Local History Society

Covering Cricklewood, Harlesden, Kensal Rise, Kilburn, Neasden, Stonebridge, Park Royal and Willesden

Willesden History Society on Facebook


Kensal Rise, Kilburn, Neasden, Stonebridge, Park Royal
Willesden Local History society

The WLHS was formed in 1974 by local enthusiasts who were interested in the history of the old Borough. The founder members had two main objectives: to ensure that the two thousand years of Willesden's history was not lost when the then new administrative Borough of Brent was born, and to seek out and record historical facts, because a community's future health is enhanced by a good knowledge of its past.

Now, the Society has members of all types, active researchers, family historians, authors, photographers, and some who just enjoy the lectures and fellowship at the meetings. All are welcome.

We are looking for people to become more involved in the running of the Society. Please come along and have a chat with us if you have an interest in local history and would like to help with the Society.

WLHS meets monthly from September to June, when lectures, usually with a Willesden flavour, are presented. A Journal is produced regularly, and from time to time there are guided walks and outings to places of historic interest. The Annual Subscription (15.00) includes entry to all meetings and free copies of the WLHS Journal.

We do hope you will join us to extend our knowledge of old Willesden.

Click here for the membership application form.


Unless otherwise shown, the Society meets at 7.30 pm on a Wednesday from September to June at St.Mary's Parish Centre which is in Neasden Lane adjacent to the churchyard. There is limited parking space in Church Path on the church side. For information how to get there, please visit St.Mary's Church website here.


Annual General Meeting.
Please come along to support your management team - it really is quite enjoyable!

Jul. 20th Visit to the Grange, Neasden.
We will meet at the car park of the Grange on Neasden roundabout at 7:30pm, to explore the past and present of the Grange.

Sep. 18th Queens Park Day Sunday 11am to 4pm.
The Committee hope to attend with the bookstall as usual. Please join us.

Sep. 21st ‘Grunwick Anniversary’ – Pete Firmin.
This year is the 40th anniversary of the famous dispute at the Grunwick factory in Chapter Road. Pete who is chairman of the Brent Trades Council will recall some of the highlights.

Oct. 19th ‘Clitterhouse Farm’ – Roger Chapman.
This ancient farmhouse just outside Willesden has been the subject of archaeological digs many times. Roger of Hendon and District Archaeological Society will give the latest information on its history.

Nov. 16th ‘The Willesden Green Cat Mosaic’ – Debra Collis.
Debra is an artist working in the figurative tradition in both fine arts mediums and mosaics. She has produced a number of mosaics in public places including those at Willesden Green. The title of her talk is ‘the troubled road of creativity through the eyes of Louis Wain ‘the man who drew cats,’ who lived in Kilburn.

Dec. 14th - The WLHS Christmas Event.
This year we are planning a buffet with the usual super-raffle and entertainment from Terry Lomas and the Silvertones called ‘Sounds of the Sixties’.

Latest news:

New Willesden Local History Society Project:

A Walking Tour Map of High Road, Willesden

Willesden High Road Map

To celebrate the opening of the new Willesden Green Library and Community Centre, we have produced a short walking tour guide of High Road, Willesden.

It includes a potted history of the area, from the times when Willesden was a 'green and pleasant land', the development of the region boosted by the coming of railways, Willesden's war effort and taking Willesden to 21st century.

The map includes 18 historic locations, demonstrating a rich variety of local life, from industry to music and art, from churches to pubs, from buses to trains. 

And, of course, our celebrated Willesden Green Victorian Library, saved from demolition during the recent development thanks to the efforts of local community.

This pocket size guide costs 1 and is available from our book stall during our events, or you can buy it here:

A Walking Tour Map of High Road, Willesden

You can also send a chequefor 1.00 (in UK pounds), payable to Willesden Local History Society, with your name and address, to:

Irina Porter, 75 Birchen Grove, London NW9 8RY   

We are now on Facebook:

Willesden History Society on Facebook

Our long-awaited book, Willesden Local History Society, 40 Years of History, has arrived!

Willesden, in the London Borough of Brent, has changed a lot in the last 40 years. Some landmarks were lost, like the art deco building in Willesden Lane, the Rolls Royce factory, the Guinness Brewery and the Heinz factory, some were subject of heated disputes, like Dollis Hill House and Willesden Green Library, and many historic pubs are no more.

New projects and developments transformed the look of the borough, like the Stonebridge estate, which had a complete makeover twice within this period. We gained a building for the Capital City Academy by the acclaimed architect Norman Foster, and the Neasden Hindu Temple entered the Guinness Book of Records. Many parks and public places underwent changes – for better or worse.

This books records those and many other developments, alongside the history of the Society, from its founding days in 1974 to the present. Every article is illustrated with photographs from our members’ collections, the Brent Archives and many supporters of this project. Social history in the form of memories from our members bring the history to life, along with the detailed research and memories from the best local historians of our region.

If you are a member of the Willesden Local History Society, you get a 2 discount from the full price of the book. Membership information here.

Prices - for WLHS members (if you may membership fees and receive our Journal)

UK (7 + 2.80 p&p) 9.8
Europe (7 + 6 p&p) 13
Rest of the World (7 + 8 p&p) 15

Prices - for non-members

UK (9+ 2.80 p&p) 11.8
Europe (9 + 6 p&p) 15.00
Rest of the World (9 + 8 p&p) 17.00

You can also send a cheque (in UK pounds) for the appropriate amount, payable to Willesden Local History Society, with your name and address, to:
Irina Porter, 75 Birchen Grove, London NW9 8RY   

We are now on Facebook:

Willesden History Society on Facebook


WLHS: The Secretary, 51 West Ella Road, London NW10 9PT
email enquiries: cliffwadsworth@btinternet.com - for issues dealing with the Willesden Local History Society and Willesden history in general,
or contact Cliff Wadsworth 0208 965 7230

For Willesden enquiries concerning local history documents, Street Directories, Census Returns, Voters Lists, Maps, and Local papers,
please contact Brent Archive & Library, Willesden Green Library Centre, 95 High Road, London, NW10 2SF.
Phone 020-8937 3541;
e-mail archives@brent.gov.uk
Website www.brent.gov.uk/museumarchive.nsf/Pages/LBB-3

Click here for historical photographs of North West London

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