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Hounslow shown within Greater London
|OS grid reference|
|- Charing Cross||10.6 mi (17.1 km) ENE|
|Ceremonial county||Greater London|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|UK Parliament||Brentford & Isleworth|
|London Assembly||South West|
Hounslow // is the principal town in the London Borough of Hounslow. It is a suburban development situated 10.6 miles (17 km) west south-west of Charing Cross. It forms a post town in the TW postcode area.
The origin of the name Hounslow is uncertain. It may derive from the Anglo-Saxon Honeslaw (meaning an area of land suitable for hunting), or from a name or description for a mound or hill associated with the pagan Hundi, of Anglo-Saxon times.
Positioned on the Bath Road (where it forks to the Staines Road at the Bell Inn), Hounslow was centred around Holy Trinity Priory founded in 1211. The priory developed what had been a small village into a town with regular markets and other facilities for travellers heading to and from London. Although the priory was dissolved in 1539 the town remained an important staging post on the Bath Road. The adjacent Hounslow Heath that had been used as a military encampment by both Oliver Cromwell and James II developed a reputation as the haunt of highwaymen and footpads. Nearby important landowners included those of Osterley House, Syon House, Hanworth Park House and Worton Hall.
The building of the Great Western Railway line from London to Bristol from 1838 reduced long-distance travel along the Bath Road. By 1842 the local paper was reporting that the 'formerly flourishing village', which used to stable 2,000 horses, was suffering a 'general depreciation of property'. The Hounslow Loop Line was constructed in 1850, prompting new development.
One of the earliest surviving houses in the town is The Lawn, in front of the Civic Centre with its public tennis courts, in brown brick with three double-hung sash windows set back in reveals with flat arches, roof with parapet and porch of fluted doric columns, pilasters, entablature and semi-circular traceried fanlight.
The construction of the Great West Road(a revival of an earlier name for the Bath Road as a by-pass for it around the north of Brentford, Isleworth and Hounslow centres) in the 1920s attracted the building of the factories and headquarters of large companies. The factories were a great local source of employment until a decline in the 1970s, and attracted workers from all over and the area was heavily developed with houses. In the next two decades offices largely replaced factories on the Great West Road and further expansion in hotel and housing stock has taken place, an example being the Blenheim Centre, an image of which is in the gallery section below.
The A4 Great West Road joins with the A3006 Bath Road (from the A315) before Henlys Roundabout which is in Hounslow West from which a WNW route passes London Heathrow Airport, terminals 1 to 3 and terminal 5 as the Bath Road and a WSW route, the A30, passes terminal 4, bypasses Staines and reaches the M25; the remainder is for the mostpart a minor route to Land's End, Cornwall.
The A315 is the historic WSW road out of London, on which Hounslow's High Street is placed. To the east it bisects Isleworth, Brentford and Chiswick. To the west it bisects North Feltham and Bedfont before joining the A30.
The north-south A312, The Parkway, to the west of Hounslow leads south to Hampton or north to Harrow passing Waggoners' Roundabout (WNW of Henlys Roundabout in Hounslow West), Hayes, Yeading and Northolt.
Three minor roads converge on Heston from the A315 in parts of Hounslow, the A3063, A3005 and B363. The single road re-divides just north in Norwood Green into a northwest road to Southall (the A3005) and into the A4127 that passes by Hanwell, briefly using the A4020 west before bypassing Dormers Wells, passing Greenford to reach Sudbury, the town immediately to the west of Wembley and North Wembley.
Trains and Underground
London Underground provide Hounslow West tube station, Hounslow Central and Hounslow East which are on the Piccadilly Line to Heathrow, Osterley, Hammersmith, Knightsbridge, stations for Hyde Park, Buckingham Palace, Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Square, Covent Garden and Cockfosters.
Hounslow railway station, operated by South West Trains is on the railway line to London Waterloo station, or westwards to Reading, Weybridge or to Windsor. The railway line also offers services on the Hounslow Loop Line, opened 1850, further around the loop to Twickenham and Richmond.
There is a large bus garage (coded AV), with adjoining bus station, located at the junction of London Road and Kingsley Road. In 1962, as a result of the final stage of the London trolleybus programme of conversion to motor bus operation when Isleworth Depot was closed, the staff from that depot (coded IH) were transferred to Hounslow Garage. The property is owned by the French owned RATP Group, which took it over from the Transdev London group and operated through their company London United Busways, previously owned by London Transport. In addition to its frequent and regular daytime services throughout the surrounding areas Hounslow figures on the N9 night service from Heathrow to Central London.
Hounslow Heath Aerodrome was a grass airfield, operational 1914–1920. It was situated in the London borough of Hounslow, and in 1919 was the location from which the first scheduled daily international commercial air services took place.
Staying in Hounslow
Owing to its proximity to Heathrow and the ease of access into Central London, central Hounslow has developed a number of new hotels – some converted from former office buildings. A greater number of large hotels exist by Heathrow, on the A4 Bath Road; these are mentioned in London Heathrow Airport/Harlington.
Hounslow Heath and other parks
Hounslow Heath is a large public open space and local nature reserve to the west of Hounslow, a London borough. It now covers about 200 acres (80 ha), the residue of the historic Hounslow Heath that covered over 4,000 acres (1,600 ha).
The Heath has major historical importance, originally routes from London to the west and southwest of Britain. Staines Road, the northern boundary of the present Heath, is formerly the Roman Road, Trinobantes There are several historic references to Roman camps on or close to the Heath. Continuous recorded history dates back to Norman times. It gave its name to the former hamlet of Heathrow.
Hounslow has a very high immigration rate. According to the 2011 Census, more than 50% of Hounslow residents are born outside of the UK. The crime rate in Hounslow has soared tenfold since 2001, partly due to the high influx of foreign immigrants. Hounslow also has a very severe rat problem, with vermin being regularly sighted.
A programme dated 7 July 1935 suggests that there may have been motor cycle speedway racing at a venue in Dockwell Lane branded as Hounslow Speedway. Best information suggests there were more than one meeting staged in conjunction with the Hounslow Motor Cycle and Car Club.
- Singer-songwriter and Genesis drummer Phil Collins was born and raised in Hounslow
- Singer-songwriter Elvis Costello attended Archbishop Myers' Secondary School (now St Mark's Catholic School)
- Singer-songwriter, model and occasional DJ Sophie Ellis-Bextor was born in Hounslow
- Actor Cyril Cusack (1910–1993) lived in Hounslow at the time of his death
- Mo Farah, Olympic 10,000 m and 5,000 m gold medalist, lived in Hounslow
- Ian Gillan, vocalist of rock band Deep Purple, was born in Hounslow
- Psychiatrist Professor Simon Gowers grew up in Hounslow
- Gustavus Green (1865–1964), aircraft engine pioneer, was born in Hounslow
- Charles Hawtrey (1914–1988), Carry On film legend, was born in Hounslow
- Actress Patsy Kensit lived in Hounslow during her teenage years
- Eminent historian Francis Maddison (1927–2006) was born and educated in Hounslow
- Bill Mason, Olympic rowing silver medalist and coach of Imperial College London rowing team, lives in Hounslow
- Ian McLagan, keyboardist of the Small Faces and Faces, was born and raised in Hounslow
- Award-winning musician M.I.A. was born in Hounslow
- Father Ted actor Dermot Morgan (1952–1998) lived in Hounslow at the time of his death
- Alistair Overeem, mixed martial arts champion, was born in Hounslow
- Sir Alec Reed, founder of the REED employment agency, was born in Hounslow
- Cyril Vosper (1935–2004), adherent then critic of Scientology, was born in Hounslow
- Maria Whittaker, 1980s Page Three girl, was born in Hounslow
- Actor Jack Wild (1952–2006), Artful Dodger in the film Oliver! and star of H.R. Pufnstuf, grew up in Hounslow
- Violet Englefield, the actress and singer, was born in Hounslow.
- Professional DancerDarren Panton Royal Ballet School became the first black male to graduate through the school, was born in Hounslow and lived in Hounslow during his time there
Hounslow is twinned with the following settlements around the world:
- Royal Mail, Address Management Guide, (204)
- Daniel Lysons, 'Heston', The Environs of London: volume 3: County of Middlesex (1795:22–45): accessed 6 August 2010.
- Quoted in Acworth, WM 'The Railways in 1843' in Morgan, B (1963) Railway Lover's Companion, Eyre & Spottiswoode, P90
- English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1079602)". National Heritage List for England. The similar example of 44–50 Bath Road: also in brown brick and as is sometimes seen, has been painted.
- English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1080312)". National Heritage List for England. The Lawn
- "Not one more night: Singer Phil Collins announces his retirement". Dailymail.co.uk. Retrieved 5 June 2012.
- Turnbull, Simon (12 August 2012). "Magical Mo Farah races into land of legends during London 2012". Independent.co.uk. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Simon Gowers, Prof". Institute of Psychology, Health and Society. Retrieved 23 September 2012.
- Cumber, Robert (17 December 2010). "Council to revive links with Palestinian town". Hounslow, Heston & Whitton Chronicle. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Hounslow (town).|
- Hounslow Online – www.hounslowtw3.net Hounslow's local community website
- Community Guide to Hounslow – www.activhounslow.com Hounslow's online guide