2,000 parliamentarian soldiers held off 12,000 royalists but the Parliamentary horseman fled back to London when they heard the cannon fire from the enemy and the Parliamentarian foot soldiers were forced back to Brentford Bridge. in the end the royalists overpowered the Parliamentarians who sank their own barges to avoid them falling in to enemy hands.
The civil war lasted 4 years with many soldiers dying.
Syon House is still owned by the Duke of Northumberland and is located in Syon Park. The tudor house has been there since late 16th century but was remodelled in the 1760's and the wonderful domed conservatory was constructed in the 1820's. The house is open for the public on Wed, Thurs and Sun from March to October from 11 am - 5 pm. The gardens are open all year round at certain days and times.
the Great Hall at Syon House can be rented for weddings etc and can seat 120 guests.
The area is somewhat ruined by the large car park next door that caters for the garden centre, and another car park for the Waldorf Hotel
Gillette Corner has been a famous landmark in London since 1930 when the European headquarters of Gillette was situated here. The tower was designed by Banister Fletch and was constructed from brick with a four faced neon illuminated clock at the top which could be seen from miles around back then.
Unfortunately the Gillette building is going to be developed into a hotel and business park.
The park is one of the ancient manors of Middlesex with the 1622 Jacobean Manor House still standing. The park is open daily from 8 am to dusk and as well as having a children's playground it has tennis courts, a basketball court and a cafeteria and a nature trail.
The park hosts the annual Brentford Festival, as well as a car boot sale on the first saturday of each month.
The park was purchased from the Rothschild family and was open in 1926 to the public. I am afraid i did not have time to explore the park thoroughly but i enjoyed what i saw, and will return soon should i have enough time to do the place justice. The colour of the trees in Autumn was exceptionally beautiful, as i wandered past the Potamac Pond.
Gunnersbury Park Museum contains costumes, fine art, carriages and Rothschild items. There is also a boating pond and a bath house as well as many trails and footpaths to explore the park
Brentford Fountain Leisure Centre is located just off the A4 near Kew Bridge. Besides swimming there is badminton, short tennis, basketball, gym, 5-a-side football and Zumba classes (exercise). There is also a cafe and a new room for indoor cycling.
Open Mon-Fri 6.30-22.00
Sat, Sun 8.00- 18.00
The Steam Museum at Brentford is worth a visit if you are prepared to pay the £15 admission fee. It is located in the High St, not far from Kew Bridge. It is open Tuesday to Sunday from 11 am to $pm and this year, around New Year they will be starting up some of the engines so good time to take the kids.
The building was erected in the 19th century to supply water to the Londoners and is an important historical site in the water industry.
In the museum there are hands-on challenges and games.
The Music Museum is located in Brentford High Street in a fairly new building, and contains one of the world's foremost collections of automatic musical instruments, Entrance fee is £8 and children under 16 are free provided they are accompanied by an adult. On show are tiny clockwork boxes up to the mighty Wurlitzer. Not only is it a museum but it has a concert hall too as well as a refreshment area overlooking the river. There is also a gift shop selling a good selection of musical related gifts.
For info on performances www.musicalmuseum.co.uk
The museum is open everyday except Mondays
On Brentford High Street you will find St. Georges Church which seems to have fallen in a state of disrepair. the chapel was built here in 1762, followed by the church in 1828, which was rebuilt in 1867 and the tower added in 1913. Next door to the church was the church school which was built in 1876. It looks as if it has been left idle for many years, don't know if it will be renovated or demolished.
This is located on the side of the river but there is talk of it being transferred to a different location. From the building you can get a really good view of the river and a nearby park as well as the Steam Museum. The Watermans has a cinema, theatre and exhibition as well as other events taking place.
The Thames Walk is a footpath that starts in the Cotswolds at the source of the river and ends up at the Thames Barrier in Greenwich, passing by meadows, villages, historic towns, then passing through Central London. As it passes through Brentford the path will sometimes be beside the river but often the path will be by the side of the main street. There is a small park by the side of the river in Brentford where you can see barges and wildlife on the river.
As you pass over Brentford Bridge you will see the Grand Union Canal underneath. The canal stretches 147 kms from Paddington via Milton Keynes, Northampton to Birmingham. As it linked Britain's two biggest cities barges used to transport goods before the railway system was constructed, but now the canal is just used for pleasure trips on barges and other crafts. From Brentford Bridge you may decide to amble by the side of the canal for a few miles going north to Hanwell Locks (2 1/2 mile) or Bull's Bridge (5 1/2 miles). You will see quite a few barges moored at the side of the canal, actually i was quite surprised by the number.
Syon Park is located in Brentford, just after leaving Hounslow, Syon Park is actually a 200 acre park owned by the duke of Northumberland who has a residency there called Syon House. The park is open daily to the public but closes just before dark, times changing according to the season. It borders the Thames and there is a tidal meadow which is flooded twice a day. The park also contains over 200 species of rare trees.
Syon House (£5) and gardens are open to the public from mid March to October. House wed-thurs-sat and the gardens daily
From Brentford Bridge you can take the Brent River Park Walk, a 6 1/2 mile jaunt from here to Perrivale along muddy paths by the river so come prepared. Expect to take 3 hours maximum.