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Uxbridge: Wikis


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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Coordinates: 51°32′25″N 0°28′40″W / 51.5404°N 0.4778°W / 51.5404; -0.4778

The Chimes and Uxbridge High Street
Uxbridge is located in Greater London

 Uxbridge shown within Greater London
OS grid reference TQ055835
    - Charing Cross 15 mi (24 km)  ESE
London borough Hillingdon
Ceremonial county Greater London
Region London
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town UXBRIDGE
Postcode district UB8
Dialling code 01895
Police Metropolitan
Fire London
Ambulance London
EU Parliament London
UK Parliament Uxbridge
London Assembly Ealing and Hillingdon
List of places: UK • England • London

Uxbridge is a large suburban town in northwest London, England and the administrative headquarters of the London Borough of Hillingdon. It is located 15 miles (24.1 km) west-northwest of Charing Cross and is one of the major metropolitan centres identified in the London Plan.[1] It historically formed part of the parish of Hillingdon in the county of Middlesex and was a significant local commercial centre from an early time. As part of the suburban growth of London in the 20th century it expanded and increased in population, becoming a municipal borough in 1955 and has formed part of Greater London since 1965. Uxbridge is a significant retail and commercial centre, and is the location of Brunel University. The town is near to the boundary with Buckinghamshire, which is locally the River Colne.



The name is derived from "Wuxen Bridge" which was likely to have been near the bottom of Oxford Road where the "Swan and Bottle" now stands. The Wuxen were a 7th-century Saxon tribe.


Archaeologists found Bronze Age remains (before 700 BC) and medieval remains when the new shopping mall The Chimes was being built. Two miles away at Denham, Upper Paleolithic remains have been found.

Uxbridge is not mentioned in the Domesday Book of the 11th century, but a hundred years later the existing church, St Margaret's, was built. The pub presently called "The Queens Head" has a sign depicting Anne Boleyn, wife of Henry VIII. The pub was previously called "The Axe" and possibly dates from the 1540s. A tunnel connects the pub to the church. At the bottom of Windsor Street there is a cemetery with an archway. It was here on Lynch Green that three heretics were burned to death in 1555[citation needed]. Foxe's Book of Martyrs gives the names as John Denley, Robert Smith and Patrick Packingham, but other sources call the last one Patrick Rockingham. He was found guilty of denying the Trinity.

Under Elizabeth I, Roman Catholics were subject to severe constraints. Edmund Campion was a Catholic priest, trained in Douai in the Netherlands, to give covert support to Catholics. He travelled around England on horseback, giving sermons in secret and pretending to be a diamond merchant. In 1580 he came to Uxbridge and hid for a couple of weeks, in a house owned by William Catesby. In 1581 Campion was caught. He was hanged, drawn and quartered in London. The 40 or so Catholics who died in this period are called the "Douy martyrs" which is also the name of the local Catholic secondary school, in Ickenham.

Penelope Freeman, daughter of Robert Freeman, M.D., of Uxbridge

In 1605 the Gunpowder Plot was uncovered. The leader, Robert Catesby (son of William), escaped and hid in his house in Uxbridge. He was later shot. There were negotiations between Charles I and the Parliamentary side in Uxbridge, 30 January to 22 February 1645, commemorated in the name of a local pub and restaurant, the Crown and Treaty. This latter is on the A4020 Oxford Road where it leaves the town, at the canal overbridge.

The covered market was built in 1788, but the previous building was about twice as big, creating big problems for traffic. In the early 19th century, Uxbridge had an unsavoury reputation. The jurist William Arabin said of its residents "They will steal the very teeth out of your mouth as you walk through the streets. I know it from experience."

Uxbridge originally formed a chapelry within the parish of Hillingdon. It was split out as a separate civil parish in 1866[citation needed], and became part of the Uxbridge Urban District[2] in 1894 under the Local Government Act 1894.

In the 1930s George Orwell was a teacher at Frays College (Harefield Road) which later became Frays Adult Education Centre, but has since been demolished. His novel A Clergyman's Daughter was based on his experiences there.[citation needed]

On 31 August 1935 Uxbridge Lido opened in the "Moderne" or Art Deco style. The building is now Grade II Listed, and has been incorporated into the new Hillingdon Sports and Leisure Complex which opens in 2010.

For about 200 years most of London's flour was produced in the Uxbridge area[citation needed]. There were also breweries, The last Brewery was called Harman's and was based in the High Street and extended up George Street. It was still in operation up until the early sixties.

The ANITA calculator, the world's first desktop electronic calculator, was developed and manufactured by the Bell Punch Company at its site on "The Island", off Rockingham Road. The largest manufacturer in Britain of mechanical calculators, ticketing systems, and taximeters, the company's electronic calculators proved hugely successful when launched in 1961. With further development, there followed a series of desktop electronic calculators, with hand-held calculators following in the early 1970s. In 1972 the calculator division was sold to Rockwell International of the USA, which decided to exit consumer electronics in 1976 and closed down calculator manufacturing. The Bell Punch Company continued manufacturing its other products till about 1986 when it too closed down.

The infamous highwayman and thief Dick Turpin used to hold people up on the roads of Uxbridge back in the 1700s, hence Turpin's nightclub on Vine Street opposite Randall's in Uxbridge in the early 1990s.

Modern Uxbridge

The town centre today comprises retail outlets and major office buildings, including the main European offices of several international companies including Kuehne + Nagel, Cadbury plc, Parexel International, Xerox, Arri, Bristol-Myers Squibb, APL, Herbalife Europe Ltd and the Anadarko Algeria Oil Company. Other employers include Apple, Unisys, F. Hinds, The Coca-Cola Company, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Amgen, Bayer, Canon, Anixter International, WMS Gaming, Manpower, AIB, General Mills and PricewaterhouseCoopers. The population in Uxbridge in 2001 was 62,000 people including students resident at Brunel University

RAF Station

Uxbridge also has its own Royal Air Force station, known as RAF Uxbridge, that is most famous for being the Headquarters of 11 Group (RAF Fighter Command) during the Battle of Britain. A replica Spitfire can be seen on display at the front entrance to the base.


Uxbridge station, fronted by a pedestrian high street is the terminus for both the Metropolitan and Piccadilly underground lines. The station is connected to a bus terminus with connections to Hillingdon, Hayes, Ealing, Ruislip, and Slough.

A TFL project called the West London Tram Service has been postponed however "an effective bus-based solution"[3] was cited as an alternative, but no specific plans exist. The route is currently served by the 427, 207, and 607 bus services.

There were once three railway stations - Uxbridge Vine Street (originally just Uxbridge Station), Uxbridge High Street, and Uxbridge Belmont Road. All three have now closed, replaced by the underground and bus services.

The former Grand Junction Canal, now Grand Union Canal, which connects London with Birmingham, passes immediately to the west of Uxbridge, and forms the borough boundary. The first stretch was built in the late eighteenth century from Brentford to Uxbridge. Further upstream is Uxbridge Lock, and nearby is a flourmill belonging to Allied Mills. A Mister King, who called it "Kingsmill", bought this in the nineteenth century. This brand name is one of the best-selling bread-makers in the UK, though most of the milling is now done on Tyneside.

London Heathrow Airport is also located in the London Borough of Hillingdon and is approximately 5 miles from the centre of Uxbridge.



London Buses routes 222, 331, 427, 607, A10, U1, U2, U3, U4, U5, U7, U9, U10 and N207 serve the area.


Uxbridge has two shopping centres, The Mall (formally "The "Pavilions") and The Chimes. Much of the town centre is pedestrianised. In addition, just off the High Street is Windsor Street, a short road populated by older shops; as well as being home to St Margaret's Church.

The Art Deco-style department store, Randall's, is owned by the family of the Conservative MP for Uxbridge, John Randall, who was elected in a 1997 by-election when the sitting MP, Sir Michael Shersby, died shortly after the 1997 general election.

The Randalls store was recently confirmed as a Grade II listed building.

Uxbridge as a filming location

Nearest places


External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

There's more than one place called Uxbridge:


United States of America

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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

UXBRIDGE, a market town in the Uxbridge parliamentary division of Middlesex, England, 18 m. W. by N. of St Paul's Cathedral, London, on the river Colne, and on branches of the Great Western and Metropolitan railways. Pop. of urban district (1901), 8585. There are breweries, foundries and engineering works, and a considerable traffic is carried on by means of the Grand Junction Canal. The town, which is connected by electric tramway with Hammersmith, London, has extended considerably in modern times as a residential centre. The church of St Margaret is Perpendicular, and retains a fine font in that style, and several ancient monuments.

Uxbridge is an ancient borough, stated to have been one of those originated by Alfred the Great, but it is not mentioned in Domesday. Here negotiations were begun, on the 30th of January 1645, between the commissioners of Charles I. and the parliament, but were broken off on the 22nd of February. A part of the "Treaty House," in which they were carried on, remains. In 1647 the parliamentary forces had for some time their headquarters in the town. It remained a garrison town until 1689. It obtained the grant of a market from Henry II.

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