MYSTERY surrounds a Plymouth street with two ‘missing’ houses.
Stangray Avenue, in Mutley, has a total of 72 houses along the terraced street, but there are two house numbers missing – number four and number 24.
The reason why has perplexed Plymouth City Council, Royal Mail and the Land Registry, with no record of either house ever being built.
A spokeswoman from Plymouth City Council said: “Curiouser and curiouser! I am afraid we are mystified too!
“Our staff checked the old books and maps and it has always been the case. If you find out let us know!”
So where did they go?
Many residents on the street hadn’t noticed they were missing, but were soon left scratching their heads about why they weren’t there.
Jenni Brady, who lives in number 16, said: “I’ve never even noticed. How strange. I can’t believe that, what a mystery.”
Avril Jenkins, from number 17, hadn’t noticed either. She said: “How unusual. I never even realised. Very peculiar.”
But Andrea Lynch has lived in number 26 for 40 years. She said the houses were 110 years old, and had always thought number 22 was larger than the other homes.
“They were all made to how people wanted them. Maybe the original owners of number 22 wanted it bigger and there wasn’t enough space for Number 24?
“I haven’t seen another road like that, but it’s nice, it’s unusual.”
There are tales as old as time about the number 13 being unlucky for some.
In Plymouth City Council’s guide to street naming and numbering it acknowledges the ongoing issues surrounding number 13.
It states: “Number 13 is always omitted when numbering developments as over the years there have been requests to the council to renumber properties that were originally numbered 13.”
But at Stangray Avenue, number 13 is present and correct.
So what’s wrong with number four and 24?
In China, number four is considered unlucky. However, on Mutley’s Stangray Avenue, number 14, 34, 44, 54, and 64 can all be accounted for.
If the residents would like the houses to be renumbered it may take some time.
The council guide to renumbering a street states that if more than 10 properties need to be renumbered it is a “major scheme”.
It says that to do that it would be necessary for the street naming and numbering officer to consult the respective ward councillors for their views on the proposals.
Also that at least two thirds of the householders must be in agreement with the proposed renumbering scheme for it to proceed or if less than two thirds a decision to renumber can be made by the cabinet member.
But Despite the number conundrum, none of the residents were in a hurry to renumber the street, so until then, the mystery goes on.
Do you have a street with a difference? Email firstname.lastname@example.org with more strange street goings on.
HOW ARE STREET NAMES AND NUMBERS DECIDED?
THE street naming and numbering process, compiled by Plymouth City Council, outlines the reasoning behind how our streets are named and numbered.
The council states that all new street names should end with terminal words such as Road, Street, Avenue, Drive, Lane, Place, Gardens and Way.
A Terrace is for a terrace of houses, but not a subsidiary name within another road. This practice was ceased many years ago at the request of emergency services and Royal Mail due to the difficulties associated with trying to locate named properties quickly.
In terms of the numbering protocols, houses are always numbered with odd numbers on the left side of the road, when entering from the principal road, and even numbers on the right.
Where a cul-de-sac is developed, the numbering should be consecutive and in a clockwise direction.
If the development is an infill site and there are no spare numbers within the sequence, then letters will be suffixed to the numbers such as 10A or 10B.
Number 13 is always omitted when numbering developments as over the years there have been requests to the council to renumber properties that were originally numbered 13.
There are only certain occasions when each title can be used. Crescent can only be used for a crescent-shaped road, whereas Close can only be used for a cul-de-sac. Also Square can only be used for a square shaped road and Hill can, obviously only be used for a road on a hill.