History of Old Roar Road


Early mention of “Old Roar” is made by John Stell in his Hastings Guidebook, published in 1794, which refers to a fall of water known as “Old Roar” in the middle of a thick wood, which could be reached by passing through the Hop Gardens (now Alexandra Park). This is the waterfall that can be seen from the footpath running from Old Roar Road to Ghyllside Avenue. Although now only a trickle, except when in spate, this was one of the sights of Hastings in the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

In 1864 George Clement bought an estate of some 179 acres (Silverhill Farm) which was to be laid out for building. The northern part of it was reserved for houses standing in extensive grounds and lies on either side of Old Roar Road which is private and is maintained at the expense of the frontagers and other users.

As the grounds of the Victorian mansions were gradually split up for further development, each smaller property became responsible for the upkeep of the road. For a century and a half Old Roar Road has remained in private ownership and the only public right of way is on foot. In 2004 the road was purchased by a group of residents. The road remains owned entirely by them.