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Brentford High Street Project

Web bhsproject
The site brings together information about the people and properties of Brentford, particularly the High Street, from 1840 (with some earlier material). It has around 900 web pages and over 600 images.

If you are a new user take a look at the site guide.

New additions, also see Coming Soon: recently received contributions; perhaps you can help someone with a Brentford enquiry - it could be about a person, place or business, see Can You Help. More recent news follows.

I hope you find something of interest and if you have any memories or stories about Brentford please get in touch, Iíll be delighted to include them.

*** Tip To make text larger press (at the same time) your Control ('Ctrl') and '+' keys. To shrink text use Ctrl and '-'. This will work on many other websites. Thanks to George Thorne for prompting this tip. ***

News

Yes, the home page looks a little different from January 2014, when I get time I will do a proper springclean, but for now just use the links above to see Coming Soon and Can you help!

Brentford Local History Day - Saturday June 7th 2014

, Will include talks and displays with a 1914 focus and there will be more to it than the outbreak of WWI. More to follow, watch this space.

Steve, 29 November: 'a current newspaper item for you with a Brentford connection and a bit of a Brentford related mystery', http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/books/booknews/10482202/Mystery-over-leak-of-unpublished-JD-Salinger-stories-leads-to-Brentford-terrace.html.

Take a couple of minutes to enjoy Leigh Cousins' video: one lovely summer's day in Brentford. Showcasing some of the reasons why Brentford is a brilliantly beautiful place. Don't forget to vote 5-star if you enjoyed the video! - it is at http://www.citizen.tv/brentford-summer-s-day-in-brentford-qyV9lm0Zgp.html (also on Youtube and Vimeo).

LostCousins - a Great Resource

Peter Calver, LostCousins founder, publishes a newsletter every fortnight or so, each edition packed with hints and tips to help family researchers.

You do not need to log-in to the LostCousins website to read the newsletter, use this link.

If you join LostCousins (it is free) you will find it extremely useful in locating relatives: Peter's website introduction explains:
Are you serious about researching your family tree? If so, you've come to the right place, because LostCousins is the ONLY family history website able to match you with others researching the same ancestors
AUTOMATICALLY, ACCURATELY & CONFIDENTIALLY
Simply enter the relatives on your family tree who were recorded in selected US, Canadian, British, or Irish Censuses - then click the Search button.

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Recent Additions

Thank you to all contributors for providing a wealth of diverse material. Access pages via links below.
  • Howard Webb has contributed a rare postcard view of the western end of the High Street, pre-1920, taken from near St Lawrence's church (12 April 2014)
  • Dennis Rayner has added some names to the New Road 1945 VE Day celebrations photo (8 April 2014)
  • More updates to the Ranton's 1949 photo, this time provided by Christine Sheppard (nee Payne) (28 March 2014)
  • Brentford Local History Day 2014: Saturday 7 June is the date for your diary
  • Thanks to Peter Calver (LostCousins - see above ) for a great free online newspaper archive at Welsh Newspapers Online: a search for 'Brentford' found over 200 matches as many English news items were re-published in the Welsh press; the period covered is from 1804 to 1919 (5 March 2014)
  • Thanks to Brian Bouchard for updates to notes about Henry Richards, surgeon, who lived at 295 High Street in the mid 19th century (27 Feb 2014)
  • Jane has spotted Stan and Joan Burwood in two photos of St George's School taken around 1938, one provided by John Gray the other by Diane Lockie; Can you help Jane with some Brentford family queries? Names: Burwood, Carter, Pilgrim, Stanley (27 Feb 2014)
  • A Wartime Romance tells the story of a wartime romance between a Brentford girl, Joan Beardsworth, and her Welsh fiance Ray Llewellyn, who married after a whirlwind courtship, and their experience of life in post-war Brentford... read more; compiled by Julie Jakeway and available as an e-book for Kindle devices or the Kindle App.from the Amazon website (16 Feb 2014)
  • Thanks to Mary Marshall for pointing out a new resource: The National Archives Middlesex military service appeal tribunal 1916-1918;there are 136 Brentford men listed including three conscientious objectors; downloads are free until the end of 2014 (8 Feb 2014)
  • Can you help Frances, who seeks a photo of King's Place (which was demolished by 1961) or any memories or links with the Rushes family? More details below (5 Feb 2014)
  • Some updates from Patsy Langley: the Rantons photo includes her aunt; and she spotted the Wilson and Kyle building on a 1950s postcard; David Daubney added updates to the Dear/Bates family (4 Feb 2014)
  • Thanks to Diane Newman for her tip to look at the Facebook page 'All things Brentford', it has some great photos and you do not have to register with Facebook to see them; to find simply Google 'All things Brentford facebook' (17 Jan 2014)
  • Were you at St George's Primary School in the 1950s? If so yo umay be able to provide add some names to Ian Powell's class photos taken around 1953-57 (12 Jan 2014)
  • Michael Maddock has prepared a biography for the 'J Mann' commemorated on the West Brentford War Memorial (6 January 2014)
  • Loretta has sent a photo of a football team, she hopes someone can identify the players which should include a member of her Voller family; and other military photos from WW2 (24 Dec 2013)
  • A few Christmas items to enjoy with a mincepie!
  • Bob Sheridan has sent more write-ups of his family research into the Clements, Payne and Jupp families of Brentford; the Clements family and additions to the Payne family are now available and include a 1934 wedding photo (Thomas/Payne): can you add any names? (14 Dec 2013)
  • Francis Frith's site includes Brentford postcards and memories, thanks to Roger Davis for the link; which will be added to the Web Links page shortly (12 Dec 2013)
  • On Boxing Day 1851 The Morning Post published an article providing entrance statistics for each of the metropolitan workhouses during the year, including Brentford Union; also details of their Christmas fare; a link to The Workhouse website is included in Web Links - useful for anyone with ancestors who spent time in the workhouse (10 Dec 2013)
  • Tim Lothian has provided several additions to the Buck family page (9 Dec 2013)
  • Photos of St Paul's School following a fire in August : thanks to Diane Lockie 4 December 2013)
  • Lynn Hayter recommends a BBC Radio 4 programme 'A history of Britain in numbers', podcasts are available from the BBC website (if you are quick you can still catch the first episode); Lynn adds 'it provides some interesting background to the lives of our ancestors'; Fridays at 9pm (29 Nov 2013)
  • More from Steve: a response to Deirdre Richards' query which may be helpful for others with airmen in their families who served in WWI; Brentford news item about author J.D. Salinger; also a number of links about the Trafalgar Way this historic route includes a list of the names, ranks, ages and ships on which they served for the men of Brentford and Chiswick; it is in The Xpress Tavern PH near Kew Bridge; see Web Links for more details (29 Nov 2013)
  • Thanks to Steve for links to Bomb Sight, further help with the query about WW2 bombing in the area (27 Nov 2013)
  • Can you help Deirdre Richards with a query about a pilot who served in the early days of the RAF? see above for more details (27 Nov 2013)
  • Roger Davis has sent details of a website which plots the WW2 bombs which fell on Brentford (17 Nov 2013)
  • Can you help with a recent request about a bombing in Brentford, 1940? (12 Nov 2013)
  • Brentford is Brilliant! Especially on a summer's day, 2013 - see above for a link to Leigh Cousins' video (4 Nov 2013)
  • A news item from November 1861: the death of William Jones refused admittance to the workhouse (2 Nov 2013)
  • Arthur and Don Peters have updated their memories page, and added an early 1900 photos of Thomas Henry Peters (1 Nov 2013)
  • The 1801 and 1811 censuses for Ealing, which include Old Brentford, are available free of charge at http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~jonga/census1intro.html; Old Brentford is in Ealing Lowerside; a great resource, thanks to Janet McNamara for forwarding details (19 Oct 2013)
  • Janet McNamara has prepared a most useful name index to Brentford UDC public mortuary records 1899 to 1909: over 350 names (18 Oct 2013)
  • Loretta Lumley has provided photos (to follow) and details of all her Brentford family names (over 40 in total from Algar to Wyatt), linked via her Voller family (11 Oct 2013)
  • More details from Fiona about the Priddy and Wootton families she is researching (25 Sep 2013)
  • Patsy Langley has provided information about the Boxall family, who ran the Magpie and Crown at 128 High Street in the 19th century (24 Sep 2013)
  • Is Doris Frances Sansom (born 1914, Brentford) part of your family? See details above, including a link to a photo showing her (24 Sep 2013)
  • Christine Russell's latest finds regarding her ancestor Thomas Perrott's family from Somerset; the family lived in Brentford during the first half of the 19th century but even with their distinctive surname proved challenging to trace back further (24 Sep 2013)
  • Christine Howes has sent several photos including St Lawrence with St Paulís School football team 1955-56 season (followed soon after by a list of the names of the team from Peter Thames - thank you!); the swimming team from the same school about 1955; 2 class photos from around 1953/1955; and Howes family photos, same era - to follow (16-20 Sep 2013)
  • Bob Sheridan has sent details of the Grant, Payne and Christmas families who lived in Old Brentford from the mid 19th century; some of the family worked at the Pier House Laundry and Palm Toffee Factory; he has also included memories from WW2; can you help identify attendees at a Brentford wedding in 1934? (16 Sep 2013)
  • Selby Whittingham spotted a recent BBC Radio 4 programme 'Midweek' which included Robert Henrey, grandson of the vicar of St George Old Brentford, talking about his child actor days; listen to on BBC iPlayer; Robert speaks from around 13 minutes in for about 10 minutes (13 Sep 2013)
  • A photo from Julia Quilliam, care of staff at Barclays Bank, showing 315 High Street and the Osborne family in 1905 (5 Sep 2013)
  • Gordon Welch has sent his Brentford memories from the 1940s-60s; his wife used to live at 353 High St and family surnames include Beeson and Sweeney; Gordon also mentions a 'midwife that my mother used to talk about Granny Paddle', does anyone remember her? (4 Sep 2013)
  • Janet McNamara has completed a biography of Harry Frank Davis JP (1889-1964), councillor and volunteer fireman for 25 years (29 August 2013)
  • Rob Bolton provided a 1910 photo of the Hanwell Company of the London Diocesan Church Lads Brigade (28 August 2013)
  • Photo of Brentford Gas Works in the mid 1950s, from across the Thames, provided by Don Harris (28 August 2013)
  • Thanks to Val Bott for forwarding details of a new website: BTís archive collection, a searchable digital resource of almost half a million photographs, reports and items of correspondence preserved by BT since 1846 (22 July 2013)
  • Dave Stoneleigh provided several photos from BFC programmes from the late 1940s/early 1950s back in February; apologies for the delay, some covers from 1947/48 to 1958/59 seasons are now online and contents will follow (13 July 2013)

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Coming Soon

Below is a summary of items sent over the last few months, these will be added as soon as possible. Thank you to all contributors for the wealth of images, research and puzzles:
  • Nigel Brock has sent details of his Jullion ancestry back to 1701 (April 2014)
  • David Vesey has provided two pictures, a watercolour by Auguste Ballin showing Boston Manor Road and a nineteenth century drawing of the Park Baptist Chapel, Boston Manor Road (April 2014)
  • Janet McNamara has provided more news cuttings: George Haley's election address, April 1st 1903 and one from 1914 about expansion of the Griffith Bros business (origins in Brentford, around 1900) into Richmond (Feb 2014)
  • Howard Webb has sent another superb set of postcard images, highlights include 1900s-1920s views of the High Street opposite St Lawrence's church, the Rothschild school and Windmill Road, also the Council Offices, a clear Half Acre photo and a card published when the Boatmen's Institute opened in 1904 (January 2014)
  • Yvonne has sent a couple of postcards from 1906 showing the canal, Brentford area and Strand-on-the-Green; can someone identify the locations? Also a sketch by Hiugh Thomson showing Brentford Lock in 1909 (December 2013)
  • Linda (of Australia) has provided many notes to supplement the biography of Charles Braden, who moved into Brentford in the mid 1870s and was a local councillor (September 2013)
  • Diane Lockie and Janet McNamara sent photos from the Local History Day (June 2013)
  • Peter King provided a file of newspaper cuttings and adverts from 1913 following the Local History Day in June (June 2013)
  • Several trade directory lists, the earliest 1793, from Janet McNamara (March 2013)
  • Lynn Hayter has sent a slideshow showing Brentford in November 2012, over 100 photos, hope to be able to make this available to any who can access a .wmv file and some stills (March 2013)
  • Dave Stoneleigh has sent scans of Brentford Football Club programmes from 1947-1952, including adverts and team names, a trip down memory lane! (Feb 2013)
  • More councillor information: newscuttings from 1913 for councillors Dodge and Haley: thanks again to Janet McNamara (Jan 2013)
  • Janet McNamara has sent newspaper cuttings about Brentford councillors, also a charming advert for the dolls' hospital at 234 High Street (September 2012)
  • Table showing councillor attendances at committee meetings, 1910/11 from Janet McNamara (June 2012)

The above is not a complete list of all material outstanding (one of the challenges is to keep tabs on all contacts and I occasionally have a 'hot moment' when I find a mis-filed email dating back two or more years... If you write and have no reply, or I have said I'll do something and then don't a reminder will be appreciated!

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Can You Help

Please get in touch if you can help with any of the following. Thank you!

Jane has a number of Brenford families:
CARTER, Sarah A
(b) 1846 Brentford (d) 1931 Brentford. She married George Henry STEPNEY and they are my nan's maternal grandparents. They lived at 4 Running Horse Yard and then in Kenley Road.
I am looking to go back 2 more generations, I have Sarah's mum as Sarah Gumm (b) Feb 1825 but after that is a blank. If anybody could help with anything I would be over the moon!
Other members of my grandparents family are:
Edith Burwood (nee Joyce) - I'm looking for all info and early memories of her & her family, if anyone remembers them! She married Albert (Bertie) Burwood and I'd love to hear all about their early lives. They all lived in Kenley, Cressage and Harnage Road's and the Potteries before that (1800's)
Any memories of Elizabeth Pilgrim (Lizzie) my nan's mum would be great too. She spent her married life with Thomas Pilgrim and they lived in Carville Crescent for many years, where my nan was brought up. Early married life was in Mafeking Avenue and my nan was born there in 1929. Also, my hans brothers, Don Pilgrim and Ken Pilgrim. Both local, well known lads by all accounts! They all played in Jackie's football team at Carville Hall Park and one of the brothers, I think Ken, had trials for Brentford FC. Don worked at Smith's Crisps and I have some great pics to send over of the vans. Don Died in 1970, the same week as my nan's mum and Ken died in the late 1990's.

Frances seeks a photo showing King's Place, this was a terrace of eight houses, backing on to St Paul's Road and (from the front door) looked across to Albany Road (or Back Lane as it was) and St Paul's School. They were built by 1866. A check of Google Maps show various changes to the area. The Church Hall was built on the northern side of King's Place by 1934 and it appears King's Place was demolished between then and 1961 to make way for St Paul's House. Frances also asks if anyone remembers her mother's family, the Rushes.

William Ashfield, early pilot 'was born in Brentford in 1900 and gained his RAF wings, but according to family memories he unfortunately crashed his plane on his maiden flight before he actually saw any action. He did survive although breaking many bones and he was hospitalised for quite a while. Perhaps he didnít actually see active service because of this' (Deirdre Richards writing in November 2013). Checks of military records on ancestry and findmypast did not help, can anyone suggest where further searches could be made?

Thanks to Steve for providing information including the following link on The National Archives website to his service record.

Bombing - Bridges family: W. Bridges' family were bombed out in 1940; has anybody got any information; 'my family all went to St John school Old Brentford' (Nov 2013).

Thanks to Roger Davis for providing a link to the website 'Bomb Sight: Mapping the WW2 bomb census'. The link shows bombs which hit Brentford in the London Blitz, 7th October 1940 to 6th June 1941. 7 bombs fell in the New Road area alone, including one in Griffin Park. Click on a bomb symbol for more information and any eye-witness accounts.

Also thanks to to Steve who replied with a link showing the area, adding 'the surrounding areas are individually listed under Hounslow on the main index page. There is also an interactive map of the whole of London and if you zoom in to high magnification on the red symbols, and then click on an individual symbol, an information box will appear which will contain information about that particular symbol. (example).

Two 20th century Brentford families, Priddy and Wootton, are being researched by Fiona; Fiona's mother-in-law was born in 1938 and her father worked on the barges near Brentford Bridge in the late 1930s/early 1940s; he used to take the horse back to stables nearby. His name was James (Jim) Priddy and he married an Alice Creswell on 2nd August 1920. I believe they lived in Marlborough Road, Isleworth and they are thought to have had eight children. The Woottons were greengrocers and may have had a stall in Brentford Market (Sep 2013)

Is Doris Frances Sansom (born 1914, Brentford) part of your family?: If so John Kemmery will be interested to hear from you as he has a 125 photos in an album plus letters, programmes, posters; she was an actress and belonged to the London stage amateur players. John has forwarded a sample of photos and these will be added to the site (this could take a few weeks): see one example. A check of the electoral register on ancestry.co.uk shows a Doris Sansom at 15 Netley Road in 1936 and 1949 and other Sansoms in the household: Benjamin, Charles W. and Frances Mary. Please contact John if you are interested. (August 2013)

Can you help Margaret reunite a 1920s journal with the writer's family?; two photos show the mystery journal-writer, possibly called George, who worked at Bohee's, the printers, 58/59 High Street, and a view outside Bohee's (May 2013)

Please can Jim Kelleher provide his current email address: a researcher into the Twining family would like to get in touch?

Please can Pauline Chidwick provide her current email address: a researcher into Reuben Fleetwood and family would like to get in touch?

Wedding photographer query: Can you help by providing the names of any local wedding photographers who worked in the late 1960s/early 1970s? So far two suggestions:
D.W.P. Studios of Ruislip Road, Greenford, 1969; thanks to Peter Thames
F. & J. Hare, whose head office in 1971 was at Belmont Circle, Harrow, Middx, they also had branches at Wembley and Eastcote. A web search for F. & J. Hare photographers, Middlesex gave: Address: 8-10 Station Parade, Belmont Circle - Kenton Lane Harrow HA3 8SD Phone: 020 8907 0277; thanks to Lynn Hayter

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