|Cricklewood Railway Terraces||Barnet|
Cricklewood developed rapidly once the Child's Hill and Cricklewood Station opened in 1870. Midland Railway Company had purchased 150 acres of former agricultural land and in addition to its extensive railway facilities built housing for the employees. This consisted of 5 terraces, all but one named after prominent railway officials. Between Midland and Johnston Terraces was an open green swathe of communal garden, later sub-divided into individual plots, possibly as part of the war effort for growing food. In 1969 this communal garden was re-established, sub-divided by access roads into four areas of grass and cherry trees. The area between the other terraces was, and remains, sub-divided into gardens and allotments, with a playing ground situated to the south.
The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/08/2000
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Cricklewood Railway Terraces, Communal garden between Midland and Johnston Terraces, August 2000. Photo S Williams
Click photo to enlarge.
Records of Cricklewood date back to the late C13th; the name may describe the shape of the wood which formerly existed here, 'crickle' a dialect work for 'bend'. In 1860 Cricklewood was a small rural settlement but housing and industrial development was rapid once the Child's Hill and Cricklewood Station opened in 1870 (known as Cricklewood Station from 1903) on the Midland Railway's track from Bedford to St Pancras. The railway company had purchased 150 acres of former agricultural land and built an extensive depot, large engine sheds, sidings and despatch stations for coal, as well as housing for railway employees south-east of the depot. This consisted of 5 terraces, the earliest of which were begun in the 1860s: Midland, Gratton and Needham Terraces; in the 1890s Johnston and then Campion Terraces were built. All but Midland were named after prominent railway officials of the time. Gratton Terrace, which abuts Edgware Road from which it is divided by a narrow landscaped bank with pollarded plane trees, had larger houses with back gardens for more senior railway officials, the other terraces being of humbler size. Until 1952 all the roads within the terraces area were private.
Between Midland and Johnston Terraces an open green swathe of communal gardens is shown on maps of 1894; during World War II this was sub-divided into individual plots, possibly as part of the war effort for growing food. However, when in 1969 the Bradford Property Trust bought the terraces, residents voted to re-establish the communal garden area between Midland and Johnston Terraces as semi-private green space. It was sub-divided by the access roads into four areas, each having brick walls and railings at each end surrounding a grassed area on which cherry trees were planted. The area between the other terraces was, and remains, sub-divided into gardens and allotments. A playing ground is situated to the south by Campion Terrace.
Cricklewood Railway Terraces Conservation Area booklet (LB Barnet); Bridget Cherry & Nikolaus Pevsner, The Buildings of England: London 4: North (Penguin, 1998); Ben Weinreb & Christopher Hibbert, 'The London Encyclopaedia' (Macmillan, revised ed. 1993)