infobox UK place
country = England
region= London
official_name= Uxbridge
london_borough= Hillingdon
constituency_westminster= Uxbridge
post_town= UXBRIDGE
postcode_area= UB
postcode_district= UB8
dial_code= 01895
os_grid_reference= TQ055835
latitude= 51.5404
longitude= -0.4778
Uxbridge is a university town in the London Borough of Hillingdon in West London, England. It is a suburban development situated convert|15|mi|km|1 west north-west of Charing Cross and near to the boundary with Buckinghamshire which is locally the River Colne. It is one of the major metropolitan centres identified in the London Plan.

The name is derived from "Wuxen Bridge" which was likely to have been near the bottom of Oxford Road where the "Swan and Bottle" now stands. The Wuxen were a 7th-century Saxon tribe. Before 1965, Uxbridge formed a municipal borough of Middlesex.

Modern Uxbridge

The town centre today comprises retail outlets and major office buildings, including the main European offices of several international companies including Kuehne + Nagel, PAREXEL International, Xerox, Arri, APL, Herbalife Europe Ltd and the Anadarko Algeria Oil Company. Other employers include Apple, Unisys, F. Hinds, The Coca-Cola Company, Anixter International, WMS Gaming, Manpower, AIB and General Mills.

The population in Uxbridge in 2001 was 62,000 people.

RAF Station

:"See main article: RAF UxbridgeUxbridge also has its own Royal Air Force station, known as RAF Uxbridge, that is most famous for being the Headquarters of 11 Group (Fighter command) during the Battle of Britain. A replica Spitfire can be seen on display at the front entrance to the base.


Archaeologists found Bronze age remains (before 700 BC) and medieval remains when the new shopping mall "The Chimes" was being built. Two miles away at Denham, Upper Paleolithic remains have been found.

Uxbridge is not mentioned in the Domesday Book of the 11th century, but a hundred years later the existing church, [http://www.uxbridgeparish.org/stmargarets St Margaret's] , was built. The pub presently called "The Queens Head" has a sign depicting Anne Boleyn, wife of Henry VIII. The pub was previously called "The Axe" and possibly dates from the 1540s. A tunnel connects the pub to the church. At the bottom of Windsor Street there is a cemetery with an archway. It was here on Lynch Green that three heretics were burned to death in 1555. Foxe's "Book of Martyrs" gives the names as John Denley, Robert Smith and Patrick Packingham, but other sources call the last one Patrick Rockingham. He was found guilty of denying the trinity.

Under Elizabeth I, Roman Catholics were subject to severe constraints. Edmund Campion was a Catholic priest, trained in Douai in the Netherlands, to give covert support to Catholics. He travelled around England on horseback, giving sermons in secret and pretending to be a diamond merchant. In 1580 he came to Uxbridge and hid for a couple of weeks, in a house owned by William Catesby. In 1581 Campion was caught. He was hanged, drawn and quartered in London. The 40 or so Catholics who died in this period are called the "Douai martyrs" which is also the name of the local Catholic secondary school, in Ickenham.

In 1605 the Gunpowder Plot was uncovered. The flamboyant six-foot leader, Robert Catesby (son of William), escaped and hid in his house in Uxbridge. He was later shot. There were negotiations between Charles I and the Parliamentary side in Uxbridge, January 30 to February 22 1645, commemorated in the name of a local pub and restaurant, the Crown and Treaty. This latter is on the A4020 Oxford Road where it leaves the town, at the canal overbridge.

The covered market was built in 1788, but the previous building was about twice as big, creating big problems for traffic. In the early 19th century, Uxbridge had an unsavoury reputation. The jurist William Arabin said of it residents "They will steal the very teeth out of your mouth as you walk through the streets. I know it from experience."

Uxbridge originally formed a chapelry within the parish of Hillingdon. It was split out as a separate civil parish in 1866, and became part of the Uxbridge Urban District [http://www.uxbridgeparish.org/] in 1894 under the Local Government Act 1894.

In the 1930s George Orwell was a teacher at Frays College (Harefield Road) which later became Frays Adult Education Centre, but has since been demolished. His novel "A Clergyman's Daughter" was based on his experiences there.

For about 200 years most of London's flour was produced in the Uxbridge area. There were also breweries, The last Brewery was called Harman's and was based in the High Street and extended up George Street. It was still in operation up until the early sixties.

The "ANITA" calculator, the world's first desktop electronic calculator, was developed and manufactured by the Bell Punch Company at its site on "The Island", off Rockingham Road. The largest manufacturer in Britain of mechanical calculators, ticketing systems, and taximeters, the company's electronic calculators proved hugely successful when launched in 1961. With further development, there followed a series of desktop electronic calculators, with hand-held calculators following in the early 1970s. In 1972 the calculator division was sold to Rockwell International of the U.S.A., which decided to exit consumer electronics in 1976 and closed down calculator manufacturing. The Bell Punch Company continued manufacturing its other products till about 1986 when it too closed down.

The infamous highwayman and thief Dick Turpin used to hold people up on the roads of Uxbridge back in the 1700s, hence Turpin's nightclub on Vine Street opposite Randall's in Uxbridge in the early 1990s.


Uxbridge station, fronted by a pedestrian high street is the terminus for both the Metropolitan and Piccadilly underground lines.

The station is connected to a bus terminus with connections to Hillingdon, Hayes, Ealing, Ruislip, and Slough.

A TFL project called the West London Tram Service has been postponed however "an effective bus-based solution" [http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/projectsandschemes/networkandservices/3223.aspx] was cited as a alternative, but no specific plans exist. The route is currently served by the 427, 207, and 607 bus services.

There were once three railway stations - Uxbridge Vine Street (originally just Uxbridge Station), Uxbridge High Street, and Uxbridge Belmont Road. All three have now closed, replaced by the underground and bus services.

The former Grand Junction Canal, now Grand Union Canal, which connects London with Birmingham, passes immediately to the west of Uxbridge, and forms the borough boundary. The first stretch was built in the late eighteenth century from Brentford to Uxbridge. Further upstream is Uxbridge Lock, and nearby is a flourmill belonging to Allied Mills. A Mister King, who called it “Kingsmill”, bought this in the nineteenth century. This brand name is one of the best-selling bread-makers in the UK, though most of the milling is now done on Tyneside.

London Heathrow Airport is also located in the London Borough of Hillingdon and is approximately 5 miles from the centre of Uxbridge.


Uxbridge has two shopping centres, The Mall (formally "The "Pavilions") and The Chimes. Much of the town centre is pedestrianised. In addition, just off the High Street is Windsor Street, a short road populated by older shops; as well as being home to St Margaret's Church.

The Art Deco-style department store, Randall's, is owned by the family of the Conservative MP for Uxbridge, John Randall, who was elected in a 1997 by-election when the sitting MP, Sir Michael Shersby, died shortly after the 1997 general election.

Uxbridge as a filming location

"The National Lottery" - Advert - Was filmed in Windsor Street

"Durex" Advert - With the protagonists separated by a chain-link fence was filmed outside the Tube Station entrance. Uxbridge is an anagram of "Big Durex"...

"McCain Oven Chips" - Advert

"Take Three Girls" - A new Bollywood Production

"Extras" - Comedy program written by Ricky Gervais - Many scenes were filmed around the town centre.

"Genevieve" - Filmed in an around Uxbridge, as well as West Drayton and other nearby towns.

"Mind Your Language" - Comedy Series

"The Demon Headmaster" - CBBC series filmed in and around the Atrium building.

"Family Affairs" - Channel 5 soap opera, filmed outside the Civic Centre in Uxbridge.

"A Clockwork Orange" - scenes from the Ludovico Centre were filmed at Brunel University.

"The Sweeney" - detective series in which the episode entitled "Thou Shalt Not Kill" was filmed at Brunel University. The entrance to the present Student Union building doubled as a university branch of a bank during a botched armed robbery and subsequent hostage situation.

"The Wrong Arm of the Law" - Filmed around Uxbridge Moor, just south of the main town - including memorable scenes of the getaway car leaping over Swan Bridge on Cowley Mill Road.

"Only Fools and Horses" - Scene filmed in Randalls department store

"Press Gang" - Shot entirely on location for the first series, with the Junior Gazette newsroom being represented by a disused building, however, that was demolished before the second series was due to start shooting, so the newsroom had to built at Pinewood Studios, and interior scenes were shot there for the rest of the series. However, outdoor scenes continued to be shot in and around Uxbridge.

"Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging" - Gurinder Chadha's (Bend It Like Beckham and Bride and Prejudice) film version of Louise Rennison's best-selling book was partly filmed in Bishopshalt School.

Nearest places

* Cowley
* Denham, Buckinghamshire
* Harefield
* Hayes
* Ickenham
* Iver Heath
* Ruislip
* West Drayton
* Yiewsley
* Hillingdon


External links

* [http://www.hillingdon.gov.uk/ London Borough of Hillingdon]
* [http://www.uxbridgeparish.org/ The Uxbridge Parish of St Margaret's and St Andrew's Churches]
* [http://www.uxbridgetown.com/ UxbridgeTown.com - An Essential Guide To Uxbridge]
* [http://www.hillingdontimes.co.uk/ Uxbridge & Hillingdon Times]

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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Uxbridge — (spr. öcksbridsch), 1) Stadt in der engl. Grafschaft Middlesex, am Colne und dem Grand Junction Kanal, hat Eisengießerei, Schiffbau, Maschinenbau, Getreidehandel. und (1901) 8585 Einw. Hier fanden 1645 Verhandlungen zwischen Karl I. und dem… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

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