Historic and Modern Facts about Greenford
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Greenford Baptist Church's building - before it was blown up in the Second World War.Read about the fascinating History of Greenford Baptist Church.
|Ceremonial county||Greater London|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|UK Parliament||Ealing North|
|London Assembly||Ealing and Hillingdon|
For Current facts about Greenford see the Ealing Council website.
A Brief History of Greenford
Greenford, historically Greenford Magna, is a suburb in the London Borough of Ealing in west London, England. It is one of the oldest recorded places in Ealing, first referred to in a Saxon charter dated 845AD. It was known then as Grenan Forda. Historically, it was part of the county of Middlesex but now it's part of Greater London.
In the Domesday survey, about 200 years later, the population contained 27 people and one Frenchman. The Abbey of Westminster held land in Greenford before the Norman Conquest and the manor remained in the hands of the Abbey until the Dissolution during Henry VIII's reign.
A small suburb called Perivale is considered to be part of Greenford and was referred to as Greenford Parva (Little Greenford) until the 15th century.
Until the mid-19th century Greenford was almost exclusively agricultural and the population grew very slowly. In 1801 a community of 359 people lived here and by 1871 it was still less than 600.
The Paddington branch of the Grand Junction Canal opened in 1801 but because the area was so secluded, by 1811 Greenford was a popular stop for day trips from the capital.
There was no main road through the parish and the area remained isolated until the coming of the Great Western Railway in 1904. The age of the train changed the appearance and nature of Greenford completely with factories being established and residential development accelerating after the First World War.
Greenford is considered to be birthplace of the modern organic chemical industry. It was in William Perkin's chemical factory in North Greenford, by the Grand Union Canal, that the world's first aniline dye was discovered in March 1856. Perkin called his amazing discovery 'mauveine'. Today there is a blue plaque marking the spot in Oldfield Lane North, just south of the Black Horse Public House. The former Rockware glassworks on the canal is commemorated by Rockware Avenue.
The most prominent landmarks in the suburb are the A40 (a large road that connects Central London with the M40 motorway) and Horsenden Hill - which towers 85 metres (280 ft) above sea level. Other notable historic sites are the small Parish Church of Holy Cross (14th century) and Betham House, built by Edward Betham (around 1780).
Today's Greenford is a vibrant multi-ethnic community with new businesses, shops and diverse communities from all over the world. Greenford and its surrounding areas have become an upcoming buoyant area in which to live. It is only minutes away from Ealing and Harrow, offers links to central London with the A40 and the Central Line Railway and also has easy access to Heathrow Airport via a direct Bus service.
Greenford contains a vibrant multi-ethnic community living mainly in 1930s and 1950s houses, maisonettes and flats. There are local schools and churches for all major Christian denominations and extensive shopping facilities where both modern and traditional tastes are all catered for. There is a strong community feel in Greenford as it meets the needs of a diverse population and still manages to keep the village feel.