St Stephen's Church, West Ealing
|West Ealing shown within Greater London|
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|Ceremonial county||Greater London|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
West Ealing is a district in the London Borough of Ealing, in west London. The district is about 1 km west of Ealing Broadway. Although there is a long history of settlement in the area, West Ealing in its present form is less than 100 years old.
A hamlet named West Ealing was recorded in 1234, although it was later renamed Ealing Dean; the West Ealing railway station was known as the Castle Hill & Ealing Dean Station when it was built in 1871. Ealing Dean may derive from denu (valley); its first reference was in 1456, and it appears on a 1777 Ealing parish map. Most of what is now West Ealing was open countryside, with houses at Ealing Dean, Drayton Green and Castle Bear Hill (now Castlebar Hill).
In 1387 Drayton Green was known as Drayton and, later, as Drayton in Ealing. During the late 19th century, Drayton was a hamlet with eight householders. The area around Drayton Green Lane was later called Steven's Town and had over 40 cottages.
A major east-west road in the area became known as the Uxbridge Road. It was a popular 19th-century stagecoach route, and the London-to-Banbury-and-Oxford coach stopped at the Halfway House pub (the present Broadwalk Hotel) in West Ealing. The Green Man pub in West Ealing was a carters' stop, reportedly with stabling for a hundred horses.
During the 19th century much of the land from the Uxbridge Road south to Windmill Road, east to Northfield Avenue and west to Boston Road was market gardens and orchards. In addition to a few streets named for apple varieties, among the last remaining evidence of this is the little-changed Steel's Fruit Packing Warehouse at the intersection of Northfield and Northcroft Roads.
At the eastern boundary of these market gardens and orchards were allotments dating to the Poor Relief Act of 1832, when the area known as Ealing Dean Common (both sides of Northfield Avenue) was given to West Ealing's poor by the bishop of London. The allotments on the east side of Northfield Avenue are original, but those on the west side were developed in the early 1980s.
Ealing Dean's principal claim to fame in the 1800s was its pony and donkey races. These races, on what was known as Jackass Common (the present Dean Gardens), ended in 1880 when the local council forbade them on moral grounds.
In 1882, the Ealing Lawn Tennis Club was founded on land between St. Leonards Road and the Great Western Railway (GWR). The club quickly became the most-successful women's lawn-tennis club in the world. Three Ealing-born club members (Blanche Bingley, Charlotte Cooper and Dorothea Douglass) won a total of 13 Wimbledon Singles titles between 1886 and 1906. In 1906, the club moved to Creffield Road in Ealing Common.
During the 1890s, central West Ealing's shops were more informal than those in central Ealing. There were then (and now) fruit and vegetable stalls in West Ealing which were absent from Ealing. Central West Ealing throve during the mid-20th century when draper, house furnisher, clothier and outfitters F. H. Rowse and draper and fashion house W. J. Daniel and Company flourished with Marks and Spencer, British Home Stores, Woolworth, Sainsbury's and WHSmith. Later, Waitrose, McDonald's and Blockbuster Video arrived.
The West Ealing Library is on Melbourne Avenue south of the Uxbridge Road. Its former location, which opened in 1903, was between Melbourne Avenue and St James's Avenue (the present Sainsbury's location).
West Ealing had a large cinema at the Uxbridge Road end of Northfield Avenue, which opened as the Kinema in 1913 and replaced the Ealing Dean Cottage Hospital. The cinema was rebuilt in 1928 as the Lido. When attendance fell, it was divided into two small cinemas (Studio 1 and Studio 2) and the main hall became a bingo hall. After a change in ownership, the cinemas became Cannon 1 and 2 and the bingo facility reopened as a snooker hall. With another change of ownership it was briefly the Gosai, an Indian cinema primarily devoted to Bollywood films. After it closed, it was demolished in 2005. The site has been redeveloped in a partnership of the Dominion Housing Group and the Ealing Community and Voluntary Service; the new building, the Lido Centre, opened in 2007 as Ealing's volunteer centre. Above the voluntary-organisation work space are a number of small utility flats intended for social housing.
Residential building growth in the area may be attributed to the 1871 GWR railway station at Ealing Dean and the line's later extension to Greenford via Castle Bar Park railway station and Drayton Green railway station; the 1901 London United Tramways Company line from Ealing to Southall, and the 1907 District Railway halt at Northfields.
During the 1920s, a number of houses were built on the Argyle Park estate (from the Argyle Road to the Greenford GWR railway line) and along Kent Avenue. Later housing developments replaced the allotments west of Northfield Avenue; others created flats in Langham Gardens (off Gordon Road) in 1970 and another, in 1977, created the Green Man Lane Estate. In the early 1980s, the Berners Drive-Coleridge Square estate was built next to the rebuilt West Middlesex Lawn Tennis club west of Drayton Green.
Since World War II there has been rebuilding in West Ealing, with a number of Victorian houses converted into flats. F. H. Rowse's, WHSmith, Marks and Spencer, Woolworth and McDonald's have left. Recent arrivals include Wilko. The Daniel's store has been replaced by a gym under a block of flats. Waitrose replaced its original store with a larger one. Although West Ealing's shopping and cultural facilities have gradually declined, in 2001 it saw the establishment of London's only street market dedicated to farm produce.
West Ealing is made up of three electoral wards for local council elections: Cleveland, Elthorne and Walpole; it is also served by small portions of the Northfields and Ealing Broadway wards. These wards each elect three councillors to the Ealing Council. Recent elections have seen seats changing parties; as of the 2014 election the area has mainly Labour representation, with Labour councillors in Elthorne and Walpole and two Labour and one Conservative councillor in Cleveland.
West Ealing was in the parliamentary constituency of Ealing Southall (represented since 2007 by Labour Member of Parliament Virendra Sharma), until boundary changes for the 2010 general election moved Walpole into the newly formed Ealing Central and Acton constituency (represented since 2015 by Labour MP Rupa Huq). Portions of the area are in the Ealing North constituency, represented by Labour MP Stephen Pound. West Ealing is in the London Assembly constituency of Ealing and Hillingdon, which has one assembly member: Onkar Sahota (Labour), who was elected in May 2012.
- MacDermot, E T (1927). History of the Great Western Railway. 1 (1833-1863) (1 ed.). London: Great Western Railway.
- "Ealing and Brentford". British History Online.
- The original name of Halfway House is still visible in the semicircle above the top floor windows
- "Ealing and Brentford: Nurseried and Market Gardens". British History Online. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
- "History: Ealing Dean Allotments Society". Ealing Dean Allotments Society. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
- "Club History". ELTC. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
- It has since been rehoused in a modern building. Storytime is held on Tuesdays from 10.30am -11am. Events are organised for children throughout the school holidays. Open: Tues, Wed and Thurs 9am-7.45pm; Fri and Sat 9am-5pm; Sun and Mon closed. There is wheelchair access to the library. For more information visit Ealing Council web site in External links (below)
- Ealing and Brentford: Public services', A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 7: Acton, Chiswick, Ealing and Brentford, West Twyford, Willesden (1982), pp. 147-49,(fn 68). Date accessed: 14 May 2007.
- "ABC West Ealing". Cinema Treasures. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
- Ealing Volunteer Centre. Volunteering England Organisation. Accessed 2007-05-14
- Called Ealing Farmer's Market it is part of London Farmers' Markets. Trading on Saturdays. Hours: 9 am - 1 pm. Location: Leeland Road, West Ealing, W13. See also: External links section (below)
- "Ward Maps". London Borough of Ealing. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
- "Council Elections 22 may 2014". London Borough of Ealing. Retrieved 29 April 2015.
- "Results 2012 | London Elects". londonelects.org.uk. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
- Hounsell, Peter (1991) Ealing and Hanwell Past, London : Historical Publ., ISBN 0-948667-13-3
- Neaves, Cyril M. (1971 ) A history of Greater Ealing, Local history reprint series, 2nd Ed, Wakefield : S.R. Publishers [Facsimile reprint of 2nd ed., Brentford: Brentford Printing], ISBN 0-85409-679-5