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Not Brentford New

Peter Young's Brentford photos from the early 1970s

Biographical notes

Peter Young is a writer and editor for a publishing company based in Wales, concentrating mainly on books about education, psychology and the arts. He grew up in Chiswick, Grove Park, moved to Brentford (The Ride) in 1961, and lived in South Ealing/Northfields from 1973 until 1979. He currently lives in Worcester. He started photography in 1967 in South Australia. He has posted a number of photographs, mainly of England and France, on Panoramio [http://www.panoramio.com/user/484745]. Peter has also published photos on Geograph ["http://www.geograph.org.uk/article/Geograph-Introductory-letter]: this site is searchable by place and there are Brentford images from the 1930s onwards.

Peter adds: In 2015 I became a Volunteer at the nearby National Trust property of Croome. I have two main roles: Volunteer Photographer and Estate Waller. The Walling Team are gradually restoring the Croome Estate walls using dry-stone walls. A number of my pictures are used on the Croome Website [https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/croome], as well as on the Croome Facebook [https://www.facebook.com/ntcroome/] and other marketing and publicity material for Croome Court. As Croome is constantly updating itself, part of my photography is creating archive material of the changes and events that take place there. Recently, the National Trust took over the Elgar Birthplace Museum in Lower Broadheath, and I have been recording the current ‘before’ state there. In addition, I have my own blog [https://esperluetterbox.wordpress.com/] which is mainly about Creative Writing, but I usually put a photo or two on each entry, it includes a fair number of photos of Croome.

The Brentford photos

The Brentford images have been taken from Peter's colour slides dating to the early 1970s, when he used an Olympus Pen-F half-frame SLR camera and Agfa colour reversal film.

There are over 90 images of Brentford scanned at 240 dpi including the Docks, views of the canal, the Great West Road and many areas of the town, see below for more details. A small selection from this great photographic archive follows.

Brentford thumbnail images

Photos list

High Street

Kew Bridge & Brentford riverside

Brentford Dock These pictures show the handling of drums full of concentrated lime juice, from the West Indies, which was shipped up the Thames to Brentford, stacked on the wharf, and then loaded onto narrowboats – Threefellows Carrying – which were tied in parallel. The juice was taken by canal up to Rickmansworth where the Roses Lime Juice factory was (more details) because it was deemed too corrosive to be carried by road.

The following photos were also taken at Brentford Dock, including the unloading of coffee beans

Thames Locks and Brentford Lock

Brentford Football Club

  • Gated entrance

Public Houses

Great West Road & M4
For more background about the development of the Great West Road, see James Marshall's piece in the Brentford and Chiswick Local History Society journal at http://brentfordandchiswicklhs.org.uk/local-history/industries-and-crafts/the-great-west-road-then-now/. This includes a map of the 'Golden Mile' from Chiswick roundabout to Syon Lane with several landmark buildings keyed.

If you are a map geek - and why not - then the 25 inch to the mile OS map published in 1936 is recommended; coming from an era when businesses were thought to be long lasting, it describes each factory - so Firestone is the 'Rubber Tyres Manufactory' and nearby are other Manufactories: Corrugated Case, Windscreen Wipers, Perfume, Toothpaste, Fire Extinguishers and Gyroscope. Later maps just show 'Factory'. The map (and many others) can be viewed for free at the Scottish National Library website.

The site has an early 1930s' view of the Great West Road and also notes from talks by James Marshall and Vanda Foster about the Great West Road (Brentford Local History Day, 2013).

Off the High Street

The full size photos will be published with accompanying notes over the next few months.

Please get in touch if you recognise any of the people or have memories to share.

Page published May 2014; updated May 2017