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Plaque to Honour A-Z Maps Creator

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The BBC has a short story about a plan to unveil a plaque in Southwark, a neighbourhood of London, in honour of Phyllis Pearsall who walked 3,000 miles in an effort to map the streets of London in the mid 1930s. Pearsall went on to found the A to Z Map Company, a producer of popular street maps in the U. K. From the Southwark Council website:
“(Phyllis Pearsall) spent the first few years of her bizarre and often traumatic childhood in Court Gardens Lane. By the time she was 15 her father was bankrupt and had abandoned his family. Her mother and stepfather had turned her out on the streets and she’d moved to France to live the Bohemian life with her artist brother.”

“The idea that changed her life came to her a few days after her 29th birthday after she returned to London and became lost trying to find the homes of people whose portraits she had been commissioned to paint. Within days, she had taken to the streets - all 23,000 of them - determined to sketch, index and publish them. Despite scepticism and ridicule, the A-Z was on the bookshelves of WH Smith in 1936.”

“Today, the company publishes over 250 titles ranging from street maps and atlases to large scale plans of towns and cities.”

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