Colborne and had fond memories of spending time with his grandparents. The home was older but nicely kept but now it is horrible…the people living there have left things derelict with kids toys outside and crooked stairs with one plank broken. Weeds and garbage out front and a blanket hanging in the window.yuck.

  5. I knew there’s a London, Texas USA, but I didn’t know about the one in Canada. It’s lovely that the river is also the Thames! Do you say it the same way?

    My biped says it was quite sad when she visited the village where she was born. Her great-grandfather’s garden that she enjoyed playing in had become a small housing estate.

  6. I certainly know of London, ON though I’m not certain that I’ve been there other than passing through. For some reason our tours never got booked in London. Looks like a great city.

    I’ve visited most of the houses where I’ve lived. Some more than once over a period of many years. They actually didn’t look too bad for the most part. One of them in Pittsburgh, PA looked run down and abandoned when I visited in about 1978, but later in 2014 it showed much improvement as the owners must have done a lot of refurbishing. My wife and kids all tease me about wanting to visit my old home places, but it brings back so many memories when I do.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  7. I have visited my old hometown on several occasions. The house where I spent my high school years is exactly the same as it was when I lived there. Really: we sold it after Mom died and the new owners haven’t done a thing with it, except presumably maintenance on the inside. The neighborhood in Chicago where Mary grew up and we lived for ten years has really deteriorated.

  8. Loved seeing the pictures of “the other London”. Great corner shots! Looks like a beautiful and fun place to live. I’d like to check out the Urban Saloon! 🙂 That had to break your heart when you saw your old house being neglected. I can imagine.
    Thanks for sharing!

  9. I was aware of London, Ontario, but didn’t know it was such a nice place. A number of years ago I visited Topeka, Kansas, where I lived from age eight to twenty. I drove by the house in which I grew up. I couldn’t believe how tiny it was. Recently I found it online because it is for sale. It’s actually smaller than the Florida bungalow I live in now. I don’t know how we lived there without killing each other. One bathroom for six people plus we had frequent weekend guests.


  10. We took the kids to London once on vacation. There was a children’s theme park with nursery rhyme characters in the area. We then drove on to Amish country. Nice trip.

    1. Storybook Gardens in Springbank Park! I used to love going there as a kid. 😀 The Amish area around St. Jacob is beautiful too. Thanks for coming by, Denise.

  11. Who says, you can’t go home again? Of course you can, just so long as all you are doing is passing through.

    The last time I drove through my old neighborhood, everything seemed smaller… the roads, the businesses, the houses, the life expectancy…

    1. I went home to Germany and that was a good experience as well. 🙂 London is beautiful, except for the sorry state of our old house and a few seedy areas which are easy to avoid. If only it were closer to Toronto, I wouldn’t mind living there again. 🙂 Sounds like your old neighbourhood is dying out, Myke. That’s always sad.

  12. How interesting Debbie. They say it’s seldom a good idea to return to houses that we once lived in , especially those homes we grew up in. Our memories are truly better. We woke up to the dreadful news … once again ….. in London. I’m sure ‘your’ London is a safer place.

    1. It was disappointing to see my old house in such disrepair. 🙁 Much different experience when I went back to Germany. Both my home and that of my grandparents had been beautifully refinished. Yes, we watched the news story about yesterday’s attack in London, England. How sad! 🙁 Our London is definitely much safer, as is Canada, in general. So glad to be living here!

  13. Hi Debby – I knew about London and the Thames … and oddly enough recently saw film put on by our Underground Theatre about Canadian Ned Hanlan – a world sculler in the late 1800s – who came from Toronto … but the film used London and the Thames in Canada to film some of the river work! The film is called “The Boy in Blue” …

    It does sound wonderful that it hasn’t over developed … but sad to read about your house – always difficult to go back … cheers Hilary