Oxted & District History Society - Talk
Oxted & District History Society

Nick Pollard, Chairman of the Sunbury and Shepperton Local History Society and Spelthorne Museum, gave an illustrated lecture to the Oxted & District History Society on ‘Heathrow from Iron Age to Jet Age‘.

The Heathrow area is very flat with fertile river terraces and was attractive to early settlers. An early Iron Age village on the airport site was excavated in 1944.

There was a Bronze Age field system and some Neolithic remains. General Roy’s Baseline of 1784 across Hounslow Heath marked the beginning of the Ordnance Survey and accurate maps. Heathrow was a small hamlet near the Bath Road, consisting of several farms and Heathrow Hall. There were several early aerodromes in the area at Hounslow Heath, Heston and on the present Heathrow site.

In 1944 Heathrow was requisitioned by the RAF and opened as a civil airport in 1946. The original terminal was in a large tent. In the early 1950s operations were still on the north side of the airport, near Bath Road. New terminals and administrative buildings in the centre of the airport, reached by a road tunnel from Bath Road were opened in 1955. Terminal 4 to the south of the airport was opened in 1986 and Terminal 5 to the west in 2008.

6th October 2009


Heathrow from Iron Age to Jet Age a talk by Nick Pollard.