Tobacco Road was a street in Bermondsey, London near to the docks. Many of the residents of the road were dock labourers. The tenements in the street were nicknamed "Dockers Mansions".
By 1906, the Trotter family were living in one of the houses down Tobacco Road. Jack Trotter Snr and Victoria Trotter had 4 children, Edward Trotter in 1906, Albert Trotter in about 1915 and 2 other sons Jack Trotter and George Trotter.
As the road was near to the docks, ships from all over the world used to sail in the area. The local pubs and cafes were full of sailors from all over the world. Timber from Canada and bananas from Jamaica used to be unloaded off the ships onto the docks. Local resident Albert Trotter remembers the pubs and cafes being full of sailors from all over the world, and how he learned to swear in 10 different languages. He says him and his mates used to annoy their neighbours by kicking footballs up against the walls and women chased them away with their brooms.
The Trotter family were still living down Tobacco Road in the early 1930s when Albert got a job on a tramp steamer before joining the Navy. By 1936, his older brother Edward and his brood moved to Peckham, London, SE15. Albert still spent a lot of time at the docks as he met Freddie "The Frog" - Freddie Robdal there.
In the 1960s or 1970s, the rows of 100 year old terraced houses were demolished and apartments were built on the site later on.
When Albert ran away from home in January 1991 after supposedly being mugged, he returned to Tobacco Road and found it had all been torn down and replaced with apartments. He told his great nephews Del and Rodney about how the area was once full of 2 up and 2 down houses. He said how the children used to play football in the street, kick the footballs up against the walls and women would chase them away with their brooms. Del Boy said the new apartments cost an arm and a leg and he can see himself living in one when he is a millionaire. They then return to the van to go back to Peckham.
Known residents of houses down Tobacco Road
- ??-1906-1915-?? Jack Trotter Snr and Victoria Trotter (parents of Edward, Albert, Jack and George Trotter. (House number unknown)
- In He Ain't Heavy, He's My Uncle, the filming location of the posh dockside apartments which stood on the ground of the terraced houses was filmed in Wapping, East London, about 2 miles from Bermondsey, but dialogue given in the serial by Albert about his childhood suggests Tobacco Road was in Bermondsey. Also, in Rock And Chips (24 January 2010) when Albert's niece in law Joan Mavis Trotter applies for a flat, she gives Reg Trotter's birthplace as Bermondsey.