Sunday, 25 November 2012

Silk Stream - Colindale

Silk Stream
The Silk Stream flows east and south

Industrial and trading area around the old airfield, with its Museum and other public facilities

Post to the west Colindale
Post to the south West Hendon

Aerodrome Road
An extension of Colindale Avenue. Built by German prisoners of war during the Great War to serve aircraft hangars for Grahame-White Aviation.  From 1909 it was a showcase for flying, In 1914 the Grahame White factory was requisitioned as a Royal Naval Air School  and an AAP and operated as a defensive airfield until 1916. Many storage sheds were built and in 1925 it became a Royal Airforce Fighter Station until 1949. Since 1963 it as been the RAF Museum. Many original structures remain. 
Sheds were established by the London Aerodrome Co. along the southern boundary of the airfield in 1910 and erected by Smith & Co. of Stratford. By 1911 it was owned by Claude Grahame-White.   The sheds continued to be used by a number of small flying schools – The Blackburn School, The Temple School, the Deperdussin School, The Ewen School, Breuget Manufacturing Co. Later, in the early years of the Great War, flying schools there included the Beatty School, the Handley Page School, London and Provincial Aviation Co.  By 1917 they had all been relocated.
Aeronautical Syndicate founded by Horatio Barber making Valkyrie canard monoplanes in one of the original 1911 sheds.  He gave four of these to the government. They built Viking bi-planes in 1912. In 1912 they were taken over and became AIRCO and eventually became part of Handley Page.
The Blériot School was in one of the original 1911 sheds staffed by Pierre Prier, and Norbert Chereau. Frank Hedges Butler was their first pupil.
Graham-White Flying School moved here from Brooklands in 1911, and included workshops moved here from Walham Green. He manufactured an American Burgess plane as Grahame-White Baby.
Chanter Flying School. In one of the sheds in 1911. The owner was also the instructor and pupil. Left later in 1911 and went to Shoreham.
Little Hendon. On the south side of the road and used by the Graham-White school from 1917
No. 2 Aircraft Acceptance Park. 14 Storage sheds were erected on the south east corner of the airfield to accommodate the aeroplanes bought from America during the Great War. The R.F.C. then started flying from Hendon from February to May 1916.
Hangars on the north side if the road became Grahame-White's small car, aircraft and furniture business 1919- 1925. By 1920 over they were producing 100 cars per week. Two of these sheds became the first General Motors assembly building.
Skywriting Corporation, based there from 1922 with smoke-generator. Skywriting - writing a message with smoke from an aircraft, began in England after World War I by John C. Savage, RAF at Epsom Downs, in 1922. This was taken to the US and the Corporation was an American company.
W.C. Gaunt & Co. motor car manufacturers, and Packard dealers. Billy Gaunt was a ‘colourful entrepreneur’ from Bradford. Becoming a multi-millionaire in the wool trade, a London theatre owner and much else, he died the owner of just a small petrol station.
Delco-Light Co., electrical dealers on site here in 1923, The Delco-Lights was an American firm developed in 1916 and consisted of complete electric power systems for farms and other remote buildings. It consisted of a generator which fueled a battery. By the early 1920s they had a huge factory in Dayton Ohio. By the mid-1920s they had also developed and were making the first Frigidaire refrigerators and had become part of General Motors.
Tylor Engineering Company Ltd, engine manufacturers on site here in 1923. The firm dated from 1906 when they were at Belle Isle. They supplied engines for tanks and buses and some of their engines exist and are restored. The firm was a subsidiary of an old established brass founder and in the early 1920s this engine building works was moved to a purpose built site in New Southgate designed by Wallis Gilbert. Tylors moved to Hendon in the early 1920s because of financial difficulties and the New Southgate factory eventually became Standard Telegraphs and Cables works
Aerofilms Ltd, aerial photographers. This was the first British commercial aerial photography company, founded in 1919 by Francis Wills and Claude Grahame White.  Initially they used aircraft of the London Flying School from Stag Lane but later from AIRCO. In the 1920s they carried out vertical photography for survey purposes and later pioneered mapping from aerial photographs, with the Ordnance Survey as a client. From In 1925they were based at Hendon. In the Second World War they formed the Allied Photographic Interpretation Unit at Medmenham. Post-war work with Hunting Surveys Ltd has resulted in a huge library of historic aerial pictures and their library has been sold to English Heritage by their current Norwegian owners, Blom.
Angus Sanderson Ltd. In site here in 1923. The car was intended to be mass produced as Ford had done so successfully. It used an engine from Tylor. They made about 3000 until they were undercut by Morris. They went out of business in 1927.
Western Electric Company Ltd. This was the manufacturing branch of the American Bell Telephone Company which had come to Europe in 1882 and London in 1883. This eventually became Standard Telephones and Cables. The company bought the New Southgate site built by Tylor in 1922. This was not enough however and in 1925-26 they took on premises at the north side of Aerodrome Road where radio transmitters and receivers were made; laboratories were set up in the former London Country Club. It was here they began to develop polyethene.  The site closed in the early 1930s and became part of the Police College. The Alderman Cafe from the 1924-25 Wembley Exhibition site had been re-erected at Hendon and was transferred to New Southgate as an early self-service cafeteria.
Government Lymph Establishment. In 1881 the Local Government Board established an Animal Vaccine Station to supply lymph for vaccination. In 1907 three units were amalgamated to form the Government Lymph Establishment at Hendon. It was tasked to have sufficient vaccine to meet epidemic emergencies, and undertake research. In 1919 it was taken over by the Ministry of Health and it was closed in 1946
Franco-British Electrical Co. Illuminated Signs. Established here in 1922.  They had made the lights for the Franco British Exhibition of 1908 and later installed the neon signs for which Piccadilly was famous from the 1920s.
Bronze statue of Sir Robert Peel, by William Behnes.  When Peel died suddenly the Cities of London, Leeds and Bradford commissioned this statue. It was erected in 1855 on the site of what is now St. Paul’s Station. Because of traffic it was supposed to be moved to the Bank of England, but was taken down and not put up.  In 1951 it was put into Postman’s Park and in 1974 went to the Police College. It is now standing in the public area of a private estate there.
Aircraft factory, for Hendon Aerodrome. This was built for the Grahame-White Aviation Company by Herbert William Matthews. Between 1915-1916. The Aerodrome Road elevation is red brick single storey with a "GW" monogram cover the central door. More lies behind some of which has been moved.
Metropolitan Police College. The college was opened in 1934 in the buildings of Hendon Country Club which had been used previously as laboratories of the Standard Telephones and Cables. The original idea was for a military-style cadet establishment to train college graduates entering the service as officers.  The college was closed during the Second World War and reopened as a College for all police entrants. In 1960 the Police rebuilt the college, as the new Peel Centre, named after Sir Robert Peel
Hendon Country Club, Claude Grahame-White established what he saw as a gentleman’s flying club at Hendon in 1919 when he established the London Flying Club with its own separate airfield on the southern side of Aerodrome Road. It has a with a flying school, a sixty-room red brick clubhouse with London’s best ballroom and fifty accommodation rooms, thirty tennis courts, two polo fields and plans for an 18 hole golf course. Grahame-White used golf architect Dr. Alister Mackenzie to design the golf course.  In 1920 the name was changed to the London Country Club. Unfortunately in 1922 the Northern Line extension went through the planned golf course which meant it has to be compressing between the railway line and Aerodrome Road. In 1925 Grahame-White was forced to close the London Country Club, and the clubhouse. The tennis courts and polo grounds had been closed, but the golf course was kept open. It had closed by 1930

Beaufort Park
This development is on the site of RAF East Camp. After the Second World War this became home to the RAF stores computer centre
Control tower from the Hendon Aerodrome site. This was probably the first control tower in Britain - although its function was not known because it is not clear what 'control' meant then beyond hanging out flags. Grahame White's office remained underneath.  Built by architect Herbert Matthews with a Neo-Georgian show front, workshops behind, and the belvedere or 'control tower' above built in 1911.  Demolished after 99 years by the RAF Museum and rebuilt in a location closer to the museum
Grahame White Company offices and factory. Drawing offices between the control tower and the watch office.  Originally flanked by attached hangars, subsequently demolished. The building was unoccupied since at least 1987 when the RAF moved out.
Office for Duty Pilot, 2072/26 demolished 1989
Museum of Domestic Design and Architecture is part of Middlesex University and has a collection of 19th- and 20th home decorations. This includes collections of Wallpaper including the Crown Wallpaper Archive.

Chancellor Place
Officers Mess. Now a Middlesex University Hall of Residence. It is a Neo-Tudor building from 1917 which was later called formerly the 'London Aerodrome Hotel'. This was built as a black and white timbered hotel for VIPs despite wartime shortages. It was probably designed by Herbert William Matthews in brick with roughcast and timber cladding.

Clovelly Avenue
Colindale Primary School. In the 1930s new houses were built in the area and the school was built to cater for the new population. The wings on the old school logo symbolised Hendon Aerodrome. Until the 1960s there were bomb shelters on the playing fields used during the Second World War. The school was rebuilt in 2011 on the original school playing fields.

Colin Park Estate
Houses built in 1927 for F.H. Stucke & Co., 'artistic' house builders, by E. G. Trowbridge

Colindale Avenue
Footpath – this ran from the bottom of Hay Lane, under a railway bridge, to the first aerodrome hangars.
144 A. Garstin and Co. Factory, This was described as a trunk factory. Garstin made leather goods – cases, watch straps etc. etc.
Site of 'Leatherville', thirty dwellings for workers at Garston's trunk factory, established here in 1901.
Brent Works, Tilley Lamps Co. The Lamp derives from John Tilley’s invention of the hydro-pneumatic blowpipe in 1813. The company was in Stoke Newington and Shoreditch in the 19th and moved to Hendon in 1915. . In the 1960s they moved to Belfast
The Gee Tee Co., manufacturers of tissue paper products – paper handkerchiefs, sanitary towels. They had opened in King's Cross, 1926, and moved here in 1931. In 1935 they moved to Cumberland Road.
116 Colindale Paper Co Ltd. 1950-58.  They made toilet paper - Luxury, Colinco, Papcol rolls
Crepe Paper Manufacturing Co. Ltd.  Here 1932-33.
Colindale Hospital.  Colindale Hospital. In 1890 there were concerns to expand the overcrowded Cleveland Street Infirmary of the Central London Sick Asylum District. It was decided to move somewhere cheaper and the new infirmary was built by by John Giles, Gough & Tros and opened in 1900. Initially it had 274 beds in a central block with a house for the Medical Superintendent and a Nurses' Home. There were also children’s and isolation wards, an operating theatre, mortuary, etc. In 1913 It was renamed the Hendon Infirmary and in 1920 was reopened as a tuberculosis hospice. In 1930 it passed to the London County Council and in 1948 joined the NHS as the Colindale Hospital. As treatment for TB succeeded, it became a general hospital.  It closed in 1996 and the site is due to be redeveloped for housing. The façade of the main block of the hospital has been refurbished as part of the new development
British Blood Transfusion Centre, building of 1990 by the Design Team Partnership.  . 
Health Protection Agency. This is an independent organisation set up in 2003 to protect the public from threats to their health from infectious diseases and environmental hazards.
Colindale Station.  Opened in 1924 it lies between Burnt Oak and Hendon Central on the Northern Line. It was originally built on the Charing Cross, Euston and Hampstead Railway and designed by S. A. Heaps with 250' long platforms and in the style of a rural station. In 1940 it was bombed and destroyed and in in 1962 a new building was erected incorporating shops
British Library Newspaper Library. Built in 1900-3 as the British Museum Repository and enlarged 1930-2 by J.H. Markham of the Office of Works, with storage on six floors.  An extension of 1956-7 replaced the 1903 building, which had been destroyed in 1940.  The superintendent's house of 1903 survives.  The 1930s building is of brick, very austere yet with a few simplified classical trimmings.  Later additions 1969-71 microfilm building and 1972 reading room. The library is being digitized and then will move to Boston Spa.
Pillar box outside the post office. Constructed by A. Handyside & Co. their Britannia Foundry and Engineering Works.  It has a V.R. cypher 1887 - 1899
Shed in a field at the end of the lane where it now joins Aerodrome Road. This was the shed used by Everett and Edgecumbe to house their first monoplane which effectively founded Hendon Aerodrome.  It was later converted in 1911 to become the first offices of C.Grahame-White & Co.
Colindale Park, A small grassland wedge with a footpath through to the station. There is a play area, trees and apparently wild life interest.

Colindeep Lane
This was once called Hendon path said in 1593 to be an 'ancient highway ‘and as late as 1863 it was sometimes called Ancient Street.
89-97 Four groups flanking Court Way, with tile hanging alternating with half-timbering, and Trobridge's typically emphatic star-shaped chimneystack.
Silk Stream Bridge. This is stone with parapets. There was a ford here until 18256 when a footbridge was built. A weir slightly upstream of the bridge is a measuring point for flood data
Rushgrove Park. Previously called Colindeep Open Space. The Silk Stream flows through the Park, which is made up of flood prone open space which remained when all the housing was built in the 1930s. It was laid out as a recreation ground by the mid-1950s, with winding paths, a pond and tennis courts. Among the trees are gingko, catalpa and conifers, but the pond has been removed and is now covered over.

Edgware Road
Safetex Safety Glass, formed in 1925 to manufacture reinforced glass for motor vehicles. The company operated from a factory here and went in receivership i1932.
Odeon Cinema. This was built and operated by Oscar Deutsch and opened in 1935. It was designed by Arthur Starkey like his earlier cinemas for the circuit. It has low facade with cream faience tiles and shop units on either side or flats above. There was a car park behind. It was closed by the Rank Organisation in 1960 and remained empty until 1967 when it opened as the Curzon Cinema. In 1972 it was re-named Classic Cinema and a second screen was installed in the balcony and called the Tatler Film Club screening uncensored sex films. It closed in 1981 and in 1986 became a snooker club.
Hyde United Reform Church. The Chinese Church in London. Chapel of the Churches of Christ. Presbyterian. Congregational
Moon Under Water Pub.  Wetherspoons pub opened in 1990. This was built as a Woolworth’s store

Heritage Avenue
The Dovecote. Modern pub in new build
The Beaufort Pub

Sheaveshill Avenue
Titanine Paint Factory. In 1881, German Holzapel brothers founded the Holzapfel Compositions Company Ltd., producing marine coatings in Felling, where they remain. In 1915 they developed Titanine, an aeroplane dope as the British Aeroplane Varnish Co. Ltd., and 1,000,000 gallons of titanine were manufactured during the Great War. .

Aerofilms. Wikipedia web site
Beaufort Park. Web site
Blackwood. London’s Immortals
British listed buildings. Web site
Cinema Treasures. Web site
Clunn. The Face of London
Day. London Underground
District Dave. Web site
Field. London Place Names
GLIAS Newsletter
Graces Guide. Web site
HADAS Newsletter
London Borough of Barnet. Web site
London Encyclopaedia
London Gardens Online. Web site
Lost Hospitals of London. Web site
Metropolitan Police College. Wikipedia web site
National Archives. Web site
Osborne. Defending London
Pastscape. Web site
Pevsner and Cherry. London North
Renwick. RAF Hendon
Skinner. Form and Fancy
Thames Basin Archaeology Group. Report
Titanine.Wikipedia web site

Friday, 23 November 2012

Silk Stream - Colindale

Silk Stream
The Silk Stream flows south eastwards
TQ 20548 89781

Busy area along the Edgeware Road including many historic aircraft manufacturing sites

Post to the north Burnt Oak
Post to the east Colindale

Annesley Road
By 1920 AIRCO had premises here

Capitol Way
The road is made up of trading units and superstores. The area was previously covered by factories
Aspar Pharmaceuticals

Carlisle Road
Carlisle Road was built in the 1930s on land used for industry since before the Great War, when it was the northern boundary of the area used by AIRCO.
1 Peerless and Ericsson. This company made coffee grinders, potato peeling machines, dough kneaders, sausage fillers etc. They became part of Baker Perkins in the 1930s but appear to have been here from the late 1920s...
11a Nigel Fredericks, Butchery business which began elsewhere in the 1890s.
15a Café de Carriage – café designed as a green double decker bus
20 Bosch. The company made grinders here in the 1960s
20 Scintilla Ltd. The British division of this Swiss company was based here 1930s-1950s making electrical equipment, mainly for aircraft and specialising in magnetos
Acorn Products Ltd. Founded in 1928 moved here from Camden Town in 1936. In 1965 it became Acorn Aluminium Products and closed in 1968. They made a large range of anodized and Electro-metallurgical products
Armstrong Cork Company Limited. This American based multi-national had its Ceiling Systems Department here in the 1960s. The factory was on the north side of the road
Broadway Engineering Co. Ltd. This company based here in the 1930s and early 1940s handled agencies for machine tools, etc.
Coxorian Works. Owned by John Cox this works was here in the 1960s making specialist fireproof cloths for aircraft seats, etc.
Kay (Sports and Games) Ltd. This company had works here from the 1930s -1960s making a wide range of items from the Kay Chemistry Outfits, to sports equipment specialising in Dart Boards. Still there in the 1960s with a factory on the south side of the road
Lamson Paragon. They opened their packaging division, factory and offices here in 1969, moving from another factory site nearby.

Cecil Road
Everett and Edgecumbe Instrument Works. Although Cecil Road is given as the address of this works which stood on the south side of the road the works also fronted onto Colindeep Lane.they built their first monoplane in 1910 and effectively founded Hendon airfield. In Cecil Road they made specialist electrical instrumentation – now collector’s items.
Process Developments. Made plastic processing machinery.

Colindale Avenue
New Chandos Pub. Prominent building with a ‘Tudor style’ façade. Closed.
London& Parisian Motor Company Ltd. Repair Works. They were agents for Hotchkiss and Delage cars and in 1914 had their Motor Works here. In 1916 it became the London and Provincial Aeroplane works who used designer Anthony Fletcher. . By 1921, their premises were occupied by the Hendon Jig & Tool Company Limited.
The Hendon Electric Supply Co. this is a brick building with the name on a plaque above the first floor. There are houses built at the back in what was the yard
70 Seahorse Furniture and some offices.
68 Jain Centre. This has been refurbished to include a carved wooden temple with semi structured idols and a Community Hall, Seminar Room, Offices and ancillary facilities. It is an old factory building.

Colindeep Lane
Technology Park – on the site of the Everett and Edgecumbe Works in Cecil Road
The Chestnuts – new housing on the site of a house of that name

Edgware Road
319 Dagenham Motors. Motor showrooms on the site of the Desoutter factory built in 1998.
319 Desoutter Brothers. Desoutter was set up in 1914 to manufacture artificial limbs. This was started after Marcel Desoutter lost his leg in an accident. In the course of this a pneumatic drill was developed. By the 1920s a range of pneumatic power tools had been developed and Desoutter took over a company manufacturing electric power tools. Moving to Colindale, in 1924 where they had an art deco factory. By the 1980s they had many foreign subsidiaries. They were sold to Air Power Tools in the 1990s. The factory was demolished and is now a car showroom. However they seem to maintain some sort of presence at that address
333 Southon House. Headquarters building of MFI furniture group
399 Oriental City. This was a shopping centre specialising in oriental goods and restaurants. It had been set up as Yaohan Shopping Centre but the parent body became bankrupt and it was sold to Malaysian owners who renamed it. It closed in 2006 and the site redeveloped.
508 Merit House, tower block and offices on the site of the tram depot.
AIRCO.  The Aircraft Manufacturing Co. Ltd., had been formed by George Holt Thomas in 1912. At first they built French Farman designs under licence, but in 1914 Geoffrey de Havilland became their chief designer and after that their aircraft were De Havilland DH1, DH2 etc. AIRCO produced thousands of aircraft for the British military during Great War. In 1914 AIRCO were on the east, side of the road. There was an expansion to meet increased War Office orders around 1917 and by 1919 had all the area between Hay Lane and Carlisle Road, plus part of the grounds of Grove House. By the Armistice the workforce had grown to 4,400 and the factory area had increased seven-fold and it was advertised in 1918 as the largest aircraft company in the world. They established the first airline in the United Kingdom, Aircraft Transport and Travel Limited, as a subsidiary. The original AIRCO hangar covered six acres with 15 acres of land. There aircraft were built for the R.F.C., Royal Navy, and R.A.F. Behind it were other hangars which were still there in 1922. The Edgware Road factory covered six-acres. AIRCO could not adjust to peacetime production and by 1919 the company was in trouble. It was bought by the Birmingham Small Arms Company Limited in 1920, manufacturers of cars and bicycles as well as firearms – but they were not interested in making aircraft when they discovered how bad the AIRCO’s finances really were. Geoffrey de Havilland bought the assets he needed and set up his own company in 1920.  Havilland moved to Hatfield in 1914 but the site was used until 1971 and the original buildings were used by BACS.  In 2005 tthey were demolished for housing. 
Beardmore Motors. William Beardmore Company was a Glasgow based engineering company active in many feeds from the mid-1880s. In 1919 they had set up a motor vehicle manufacturing arm. In 1929, Beardmore Motors was bought out by its directors, and taxi production moved to Hendon where a line of taxis was introduced and manufactured. In 1956 production moved to Addlestone.
Beis Yaakov Primary School. This is a voluntary-aided primary school, for girls aged 3 to 11 from Orthodox Jewish families. It is the largest Jewish primary school for girls in the country. It was set up in 1972 to serve the Cheredi community and was then in Finchley Road. It is maintained by the London Borough of Barnet although it is actually in Brent. The building was previously known as Kilburn Polytechnic Annexe but was in fact the former headquarters of AIRCO. The office building dates from about 1914 when Holt Thomas embarked on a big expansion. Before being taken over by the Polytechnic the building was used for a mixed secondary school, Kingsbury County, which had been adapted in 1925
Daimler. British Daimler was always independent of the German company and from 1910 were part of Birmingham Small Arms. After BSA took over AIRCO there was an attempt to extend Daimler’s car hire business into air hire– The Daimler Air Way - but using Croydon Airport. This eventually became part of Imperial Airways of which it formed the basis. In Colindale their works were south of the former AIRCO hangar on the corner of Grove Lane.
Davies Tyre Works. Davies were on the site on the south side of the road immediately south of Colindeep Lane. They had originated in 1880 as a bicycle maker, S. T. Davies & Co. After the Great War they concentrated on wholesaling imported tyres and then sold tyres made elsewhere but 1924 branded “Davies" and this continued. Their range consisted of Davies car, giant and motor cycle covers and tubes and also in retreads
Frigidaire. This is an American firm, a division of General Motors. Their UK operation started in a wooden shack in Aerodrome Road, employing 11 people in 1923. They sold the first fridges in England. They took over some of the site on the west side of the road in 1931.
General Motors Limited. They acquired the freehold, from the War Department in 1928. This was land used by Lamson Paragon Supply Company Limited, formerly owned by Thrupp and Maberley plus land owned by the Royal Dental Hospital and the Daimler Company. What had been the No.1 Aircraft Salvage Depot - the northernmost factory on the west side of the road, built in 1917, became General Motors assembly plant in 1923 onwards. They opened a branch with 6 employees in 1923, making vehicles which included assembly of Chevrolet vehicles, for which a specialist plant was set up here. They assembled a 1-ton Chevrolet truck here to avoid paying import duty. Chassis parts came from Canada and assembled into using a range of bodies from local manufacturers. American practices of standardised manufacture meant that unskilled labour was used. After taking over Vauxhall in 1928 some work moved to Luton
Handley Page. Had a temporary factory in this area near the AIRCO works in 1915 where the first large bomber made in England was constructed and towed to the airfield along Colindale Avenue.
Hupfield Bros. and Hedges, Reinforced Plastics. Took over the Lamson Paragon factory in 1959
Lamson Paragon. This firm took over Thrupp & Maberly's premises in 1920. They had been set up in the City of London in 1886 as the Paragon Check Book Co. The Hendon factory opened in 1922 as Papercraft Works, making bags and wrappings but after the Second World War, production moved to West Hartlepool and the offices moved to Carlisle Road in 1969
Mercedes Benz House. Centre for Smart Car dealership
Nevett Bookbinding Co. The Company had been set up in the City in the 18th and had pioneered a number of bookbinding techniques.
Phoenix Telephone & Electric Works, which started in 1912 in Cricklewood, became the War Department signal factory, and moved to Kingsbury in the early 1920s. At its height it employed 1,600 workers but there were only 1,000at the factory's closure in 1968-9. They were on both sides of Grove Lane in old AIRCO premises. Om one side was an old AIRCO hangar. They began to make telephone apparatus and other electrical and mechanical domestic appliances plus tinsel as a component of telephone cords. In the 1960s the Post Office was their single largest customer.
Shoelands Farm. This was owned by All Souls College Oxford but in industrial use from 1914.
T. F. Bristow and Co. Soap and shampoo factory here in the 1950s. The firm was founded in the 18th and later became part of Smith Kline. It was on the east side of the road
Thrupp and Maberly Limited. This firm built motor bodies at Shoelands Farm. In 1920, they moved to Acton and later became a Rootes' subsidiary.
Trolleybus Depot. This was on the site of what is now Merit House and had been the Metropolitan Electric Tramways Hendon Depot – the name was changed to Colindale Depot in 1950 to avoid confusion with Hendon bus garage. It has been converted to trolleybus use in 1936 but in 1910 it had been where the first British trials of a trolleybus were held. It has been intended to convert all tram routes to trolleybuses but the war intervened and motor buses were used instead. It was closed and demolished in 1962. Land behind the depot was used from 1959 to 1962 by the George Cohen 600 Group for scrapping the trolleybus fleet.
Turnpike marker. This was south of the junction with The Greenway. It was placed on the Edgware - Kilburn Turnpike, which had opened in 1711. It is in cast iron and marked ‘Hendon Parish’.

Grove Park
The road evolved from a new road which followed the line of a footpath to Grove House and which ran from the main entrance to AIRCO. AIRCO had acquired the Grove Park Estate along Stag Lane to increase production around 1917.
Grove Park – small local park with The Bungalow which is part of Grove Park School., this was Westfield College Athletic Ground – previously the Royal Dental Hospital Sports Ground
Grove House. This stood south of Shoelands Farm, on the west side of the road. It was a nursing home in 1906 but had been the home of Field Marshall Lord Roberts. It was requisitioned by AIRCO to create a take-off field. It was bought by Hendon Council in 1934, demolished, and the grounds became Grove Park. In 1914 there was a private road from Edgware Road to the house and another roadway going to Stag Lane from it which became Grove Park Road.
The Village School. This is a merger between Grove Park Special School and Hay Lane School with new buildings on the Grove Park site. Grove Park School was built in the late 1960 by Brent Council as a school for physically disabled children. There is a swimming pool here as there was at Grove Park.
Kingswood Kitchens – this factory is in the remaining buildings of the AIRCO factory.

Hay Lane
St. Sebastian and St Pancras Roman Catholic Church. In 1924 a cottage and field next to Haydon House as a camping ground for the Westminster Cathedral boy scouts. A church was built there in 1925 - St. Sebastian and St. Pancras, are the patron saints of scout officers and cadets. In 1930 and subsequently the church was enlarged.
26 Father O’Callaghan Centre
Hay Lane School. This was built in the late 1960s by the Department of Health for children with severe learning difficulties. In the early 1970s the council took over Hay Lane School

Montrose Park
Engine shed. This remains from the Hendon Factory Branch railway from the Midland Main Line.’ This terminated in a fan of sidings on Edgware Road just north of the Tramway Depot.

Roe Green
Roe Green Garden Village lies behind the AIRCO buildings, between Stag and Bacon Lanes and was completed in 1920. As a Garden Village it was built on old farm land to house the hundreds of factory workers. In 1916, the Office of Works commissioned its principal architect, Frank Baines, to design an estate of cottages for aircraft workers. Roe Green was based on his office’s design for Woolwich Well Hall Estate built for Arsenal workers

Stag Lane
Sewage works. This was next to the General Motors site in land owned by All Souls College. It was built in 1904 by Kingsbury Urban District Council on Stratford Long, east of the road. The site was sold in 1925
Roberts Court. Site of Amy Johnson’s house was where Stag and Hay Lanes meet
Stag Lane Clinic
Library. This is now used by the Brent Park pupil referral service
The Brent Sikh Centre, founded in 1995 in a church hall in Edgware. They bought a coal depot/junkyard from the council in 1995 opened a new centre there.
Kinnor Jewish Youth and Community Centre

The Greenway
Capitol Industrial Park

Windover Avenue
Windovers the coachbuilders were in a short road named after them off Edgware Road. They claimed to go back to a Bartholomew Windover who was a 17th saddler in Devon. By the late 185y the family had a coach building business in Grantham and Huntingdon. In the mid-19th they built a two wheeled horse drawn vehicle and were established Coachbuilders. In 1910 they made their first body for a Rolls-Royce Silver Ghost. After the Second World War they made bodies for passenger coaches some of the first models were used for coach tours abroad. In the 1950s they made fire engines including the "Green Goddess. Hey also made the bodies for the Beardmore taxis. In 1956, the company closed down.

Armstrong Cork. Web site
British History. Kingsbury. Web site
Competition Commission Reports
Daimler History. Web site
Davies. British Airways
DistrictDave. Web site
Field. London Place Names
Flight Archive. Web site
Grace’s Guide. Web site
Nigel Fredericks. Web site
Osborne. Defending London
Renwick. RAF Hendon
Stevenson. Middlesex
William Beardmore Co. Wikipedia Web site
Windovers. Web site.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Silk Stream - Burnt Oak

Silk stream
The silk stream flows south east and is joined by a tributary from the north east
TQ 20330 90739

Busy urban area adjacent to the A5.  There are shops and pubs and churches - as well as converted cinemas and a street market

Post to the north Watling Estate
Post to the south Colindale

Barnfield Road
Salvation Army Church. The church was built in 1934.

Burnt Oak Broadway
Mecca Bingo. This was the Savoy Cinema built in 1936 for A. Glassman. The auditorium runs parallel to the Broadway and the entrance block has classical stone dressings surrounding a large window divided by stone pillars. Inside there is a stepped ceiling by George Coles who designed it in an Art Deco style. There were 2,000 seats and the Christie organ was secondhand - from the Rosevale Cinema, Glasgow.London Co-operative Society Store.  It eventually became an Essoldo in 1961 but closed the same year and succumbed to bingo - the first to operate in London.
104 Bald Faced Stag, half-timbered pub with what seems to be a reputation.
Peacocks. This was the Coop’s "finest department store” opened in 1936. Clock on the tower with a plaque

Montrose Avenue
St.Alphage. brick church originating in 1927 and restored in 1952 after war damage. The pulpit comes from St Mark’s, Goodman’s Fields.
Montrose Playing Fields. This was transversed by the Hendon Factory Branch railway. A bridge exists by which it crossed the Northern Line, and it ran to an engine shed and sidings in the south west corner of the park

Silk Stream Road
Barnfield Primary School. Built 1929 Barnfield Senior Boys’ School. In 1964 it moved to a joint school with Brent Secondary Modern School in Sturgess Avenue.  It subsequently became a primary school.
Silk Stream Park. The park is part of the Estate. The park lies on either side of the Silk stream Park with natural landscaping on both banks which feature trees including mature horse chestnut.

Thirlby Avenue
Church of the Annunciation. Roman Catholic Church. Consecrated in 1928. With a dome over the crossing.
The Annunciation Infant School
Goldbeaters Primary School, built 1931.

Watling Avenue
London Transport constructed this as a new road to serve the tube station
Silkstream Parade. These shops were developed in 1929-31 by Burnet Tait & Co. they were thought to be daring at the time.
9 This is where Jack Cohen opened the first ever Tesco store in 1929
Watling Market opened in 1935 with a hundred covered shops and stalls. It now functions with a boot sale.
Burnt Oak Station.  Opened 1924 it lies between Edgware and Colindale on the Northern Line. It was originally built on the Charing Cross, Euston and Hampstead Railway, to a rural station design by Stanley Heaps.  It opened as Burnt Oak (Watling) but in 1950 the name was changed to Burnt Oak. Initially it only opened on weekdays.
International Gospel Church formerly Woodcroft Evangelical Church.  Built as a Christian Brethren church in 1927 by Sir John Burnet and paid for by Sir John Laing who had an office at Mill Hill. Laing had a background with the brethren in Carlisle. It stands at a focal point at the main crossroads of the Estate. 
Library. Built 1966 in concrete

British History. Hendon. Web site
Cinema Treasures. Web site
Clunn. The Face of London
Day. London Underground
Field. London Place Names,
GLIAS Newsletter
International Gospel Church. web site
London Borough of Barnet, Web site
London Gardens Online, Web site
Middlesex Churches,
Pevsner and Cherry.  London North
Shady Old Lady.  Web site

Burnt Oak Brook - Watling Estate

Burnt Oak Brook
The Brook flows southwards

Post to the west Edgeware
Post to the north Upper Hale
Post to the east Mill Hill
Post to the south Burnt Oak

Abbots Road
Menorah Grammar School. Independent Jewish secondary school established in 1978.  This is in the buildings of what was Orange Hill Central Schools.
Orange Hill Central Sschools opened in 1932 with a two-storey front range with stone surrounds to windows and a stone gateway. It became a grammar school in 1948 and from 1965 boys only. It became Orange Hill Senior High School in the early 1970s as a mixed comprehensive and then merged with Moat Mount School as Mill Hill County High School to the north of Mill Hill Village.

Cressingham Road
Watling Clinic

Deans Lane
Footpath and entrance gate. This is roughly at the point at which the Finsbury Park/Edgware line crossed the road. Until c.1996 the trackbed to the west of Deans Lane was known as the 'Mill Hill Old Railway Nature Reserve' and it was possible to walk to where the viaduct crossed over the Northern Line. There is now a secure fence and a path which acts as road access to the Northern line dept. Under the road the trackbed had been narrowed and now formed a footpath.  This now appears blocked with trees and undergrowth.

Hale Drive
The line of the Finsbury Park/Edgware Railway lies behind the houses for much of Deans Lane and forms a postcode boundary along this section.
Deansbrook Infant and Junior School

Orange Hill Road
Watling Centre. Built for the Watling Community Association in 1931 by Granville Smartfield. Residents had formed the Watling Association in 1927 and the community centre was opened by the Prince of Wales in 1933 and continues to function
St. James' Catholic High School. Founded in 1934 by the Dominican Sisters to provide Catholic secondary education for the children of the parishes of north-west London. It was then the only mixed non-selective Catholic school. In 1949 St. Thomas' Independent School in Stanmore was annexed to St. James' and in 1997 the school was moved to a site in Colindale
Buckle Court.  Thus was Orange Hill House Built in 1877 by John Blundell Maple of the furniture store and later the home of Claude Graham White. It is in red brick with terracotta and brickwork in the manner of Norman Shaw. It later became St Rose Convent belonging to Dominican Sisters. In 1931 they opened a school next to the church for boys and girls of all ages and eventually St James School was built. They also opened a private school in the convent which was now called St Rose's. The site is now housing.
Lodge and stables by J.G. Buckle, with coloured and moulded brickwork

The Meads
The Meads Open Space - Park for the northern part of the Watling Estate
The Annunciation RC Junior and Infant Schools

Watling Avenue
Burnt Oak Leisure Centre. Run by GLL

Watling Estate
Named from its proximity to Watling Street, the Roman road on the line of the current Edgware Road (A5). The Watling Estate was built by the London County Council on the site of Goldbeaters Farm between 1931 and 1939. It had 4,000 houses, only surpassed in size by Becontree. It was laid out under G. Topham Forrest on garden city principles.

Watling Park
Open space was left and created throughout the Watling estate. Much of it follows the meandering course of the Burnt Oak Brook, and old trees from Goldbeaters Farm were kept. Watling Park was park opened in 1931. It was was landscaped with paths, pedestrian bridges and mature trees

British History. Hendon. Web site.
Clunn. The Face of London
Field. London Place Names,
Mill Hill County School. Web site
Pevsner & Cherry.  London North
Smyth. City Wildspace
Stevenson. Middlesex
St.James School. Web site

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.

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