Bomb site, Ruislip Road East

The overgrown space behind this gate was once occupied by a pub called the Load of Hay. I think it forms part of the flood defences now as it is next to the Brent, alongside the bridge. The National Archives hold the records for the Isleworth Brewery Company, originally the Farnell Brewery, which took over Sich and Company in 1920. The Load of Hay was an outlet for the ales brewed at Sich’s Lamb Brewery in Chiswick from the eighteenth century but there is actually a reference to the pub in the company records that dates from 1598, so it may have been here then. This is another Greenford pub that gets a mention in the Old Bailey records.

An early 20th century image of the pub alongside another tragic photograph showing the fate of the Load of Hay can be seen here on the Holy Cross website. On the night of the 24th September 1940 the landlord, Sydney Walton, and his family were killed when a parachute bomb landed here. It’s sad to think that so many people drive and walk past this place but remain unaware of its significance in Greenford’s history.

I am very grateful to Carole Connelly for pinpointing the exact spot of the Load of Hay.

Images and text ©Albertina McNeill 2012. Please do not reproduce without permission. All rights reserved. Do not add any of these images to Pinterest or similar sites as this will be regarded as a violation of copyright.

This entry was published on September 18, 2012 at 10:54 pm. It’s filed under Places and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

4 thoughts on “Bomb site, Ruislip Road East

  1. Steve Jackson on said:

    My G, G, Grandfather Thomas Jackson & family lived in and ran this Pub from about 1861 till his death in 1893. I would love to see the pictures but the link above to Holy Cross site is not working. Please can you assist as I would like to know more.


    • Unfortunately those responsible for the Greenford Magna site removed anything to do with local history when new management took over. I was hoping they would restore it but that seems unlikely. I recommend contacting the local history section at Ealing Central Library as they may have the original photos and might be able to tell you more. You can reach them at ealing dot localhistory at carillionservices dot co dot uk. I have been told that the building that was hit by the bomb was an early 20th century rebuild rather than the original 18th century building but do not know if this is the case. Please email me at positivegreenford at hotmail do co dot uk and I will let you know if I come across anything else.

  2. Kevin Hamm. on said:

    I can remember the site clearly in the early 1950s as I passed it on the way to school every day. The site consisted of a cleared flat area with the foot print of the hotel clearly outlined. The pub sign with the swinging painted board was still at the front and looked eery particularly on a dark dingy day.
    My eldest sister had a school friend at the pub who was killed by the bomb. Land mines were large parachute bombs which had delayed action fuses. This meant that they would often explode some time after the “all clear” had been given. Not exactly cricket.

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