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The London Borough of Hillingdon is the westernmost borough in Greater London, England. The borough’s population was recorded as 243,006 in the 2001 Census.[4] The borough incorporates the former districts ofRuislip-NorthwoodUxbridgeHayes and Harlington and Yiewsley and West Drayton in the historic county of Middlesex. Today, Hillingdon is home to Heathrow Airport and Brunel University, and is the second largest of the 32 London boroughs.

Hillingdon Council governs the borough, with its headquarters in the Civic Centre in Uxbridge. For administrative purposes, the borough is split into North and South Hillingdon with more industrial units to the south and residential suburban areas in the north. Much of the residential areas were expanded with the extension of the Metropolitan Railway from Harrow on the Hill to Uxbridge in the early 1900s and the gradual establishment of stops along the line, becoming known as “Metro-land“.


The borough was formed in 1965 from the Municipal Borough of UxbridgeHayes and Harlington Urban DistrictRuislip-Northwood Urban District and Yiewsley and West Drayton Urban District of Middlesex.[5] The councils involved were initially unable to decide upon a name, with Keith Joseph suggesting “Uxbridge” in October 1963, later revised to Hillingdon.[5]

The coat of arms for the London Borough of Hillingdon were granted on 22 March 1965.[6] Between 1973 and 1978, the borough’s civic centre was built in Uxbridge.[7]


The London Borough of Hillingdon’s Civic Centre in Uxbridge

The borough is governed by a democratically elected council, known interchangeably by the full name and as Hillingdon Council.[8] It is split into wards represented by 65 Conservative, Labour and independent councillors.[9] A cabinet and leader are elected annually.[10] The present leader of the council is Councillor Raymond Puddifoot of the Conservative Party.[1] Elections for councillors are held every four years.[10]

A Mayor is chosen yearly by councillors and is largely a ceremonial role.[11] The present mayor is Councillor Mary O’Connor, who was selected in May 2011.[2]

The British Government’s UK Border Agency have two immigration removal centres,Colnbrook Immigration Removal Centre and Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre in Harmondsworth.[12][13]


The borough includes the areas:

The borough also includes RAF Northolt and the former sites of RAF EastcoteRAF South RuislipRAF West DraytonRAF West Ruislip and RAF Uxbridge.

Parks and recreation

The Eastcote House walled garden (my home backs onto this lovely area!)

The borough maintains over 200 green spaces, totalling around 1,800 acres (730 ha).[14] Since much of the area is within the Metropolitan Green Belt, and as it is one of the least densely populated of all the London boroughs, there are large areas of land properly called open space. They range in size from the Colne Valley corridor to the smallest gardens and playing fields.[15]

Harmondsworth Moor, a park owned by the borough, is administered by British Airways on behalf of the borough.[16] After British Airways planned to create a new headquarters in 1992, the airline agreed to restore a former landfill site to what is now the moor.[17]

The Grand Union Canal passes through parts of the borough, including Uxbridge, Yiewsley and West Drayton. Ruislip Lido was built as a feeder reservoir for the canal, but was eventually disconnected and changed to become a recreational lido. Two Sites of Special Scientific Interest next to the canal, Frays Farm Meadows and Denham Lock Wood, are managed by the London Wildlife Trust.

The borough also operates children’s centres, recreational areas for children of under five years of age and their families. The centres include Barra Hall, Belmore, Cherry Lane, Colham Manor, Cornerstone, Cowley St. Laurence, Harefield, Hillside, McMillan Early Childhood Centre, Nestles Avenue, Oak Farm, Uxbridge College (Hayes Campus).[18]

There are three theatres owned by the borough: the Compass Theatre, Ickenham, the Winston Churchill Hall (part of the Manor Farm site) and the Beck Theatre, Hayes, which is operated on behalf of the borough by HQ Theatres Limited.[19]


Waterside, the headquarters of British Airways inHarmondsworth

The borough is split into two divides, North Hillingdon and South Hillingdon, the latter being home to large industrial units, while North Hillingdon remains predominantly an affluent and leafy part of London, with towns of IckenhamRuislip and Northwood boasting high incomes per capita.[15]

British Airways is headquartered in WatersideHarmondsworth, in Hillingdon.[20] The building officially opened in 1998.[21] Prior to the opening of Waterside, the airline’s head office was the Speedbird House at London Heathrow Airport.[22]

In 2007 Cadbury Schweppes announced it would be moving to Uxbridge from Mayfair to cut costs.[23] The company later split and Cadbury plc moved to its new head office in Cadbury House in the Uxbridge Business Park in June 2008.[24]

Guoman Hotel Management (UK) Limited has its head office in the Thistle London Heathrow in West Drayton.[25][26]

British Midland International has an office in Stockley Close, West Drayton, Borough of Hillingdon.[27] In July 1999 Sir Michael Bishop formally opened the British Midland Training Centre, which is located in Stockley Close.[28] Hellenic Imperial Airways has its United Kingdom offices in the Axis House in Harlington in the London Borough of Hillingdon.[29] China Airlines has its UK office in the Hyde Park Hayes 3 (HPH3) in Hayes in the borough.[30]

One of the predecessor organisations of British Airways, British Overseas Airways Corporation had its head office in the Speedbird House.[31]The other predecessor, British European Airways had its headquarters in Ruislip,[32] as did BEA Helicopters.[31] During its existence the airlineBritish Eagle had its head office on the grounds of Heathrow Airport.[33]


The borough maintains several libraries: Charville, Eastcote, Harefield, Harlington, Hayes End, Hayes, Ickenham, Manor Farm, Northwood Hills, Northwood, Oak Farm, Ruislip Manor, South Ruislip, Uxbridge, West Drayton, Yeading, and Yiewsley.[34]

In May 2011, Hillingdon Council received the Library Innovation of the Year award at the 2011 Bookseller Industry Awards.[35]

Also within the borough is Brunel University and Uxbridge College‘s Uxbridge and Hayes campuses.


Uxbridge tube station

London Bus routes 81, 90, 105, 111, 114, 140, 195, 203, 207, 222, 282, 285, 331, 350, 395, 398, 423, 427, 482, 490, 607, A10, E6, E7, E9, H11, H13, H26, H98, U1, U2, U3, U4, U5, U7, U9, U10, X26, night routes N9 and N207 and school routes 696, 697 and 698 operate in the borough. The routes 58, 60, 61, 71, 75, 76, 77, 305, 441, 555, 557, 581, 615, 724, 740, A30, A40, R21, W7 and W9 are run by other operators.

The numerous National Rail and London Underground stations in the borough are:

The council announced in June 2011 that it would be lobbying Transport for London to have the Central line extended from West Ruislip station to Uxbridge station. Such a project would require a business case approved by TfL and the completion of signal upgrade work on the Metropolitan line.[36]

The Royal Air Force station, RAF Northolt, is situated in South Ruislip near the A40 and the tube station. Most early RAF airfields were named after the nearest railway station; in this case Northolt Junction, the original name of South Ruislip station. The station has been redeveloped in recent years to house a number of additional military capabilities besides the RAF operations, and is popular with business people and politicians for private flights.[37]

See also


  1. a b “Councillor Raymond Puddifoot”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 17 February 2011. Retrieved 4 April 2011.
  2. a b “New Mayor for Hillingdon Council”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 13 May 2011. Retrieved 16 May 2011.
  3. ^ Data Management and Analysis Group, Greater London Authority, Demography Update October 2007, (2007)
  4. ^ “Area: Hillingdon (Local Authority)”. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 11 April 2011.
  5. a b Cotton 1994, p.133
  6. ^ “Hillingdon’s coat of arms”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 18 May 2010. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  7. ^ “Civic Centre”. London Borough of Hillingdon. May 2010. Retrieved 9 October 2011.
  8. ^ “Local government”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 19 September 2008. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  9. ^ “Political parties and independents”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 14 May 2010. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  10. a b “How the council and cabinet work”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 11 May 2010. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  11. ^ “Civic Protocol”. London Borough of Hillingdon. May 2011. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  12. ^ ”Colnbrook Immigration Removal Centre.” UK Border Agency. Retrieved on 13 February 2010.
  13. ^ ”Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre.” UK Border Agency. Retrieved on 13 February 2010.
  14. ^ “Parks and open spaces”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 11 January 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2011.
  15. a b “Hillingdon profile 2008″. London Borough of Hillingdon. 2008. Retrieved 27 March 2011.
  16. ^ ”Harmondsworth Moor.” London Borough of Hillingdon. Retrieved on 2 September 2009.
  17. ^ ”Contact Information.” British Airways. Retrieved on 18 May 2009.
  18. ^ ”Children’s centres in Hillingdon.” London Borough of Hillingdon. Retrieved on 26 June 2010.
  19. ^ “About us”. Beck Theatre. Retrieved 27 March 2011.
  20. ^ ”Contact Information.” British Airways. Retrieved on 18 May 2009.
  21. ^ ”Our locations.” British Airways Jobs. Retrieved on 18 September 2009.
  22. ^ ”Blue Sky prepares for launch as PAL 737-300s are secured.” Flight International. 28 January 1998. Retrieved on 14 December 2009.
  23. ^ Muspratt, Caroline (1 June 2007). “Cadbury swaps Mayfair for Uxbridge”The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 27 April 2010.
  24. ^ “Cadbury plc Confirms Strong Start to 2008″. Investis. 19 June 2008. Retrieved 4 April 2011.
  25. ^ ”Corporate Office.” Thistle Hotels. Retrieved on 28 December 2011. “The corporate office is based at Thistle London Heathrow and is situated across opposite the main reception adjacent to the Conference Centre”
  26. ^ ”Thistle London Heathrow.” Thistle Hotels. Retrieved on 28 December 2011. “Bath Road, Longford West Drayton UB7 0EQ”
  27. ^ ”bmi’s company rewards.” British Midland International. Retrieved on 28 December 2011. “Stockley Close, West Drayton, Middlesex, UB7 9BL”
  28. ^ ”the nineties.” British Midland International. Retrieved on 28 December 2011.
  29. ^ ”Contact Us.” Hellenic Imperial Airways. Retrieved on 10 May 2011. “London / United Kingdom Hellenic Imperial Airways Axis House 242 Bath Road Harlington UB3 5AY”
  30. ^ ”Europe and Middle East.” China Airlines. Retrieved on August 30, 2011. “The United Kingdom 3rd Floor, West Wing, Hyde Park Hayes 3 (HPH3),11 Millington Road, Hayes, Middlesex, UB3 4AZ”
  31. a b ”World Airline Directory.” Flight International. 28 September 1967. 530.
  32. ^ ”World Airline Directory.” Flight International. 28 September 1967. 529
  33. ^ ”World Airline Directory.” Flight International. 2 April 1964. 502.
  34. ^ “Your local library”. London Borough of Hillingdon. 13 January 2011. Retrieved 4 April 2011.
  35. ^ Kobori, Minato (20 May 2011). “Hillingdon wins best library innovator of the year”Hillingdon & Uxbridge Times. Retrieved 25 May 2011.
  36. ^ Coombs, Dan (17 June 2011). “‘Extending Central Line to Uxbridge will cut traffic’”Uxbridge Gazette. Retrieved 17 June 2011.
  37. ^ “About us”. Royal Air Force. 2011. Retrieved 19 November 2011.
  • Cotton, Carolynne. (1994) Uxbridge Past. London: Historical Publications ISBN 0948667303

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