Ponders End

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Ponders End
Ponders End.jpg
Tower blocks at Alma Road
Ponders End is located in Greater London
Ponders End
Ponders End
 Ponders End shown within Greater London
OS grid reference TQ35595
London borough Enfield
Ceremonial county Greater London
Region London
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town ENFIELD
Postcode district EN1, EN3
Dialling code 020
Police Metropolitan
Fire London
Ambulance London
EU Parliament London
UK Parliament Edmonton
London Assembly Enfield and Haringey
List of places

Coordinates: 51°38′46″N 0°02′46″W / 51.646°N 0.046°W / 51.646; -0.046

Ponders End is a place in the London Borough of Enfield, north London located in an area generally known as the Lea Valley. It is roughly located in the area either side of Hertford Road (High Street, Ponders End) between The Ride and the Boundary Public House (North to South) and Wharf Road and the Southbury railway station/Kingsway (East to West).[1]


Ponders End is marked on the Ordnance Survey map of 1822. It was recorded in 1593 as Ponders ende meaning the "end or quarter of the parish associated with the Ponder family" from the Middle English ende. John Ponder is mentioned in a document of 1373; the surname is believed to mean a "keeper of, or dweller by, a fish-pond or mill-pond".[2]


Through the 19th century the area became industrialised, due to its location in the Lea Valley corridor and the close proximity of the River Lee Navigation. The first major firm to arrive was Grout, Baylis & Co, who were established in Norwich in 1807 as crape manufacturers, the material being used for widows' weeds. They opened a dyeing and finishing plant in Ponders End two years later. Crape went out of fashion by late Victorian times, and the factory closed in 1894. The buildings were taken over by the United Flexible Tubing Company.

In 1866 the London Jute Works Company established a factory on the Navigation in a desolate area known locally as Spike Island. Many of the new employees came from Dundee, the traditional centre of the jute industry in Scotland. The jute works closed in 1882, to be replaced by the Ediswan factory. Over the years the factory was enlarged, eventually covering 11.50 acres (4.65 ha), and employing many people, notably girls, from the area. Ediswan produced electric lamps, and the factory was colloquially known as The Lamp. They also manufactured appliances for the shipping and aviation industries, mechanical pianos and butter makers.

To the south of Ponder's End Lock a factory making white lead was built in 1893. Located further south of that factory, the Cortecine works produced floor-cloth and carpet backing. By 1906 over 2000 people were employed in local factories. Another major industry in the latter years of the 19th century was horticulture. Tomatoes and cucumbers were the principal produce but flowers and fruit were also grown in the many orchards and greenhouses to the north of the locality.[3] During World War I, a huge munitions factory, the Ponders End Shell Works was built in Wharf Road. The factory building was sold after the war. Further factories were built in the 1930s alongside the newly built Great Cambridge Road.[4]

Today (2009) little remains of manufacturing and much of the area has given way to warehousing and residential developments. Aesica pharmaceutical manufacturers (formerly Thomas Morson Ltd) [5] closed its plant in 2011.[6] Wright's Flour Mill, the oldest working industrial building in Enfield remains, with present day buildings dating back to the 18th century.[4]

On 7 August 2011 Ponders End was the scene of copy-cat riots which spread from Tottenham to neighbouring districts.[7]

Popular culture[edit]

Musician Jah Wobble was inspired to write his (2005) album Mu by his experiences in the Lea Valley and Ponders End.[8][9]

Ponders End Allotments Club is a track from the (1975) Chas and Dave album One Fing 'n' Annuver.[10]

Historic buildings[edit]

Wright's Flour Mill and the mill stream
View of the Navigation formerly known as the Navigation Inn from the towpath of the River Lee Navigation

Nearest places[edit]

South Marsh, Overflow Channel and the grassed embankment of the King George V Reservoir


Angling is allowed on the River Lee Navigation upstream and downstream of Ponders End Lock. Information from the River Lea Anglers Club.[14]

Nearest railway stations[edit]

Notable people[edit]

Local newspapers[edit]

The local newspapers are as of 2011-

Newspaper Link
Enfield Independent [15]
Enfield Advertiser [16]


After boundary changes in 2010 - Ponders End became one of seven wards which form the Edmonton parliamentary constituency.[17] The MP for constituency is Andy Love, Labour Co-op who polled 21,665 votes (53.7%) at the General Election held on 6 May 2010.[18]

  • Ponders End consists of five polling districts, with six polling stations.


Higher education[edit]

Places of worship[edit]

Open spaces[edit]

  • Ponders End Park, formerly Ponders End Recreation Ground and Ryan's Park.[25]

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Local Government Map of Ponders End Boundaries Retrieved February 28, 2008
  2. ^ Mills, A, D, Oxford Dictionary of London Place Names (2004) p180 ISBN 0-19-860957-4 Retrieved 17 October 2008
  3. ^ Godfrey A (notes to) Old Ordnance Survey Maps: Ponders End 1895 Alan Godfrey Maps, ISBN 1-84151-043-2 Retrieved 7 September 2009
  4. ^ a b Ponders End history Retrieved 19 February 2011
  5. ^ Thomas Morson Retrieved 8 September 2009
  6. ^ Plant closure Retrieved 18 April 2011
  7. ^ News report 8 August 2011
  8. ^ Hatts, Leigh The Lea Valley Walk p99 ISBN 1-85284-522-8 Retrieved March 14, 2008
  9. ^ Lea valley walk Retrieved May 15, 2008
  10. ^ Chas and Dave Retrieved May 14, 2008
  11. ^ History of Enfield Retrieved November 22, 2007
  12. ^ Buildings of England London 4:North by Bridget Cherry & Nikolaus Pevsner pg 451 ISBN 0-14-071049-3
  13. ^ The Navigation Retrieved 13 July 2009
  14. ^ River Lea Anglers Club Retrieved 2 December 2014
  15. ^ "News, sport and local information for Enfield and surrounding areas". Enfieldindependent.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-06-30. 
  16. ^ "The Enfield Advertiser". Mediauk.com. Retrieved 2011-06-30. 
  17. ^ Electoral boundaries Retrieved 15 April 2011
  18. ^ Andy Love MP Retrieved 28 August 2010
  19. ^ St Matthew's Ponders End Retrieved 25 May 2011
  20. ^ Mary Mother of God RC church Retrieved 15 December 2010
  21. ^ Ponders End mosque Retrieved 27 June 2009
  22. ^ Lincoln Road chapel Retrieved 9 January 2013
  23. ^ Ponders End Methodist church Retrieved 9 January 2013
  24. ^ Ponders End United Reformed church Retrieved 9 January 2013
  25. ^ London Borough of Enfield parks Retrieved 23 July 2014