Edgware High Street Western side

The houses next to the War Memorial (unveiled November 1919) are all that is left of Edgware's old High Street. 

The Crane

A few of the houses, like number 97, date from the 16th century - others are from the 17th and 18th century.

  • There was an inn sometimes called the Crane, said by some to be the oldest pub in England. Although this was probably not true it was very old and was first known of in 1600
  • there was also a legend that there was a secret passage from the inn to Cannons (but this is unlikely)
  • the inn grew in prosperity as a coaching inn probably from the 17th century and closed in May 1929
  • the building became a motorcoach station during the 1930s

The Chandos Arms

By the early 19th century the Chandos Arms was used as Edgware magistrates court.

  • on Thursday mornings people from Edgware, Stanmore, Harrow, Hendon, Kingsbury, Little Stanmore, and Pinner (an area called The Hundred of Gore) were tried for minor offences such as being drunk, ill treating animals, or being offensive or violent
  • in the first half of the 19th century the Chandos Arms was also where voting took place during elections. In 1850 a new courthouse was built
  • the court was closed in December 1913 when Hendon Courthouse was opened
  • the Old Court House was demolished in 1964. Edgware Congregational Church held services in an upper room on the High Street in 1829 conducted by students of Hoxton Academy and Highbury College
  • until that time there was no meeting place for non-conformists in Edgware
  • in 1834 a chapel was built in the High Street, which was replaced with another elsewhere in Edgware in 1915

School, Police Station and Fire Station

There were important local institutions behind the High Street and along the southern side of Whitchurch Lane.

  • next to where the police station is today was a small school (built in 1855)
  • by 1899 the school had become Whitchurch Institute (demolished in 1930)
  • Edgware police station was established in Edgware in 1865, replaced in 1892 by a purpose built station when there were around 30 policemen
  • by the 1920s the station had nearly forty staff, with officers having to work in the cells
  • the present Police Station was constructed in 1932
  • in 1896 a small fire engine house was built behind the Chandos Arms run by a volunteer fire brigade of 10 men, originally with a horse drawn engine but with a motor fire engine by 1914
  • in September 1933 the fire station itself caught fire, and, because the fire was so fierce, the small brigade could not get to their equipment to put it out

Whitchurch Lane Area

The northern side of Whitchurch Lane developed after trams started to run between Cricklewood and Edgware in 1904.

  • the row of shops was built sometime in the 1880s
  • the Mead has terraces of houses dating back to 1902 and 1903
  • in 1905 the Leto Photo Company had a factory in Meads Road, west of which were a handful of respectable houses in Montgomery, Churchhill, and Gresham Roads

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