By the time the Piccadilly Line arrives into Hounslow West, you really feel like Heathrow is a stones throw away. The station itself began life as Hounslow Barracks on 21st July 1884, at the end of a short branch line of the Metropolitan District Line from Hounslow Town, now long since closed.
In 1925, the station gained its current name. In 1931, it was rebuilt along with many others on the Piccadilly/District Lines in this area and is another from Underground architect Stanley Heap working with Charles Holden. I particularly liked the station building here, which is very similar to the equally impressive structure at Ealing Common.
There was further rebuilding to come. The Piccadilly Line was extended to Heathrow in 1975, this required resiting the platforms as their existing alignment would have resulted in a route requiring demolition of existing residential buildings in Hounslow. That now means the station at platform level has a ’70s feel which continues until you reach the ’30s building at street level.
Earl Haig, 286 Bath Road, TW4 7DN
You can’t escape Heathrow when you get off here. Planes seem to be buzzing overhead every minute, while all the buses heading westwards have it as their destination. There also seemed to be a fair amount of airport staff at the station during our visit.
Our pub was very easy to find, being right opposite the station. I was a little concerned before we visited as the the website ‘beer in the evening’ had given the Earl Haig 1.9 out of 10 – the lowest score I’d ever seen on the site and a fair bit lower than other grim pubs I’d seen on my travels.
Given the proximity, we decided to give it a go. It’s based in a quite non-descript modern building, but you can’t really hold that against it. It’s got a fairly expansive exterior with a couple of pool tables at the back, as well as a couple of quiz and fruit machines.
It wasn’t really an ale place but our lager tasted fine. It was quite quiet when we arrived and we didn’t have any problems. The previous reviews on beer in the evening suggested it was the sort of place where ‘non-locals’ would get a frosty reception. Like I said, we didn’t experience that but perhaps that was because it was a quiet Thursday evening.
All in all, I don’t think this pub deserved a 1.9/10 rating! I do dread to think what a real 1.9/10 will look like, but I’m sure I will come across one soon..