Edgware Brook Little Stanmore

Edgware Brook
Edgware Brook flows northeastwards

Post to the west Stanmore Marsh
Post to the south Canons
Post to the east Edgware

Canon’s Park
Marked on the Ordnance map of 1877, and named from the estate owned by the Augustinian canons of St Bartholomew's, Smithfield, who got six acres of land here in 1331. The site of the house of the Duke of Chandos, eventually the site of the North London Collegiate School is to the north of this area, but the public park area covers the remains of his grounds. The park is a fragment of an 18th landscape garden laid out between 1713 and 1720 by the Duke of Chandos. Garden designers associated with the grounds include George London, Dr Richard Bradley and Tilleman Bobart who was in charge until 1724, followed by Thomas Knowlton and Alexander Blackwell, who modelled it on Versailles. John Theophilus Desaguiliers is said to have to designed the water features.  In the park were 4 radiating tree lined avenues. After Chandos’ death the estate passed to other owners and it is thought that Humphrey Repton worked here in 1816 and in 1910 Charles Mallows. The area now covered by the park was acquired by Harrow Council in the 1920s. It became known as Canons Park Open Space and was neglected but had recently been restored with help from various heritage funds and a Friends organisation. There is a cafĂ©, toilet and an adventure playground.
Southern Avenue. This raised, carriageway ran from the Duke’s Palace in the direction of Whitchurch Lane. It has been planted with trees, but few if any 18th trees survive except for the Cedars.
King George V playing fields. This commemorates King George V and is a walled garden in the park. It is the area of the 18th walled kitchen garden and included the Duke's melon ground, fruit trees, vegetable plots hothouses for pineapples and other exotic fruits. It was completely re-designed in the 1930s and reflects that period, with evergreens and seasonal displays. There is a central square pool surrounded by a terrace with steps, formal flower beds and a pavilion.
Hawthorn Orchard. This is an enclosed plantation which probably is part of the 18th designs by Alexander Blackwell. The hawthorns were planted in the early 1950s
Spinney. This is the wooded area between Whitchurch Lane and the boundary of the School on the east side of the park.  An old hedgerow may be remnants of the earlier medieval landscape

Canon’s Park Estate
The Pards Estate was a trust established in 1919 by Arthur du Cros. In 1926 George Cross bought 85 acres the park from the Trust and built houses like 16th Kentish black and white farmhouses. The estate was planned by A J Butcher, ARIBA who kept the trees and the basin and divided the Canon’s Drive into house size plots. He also designed the layout for additional roads off it. Houses were built 1927-1936 designed by Butcher and also Sandon Brothers, H A J Copps, Sword Daniel and Co and F W Bristol and Co.

Canons Drive
Canons Drive follows the original path of the entrance to the Canons estate and designed to create the optical illusion of the house being twice its actual size. The road was planted with Wellingtonia.
The entrance gate to Canons Place was the entrance to the Chandos estate and has grand decorated 18th gate piers
The Basin. A feature of the original park layout which survives. It is a small oval pool maintained by the residents association. It is surrounded by sycamore, oak, planted limes and horse chestnuts, plus alder and crack willow at the water’s edge. Coot, moorhen, and black headed gulls are the most common birds seen along with the ubiquitous Canada geese and ducks of various kinds.

Chandos Crescent
78 Chandos Children’s Centre. Opened in shop premises 2008

Chandos Recreation Ground
Opened pre-Second World War by the local council on a hillside. Named after the Duke of Chandos,

Churchill Road
One of a group of roads noting Second World War leaders

Montgomery Road
One of a group of roads noting Second World War leaders

Orchard Close
The central island green is large and planted with shrubs and trees plus an interesting rockery.

St Lawrence Way
St. Lawrence church, Little Stanmore was given by Roger de Rames to St. Bartholomew's priory, in 1244. After the Reformation the church belonged to the lords of the manor.  In 1714 until 1744 the incumbent was John Theophilus Desaguliers, natural philosopher and inventor of the planetarium. The church was originally built in the 12th in white stone - hence it became known as ‘Whitchurch’.  , Nothing survives of this building. The oldest part now is the early-16th west battlemented tower, of brick and flint rubble. The church was rebuilt in 1715 – dated on the rainwater heads - by John James for the Duke of Chandos. Outside the walls are simple brick with plain stone-arched windows but inside The Duke employed fashionable artists and they created the dramatic interior of the church with paintings and "Trompe - l'oeil" is used to considerable effect. Inside the nave walls were painted in grisaille, probably by Francesco Sleter assisted by Gaetano Brunetti and there is a vaulted ceiling, painted by Louis Laguerre. At the west end the Duke’s gallery had a canopy painted by Belucci. The effect is of a theatre and wooden Corinthian columns on each side of the altar make the organ, appear as if on a stage and with the altar it is flanked by paintings attributed to Belucci and Laguerre. The woodwork includes an organ case carved by Grinling Gibbons. The organ is said to have been played by George Frederick Handel and it has been restored as Handel would have known it by Goetze and Gwynn of Worksop. There are original oak box-pews with iron rings to hold chains for the service books. The pulpit is from the 18th.  Books belonging to the church included a copy of the ‘vinegar Bible' of 1716, presented by Chandos.
Chandos Mausoleum. This was added to the church in 1736. A pantheon, designed for the Brydges' monuments and which later became but leads to a painted room, completed by James Gibbs in1735. The walls and ceiling are decorated with 18th illusionistic wall paintings by Gaetano Brunetti to complement the tomb of the 1st Duke of Chandos. The tomb includes a white marble monument which stands against the east wall. It is probably by Andrew Carpentier and shows the duke, in Roman costume, between his first two wives.
Churchyard. In the church yard is a tombstone to William Powell, supposedly Handel’s “Harmonious Blacksmith” Powell was the parish clerk and the blacksmith an apprentice, William Lintern, who took up music
Vicarage – a house with an orchard adjoining the churchyard was there in 1666.  The building was replaced in 1852 by one designed by Anthony Salvin, on what is now the north-west side of the Close. This was demolished in 1967 and a smaller house built in 1970.                  
Church hall. This had been built in Whitchurch Lane between Meads and Montgomery roads, by 1911.  After fires in 1966 and 1970; a new one was opened in 1972.       
Lake Almshouses. These stood near the site of the current church hall and were still there in the 1930s.  These dated from the mid-17th funded by bequests from the Lake family,          

Whitchurch Gardens
Part of Chandos Park sold by du Cros in 1911 where semis were being built a bowling green and tennis courts, in 1911

Whitchurch Lane
An old hedgerow between here and the Park may be a remnant of the earlier landscape.
Canons Park Station.  Opened in 1932 it now lies between Stanmore and Queensbury on the Jubilee Line. It was originally built by the Metropolitan Railway. It was originally called ‘Canon’s Park (Edgeware)’. There were two entrances in Whitchurch Lane on either side of the bridge. There were shops either side of entrances and flats above. It has a canopied entrance to the booking hall and here is a viaduct with shops, flats above. Inside are doors in light wood and lower walls in polished black stone. The ticket offices were wood framed with bronze money trays and rails. There are original wooden handrails on the stairs. In 1933 the name was changed to ‘Canon’s Park.’ In 1939 it became a Bakerloo Line station and in 1979 Jubilee Line. 

Field. Place Names of London
Friends of Canon’s Park. Web site
London Borough of Harrow. Web site
London Encyclopaedia
London Gardens Online. Web site
London Railway Record
Middlesex Churches
Middlesex County Council. History of Middlesex
Nairn. Nairn’s London
Pevsner and Cherry. London North West
Stevenson. Middlesex
St.Lawrence Church. Web site.
Walford. Village London,


Anonymous said…
My great grandfather was the last person to live in the Lake Almshouses.
He died there in 1950 aged 87.
He was a blacksmith and had Warby’s Shoeing Forge on the High street.
He and my great grandmother lived in the forge cottage until it was all demolished in 1931.
He is probably the blacksmith shown at his anvil in the famous E.A. Cox, London Transport
poster, now in the V&A collection.

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