Kilburn Kensal Green collage


Our programme for the first half of 2021 will be online, and, during the spring and summer, some outdoor walks and visits. All virtual talks will start at 7.30 pm. 

If you are a current member of the WLHS, you will receive an email from us with Zoom meeting details prior to each meeting. Please make sure that we have the current email address for you and check your spam folder for messages from us, if you do not receive an email from WLHS by about a week prior to the event.

The recordings of some of the online talks are available in the Archive section of the website.

Victorian gas holders at Ladbroke Grove

As our route out of Covid Lockdown still seems uncertain, we have planned a short walk in the fresh air for our April event.

This will be a self-guided walk to say goodbye to Kensal Green Gas Holders, due for demolition. They are the relics of the Western Gas Company, which established gas works on this site in 1845. By the turn of the century they occupied a large area between the Grand Junction Canal and the railway. The works burnt coal to produce gas, which was stored in the gas holders, to be sold for lighting gas lamps on the streets and in buildings.

We plan to produce a simple guide with details to observe some industrial archaeology, while enjoying the wildlife and tranquility of the waterside.

However, we’ve just learnt that the demolition of the gas holders is to start on Monday, 15th March – the construction company would have started earlier, but they could not do it in the strong winds that we’ve been having. Weather permitting, the structure will be completely gone in a month. So, if you would like to see the gas holders before they disappear, you will need to make it sooner rather than later.

The walk begins at the Ladbroke Grove entrance to the Grand Junction Canal towpath, by Sainsbury’s superstore. There are bus services to Ladbroke Grove, from Willesden Green, (no.52.), and along the Harrow Road, (no. 18.)

A simple Guide will be still be produced and, when ready, sent to members electronically and, to those for whom we do not have email addresses, by post.

History of Queen's Park, London

In and Around Queen’s Park. 

Wednesday, 19th May, 7.30 pm

Our Chair Irina Porter will talk about the history of the area that we know as Queen’s Park – from the royal beginnings of the famous local park to the artisans and labourers who built the dwellings nearby, – with lots of historic photographs.

If you are not a member, click here to book tickets

Old St.Mary's Church, Willesden

WLHS Annual General Meeting

Wednesday, 16 June, 7.30 pm

Come and support your Society for the AGM, including some entertainment. It is really quite enjoyable!

Past events

Kensal Rise Kensal Green

Exploring Kensal Green and Kensal Rise. Part 1. Kensal Green

Wednesday, 20 January, 7.30 pm.

Harry Brown and Margaret Pratt offer a description of the history to be found on a journey from St. John’s Church, travelling in a westerly direction along the Harrow Road, to Wrottesley Road.

Recording is available in the Archive

Exploring Kensal Green and Kensal Rise. Part 2. Kensal Rise, February 2021

Exploring Kensal Green and Kensal Rise. Part 2. Kensal Rise

Wednesday, 17 February, 7.30 pm.

Harry Brown and Margaret Pratt offer a description of the history to be found on a journey beginning at St. John’s Church, travelling north along Kilburn Lane and Chamberlayne Road.

Recording is available in the Archive

Wembley Robbery Squad

The Supergrass.

Wednesday, 17th March, 7.30 pm 

Historian Dick Weindling presents an illustrated online talk about Britain’s first Supergrass and the Wembley Robbery Squad. Bertie Smalls gave evidence about 22 bank raids in North West London during the 1970s, which resulted in long prison sentences for 32 of his fellow criminals.

Recording is available in the Archive