Tally-ho! – The truth behind the name

Tally Ho Corner in the 1880s. Courtesy of Barnet Local Studies

Did you know that Tally-ho! Corner as a place name was started around 1876 by members of cycling clubs and The London Bicycle Club in particular?

Residing some distance apart, our meeting place depended upon the destination of particular excursion. … On Such occasions we pursued different routes until reaching North End Finchley, where the Finchley Road leading up from Regent’s Park Joins the main North Road from Highgate. P. would come by the one and I by the other, and as our arrangements necessitated frequent allusion to this important point we found the absence of any special and distinctive name for it considerably hamper our reference thereto. It was on one of these occasions that P., sitting down to address me the usual post card, and being pressed for time and space found the long-winded phrase, “Junction of North and Finchley roads,” pall upon him more than usual. Considering it inconsistent with the eternal fitness of things that so definite a spot should possess so indefinite a name, he made one desperate effort at nomenclature, and “Tally-ho! Corner” was the result. …Owning to the fixtures of the London Bicycle Club being published in Bicycling papers, the name assigned this spot soon became the general property of bicyclists; and that some distinctive title was required by the residents is evidenced by the fact that the name has been generally adopted upon the road, and that the landlord of the hotel standing at the angle formed by the two roads now gives effect to the general acceptance of the term by erecting conspicuously over his door the words “Tally ho! Corner”

Le Voyageur, in The Country Gentleman 4th December 1880.