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St Marys Road is a street in the Harlesden area.
St.Mary’s Road, Harlesden
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Harlesden - reggae capital of London
In the 19th century, Harlesden, then a rural village, began to develop some of its urban appearance with the arrival of the railways. Willesden Junction, Kensal Green and Harlesden station stations all had an effect on the developing village. Cottages for railway and industrial workers were built, as was grander housing for the local middle class. To the east of Harlesden, there were still several farms, Elmwood, Haycroft, Upper Roundwood, and Sellon’s until the late 1890s.
Harlesden was at the height of its prosperity at the turn of the 20th century. Largely middle-class, it had a strong sense of identity compounded largely of civic pride and religious nonconformity. Nine churches and chapels were built between 1876 and 1902 as were a court house, a library, a constitutional clubhouse, and a jubilee clock, the focus of High Street. Willesden Hippodrome, a large music hall, opened in 1907. Much of High Street, a major shopping centre, was rebuilt in the Edwardian period.
Mainly after World War I, one of Europe’s biggest industrial estates was constructed at nearby Park Royal, and large factories there included McVitie & Price (later United Biscuits) from 1910, and Heinz from 1919.
The image of Harlesden today began to take shape in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Continued immigration from Ireland and new immigration from the Caribbean, the Indian sub-continent and Africa changed the racial and cultural make up of the area. More recently the area has now become home to Brazilian and Portuguese communities. Much of the housing is made up of Victorian terraces which have been attracting young professionals unable to afford similar properties in nearby Kensal Green and Queen’s Park.
Harlesden station is both a London Underground and Overground station and a railway station. The railway line at this point forms the border of the Harlesden residential area and the Park Royal industrial estate. The first station at the site was called Willesden
and opened in 1841 by the London and Birmingham Railway and closed in 1866, replaced by Willesden Junction station, half a mile to the south-east. A new station called Harlesden , opened on 15 June 1912. Bakerloo line services on the same tracks began on 16 April 1917, via a new junction at Queens Park station.