Hillingdon first opened on 10th December 1923 on the Metropolitan and District Railways. It was the last of the infill stations between Harrow on the Hill and Uxbridge to open. In 1933, the District Line services transferred across to the Piccadilly Line.
The signage at the station actually reads Hillingdon(Swakeleys), and it was listed as such on old tube maps. If you squint, you’ll just be able to make it out on this one from 1938. In the early 1990s the station was resited to allow an upgraded A40 to pass through the site. The new station opened in August 1992 and has a very ’90s feel. Lots of white pillars and glass roofs. I suppose it is distinctive in its own way as there weren’t really any other stations being built at this time, but it feels too much like a ’90s shopping centre to me!
The original station had a much more traditional look to it – as you can see here.
The Pub: The Swallow,Long Lane, UB10 9NR
Its easy to find The Swallow from the station, simply head out of the main entrance and along the covered walkway towards a building straight in front of you – that’s The Swallow! Location wise, it seems somewhat out on a limb, the only building standing in the vicinity and adjacent to the A40 with cars and coaches hurtling past its mock tudor frontage.
Inside, its a fairly typical ‘unreconstructed’ pub, with wood beamed ceiling and carpeted throughout. Some of the seating had seen better days and was a little ripped in places. There were pictures of some of the locals on the wall which I thought was a friendly touch. A couple of TVs showing Sky Sports – a meaningless end of season Premier League game. The Swallow also has a snooker table too which was in high demand on our visit.
Beer wise, two ales were available in Doombar and Greene King IPA. Behind the bar, there were various little animal models including a Puffin. I couldn’t spot a Toucan(the Guinness mascot) though! There are a couple of tables and an outside seating area but like another pub I visited recently, I’m not sure how appealing this would be!
The Swallow is an alright enough spot for a pint – I’ve been to far worse on the blog. I can’t help but feel like the pub has been stranded somewhat by the A40 -it feels on the wrong side of the fence with residential areas on the other side. That all helps to make it feel somewhat desolate so I can think of few reasons you’d have for venturing here!
(The pub has no website)