Monday, 12 November 2012

Burnt Oak Brook. Mill Hill

Burnt Oak Brook
The brook flows south west

Post to the north Mill Hill
Post to the west Watling Estate

Blundell Road
The road followed the northern boundary of Hendon Aerodrome

Bunns Lane
Bridge under Watford Way.  Bunns Lane passes under the A2/A41 and on its southern side is another arch which took the defunct Mill Hill/ Edgware railway and later the, also defunct, motorway slip from the M1.  On the east side of the bridge a staircase ascends to Watford Way
Bridge under M1
120 Churchill House. Former government building built 1958 which has housed both the Inland Revenue and been a Job Centre. Single storey Lyndhurst House built 1952 adjoins.
A s
hort section of formation of the ex railway is visible through the trees at the back – and the line would have passed under the Midland Main Line at this point. The clearing used for parking is on the north side of what would have been the trackbed.
Bunns Lane Bridge. This was the bridge which crossed the Edgware/Mill Hill railway and was originally built in 1867. Beneath it lie the buried remains of what was to be the new Mill Hill (The Hale) platforms built as part of the never finished Northern Line extension. Some traces of the work done for this could be seen until the 1990s on the westbound side. Later the trackbed below was filled in with motorway debris, road improvements in 1960's realigned the road and the both arches were bricked up following housing built east of the bridge in the 1990s. The bridge thus remains an isolated structure. 
Site of Mill Hill (The Hale) Station. This dated from 1906 and was built by the Great Northern Railway on their line between Finsbury Park and Edgware.  It consisted of a wooden platform east of Bunns Lane but near enough to provide an interchange with Mill Hill Broadway Station. Wooden steps went from the road to the platforms. In 1910 some timber buildings were provided on site. In 1928, under London Transport it was renamed ‘Mill Hill for the Hale’. As part of the New Works programme the electric conductor rail reached the station, a second platform was built and the existing platform extended. In 1939 the facilities were closed but there was a replacement bus service for which you could get tickets at Mill Hill Broadway Station – and this continued into the 1960s. In 1941 the new second line was removed and the existing line curtailed for use only with the goods depot.   Special platforms built in 1938 for the never opened LT service remained there into the 1990s.  The eastbound side was totally hidden under motorway construction debris.
Goods yard. This was south east of the station and was opened in 1910 with two sidings on the upside. More sidings were provided in the 1930s for materials used in the construction of the LCC’s Watling Estate. The Goods Depot was served by steam hauled stock until 1961 and was closed in 1964.
Bunn's Farm. This was part of the site bought in 1924 by the London County Council for the Watling Estate.
Featherstone Farm. This lay south of Bunn's Lane east of Watford Way between the railway.
Woodcroft Park
Watling Estate.  London County Council Railway line for materials during the construction process. They used locomotive Hendon.

Courtgate Close
Built on the site of tennis courts

Eversfield Gardens
Trinity United Reform church. Methodist and United Reform. This was originally Watling Congregational Church opened in 1938. The church is a plain brick hall. In 1972 it joined the United Reformed Church and in 2001 merged with Union Congregational Church, Mill Hill and St James United Reform Church to form Trinity United Reform Church.

Flower Lane
Mill Hill Industrial Estate. This is partly on the site of Bunn's Farm. Opened in 1983.
Rail depot entrance which had a weigh bridge at the entrance. Partly covers the site of the current industrial estate
Railway bridge in red brick, sited where the road joined Bunn's Lane. In the named 1970s the road was remodelled and no longer crossed by this bridge, which was demolished in the 1980s

Goldbeaters Grove
Goldbeaters Farm. This stood roughly at the top end of Goldbeaters Grove. The farm dated from at least the 14th century and Goldbeater was probably a family name. It was acquired by the London County Council and demolished for housing.
Woodcroft Junior and Infants School.  Before 1965 Hendon, was the education authority with Middlesex County Council providing the secondary schools.  Thus school was built in 1928 fir junior and senior girls by H A. Welch in an Arts and Crafts tradition.

Grahame Park Way
Mill Hill Cricket, Hockey and Squash Club. Due to close and be replaced by Orion School. The Club had the sports pavilion built and laid out the cricket square in the 1970s but from 2008 it has been the Really Fine Leisure Mill Hill Ltd.

Lyndhurst Park
The park was laid out as part of the amenities for the Watling Estate.
Remains of the new Mill Hill (The Hale) platforms lie on the north side of the park – a 50 yard stretch of platform edge. These were partially constructed for the never built Northern Line extension. A line of trees shield a stretch the site of the old line as a wilderness. This stretch of defunct line was originally intended to be a ‘green walk’; however it is now managed by the London Wildlife Trust as a nature reserve. It has vegetation typical of old railways, recent woodland and scrub with grassy glades. Unusually the reserve supports slow-worm.

Station Road
Mill Hill Broadway Station. This lies between Elstree and Boreham Wood and Hendon on the Thameslink Line. The station was built by the Midland Railway and called "Mill Hill" in 1868 being renamed in 1950. It was rebuilt in the 1960s as part of the construction of the M1 motorway. Some platform alterations were made here for the proposed Northern Line which would have passed close by.

Watford Way
This section of the road is a joint A1/A41. It follows an alignment began in the late 1920's, that took the A1 west to avoid Finchley and Barnet, through Hendon. It was built with wide verges along most of the length, spacious junctions and areas set aside for later widening. It made access to the new suburban areas easier for residents with motor cars.
553 London University Observatory. In 1925 University of London was offered a telescope which had been owned by Dr. W. E. Wilson, FRS. It was built by Grubb of Dublin in 1881 and was in Ireland. A site in Mill Hill Park was leased from Hendon Urban District Council to lease a site in Mill Hill Park and the Observatory was funded by various schools of the University. The building was designed by L. Rome Guthrie and built by Leslie and Co. in reinforced concrete.  It was opened by the Astronomer Royal, Sir Frank Dyson, in 1929.  In 1930 another building was erected to house a refractor presented by H.R. Fry of Barnet. In 1934 the Radcliffe Observatory Trustees offered the University an astrographic refractor plus its dome and rising floor. In 1951 the Observatory was incorporated in a new Department of Astronomy at University College and the Perren Chair of Astronomy was inaugurated in 1951 followed by an extension built for offices, a library and a lecture room and later a spectroscopic laboratory and more teaching accommodation. In following years the equipment was improved and extended. The Wilson telescope was replaced by a modern reflector supplied named the Allen Telescope after Professor C.W. Allen Director of the Observatory and Perren Professor, 1951-72. In the 1990s by a new computer controlled system was installed.
Pillar Box G.R. cypher, type 'D'. 1932
Pentavia Retail Park. Built in the V between Watford Way and the M1.
Abandoned slip. The slip road from the M1 to the A41 was closed to traffic when the M1 was extended from here in the 1970s
but remains in place but not accessible. It crosses under Watford Way south of Bunns Lane and north of Pentavia Retail Park.


Sources
Connor. Forgotten Stations of London
Disused stations. Web site
Field. Place Names of London,
GLIAS Newsletter
London Borough of Barnet. Web site
London Encyclopaedia
London Railway Record
London University Observatory. web site
London Wildlife Trust. Website
Middlesex Churches
Northern Wastes
Pevsner and Cherry.  London North

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