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Staines, Middlesex

Historical Description

Staines, the head of a union and a seat of petty sessions,. is a clean, well-built, quiet little town in Middlesex, on the river Thames, near the influx of the river Colne, 6 miles SE from Windsor, and 19 from London by road or 35¼ by the river. It has a station on the L. & S.W.R., and the G.W.R. has also a terminal station on the West Drayton branch.

The river is crossed here by a handsome stone bridge of three arches, designed by Rennie, and erected in 1832 at a cost of about £70,000. The town is said to derive its name from an ancient stone on the boundary of the city of London's jurisdiction of the Thames, and was known to the Romans as Pontes and to the Saxons as Stane. It stood anciently amid a forest which till 1227 extended to Hounslow, and was the place where the Danes crossed the Thames in 1009 after burning Oxford. Being a lordship of the Crown it is not incorporated, but is governed by an urban district council of twelve members, and is included within the district of the Metropolitan police. The soil is alluvial and gravel, and the town has a good supply of water derived from the river Thames and wells sunk into the chalk. The town-hall, standing in the Market Square, is a handsome building of white brick with dressings of stone which was erected in 1880-81. The industries include brewing, the manufacture of linoleum and candles, the preparation of mustard, and boatbuilding. There are a head post office, two banks, three good hotels, and two weekly newspapers. A town regatta is held annually. The church, which stands on the site of an older building said to have been erected in 675, was built, with the exception of the tower, in 1828, and is a building of red brick in a debased Gothic style. The tower was erected in 1631 from designs by Inigo Jones, and was repaired and enlarged in 1838. The interior of the church was restored in 1885. It contains some good stained windows, one of which was presented by the late Emperor Frederick III. of Germany and the Empress Frederick. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of London; net value, £443 with residence, in the gift of the Lord Chancellor. There is a church in the Edgell Road, the gift of Sir Edward Clarke, which was erected in 1893 at a total cost of about £7400, and is a fine building of red brick and stone in the Perpendicular Gothic style. It is the church of a new parish (St Peter's), formed out of the old parish of Staines. There are also Baptist, Congregational, Primitive Methodist, and two Wesleyan chapels, and a Friends' meeting-house. The town possesses several useful charities which are distributed to the poor in money, food, and fuel. The cemetery, opened in 1880, has an area of a little over an acre, and adjoins the churchyard. The workhouse of Staines union stands in the parish of Stanwell, and is a large building of brick capable of accommodating 350 inmates. Area of the town, 1843 acres; population, 5060.

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5

Administration

The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountyMiddlesex 
Ecclesiastical parishStaines St. Mary 
HundredSpelthorne 
Poor Law unionStaines 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.


Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Staines from the following:


Land and Property

A full transcript of the Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Middlesex is online.