Definition of backstreet in English:



  • 1A minor street away from the main roads.

    ‘we took a short cut through the backstreets of Kings Cross’
    as modifier ‘a backstreet garage’
    • ‘Police in Lisbon have also been supplied with 100 new marked patrol cars and 70 scooters, ideal for speeding through the city's tight backstreets.’
    • ‘Still, I enjoyed our jaunt through the backstreets of Brighton with a bottle of wine in each hand, as we made our way on foot from the multi-storey car park a quarter of a mile away.’
    • ‘Then they burst from the backstreets and the alleyway onto a large empty thoroughfare.’
    • ‘We left the park and walked back via backstreets to the hotel.’
    • ‘We had to maneuver for hours, trying different fruitless backstreets, before breaking onto open highway.’
    • ‘It's got brilliant little backstreets and candy lanes of bars in attics and basements around Plaza Nueva.’
    • ‘Use of the bollard should be limited to enforcing timed restrictions on city centre roads and to very specific cases where small backstreets are made unsafe by rat-running.’
    • ‘He said people were comparing prices at top hotels in Ireland with backstreet bars in Spain and they wanted to achieve lower prices by slashing the minimum wage and raising taxes.’
    • ‘We set off through the illuminated streets of nighttime London, round Hyde Park Corner, up Piccadilly and through the backstreets of Mayfair.’
    • ‘She floated through the maze of alleys and backstreets, craning her neck, her eyes searching.’
    • ‘I walk the backstreets and gravelly car-parks for at least half an hour and fail to find a single game in progress.’
    • ‘However, that made her even more surprised when, only a few exits later, the car turned back off the thruway and into a maze of backstreets and alleys.’
    • ‘We drove through the dusty backstreets of Dangriga until we pulled up outside a sun-bleached wooden house on stilts.’
    • ‘It sounded as remarkable in person as it did on the day I had it playing on my discman, walking through the backstreets of Berlin looking for the studio in which it was recorded.’
    • ‘But also - by wandering through the lesser-known quarters, backstreets and countless minor markets - you will get a sense of the living city too.’
    • ‘Instead of giving me worn phrases I could find in travel brochures, why can't she write about the culture, the people, and backstreet nooks and crannies that elude most tourists?’
    • ‘Just 20 lads are causing mayhem stealing hundreds of cars, tearing round estate roads and then dumping the vehicles on backstreets.’
    • ‘Turn right out of Gare du Nord and it's only a short walk through the backstreets to Montmartre, a bohemian hill with spectacular views across the city.’
    • ‘Tree-lined boulevards dotted with pavement cafes and small boutiques characterise this atypical Tokyo quarter, and a maze of alleyways and backstreets happily interrupts the city's otherwise ubiquitous grid pattern.’
    • ‘I found it depressing to think of all those kids stuck, bored, in some dismal backstreet pub in London or Leysdown whilst their uninterested parents booze away hundreds of pounds.’
    1. 1.1as modifier Acting or done secretly and typically illegally.
      ‘backstreet abortions’
      • ‘She would scrap it and have us return to the old days of backstreet abortions and unwanted pregnancies for young girls.’
      • ‘Some of the desperate women who opted for backstreet abortions often had to have their uteruses surgically removed because of resulting massive infection.’
      • ‘Some twenty backstreet factories also processed large quantities of opium, which was then one of British Columbia's largest industries.’
      • ‘Not that the landed gentry would be caught dead with a Bristol glass full of backstreet gin on their persons.’
      • ‘And some women died from backstreet abortions.’
      • ‘A fighting fund of more than £100,000 has been spent to buy back spare tickets and keep them from the backstreet hustlers, whom many blame for pricing ordinary spectators out of leading sports venues.’
      • ‘You may even need to see that old bogeyman who should be long gone in Shanghai - the backstreet money changer.’
      • ‘They were extraordinary, skating without helmets or knee pads, invading empty swimming pools like backstreet bandits, brave and single-minded and uniquely talented.’
      • ‘Risky - and often fatal - backstreet abortions continue to be the only alternative for some.’
      • ‘People are forced to go to backstreet butchers if they are not being provided with the services they need.’
      • ‘The basic game will see you set up your own backstreet clinic, and people will come to you with their ailments, hoping that you will perform a set of miracles.’
      • ‘Lust was the thing that caused men to risk their jobs and families for a tawdry backstreet encounter, it's the thing that costs politicians their careers.’
      • ‘Unemployment at 70% is exacerbating poverty, prostitution, backstreet abortion and honour killing.’
      • ‘This has led to an increase in backstreet circumcisions.’
      • ‘If abortion was illegal, many women would be forced to have abortions from unqualified physicians in backstreet clinics, risking their own health.’
      • ‘When people in the North repeatedly turn out to vote for sectarian demagoguery and backstreet thuggery above all available normal democratic alternatives, then they have not delivered a verdict which needs to be respected.’
      • ‘However the use of illegal backstreet operations to remove the tumours is being slammed by the local authorities.’
      • ‘Women in Ireland don't have to resort to backstreet abortions because they can get on a plane and fly to England.’
      • ‘But having said that, it's also implicit in the film that backstreet abortionists cannot be a good thing.’