A Chronology of Hounslow

Hounslow does not have its own entry in the Domesday Survey of 1086. The area was within the Hundred of Honeslaw (a division of the Saxon County of Middlesex), but Hounslow is not recorded as a town with its own history until the thirteenth century. As a town administering its own affairs Hounslow does not exist until 1836 with the creation of “The Chapelry of Hounslow” from the mediaeval parishes of Heston and Isleworth, which had previously shared the civil and religious administration of the town because its High Sreet, aligned along an old Roman Road, formed their common boundary. The Domesday spelling of Hounslow was Honeslaw and its derivation is from ‘Hundi’ meaning hound (an Old Germanic personal name) and ‘hlaw’ meaning a mound (a barrow, tump or ancient burial mound). The long-lost ‘hlaw’ or barrow is thought to have stood upon Smallberry Green Common, near what is now West Thames College. It may have been the site of the Anglo-Saxon open air court for the Hundred of Honeslaw – later known as the Hundred (or district) of Isleworth.

1214: Friars of the Holy Trinity at Hounslow obtained Letters of Protection from King John.

1215: The first mention of a settlement at Hounslow by Robert Fitzwalter, leader of the Barons at the signing of Magna Carta. Robert wrote to his followers that there was to be a tournament, near London, in the Wood or Forest of Staines, near the town of Hounslow.

1227:  Forest laws for the preservation of game were rescinded by the Disafforestation of the Warren of Staines. Open land to the west of Hounslow became known as Hounslow Heath.

1296: Hounslow Friary received the grant of a market and an annual fair. The market to be held on Tuesdays and the fair for eight days at Trinity Sunday. The Manor of Hounslow is first mentioned and possibly refers to the lands belonging to the Friary.

1539: Following the Dissolution of the Monastries, Richard Awnsham of Hall Place, Heston, secured a 21-year lease of the Friary House and most of the Friars’ former Manorial property or demesnes.

1545: Hounslow Heath is said to have covered 4,293 acres.

1558: William, Lord Windsor, was granted the Friary House and Manorial lands on condition that he found a religious house there. This never happened.

1629: Hunting, hawking, coursing and fishing without a Royal License was expressly forbidden on Hounslow Heath.

1647: Oliver Cromwell encamped his army of 20,000 men on Hounslow Heath, before marching, at their head, to London.

1670: The Constable for Hounslow was responsible for billeting soldiers in the town.

1685-88: James II encamped his standing army on Hounslow Heath every summer for training and manoeuvres.

1686: John Shales, Commissary-General of Provisions for the army, was granted the right to hold a market in Hounslow every day, whilst the military camp was upon Hounslow Heath, and on every Thursday at other times.

1687: John Shales was granted the right to hold a fair at Hounslow from the 1st to the 12th of May. The first two days were for selling horses; the second two days were for selling cattle; and the other eight days were for trading other goods.

1692: John Shales owned the Market House in Hounslow.

1705: Whitelocke Bulstrode purchased Hounslow Manor.

1724: Whitelocke Bulstrode died and was buried in Hounslow Chapel.

1740: The Prince and Princess of Wales visited the army’s summer encampment on Hounslow Heath, as did 20,000 other people.

1784: The first Royal Mail Coach service, using Palmer’s lightweight stage-coach, passed through Hounslow on its way between Bath and London.

1793: Hounslow Cavalry Barracks was built – the army’s first permanent home on Hounslow Heath.

1802: The bodies of highwaymen, executed for their crimes at Tyburn, were still displayed on Hounslow Heath, hanging from gibbets set between the Bath and Staines Roads, on the west side of the town.

1809: (approximate date) The gibbets were taken down.

1813: Enclosure (I) The parishes of Heston and Isleworth, which, between them, contained and shared the town of Hounslow, together drew up parliamentary acts of enclosure to allocate discreet parcels of the parishes’ open fields; and to allot fencible shares in the common heathland; amongst the then owners of land and property in each parish, in proportion to the extent of each of their properties in the two parishes at that time.

1813-19: Enclosure (II) The War Department purchase part of Hounslow Heath on the south side of the Staines Road, east of Baber Bridge, from the Commissioners of Enclosure for Heston and Isleworth, for use as a Military Training and Review Ground for Hounslow Barracks. This land is now Hounslow Heath Local Nature Reserve – the last remnant of a great open heath, once more than five miles long and between one and two miles wide, which stretched from Bushy Park to Heathrow Airport.

1818: The Heston Mill windmill was built on Hounslow Heath on the north side of the Staines Road.

1827: The Independent Chapel in Hanworth Road was built.

1829:  Holy Trinity Church, Hounslow High Street, was completed and opened.

1831: Hounslow Subscription School, in School Road, opened. It is now known as Hounslow Town School. A new school, entered from School Road, was completed in 2018. It has more than 1200 pupils and is one of the largest primary schools in the country.

1835: The Independent Chapel in Hanworth Road was replaced by the present building. It is now Hounslow United Reformed Church.

1836: The Chapelry of Holy Trinity, Hounslow came into being, making Holy Trinity Church the parish church for the town and establishing its independence of the former parish churches of St. Leonard’s at Heston and All Saints at Isleworth.

1839: Gas lighting installed in Hounslow High Street.

1841: Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s Great Western Railway opened between London and Bristol, its route running through Ealing and Hanwell. The 4-hour train journey offered a much quicker and more comfortable alternative to the journey of 11-hours or more, by stage coach, through  Hounslow. The trade of the town’s inns and livery stables received a severe blow.

1846: Private Frederick White, a cavalryman, died following a punishment flogging at Hounslow Barracks. The inquest, held at the George IV public house on Staines Road nearby (now The Honeycomb), was widely reported and made a national scandal of military discipline, leading to the restriction and the subsequent abolition of flogging.

1846: The first reference was made to a fire engine having been provided for the town.

1847: The last stage-coach passed through Hounslow. Competition from the railways has ended long-distance, horse-drawn coach services.

1850: Hounslow Station on Whitton Road opened, along with the Hounslow Loop railway line from Barnes to Whitton Junction, a part of the former South Eastern and the London and South Western Railways’ ‘Windsor Lines’ railway system that now links Reading, Staines and Windsor to London Waterloo.

1854: Hounslow Militia Barracks in Pears Road (formerly named Ordnance Road for the Barracks’ military stores) opened. The barracks provided facilities and a training centre for the town’s part-time, volunteer soldiers.

1856: A chancel was added to Hounslow’s Holy Trinity Church.

1858: The town’s first Town Hall was built, in the High Street, on the present site of W H Smith’s shop.

1858: The Middlesex Chronicle weekly newspaper, now the Hounslow Chronicle, commenced publication.

1870: Williams’ Dye-Works established on Hanworth Road.

1872: Turnpike Trusts managing trunk roads, and their pay-as-you-go toll gates, are abolished. The twin toll gates for the Bath and Staines Road at the Bell Inn, Hounslow High Street, are dismantled.

1873: St. Paul’s Church consecrated, on Bath Road, Hounslow.

1875: St. Stephen’s Church, in South Hounslow, consecrated.

1875: The first local government authority for the district was established, with Hounslow as its administrative centre. It was called The Urban Sanitary District of Heston and Isleworth.

1875: Hounslow Hospital opened, in Bell Road. The building later became a Chest Clinic.

1875: Hounslow Barracks was greatly enlarged by the addition of an Infantry Barracks and Regimental Depot to the Cavalry Barracks.

1879: Bell Road Methodist Church opened.

1883: The Hounslow and Metropolitan Railway opens Hounslow Town Station, a branch-line terminus for District Railway services to Acton and London, Addison Road (Kensington Olympia). The Town Station was on the site of the present Bus Station and Bus Garage. This line became part of the Underground Group of companies and, subsequently, a London Transport underground railway.

1884-86: The Hounslow and Metropolitan (District) Railway extended its line to Hounslow Barracks (later Hounslow West) Station on the Bath Road (1884). It opened a new station, named Heston-Hounslow (now Hounslow Central), on Lampton Road in 1886.

1892: Heston (Flour) Mill, on the Staines Road at Hounslow Heath, was converted to steam-powered milling; and was destroyed in a great fire soon afterwards.

1894: The Urban District Council of Heston and Isleworth takes responsibility for the Urban Sanitary District, with increased powers to raise local taxes and make improvements to the district’s infrastructure.

1901: The electric tram service from Hammersmith to Hounslow High Street commenced operations. The tram terminus at The Bell Inn, Hounslow, was later re-located westwards to The Hussar public house at Hounslow Heath.

1905: The District Railway branch line from Acton Station to Hounslow Barracks was electrified in order to meet competition from the new street tramway.

1905: The Council House (Hounslow Town Hall); Hounslow Public Library and Hounslow Swimming Baths were opened. All were built by the new Urban District Council and situated in the new Treaty Road, which was laid out in the extensive grounds of the former Treaty House on the High Street, which had been demolished to widen the road for electric tramway operation.

1908: Hounslow Town terminus Station closed. It was replaced by a new station (later re-named Hounslow East) on Kingsley Road.

1912: Hounslow Bus Garage was opened on the site of Hounslow Town Station.

1912: Hounslow Hospital opened in new buildings on a new site in the Staines Road. It was financed by public subscription.

1919: The first scheduled international civil air service, between London and Paris, started operating from Hounslow Aerodrome, on Hounslow Heath Military Training and Review Ground.

1919: The first flight from England to Australia took off from Hounslow Heath Aerodrome.

1925: Hounslow Town Station changed its name to Hounslow East; Heston-Hounslow became Hounslow Central; and Hounslow Barracks Station became Hounslow West.

1932: The Borough of Heston and Isleworth came into being, succeeding the former Urban District. Its Charter was presented by HRH The Duke of Gloucester.

1933: London Transport, a public corporation, takes over underground railway and bus services in Greater London. District Railway services have been re-organised with the attachment of the Hounslow branch line to the Piccadilly Underground line at Hammersmith, in order to reduce rail-traffic congestion at Earls Court.

1935: Electric trolley buses replace trams on the route from Shepherds Bush to Hounslow.

1943: Hounslow’s Holy Trinity Church (1828 building) was destroyed by fire in an arson attack.

1963: The present Holy Trinity Church building was consecrated.

1965: The modern London Borough of Hounslow was established, succeeding the Borough of Heston and Isleworth and merging it with the neighbouring local authorities of Brentford and Chiswick Borough Council and the Council of the Urban District of Feltham.

1975: The Civic Centre in Lampton Road opened.

1976: The Piccadilly Line was extended from Hounslow West to Heathrow Central.

1977: Hounslow Hospital was closed during a round of health authority cuts.

1985:  Hounslow Public Library and the Town Hall in Treaty Road were demolished as work commenced on the redevelopment of the town centre.

1987: The shops in theTreaty Centre shopping centre are opened by Little and Large (TV comedians).

1988: Hounslow’s new public library is opened by popular musician, Joe Brown, in the Treaty Centre. Joe Brown gives the first performance at the library centre’s Paul Robeson Theatre.

1989: Foundation stone laid for Hounslow’s Sikh Temple, the Gurdwara Sri Guru Singh Sabha, off Hanworth Road. Building of the temple complex is completed in 2004.

1991: Hounslow Town FC closes. Its Denbigh Road ground will become the site for a new Alexandra Primary School when the Alexandra Road buildings are demolished to clear town centre Key Site 1 for redevelopment.

1994: Hounslow High Street is closed to through traffic and designated a pedestrian zone.

1995: The new Alexandra Primary School opens in Denbigh Road.

1996: Paving and lanscaping of the pedestrianised High Street is completed.

1998: The Jamia Mosque opens in Wellington Road South, beside Heathlands School.

2002-04: Hounslow East ‘tube’ station is rebuilt with step-free access to its platforms.

2004: HM The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh visit the newly completed Gurdwara Sri Guru Singh Sabha temple, in Hounslow.

2006: Asda opens a new superstore in phase 1 of the Hounslow town centre Key Site 1 redevelopment by Blenheim Norwest.

2014: Hounslow’s War Memorial is unveiled by Johnson Beharry VC, on the forecourt of Holy Trinity Church, marking the centenary of the outbreak of World War 1. Hounslow has not had a town war memorial until now. The public memorials for the district of Heston and Isleworth were erected in Heston; and in Isleworth in 1917 and 1922.

2019: New council offices in Hounslow House, on Bath Road, Hounslow, opened in April. The Lampton Road Civic Centre closed and was handed-over to a housing association for demolition and redevelopment.

Posted by James Marshall 01 May 2013 09:13:00 Categories: Chronology Hounslow