Hay and Straw
There’s a large empty space appeared in Dock Road recently.
It was occupied for over 100 years by a warehouse that was originally built in the garden of 80, High Street and had painted on the fascia board
HAY & STRAW
Edwin Underwood came to Brentford in 1865 as Goods Superintendant at Brentford Docks Station, six years after the opening of the dock.
It had been built by the Great Western Railway to transfer goods by rail from the Midlands, and south Wales via the river to London Docks and vice versa.
Mr Underwood seems to have specialised in moving goods around the country and the continent having started working for a carrier in the West Country and then updating to the railways in the Midlands.
In 1871 he set up in business with his son as hay and straw merchants and in 1882 their offices were at 79, Brentford High Street. About this time he moved to live at number 80, High Street and the warehouse was built in the garden. By 1894 they were also coal merchants with premises at the railway yard in Lionel Road and few years later at Brentford Market (now the site of Capital Interchange and the Fountain Leisure Centre).
Edwin Underwood was a member of the Brentford Urban District Council from its formation in 1894 and was a Justice of the Peace by the time his name appeared on the foundation stone of the Swimming Baths in Clifden Road.
Early in the 20th century E Underwood & Son Ltd had six branch offices and depots in and around London with others in cities around the UK and on the continent. They employed over 300 people and had a stud of nearly 100 horses and vehicles working from their London depots supplying food and bedding for their main form of transport – horse power.
To see this map and other photos full size, please visit Historical Brentford in photos
For further information about the Underwoods and 80, High Street go to www.bhsproject.co.uk
November 24, 2010