Volume 9 - Kenton Hamlet and District

R S Brown, 1979

page 18

Station Avenue (Carlton Avenue)

This highway - a cul-de-sac - has no particular significance in Kenton's history, except that it may be included, together with Elmwood Avenue, with those modern Kenton Roads which developed as a result of their proximity to Kenton Station.  Station Avenue is situated at right angles to Kenton Road immediately east of what was the London and North Western Railway line, and running parallel to it.  Elmwood Avenue is in a corresponding situation on the western side of the line.

Station Avenue, which appears on maps published just before the first world war, was also connected by means of a footpath with Black Farm in Kenton Road, so called because all the farm buildings were tarred.

Two or three years after the cessation of hostilities in 1918, very little was happening in this region!  On the corner of Station Avenue and Kenton Road was a small stall occupied by a Mr Gerald Reed which served as a general store but there were no other shops in the vicinity.  But residents were also few and far between and the only habitations nearby were half a dozen houses in Elmwood Avenue on the other side of an inadequate railway bridge (where the station entrance presented a depressing image until improvements were made in 1921), a few buildings in Northwick Avenue and one lone household in Rushout Avenue.  The entire population of Kenton in 1921 amounted to 268: the total number of residents in Harrow at this time was over 19,000.

Amenities were non-existent, there being no library, cinema or public transport.  The Elite picture house in Harrow on the Hill High Street or the Coliseum Theatre in Station Road, Harrow were the nearest places of entertainment - if one cared to walk that far.  Families provided their own amusement although the 'wireless' was gaining in popularity and motor cars were becoming more numerous.  On Sundays lucky car-owners went 'for a drive in the country' - a pastime which has lost favour in modern times due to the exorbitant cost of petrol.

Looking east from Station Avenue could be seen only the twisting, winding road heading towards the hamlet of Kenton.  Such highways that there were in the district were unmetalled, muddy and lined with deep ruts: new residents moving into the area were invariably confronted with the problem of extracting their removal vans from a sea of mud into which they had sunk.  Farmland around Station Avenue survived for a while longer - let to farmers sat the incredibly low rent of twenty-three shillings (1.15) per acre.  In l927 an open-topped bus - route number 183 - began to serve Kenton, followed later by number 140.  The first shops were built between the railway bridge and Churchill Avenue and the aforementioned Gerald Reed opened a business on the corner site.  Opposite was Long's solitary dairy shop, later bought by United Dairies.  Developers renamed Station Road as Carlton Avenue (after a Bedfordshire village) and at the end of the highway the Council provided a recreation ground for local residents.