Beyond Lamb House, turn left into Mermaid Street. This Argentina Map steeply cobbled street has little sympathy for wheelchair or pushchair users (I write from experience!) but Argentina Map if you are not Benson-ed out, you may wish to know that this was Porpoise Street of the Mapp & Lucia books, with the first house on the left being a dentist’s surgery and Hartshorn House further down on the right-hand side being Wyses. The Mermaid Inn is arguably the most eye-catching building on the street.
It was bought in 1913 by the mother of the writer Richard Aldington who, as a result of his wartime experiences, produced his powerful anti-war novel Death Of A Hero in 1929. Marguerite Radclyffe Hall spent some time lodging at The Mermaid whilst waiting for The Black Boy in the High Street to be ready. On the other side of the road the fine Jeake’s House was, during the Depression years, the home of Conrad Aiken, an American poet, short-story writer and novelist.
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