Blackbird Hill, NW9

Road in/near Wembley Park, existing until now

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Blackbird Hill, NW9

MAP YEAR:1750180018301860190019502020Remove markers
Road · Wembley Park · NW9 ·
July
14
2017

The route of Blackbird Hill has been in existence since the Domesday Book.

In 1597 many roads converged on Kingsbury Green. One, originally called Ox Street or London Lane and later Kingsbury Road, ran eastward to the Hyde; Buck Lane, earlier known as Stonepits or Postle Lane, ran northward from Kingsbury Green to join Hay Lane, a road mentioned in the 13th century. Another early road in northern Kingsbury was Tunworth or Stag Lane, which ran from Redhill to Roe Green. Church Lane, in 1563 called Northland Lane, ran southward from Kingsbury Green to the church and Green Lane joined the green to Townsend Lane, known as North Dean Lane in 1394 and 1503. On the west Gibbs or Piggs Lane joined Kingsbury Green to Slough Lane or Sloe Street, as it was called in 1428. The southward extension of Slough Lane, Salmon Street, was called Dorman Stone Lane in the 15th and 16th centuries. There was an east-west road joining Hill and Freren farms to Hendon. The portion between Church Lane and Salmon Street, called Freren Lane in 1379, had disappeared by the early 18th century. That between Townsend Lane and Hendon, known as Wadlifs Lane in 1574, survives as Wood Lane.

The portion of road between the Brent and the junction of Salmon Street and Forty Lane, now called Blackbird Hill, was usually known as Kingsbury Lane.

From ancient times the river Brent had probably been crossed at Blackbird Hill, the point where Salmon Street crosses the river. The road and bridge were mentioned in 1531 and in 1596 there was said to have been a footbridge there from time immemorial. Responsibility for its repair was divided between the lords of Kingsbury and Neasden manors. There was a ford next to the bridge for horses and carts, except when the river was in flood when the footbridge might be used by horses. Jon Chalkhill’s water-mill of 1596 caused the formation of a large pool which submerged the ford. All Souls College built a bridge strong enough to take horses and carts and agreed with Chalkhill that he would repair it as long as he retained his mill.

Responsibility probably reverted to the college during the 17th century, and in 1824 Kingsbury vestry asked it to repair or rebuild the bridge. It is not known whether the bridge was repaired then but in 1826 it was described as wooden and 11 ft. wide, spanning a river 33 ft. wide and 6 ft. deep.

In 1921, the disused pleasure grounds at Wembley Park were chosen as the site for the British Empire Exhibition.

This opened at Wembley Park in 1924. A new bridge was built in 1922 as part of the changes connected with the Exhibition.

Kingsbury Lane was soon widened, and its steep gradient up from the river evened out, to become a modern highway with a tarmac surface. Church Lane was also widened, with a new section built (Tudor Gardens) to provide a better connection to Forty Lane, and cut out the winding narrow stretch which ended at Blackbird Farm. Forty Lane and Kenton Lane were widened and straightened. These improved road connections, as well as the publicity about the area resulting from the Exhibition, attracted the attention of property developers.

The widening of Forty Lane and Blackbird Hill opened up the whole of southern Kingsbury to the builders and roads and houses to the east of Salmon Street, between Queens Walk and Old Church Lane, were constructed during the early 1920s. During that period industry was established in Edgware Road and at Kingsbury Works in Kingsbury Road, and 37 council houses were built at High Meadow Crescent near Kingsbury Green.

In 1926 work began on a new north-south road to follow the route of the ancient Honeypot Lane. By 1935 Kingsbury had been covered by a network of suburban roads, although most of the old roads survived.

In the late 1930’s the brewers, Truman Hanbury Buxton, submitted plans to build a public house on the site of Blackbird Farm. The recently formed Wembley History Society was among the objectors wishing to see the farmhouse retained and reused. The farmhouse was demolished in 1955, with “The Blackbirds” public house built around 1957.

“The Blackbirds” proved to be a popular pub with both local people and with visitors coming to Wembley for football matches. However, by the time the old Wembley Stadium closed in 2000, other leisure activities meant that the traditional English public house was going out of fashion. A “re-branding” in the mid-2000’s as an Irish-themed pub, the “Blarney Stone”, kept the hostelry on Blackbird Hill in business for a few more years, but by 2010 a planning application was submitted to redevelop the site for a block of flats.

Planning permission for the proposed development was given by Brent Council in March 2011, but one of the conditions for this was that there should be a proper archaeological excavation of the part of the Blackbird Farm site which had not been disturbed when the pub was built. The “Blarney Stone” has since been demolished.


Main source: British History Online
Further citations and sources




NEARBY LOCATIONS OF NOTE
Blackbird Hill (1906) Blackbird Hill is image in 1906 and then part of Neasden.
Blackbird Hill Farm Blackbird Hill Farm was situated on the corner of Birdbird Hill and Old Church Lane.

NEARBY STREETS
Aboyne Road, NW10 Aboyne Road is a street in Willesden.
Alderton Close, NW10 Alderton Close is a road in the NW10 postcode area
Aylesbury Street, NW10 Aylesbury Street is a street in Willesden.
Barnes Wallis Court, HA9 A street within the HA9 postcode
Barnhill Cottages, HA9 Barnhill Cottages is one of the streets in the Harrow postal district of Middlesex.
Bilsby Lodge, HA9 A street within the HA9 postcode
Birchen Close, NW9 Birchen Close is a street in Kingsbury.
Birchen Grove, NW9 Birchen Grove is a street in Kingsbury.
Braemar Avenue, NW10 Braemar Avenue is a street in Willesden.
Bruno Place, NW9 Bruno Place is a road in the NW9 postcode area
Buddings Circle, HA9 Buddings Circle is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Chalklands, HA9 Chalklands is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Coombe Road, NW10 Coombe Road is a street in Willesden.
Daisy Close, NW9 Daisy Close is a road in the NW9 postcode area
Demeta Close, HA9 Demeta Close is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Gervase Close, HA9 Gervase Close is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Harp Island Close, NW10 Harp Island Close is a road in the NW10 postcode area
Harrington Close, NW10 Harrington Close is a road in the NW10 postcode area
Janson Close, NW10 Janson Close is a street in Willesden.
Kelly Close, NW10 Kelly Close is a road in the NW10 postcode area
Kingsgate, HA9 Kingsgate is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Lyndhurst Close, NW10 Lyndhurst Close is a road in the NW10 postcode area
Mount Drive, HA9 Mount Drive is one of the streets in the Harrow postal district of Middlesex.
Neasden Lane North, HA9 Neasden Lane North is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Neasden Lane North, NW10 Neasden Lane North is the extension of Neasden Lane beyond the North Circular Road.
Neasden Lane North, NW9 Neasden Lane North is a road in the NW9 postcode area
Old Church Lane, NW9 Old Church Lane is a street in Kingsbury.
Old St Andrew’s Mansions, NW9 Old St Andrew’s Mansions, named after the nearby church, were designed by E. Trobridge for T.W. Heath & Co Ltd of Neasden.
Page Avenue, HA9 A street within the HA9 postcode
Poplar Grove, HA9 Poplar Grove is one of the streets in the Harrow postal district of Middlesex.
Press Road, NW10 Press Road is a road in the NW10 postcode area
Quainton Street, NW10 Quainton Street is one of a series of streets named after Metropolitan Railway stations in Buckinghamshire.
Queens Walk, NW9 Queens Walk is a road in the NW9 postcode area
Rawlings Crescent, HA9 Rawlings Crescent is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Runbury Circle, NW9 Runbury Circle is a street in Kingsbury.
Saint Davids Close, HA9 Saint Davids Close is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Salmon Street, NW9 Salmon Street is a street in Kingsbury.
Saxon Road, HA9 A street within the HA9 postcode
St. Davids Close, HA9 A street within the HA9 postcode
The Close, HA9 The Close is a road in the HA9 postcode area
The Drive, HA9 The Drive is one of the streets in the Harrow postal district of Middlesex.
The Leadings, HA9 A street within the HA9 postcode
The Mount, HA9 The Mount is a road in the HA9 postcode area
Tudor Close, NW9 Tudor Close is a road in the NW9 postcode area
Tudor Gardens, NW9 Tudor Gardens is a street in Kingsbury.
Verney Street, NW10 Verney Street is a street in Willesden.
West Way, NW10 West Way is a road in the NW10 postcode area


Wembley Park

Wembley Park is a London Underground station, the nearest Underground station to the Wembley Stadium complex.

Tracks were laid through the area by the Metropolitan Railway (MR, now the Metropolitan Line) when it extended its services from Willesden Green to Harrow-on-the-Hill. Services to Harrow started on 2 August 1880 although Wembley Park station was not constructed until later.

The station was constructed to serve the pleasure grounds developed by the MR at Wembley Park, a former country estate bought by the company in 1881 as a destination for excursion trips on the company’s trains. The station opened for the first time on 14 October 1893 and initially operated to serve only Saturday football matches in the park. It opened fully on 12 May 1894.

Later in the 1890s, the Great Central Railway’s (GCR’s) London extension was constructed adjacent to the MR’s tracks. The tracks pass under the entrance building but the station has never been served by mainline operators. In 1905 the tracks were electrified and the first electric trains became operational. Between 1913 and 1915, the MR added additional tracks to double the line’s capacity.

On 10 December 1932, the MR opened a branch line north from Wembley Park to Stanmore.

Originally, the MR served all stations south from Wembley Park to Baker Street station but the line suffered from congestion due to limited capacity on the tracks heading into Baker Street. Following the combination of the MR and London’s other underground railways to form the London Passenger Transport Board (LPTB) in 1933, the LPTB took steps to alleviate the congestion by constructing new Bakerloo Line tunnels from Baker Street to connect to the Metropolitan’s tracks south of Finchley Road station. From 20 November 1939, the Bakerloo Line then took over the Metropolitan stopping services between Wembley Park and Finchley Road and the Stanmore branch.

To handle the exceptional passenger numbers associated with the 1948 Olympics held at Wembley Stadium, the original station building was extended and given a new ticket hall and additional circulation routes and platform stairs. At the opening of the Jubilee Line on 1 May 1979, the Bakerloo service from Baker Street to Stanmore was transferred to the new line.

When the UEFA European Football Championship was held at Wembley in 1996, a large staircase was constructed leading down from the 1948 extension and under the newly-built Bobby Moore Bridge, which had opened in 1993. This was intended as a temporary structure and remained in its unfinished state until 2004, when extensive work began on the station in conjunction with the reconstruction of Wembley Stadium. Additional facilities were provided to handle event crowds, and the staircase was completed in time for the opening of the new stadium in 2007.


LOCAL PHOTOS
Silk Bridge
TUM image id: 1037
Brent Town Hall
TUM image id: 1106
Blackbird Hill (1906)
TUM image id: 3117
West Hendon from above
TUM image id: 1489498601
The Plough - reputedly 800 years old
TUM image id: 1517936032
Welsh Harp
Credit: Unknown
TUM image id: 1534456927
Wembley Stadium, 1947
TUM image id: 1556882897
Oakington Manor Farm
TUM image id: 1603469997
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