Stonebridge Park first opened on 16th April 1917. Like others on this stretch of the Bakerloo Line, a station here had first opened five years previously for mainline rail services on the London and North Western Railway.
It was also briefly the northern terminus for the Bakerloo Line between September 1982 and June 1984, until services were restored to Harrow and Wealdstone. Today, it is also served by London Overground services running from Euston to Watford.
Building wise, both the platform shelters seem fairly modern and uninspiring. The one on platform 2 is particularly basic. To be fair, given that the previous buildings have been both destroyed by bombing in World War Two and then subsequently severely damaged by fires more recently, perhaps you can understand why they want to keep it basic!
The Pub: The Heather, Heather Park Drive, HA0 1SN
As we got off at Stonebridge Park, I immediately got the feeling there was going to be slim pickings round here. The area around the station is rather barren and dominated by both a large rail depot and the imposing structures of the North Circular. To reach The Heather, head south down the North Circular Road till you reach Heather Park Drive. The Drive curves round, so don’t worry if you don’t see anything at first. The pub is at the very end of the Drive, just past the small parade of shops.
From the outside, you might not even notice its a pub. Aside from the sign by its forecourt, there were little other signs of activity when we visited. It was much the same on the inside, we were the only customers bar one other bloke playing on the fruit machines but he didn’t stay long. The barman also disappeared ‘backstage’ after serving us so it was totally deserted bar us for most of our time here! There were no ales so I went for a Kronenberg.
The Heather has a rather weathered, gloomy interior. The fixtures and fittings seem dated, especially the lights, as does the dull paintwork. It advertises that it has BT/Sky Sports here – the TV was on but with no football to show, was instead playing a Storage Hunters type show on ITV4. We sat in the main area by the bar but there is also a side room with a couple of pool tables, fruit machines and a dart board.
Part of The Heather now seems to be some sort of restaurant. I suspect the rest of it will go the same way and I wouldn’t be surprised if the pub no longer exists by the time I finish the blog. Its the most dilapidated venue I’ve come across since The Pleasure Boat in Alperton last year. Unless you enjoy visiting depressing pubs in the middle of nowhere, I wouldn’t come here!
(The pub has no website)