Monday, 10 December 2018

Borehamwood

Post to the north Borehamwood
Post to the south Deacon's Hill



Allum Lane.
Railway bridge. Brick overline bridge.  Once the station stood on the bridge here.  There is now ‘gateway signage’ installed with information about the area.

Drayton Road
One of the first roads to be developed in the area.
1 Borehamwood Museum. This was set up here in 2000 and has since moved to the new community facility in Shenley Road
Borehamwood Engine Works and Loco Packing Company, This opened in 1896 by Charles Braithwaite. They made packing materials for Loco and Traction engines. The site was opposite the end of Brownlow Road and is now occupied by Siskin Cloe and other roads

Eldon Road
Neptune Studios. This, the first film studio in Borehamwood,  was opemed in 1914. It had one 70ft windowless stage. In 1917 it was sold to the Ideal Film Company.  In 1928, it was sold to Ludwig Blattner who connected it to the electricity mains and had a system of sound recording. In 1934 it was leased to Joe Rock Productions who then bought the site and built four new stages. In the Second World War the studios passed to British National Films Company and used for war work. In 1953, the studios were bought by Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. for television production.
Associated Television. In the late 1950s the site was converted into a television studio for Associated Television’s (ATV) franchise for the ITV network. After they moved to the Midlands the studio was sold to the BBC in 1984.
BBC Elstree Centre. This site is currently a production base with studios run by the BBC's commercial subsidiary BBC Studioworks.  It includes sets for long-running soaps and drama. Studio D has been used for some of the BBC's large studio productions and the BBC's 2015 General Election coverage.

Furzehill Road
Housing from the late 1890s built by Charles Braithwaite for his locomotive packing works staff
Borehamwood Baptist Church
Summerswood Primary School 

Shakespeare Drive
BECC Children’s Centre

Shenley Road
Elstree Studios.  This began in 1925 when land here was bought by British National Pictures Lt who built two large film stages. The site was used because of the natural lighting in the high village. The first British picture using sound was made here in 1929. The site was used by the British & Dominions Film Corporation, later the Associated British Picture Corporation, from 1933 until the Second World War  when the studios were used by the War Office. From 1946, Warner Brothers had a substantial interest in the site but in 1969 EMI took control.  They also had a link to Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.  Despite some closures in 1974 the studio survived and became part of Thorn in 1979. Another new owner, Brent Walker, demolished many buildings which were replaced by a Tesco store. In 1996 the site was bought by Hertsmere Council who set up a management company. The studios are used for film and television production
British and Dominion Studios. In 1930, British Dominion bought new sound stages from British International Pictures Ltd on their Shenley Road site. These were burnt down in 1936. Later part of the site was used for Frank Landsdown’s film vault service and also the Rank Organisation. It later became the headquarters of the film and sound-effect libraries.
1 Sainsburys shop. This was The Crown pub which closed in 2013. Previous names were Mousetrap, Rhythm Room, Enigma. Originally this was a mid 19th pub
22 Alfred Arms. Pub
Borehamwood Shopping Park. Complex of big chain stores, built on the site of factories and depots.
Keystone Knitting Mills.  This was a hosiery factory on the site now covered by the Shopping Park. Keystone Passage on the site remembers the name. The business dated back to 1919, when Henry Nathan Lewis and Morris Twogood started door-to-door sales of US imported stockings. They opened a factory in 1927, specialising in ladies’ hosiery and lingerie. In the Second World War the site  was used to make munitions. In the late 1950s, nylon stockings overtook the market and in in 1958 the company was taken over by Alicia Hosiery and closed in the early Sixties.
Elstree Telephone exchange 
84 Reel Cinema. The Point. Opened since 2001 by what was previously called Curzon Cinemas.
96 Library. This is part of a new, multi-purpose community centre.  It includes a theatre, cinema, the Library, a youth service area, Elstree and Borehamwood Museum, meeting and training rooms as well as a main hall.
133-135 Wishing Well pub
213 Red Lion, This is now a MacDonald’s
148-150 Elstree Inn. Hotel and Wetherspoons pub
All Saints Church. Built 1909 on land sold by the parish to developers, a church being one of the conditions. The tower was added in 1957
Gulio Cambi.  Panama hat bleaching works 1908-1925

Station Road
This was originally called the Gas Works lane
Baptist chapel. Built in 1894.  Later called the Memorial Chapel. It became a cinema operated by the Neptune Film Company, who had a film studio nearby. Called, The Gem, if closed around 1917, then public toilets and then a flower shop
Gate Studios. In 1928 a sound stage was built in a large shed with arched roof by Whitehall Films Ltd. In 1935 Julius Hagen bought the site and set up JH Studios.  In the Second World War the studio was used by the War Office. In 1950, the site was bought by J. Arthur Rank as Gate Studios. In 1957 until 2006 Harkness Screens used the site as a factory to to make cinema screens. The buildings were later demolished and flats built.
Elstree and Borehamwood Station. Opened in 1868 as Elstree Station. It lies between Radlett and Mill Hill Broadway on what is now the Thameslink service. It was originally opened by the Midland Railway in connection with the extension to St. Pancras Station.
Joint Fire Research Organisation. This was set up by fire insurers in 1935 to undertake research into fires. Later it was became the Loss Prevention Council
Elstree and Borehamwood Gas works. This opened in 1871. and was later taken over by St Albans Gas Company. The gas holders remained after closure but have now been demolished.
Elstree Brick and Tile Works. When the Midland Railway extension from Bedford to St Pancras was built in the 1860's, a brickfield was established to use the excavated clay from the Elstree tunnel.  The brickfield closed in 1915 but the chimneys remained but was thought to be a landmark for enemy Zeppelins and was  thus demolished in 1916. It is now the site of Lakeside Court, off Deacons Hill Road

Theobald Street
Wellington and Ward. Photographic materials factory. J.B.B. Wellington, an architect from Bath, was the first manager of Kodak Works in Harrow 1891 to 1893. In 1894, together with his brother in law, H.H. Ward, he established a factory in Borehamwood on part of the site now occupied by the shopping centre. They produced photographic materials and it became the largest employer of local people until the 1920's. They published the Wellington Photographic Handbook, with extensive technical information Wellington was a member of the Royal Photographic Society, serving on its exhibition committee who also exhibited his work internationally from the late 1880s. He died in 1939.

Sources
Bard. Elstree and Borehamwood Past
Borehamwood Museum. Newsletter Web site
Borehamwood Times. Web site
Cinema Treasures. Web site
Clunn. The Face of London
Elstree Studios, Web site
Lost Pubs. Web site
Mee. Hertfordshire
Nairn. Modern Buildings
Watford Observer. Web site
What pub. Web site

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