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Brentford High Street Project  

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The site brings together information about the people and properties of Brentford, particularly the High Street, from 1840 (with some earlier material). It has around 2000 web pages and over 700 images.

If you are a new user take a look at the site guide.

New additions, also see Coming Soon: recently received contributions; perhaps you can help someone with a Brentford enquiry - it could be about a person, place or business, see Can You Help. More recent news follows.

I hope you find something of interest and if you have any memories or stories about Brentford please get in touch, I’ll be delighted to include them.

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Recent Additions

Thank you to all contributors for providing a wealth of diverse material. During 2021 50 new pages were added to the site and another 75 were updated. Access pages via links below.
  • An update on St George's Vicarage and its occupants (23 Jan 2022)
  • A second postcard from Howard Webb: Brentford Market day early 1900s (16 Jan 2022)
  • Goddard shopOlder viewers may recognise this. It is taken from a postcard provided by regular contributor Howard Webb, thought to date from around 1905 (15 Jan 2022)
  • Information about bricklayers, including links to some local bricklayers from the 19th century (8 Jan 2022)
  • Ted has shared his research into Sumner, Bevan, Ryall and Harman families (6 Jan 2022)
  • A Ghost story for the new year, part 1 (1 Jan 2022)
  • Update from Ballymore regarding 129-134 High Street - thanks to Janet McNamara for the link; earlier photos and Dave Stoneleigh's 2008 photo (7 Dec 2021)
  • News from December over the years; a news special for Christmastide is on its way... (5 Dec 2021)
  • The scale of the Ballymore development is apparent in these photos from Janet McNamara, mid-November; also includes a progress update from Ballymore's November 2021 newsletter (5 Dec 2021)
  • Union Court was recorded in Old Brentford in the 1810 Land Tax record, but where was it? Read on (29 Nov 2021)
  • South side of High Street, progress on Blocks B & C: thanks to Janet McNamara for her photo taken 2 October (27 Nov 2021)
  • Three early censuses for Brentford survive and this is final one to be published here: 1811 Old Brentford; thanks to John Gauss for making his transcription and analyses available. Other lists are available in Lists, Documents, News, the link is in the menu bar to the left, under People (27 Nov 2021)
  • Week's News (London) 08 November 1873 reported "The old Scottish festival of Hallowe'en (Oct. 31) was celebrated at Balmoral Castle with unusual rejoicings." This involved cottagers, gillies and labourers carrying torches, "the Queen's pipers playing appropriate airs", dancing reels and strathspeys, bagpipes, a bonfire... (Halloween 2021)
  • Read about a successful girls' swimming group, a bolting horse, the marriage of Fred Harris to Hilda Manley and more - it was all happening in Brentford 75 years ago, November 1946 (30 Oct 2021)
  • Janet McNamara's September update on the new developments in Brentford showing progress on Blocks B and C (11 Oct 2021)
  • Count Otto Black (decd) writes 'Did you know that the 1951 movie The African Queen ... although entirely set in Africa, was actually shot partly in Brentford?'; this may show Lot's Ait. Does anyone remember the filming? If so please get in touch (9 Oct 2021)
  • Thank you to Jim from Leicester who spotted one of Brentford's Bantam boats on the canal at Skipton recently, now adapted for use as an ice cream parlour; see photo by Tim Green from Bradford, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons ; the site has more information about the Bantam boats (30 Sep 2021)
  • The August update from Janet McNamara showing progress on the Ballymore project, viewed from the High Street: thanks Janet for keeping this update diary! (30 Sep 2021)
  • Joseph Quinion was a collar maker (saddler) who died in 1837; D.Q. has sent transcriptions of documents from nearly 200 years ago, taking us back to times when letting of land involved considering the need to manure it ... (14 Sep 2021)
  • Archaeological work at the site of Catherine Wheel Yard was completed in August, see Janet McNamara's photo record of the dig (11 Sep 2021)
  • Janet McNamara's July update on the new developments in Brentford showing progress on Blocks K and B (2 Sep 2021)
  • Thanks to Jim Storrar for sending item:'Roman Hearths and 17th Century Cellars Found at Construction Site'; Museum of London Archaeology have been excavating the development site; photos to follow from Janet McNamara (28 Aug 2021)
  • Another rare Howard Webb postcard showing firemen pumping water from A Lodge, scale makers at 259 High Street, 1906; the back of the card is interesting too ... (15 Aug 2021)
  • Thanks to Howard Webb for this sepia postcard image of St Lawrence church; the church has been closed since the early 1960s and is in phase 3 of the Ballymore development (13 Aug 2021)
  • Stella White is a granddaughter of Alice Elizabeth Matthews, born 1888: is she a part of your family research too? (8 Aug 2021)
  • More research into Robert Paddon: earlier life, marriage and his sons' apprenticeships and an exercise in locating his home using land tax records (27 Jul 2021)
  • Some notes about apprenticeship focusing on Robert Paddon, draper of New Brentford, who took on apprentices between 1770 and 1790; thanks to Lorraine Dicksee for her input into this research (22 Jul 2021)
  • Have you a carpenter or joiner in your family tree? If so these links may be useful (9 Jul 2021)
  • Janet McNamara's June update on the new developments in Brentford (3 Jul 2021)
  • YouTube video clip (under 3 mins) describes the identification of the plasterer whose graffiti was revealed during restoration of Pitzhanger Manor, Ealing (1 Jul 2021)
  • Still on the schools theme, names of those in teaching and other education work, 1899/1901 (30 Jun 2021)
  • Where did your grandparents go to school in Brentford? For that matter your great grandparents? In response to a query from Julie Jakeway in Nov 2019, a list of schools operating in the late 1800s/early 1900s (27 Jun 2021)
  • Stan Prince was blessed with an excellent memory and spent his life (1920-2021) in Brentford; Janet McNamara has sent his memories; he survived a lightning strike when 17, remembered in detail bombs dropped locally in WW2 and much more; worth settling down for ten minutes to enjoy (27 Jun 2021)
  • Thanks to Paul Freeman who sent two newscuttings that help fill gaps in the life story of Arthur Phillips, actor and Brentford resident in the early 1920s (11 Jun 2021)
  • Another photographic update from Janet McNamara showing the Ballymore development at the end of May 2021 (29 May 2021)
  • A cracking view of the Seven Stars pub, Half Acre, pre-1905, thanks to regular contributor Howard Webb (27 May 2021)
  • Findmypast has recently added transcriptions of Middlesex Poor Law records, including those for the parishes of New Brentford and Ealing (covering Old Brentford); ages and circumstances are noted, for example
    Mary Ann Steptoe, 25, spinster, to be removed from New Brentford to St. Giles in the Fields, Middx, record dated 10 Aug 1810
    Lucy Collier, concerning the settlement of her brother George Mitten. George was born in Westloke. Their father's settlement was in Aston Clinton, Bucks. She is 43 years old
    In summary
    New Brentford: 234 records, mostly removals to or from the parish between 1807-1831, also 23 settlement examinations including two from 1792 and two bastardy orders: Drury 1802, Topping 1804
    Ealing: 931 records 1827-1846, comprising 141 bastardy examinations, 117 removals to or from, 673 settlement examinations (7 May 2021)
  • In April 1921 three probationery nurses were dismissed from West Middlesex Hospital; newspaper accounts give insights into life and the times, supplemented by research into Nurse Florence Mabel Slatter (6 May 2021)
  • Another update from Janet McNamara on the new developments in Brentford, featuring the site of St Lawrence's Church and graveyard (25 Apr 2021)
  • Can You Help: Chris Scott asks if anyone has reference to a Silva Haberdashery operating 100-ish years ago; please get in touch if you can help (12 Apr 2021)
  • The aite has a postcard that appeared to show Brentford Football Club fans at an away match. Charlton Athletic Museum has put us right on that score - it was indeed an away match played at The Valley, Charlton Athletic's ground, before 1924, but shows Charlton Athletic fans; the image is staying as the information from Charlton Athletic Museum gives insights into times before photography was available to all (11 Apr 2021)
  • An update on the new developments in Brentford, featuring the site of St Lawrence's Vicarage and building of the block nearby, also reference to Flora, goddess of spring - thanks to Janet McNamara (Good Friday, 2 Apr 2021)
  • Brent House was built in the late 1600s at the corner of Upper Butts and Brent Road; thanks to Liz Bryant the site now has a photo showing it shortly before demolition in 1909, in addition to views of the part-demolished building and the area in 2011 (25 Mar 2021)
  • A 1974 view from under the M4 viaduct, Turriff building in the background. Not for the claustrophobic. Thanks to Peter Young (16 Mar 2021)
  • NB nothing to do with Brentford! Updates to Jarvis/Jervis research including a link to Mark's new YouTube Family Nibbles channel; plus research into the life of Hamnet Axson, of Nantwich, Cheshire, 1649-1728 (15 Mar 2021)
  • Janet McNamara is charting the Brentford development, south side of High Street, her photo shows the beginnings of a block near the canal, at the southern corner of the site (12 Mar 2021)
  • If you have a bargeman in your family you will find David Blomfield's The bargemen of Brentford, Brentford & Chiswick Local History Society Journal, of interest, particularly if they were a Banyon, Clark, Dale, Harris, Layton, Sims or Winter; the occupations page has other links (11 March 2021)
  • Around 200 years ago Elizabeth Ronalds (nee Clarke) collected together many recipes provided by family members and residents of Brentford. Dr Beverley Ronalds has recently published a couple of articles about this old manuscript recipe book. Her article can be downloaded from her website - last item on page - and includes a transcript of recipes and contributors on pages 8 & 9: a "who's who" of Brentford in the Regency period, and particularly the protestant dissenters who attended the chapel in Boston Manor Road; (names include Drinkwater, Montgomrey and Rowe) (7 Mar 2021)
  • Two photos from Janet McNamara showing the newly painted Brentford Bridge with depictions of glorious art deco architecture (not all surviving ...) 6 Mar 2021
  • Peter Young's photo was taken on 3 March 1974 - 47 years ago - and shows a train near Syon Lane bridge on a sunny day (2 Mar 2021)
  • Continuing the hospital theme, Hanworth Park (like Downton Abbey) was used as a military hospital, 1915-1919; Liz Bryant has provided two photos from this era, one of which shows around 25 patients; news articles chart the planning for this hospital (26 Feb 2021)
  • Another photo from Stephen Read, showing West Middlesex University Hospital in October 1975, with links to older Brentford hospitals (23 Feb 2021)
  • Two photos of Half Acre in the late 1890s, one showing the Standard beerhouse and another the Vestry Hall under construction - thanks to Liz Bryant (20 Feb 2021)
  • Angela asked where a marriage at Brentford Register Office would take place in 1935. Good question. The answer is now in Brentford Basics, thanks to local historians Janet McNamara, Carolyn Hammond and Jim Lawes (18 Feb 2021)
  • Peter Young took a photo of the Watney's delivery to the King's Arms in the summer of 1972 (16 Feb 2021)
  • Remember The Sweeney? Thanks to Count Otto Black (decd) for sending stills showing the derelict Brentford Market Building; The sweet smell of succession is on ITV4 Thursday 18 Feb, 2.40pm and repeated Friday 19 Feb, 8.15am (15 Feb 2020)
  • Memories of Brentford in the 1950s and 60s from Chris Brown, who has also written about the Princess Royal, see below (10 Feb 2021)
  • Maud ConnellCan You Help: Donna Mills seeks her great aunt, Maud Connell, thought to have worked at Ranton's some time in the 1950s to 1970s - Donna has sent a couple of contemporary photos hoping they may help jog memories; Maud Turner married William Connell in 1940, their address was Inverness Road in the early 1950s;
    in a similar vein, Chris Mundell asks 'does anyone remember Frank Lewry, plastics designer and technical director of Ranton's?' Please mail if you can help (re-issued 7 Feb 2021)
    • Thanks to Sam Fox for sending memories of Frank Lewry; these have been forwarded to Chris Mundell
  • Chris Brown spotted a page about the Princess Royal pub, where he played with Sandy Dogg, mid 1960s: read more... (4 Feb 2021)
  • Thanks to Janet McNamara for two photos showing the Dock Road car park and early stages of the Ballymore development opposite Market place - a bit of a surprise if you have not been to Brentford for a year or so! (3 Feb 2021)
  • Vince Graham sent an email subject "Grim night 18th August 1892" and it was indeed: the accidental killing of William Smith by his brother, Cornelius, Ealing Road; Vince sent a scan of the death certificate (26 Jan 2021)
  • Can You Help - Answered: Maureen Harris My sister-in-law remembers being taken to see a relative, in approximately 1950/52, who lived in a prefab alongside Homefields Recreation Ground, by Chiswick Lane, Chiswick. Have you any information about these prefabs existence?
    If this rings a bell, please get in touch and I will forward to Maureen (3 Dec 2020)
    Thanks to Jose for sending a detailed OS map showing 20 prefabs on the east side of Chiswick Lane, numbered 47-83 (odds only, evens are traditional houses on the other side of the road); also a link to a prefabs website - use 'Map' tab to view a map showing all reported prefab sites (25 Jan 2021)
  • Can You Help: Rosa is interested in any information about Bangor Road and also family members: Percy and Clara Hamlin, who feature in a news piece from 1956 about flooding in The Ham; or anyone that knew her grandparents Henry Liddle and Florence (nee Hamlin), who lived at 2 Bangor Road, or her father Philip Liddle; please email, I will forward to Rosa (18 Jan 2021)
  • Can You Help: James has asked if anyone has any old photos of Boston Gardens; a check of the 1939 Register shows it was fully built by then with numbers 1 to 95 odds, and 2 to 108 evens; please get in touch if you can help (17 Jan 2021)
  • Thanks to Angela who asked where civil marriage ceremonies took place in Brentford in 1935 and to Carolyn Hammond and Janet McNamara for the answer: it was at the Middlesex County Council office building on the Great West Road near the corner of Windmill Road (and backing onto Glenhurst Road); the building has been modernised but is still recognisable in Google StreetView (17 Jan 2021)
  • Roger Davis: I happened on this cine ... a little fixated on the gasworks and coking plants, but with a lot of brief views of the High street, 1965. It is all very much as I remember it from my youth so long ago including the monochrome drabness which suits it well - What and Where Is Paradise – London's Screen Archives; See a list of business names spotted (11 Jan 2021)
  • The gasometer by St George's church features in three blue-sky 1972 photos by Peter Young (14 Dec 2020)
  • In autumn 1886 Wandering Tom of the Middlesex Independent completed a walking tour of Brentford's hostelries, making notes; we have Vic Rosewarne to thank for transcribing the original articles and adding notes of explanation: a unique contemporary account from 134 years ago (9 Nov 2020)
  • Thanks to Count Otto Black (decd) for spotting this fantastic flickr Brentford wedding photo from 1907 : William Lines and Winnie Bouts. He adds 'The picture may have been taken in the garden of Rutland House. This isn't certain, but since that's where the bride and her parents lived, whereas the groom was from Stoke Newington, it's the most probable location'. If you have folk in Brentford were they guests? also...
    if you click where it says "Photos of the Past" just under the picture, you'll be taken to a large gallery of views including, on the first page, five photos of the royal opening of Kew Bridge in 1903 (1 Nov 2020)
  • At getting on for 15 years old the website is ripe for modernisation - a big job. First, the Navigation menu (to the left) will be updated. The new Pub Hub link has lots of pub-related material, much of it provided by Vic Rosewarne and Jim Storrar. More changes to follow! (1 Nov 2020)
  • Thanks to Simon Winston for information about the Argyll Rooms/Trocadero, owned by councillor Robert Richard Bignell (27 Oct 2020)
  • During lockdown Vic Rosewarne has spent many hours working on the 1836 Poor Rate records for Old and New Brentford; this is like a mini-census that also notes warehouses, market gardens, breweries etc - the introduction has more details and links to the full set of records, including a version with occupations plus analyses by the webmaster (20 Oct 2020)
  • The site has a photo showing a part-demolished Brent House; the page now has a line drawing showing the intact Brent House, taken from an Australian newspaper of 1909 (13 Oct 2020)
  • An unusual photo from Paul Kirby showing his father and two other men working at Brentford Locks, around 1962 (26 Sep 2020)
  • Vic Rosewarne has researched some particularly inept burglaries at the Royal Hotel, involving mutton, forks (overtones of the two Ronnies) and a man known as 'Deerfoot'; they give insights into late-Victorian policing and court procedure - a fine read (22 Sep 2020)
  • Another football item - Count Otto Black (decd) sent this splendid 1930's cigarette card featuring the Brentford Bee (12 Sep 2020)
  • Lesley Punter, Paul Kirby, 1965 Paul Kirby has fond memories of Bangor Road and his photo from 1965 looks down the road to Spring Grove Laundry; notes about the history of Bangor Road included (18 Aug 2020)
  • If you haven't checked Web Links recently you may have missed reading about finds in a garden in Orchard Road - see the top item (15 Aug 2020)
  • Thanks to Linda Hillier nee Chapman, whose mother remembered the V1 rocket hit in 1944, Clayponds Avenue 13 Aug 2020
  • Di Murrell, who used to work on the waterways around Brentford - has a new book: A Foodie Afloat - an enticing story of slow boats, slow food, small events and chance encounters in France - read more; Di advises you can purchase via this link to Troubador Publishing or from Amazon (8 Aug 2020)
  • Set aside a few minutes for Peter Young's memories of Brentford in the 1950s and 60s, a rich combination of sights, sounds and smells (5 Aug 2020)
  • Can You Help: Roger Courtice seeks information about Alexander George REED (known as Chinner); his birth was registered in Brentford in 1915, he was at Mornington Road, Ealing in 1939, married (first) Margaret V Brown in 1937 by whom he had Derek (1939),(possibly Molly in 1940, Carole and David); Derek died in 1946; Alexander spent some time in Malaya in the 1940s and he died in Worthing 1984; I will forward any replies to Roger, just get in touch; thank you! (30 Jul 2020)
  • Link to photos of the captain, mate and driver of the Sultan, outside the Six Bells in 1905, and other images of this Fellows, Morton and Clayton iron composite steamer, including one near Brentford: thanks to Count Otto Black (decd) for this (25 Jul 2020)
  • Peter Young sent over 90 colour photos of Brentford; this one he describes as the Layton Road kid, delivering milk in January 1973; StreetView shows the road much changed, please get in touch if you recognise the boy or houses (23 Jul 2020)
  • More updates to John Finlay's memories from Sandra Graves and Count Otto Black (decd) and a link to a splendid website showing trolley bus photos, 1962, including one near to Ted's cafe/the scout hut (6 Jul 2020)
  • Thanks to Count Otto Black (decd) for a link to a classic TV advert for Brentford Nylons, featuring Alan 'Fluff' Freeman - see a glimpse of the Brentford Brentford HQ; search on "Brentford Nylons" in the search box above for photos and more (4 Jul 2020)
  • John Finlay remembers two cafes near Half Acre in the early 1960s: Wood's and Ted's - read more 17 Jun 2020
    • Thanks to Sandra Graves for her rapid response, see link above
  • Helen Thompson sent a brochure produced in 1964 for mattress makers Charles Fox Ltd., Reynard Mills, Windmill Road: classic 1960s styling; the brochure includes an aerial view which has made it possible to identify its location: see more (12 Jun 2020)
  • A view of Brentford Lock from 1975 - thanks to Stephen Reed for capturing a moment in time (1 Jun 2020)
  • The National Archives is currently providing free access to some digital collections - read more 30 May 2020
  • Another contribution from Jim Storrar: view of Bradbury's warehouses following demolition of surrounding buildings during the redevelopment of the south side of High Street by Ballymore (23 May 2020)
  • The legendary Brentford pubs poem records the many pubs a person would pass when walking along the High Street from Kew Bridge; Vic Rosewarne has found what looks to be the original and its date of publication - read on (22 May 2020)
  • Jim Storrar has sent Then and Now: The Changing Urban Fabric of Brentford, over 35 'Then and Now' views, all Brentford; rarely do I see a 'Now' view and think 'that looks better', but as Jim says 'one person's carbuncle can often be another's masterpiece'; see what you think - to view click here (NB around 9 Mb)(14 May 2020)
  • Another photo from 1975 from Stephen Reed, Brentford Library and war memorial; this wa staken around 70 years after the library opened (6 May 2020)
  • Thanks to regular contributor, Sally Douglas, for this Flickr link showing an 1870s soldier, 32nd Cornwall Light Infantry, photo by T Twine of Hounslow 29 Apr 2020
  • Ena Stone and friendA lovely collection of family photos from Lynn Hayter from around 1932, showing her aunt, Lilian Stone, Ena Stone and Tommy Spicer in and around Catherine Wheel Yard (25 Apr 2020)
  • Charles Woodley: Many, many years ago I lived in Brentford and joined the Cubs and then the 6th Brentford Scouts around 1958 read more...; names mentioned: Derek Brown, Ian Powell, Gordon and Vic; I will forward any replies to Charles (22 Apr 2020)
  • Notes on various alleys that run down to the Brent from High Street have been sitting idly on my computer for too many years. They would take me too long to turn into web pages but please download; the first can be accessed through RO (Roads off the High Street) - Boars Head Yard (18 Apr 2020)
  • Joanna Archer is hoping to make contact with members of the Collins and Raveney families; William "Bill" Collins was a four-month-old baby in 1871 at Mount Pleasant, father Jeremiah Collins; Bill married Martha Raveney - a surname concentrated in Middlesex - and they settled in Bromley, Kent where they had 12 children; please get in touch if you can help (17 Apr 2020)
  • Jeremiah Collins (see above) and family were at 6 Mount Pleasant in 1871; where was no. 6? A little research into the area (17 Apr 2020)
  • Also from Stephen Reed (see below): a photo of Brentford Hospital, Boston Manor Road, 1975 (including a Ford Cortina!) (6 March 2020)
  • Stephen Reed grew up in New Brentford but now lives in Devon 'I am trying to trace some family history.
    My dad's family Reed lived in Netley Road until it was demolished to make way for the new (Haverfield??) housing estate which now stands along Ealing Road. Dad's mother's family were Collins, of Irish extraction.
    My mother's family (Stevens were bargees; her mother [my grandmother] was Hogg) all lived in The Ham until about the time of the war.
    If anyone can help fill-in any background details I’d be grateful - please get in touch (6 March 2020)
  • Vincent Price Goes To Brentford! notes Count Otto Black (decd); he has sent Then and Now Dock Road photos plus a view of a Zygon spaceship from Dr Who; both mid-1970s (29 Feb 2020)
  • Notes from the St Paul's parish magazine: August 1982 now covered; thanks to Sandra Graves (28 Feb 2020)
  • In 1860, Daniel Howard, after a number of years in business in the new Road, brought his young family down to the High Street and moved into the shop at 298 which had been Donovans' Cottage with its garden fronting the road: from the first half century of Howard and Sons; thanks to Liz Bryant for sharing this rare account of Brentford from the latter part of the 19th century; it is thought to be written by John H.Howard (22 Feb 2020)
  • A view of the Butts from a 1946 painting by A.S. Hartrick (10 Feb 2020)
  • What did young gentlemen get up to in 1841? Read two newspaper accounts found by Vic Rosewarne: Victorian Hooray Henrys (9 Feb 2020)
  • Did your ancestor leave a Prerogative Court of Canterbury (PCC) will? These cover the period up to 1858 and it is possible to preview these wills for free on the National Archives website; lists of Brentford PCC wills, 1800-1858, are here; Death Duty Registers for the period 1796-1811 can also be previewed for free on the National Archives website (1 Feb 2020)
  • Another fine contribution from Vic Rosewarne: odd items I came across whilst researching pubs, mostly connected to the High Street. I thought they might interest your readers'; this is a rich miscellany of wild weather reports, odd events including a tale of a bull in a cutler's shop, also an informative read 'A MORNING WITH THE BRENTFORD BENCH, by a visitor, 1885', who looked in on the Annual Licensing Day (25 Jan 2020)
  • A history of Howard and Sons, Ironmongers prepared by Liz Bryant, including two views of the family business at 298/299 High Street; perhaps you can help date the photos? (24 Jan 2020)
  • Thanks to Claire Noble for sharing her research into non-local traders at Brentford Market in 1922, taking in local and parliamentary voting rights too 4 Jan 2020
  • Elsie Dorey, 1920Two family photos from Doug Chinnery: around 1920, his mother Elsie Dorey; around 1957, Victor and Doug Chinnery and visiting cousins (30 Dec 2019)
  • Just in time for Christmas, thanks to Doug Chinnery for photos of St Paul's choir taken around 1958; and to regular contributor Sandra Graves who has id'd one person (15/16 Dec 2019)
  • Over seven years to rebuild Brentford's High Street: plans for redeveloping the south side of High Street, New Brentford, website (13 Dec 2019)
  • The general election of 1768 - 251 years ago - resulted in the election of John Wilkes as MP for Middlesex; thanks to Count Otto Black (deceased) for a link to a rather weird account of what happened in Brentford, to which I have added a contemporary newspaper account; perhaps someone will be writing a similar piece about Brexit and the general election of 2019 in 250 years time... (11 Dec 2019)
  • A pre-1897 photo of the Cage, Ealing and Old Brentford's lock-up with links to contemporary accounts of those who spent time there - thanks to Liz Bryant (5 Dec 2019)
  • PC Harry Claude Vivian Barwick (based at the Half Acre Police Station) was awarded the King's Police Medal for an act of heroism in 1931; thanks to Paul Morrison for photos and a contemporary account (30 Nov 2019)
  • Remaining properties documented at the east end of the High Street - numbers 379, 380, 381, 383 - including the Eight Bells beerhouse which Vic Rosewarne has researched, see link next-but-one; sadly there are no photos of this area on the site, so if anyone has a historic view please get in touch (22 Nov 2019)
  • Andrea Paskins has written about Basil A Williams of 286 High Street, a chemists for over 100 years; also an opportunity to update the notes for the nearby (Little) King's Arms at 273 High Street with info from Vic Rosewarne (22 Nov 2019)
  • No one will remember the Eight Bells beerhouse: Vic Rosewarne's research recovers a history that might otherwise be lost (17 Nov 2019)
  • The chance discovery of a box under the stairs with a Brentford link - thanks to Paul Morrison for sharing his find (9 Nov 2019)
  • Thanks to Howard Webb and Janet McNamara who both have sent this fine postcard image of the east end of the High Street around 1910; a spot of research may have found the good ickle gal referred to in Howard's copy (3 Nov 2019)
  • Douglas Chinnery, formerly of New Spring Gardens, has sent another version of the famous Brentford Pubs Poem, penned by his father as a calligraphy exercise in the 1980s; the poem is attributed to Alfred Pearce; Douglas has also sent family notes and local memories (18 Oct 2019)
  • Tina Rowe spotted an interesting bequest in a will transcription provided by Bob Loveday; the legatee was thought to be James Duffield but Tina confirms it was James Dutfield, 'an exceptionally talented painter of butterflies and moths'; he lived in Ealing in the mid-18th century, see notes about him and a link to one of his paintings 2 Sep 2019
  • Joan Rose ChapmanLinda Hillier nee Chapman is pretty sure she has spotted her aunt Joan Rose Barrett nee Chapman in Diane Elphick's 1930 school photo; soon after Barry Pearce emailed details of his uncle Alfred Brooks(known as Jim) in the same photo (10/13 Aug 2019)
  • Janet McNamara has provided current-day photo of Goat Wharf, rather different to the 1930s/1940s photos from Liz Bryant (4 Aug 2019)
  • Two photos of Alexandra House, dating from the late 1930s or early 1940s, thanks to Liz Bryant; complemented by history notes and a current day view from Janet McNamara (2 Aug 2019)
  • A rather special photo of The Cage, Brentford's lock-up, from Liz Bryant, date late 1800s (26 Jul 2019)
  • Thanks to Peter Young for this link to The Guardian website; which has photos of two abandoned buildings in Brentford - Pyrene and Wilson & Kyle; also see a postcard which shows (rather fuzzily)the Pyrene Building in the 1930s; or search (above) for 'kyle' to find memories of working there, a photo from 2002 and more...; and, if you have five minutes, take a look at Peter Young's portfolio of photos of Brentford in the 1970s (18 Jul 2019)
  • Liz Bryant has sent a splendid collection of deckle-edge photos of Brentford, probably dating from the 1920s or early 1930s; the first is a view down Goat Wharf from the High Street; a 1945/6 view and 1961 map section are included (7 Jul 2019)
  • If your folk lived in Brentford around 1936 they could be in this street directory, part of Peter Rutt's excellent website, thanks to Barry Pearce for the link (16 Jun 2019)
  • Thanks to Peter Young for a YouTube link of the Brentford Lock West development; he adds 'how the world has changed! That’s where they used to store the drums of lime juice and load them onto narrowboats to be taken up the GU Canal to Rickmansworth to the Roses Lime-juice factory. The two long sheds next to the railway line were coffee bean stores'; also see Peter's many 1970s photos of Brentford Lock, Dock and other parts of the town (13 Jun 2019) If you can help just email me and I will forward to Peter (16 Mar 2019)
  • A nice image showing H. Newman's Banana Warehouse and two lorries, possibly around WW1, thanks to Peter Stuart for this (20 Dec 2018)
  • Read about two railway accidents at Brentford Dock, 1913 and 1914: reminders of the risks of working when Health and Safety legislation was not rigorously enforced; thanks to Peter Stuart for this new website source (24 Nov 2018)
  • Peter Stuart found an intriguing message about a bomb drop on Great West Road - see Roger William' copy of the same card for more info (14 Nov 2018)
  • Some early 1960s Brentford scenes including western end of High Street and Brentford Dock, from The Marked One, ReelStreets website: thanks to Christopher M (5 Nov 2018)
  • A leafy view of Boston Park Road, probably pre WW1 - thank you to Peter Stuart for another great postcard (28 Oct 2018)
  • Immerse yourself in the 1582 dispute concerning ownership of The Ham, New Brentford; entertaining and informative with references to Henry VIII and Brentford's ducking stool; a well-researched piece by Vic Rosewarne (27 Oct 2018)
  • Some of you will remember the transporting of drums of limejuice through Brentford up until the 1970s; Tam Murrell features in two of Peter Young's photos and Di remembers those days; also see her foodie afloat website and blog - some great writing and photos (19 Oct 2018)
  • If you are interested in battles see the UK Battlefields Resource Centre details of the Battle of Brentford, 1642, English Civil War; this is commemorated on the Brentford monument along with the 1016 battle: Edmund Ironside v. Canute; thanks to Sally Elizabeth Douglas (15 Oct 2018)
  • Three photos of the Queen’s Silver Jubilee celebrations in 1977, part of the collection provided by Stephen Reed (18 Apr 2018)
  • Christmas postcard 1908Family group, used as a Christmas card in 1908, sent by J.H.B.; thanks to trade directories, censuses and electoral registers the identity of the family is known; another fine contribution from Howard Webb (14 April 2018)
  • Group of 33 men outside the Bricklayers Arms, early 1960s, from Stephen Reed; Justine Sullivan has added another name so now we have Ben Morley (landlord), Charlie Reed, Dan Reed and Bill Stacey; perhaps you can add some more? (14 March 2018)
  • A view of the new Red Lion on the corner of Ealing road, from Stephen Reed, 1975; includes a no. 267 bus (13 March 2018)
  • View of High Street including Stone's menswear, 1975, another photo from Stephen Reed capturing the moment (26 Feb 2018)
  • The first of many photos from 1975 thanks to Stephen Reed; this first one shows the area opposite County Parade in October 1975 (16 Feb 2018)
  • Thanks to Peter Stuart for his additions to Jim Storrar’s piece on the origins of BFC 28 Jan 2018
  • A Ricket / Turner wedding photo from 1910, sent by Maureen Harris, featuring some wonderful Edwardian hats; perhaps you can help identify some of the guests? Surnames include Ricket, Turner and Sheldrake (29 Oct 2017)
  • Thanks to Sally Douglas for information about the Royal Rowbarge Gloriana, built in Brentford in 2011/12: official website, BBC news item covering the launch on the Thames and campaign to moor the Gloriana in Brentford; she featured in the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant, June 2012; Pam Vernon-Roberts forwarded photos showing other pageant craft, including locally-built Bantam Tugs (29 Aug 2017)


Coming Soon (catch-up is underway*)

Below is a summary of items sent over the last two years, these will be added as soon as possible. * I graduated in July 2015 (MA in English Local History) and am currently still catching up with the backlog of material. Apologies for the delay in loading new pages, all material received is held safely in the meantime.

Thank you to all contributors for the wealth of images, research and puzzles:

  • Hugh Hughes has sent a leaflet about the move of Howard & Son from High Street in 1965 (Jan 2017)
  • Annie of Appledore sent details of a grave reference and with help from the Hounslow Cemetery Team has been found to be in Islington Cemetery; they also provided plans showing the grave location (March 2016)
  • Pauline Stanhope has sent a selection of local photos taken from old calendars; views include Rattenburys ’I remember Rattenburys well. I had a second hand eternity ring from there in 1965ish’; photos include a view of the High Street opposite the Market Place around 1951 (November 2015)
  • Postcard of the Half Acre / High Street corner showing the Beehive Hotel; County Parade 1960s (thanks to my husband Richard) (November 2015)
  • Janet McNamara has provided more news cuttings: George Haley’s election address, April 1st 1903 and one from 1914 about expansion of the Griffith Bros business (origins in Brentford, around 1900) into Richmond (Feb 2014)
  • Peter King provided a file of newspaper cuttings and adverts from 1913 following the Local History Day in June (June 2013)
  • Lynn Hayter has sent a slideshow showing Brentford in November 2012, over 100 photos, hope to be able to make this available to any who can access a .wmv file and some stills (March 2013)
  • Dave Stoneleigh has sent scans of Brentford Football Club programmes from 1947-1952, including adverts and team names, a trip down memory lane! (Feb 2013)
  • Janet McNamara has sent newspaper cuttings about Brentford councillors, also a charming advert for the dolls’ hospital at 234 High Street (September 2012)

The above is not a complete list of all material outstanding (one of the challenges is to keep tabs on all contacts and I occasionally have a ’hot moment’ when I find a mis-filed email dating back two or more years... If you write and have no reply, or I have said I’ll do something and then don’t a reminder will be appreciated!


Can You Help

Please get in touch if you can help with any of the following. Thank you!

Can you help Margaret reunite a 1920s journal with the writer’s family?; two photos show the mystery journal-writer, possibly called George, who worked at Bohee’s, the printers, 58/59 High Street, and a view outside Bohee’s (May 2013)

Please can Jim Kelleher provide his current email address: a researcher into the Twining family would like to get in touch?

Please can Pauline Chidwick provide her current email address: a researcher into Reuben Fleetwood and family would like to get in touch?

LostCousins - a Great Resource

Peter Calver, LostCousins founder, publishes a newsletter every fortnight or so, each edition packed with hints and tips to help family researchers.

You can freely access the latest newsletter from the LostCousins website (link is at the bottom of the page): but as Peter says, ’why not join?’.

If you join LostCousins (it is free) you will find it extremely useful in locating relatives: Peter’s website introduction explains:
Are you serious about researching your family tree? If so, you’ve come to the right place, because LostCousins is the ONLY family history website able to match you with others researching the same ancestors
Simply enter the relatives on your family tree who were recorded in selected US, Canadian, British, or Irish Censuses - then click the Search button.