The Maypole and Southall Green

Church Path

                        This is one of the many paths which come off the Old Oxford Road, of which the High Street and Uxbridge Road are part.

                        The one mentioned here starts at the Avenue Road, continues on the left-hand side to the footbridge over the railway (this had to be extended when the Mayple sidings were put in, by 20 yards ). Passing between the Maypole Works and the Institute ( now the Community Centre ), back of Kingston Road and Osterley Park Road and Grosvenor Road to Church Road, where it becomes part of the left-hand side footpath: across Havelock Road, rear of Rectory Road to Norwood Canal Bridge. The ultimate destination was to St Mary’s Church, Norwood.

                        One of the portions of the path should be noted, that although the Council refused to allow the Earl of Jersey to build houses on the left-hand side of Avenue Road, thereby including the footpath in the road, a later Council must have had a change of heart when Church Road was built.

                        At the bottom of Osterley Park Road, next to what is now the entrance to the new Hortus Road Cemetary, was what came to be known as Waddy’s Dump. It was a field owned by Mr. Waddington who used part as a pig farm. Later it became a sand pit with sand being excavated for sale. During the 1939-45 war it became the dumping ground for refuse from bombed properties, among these was Woolworths and the younger element used to go scrounging to see what they could find. The site laid derelict for years – quite a disgrace  – but has recently been fenced and levelled.

                        Grosvenor Road, named after the family name of the Dukes of Westminster, has very many poorly-constructed houses, with a small block of flats on the right-hand side. It used to be a sort of dead-end road with a piece of sloping land leading to Windsor Road, this has now been made part of the road.

                         Portland Road named after a fomer Prime Minister, has always been a quiet cul-de-sac, with a small private school on the right-hand side and an entrance into Havelock Road Cemetary. On the corner of Osterley Park Road and the Green now stands the Southall Norwood Hospital.

                         This was formerly The Chestnuts, so named after a big horse chestnut tree growing on that corner. It was built in 1897 by Mr. Tommy Watson. On September 8th 1903 it was taken over by the Working Mens’ Club with a membership of 350. This lasted only about 6 years and eventually it became the residence of Mr. Michelsen, manager of the Maypole.

                        In 1933 it was purchased by the Southall Hospital Committee for the sum of £2,500 and, after building alterations, was opened in 1934. A great deal of voluntary work was done and, although a childrens’ ward could not be maintained, every effort must be made to keep it going against all pressure for its closure.