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Template:EngvarB Template:Use dmy dates Template:Infobox UK place Colnbrook is a village in the unitary authority of Slough in Berkshire, England. It was formerly in the historic county of Buckinghamshire. It straddles the Colne Brook and Wraysbury River which join on its southwest border (two distributaries of the Colne). It is centred Template:Convert southeast of Slough, Template:Convert east of Windsor and Template:Convert west of central London.

In the most local matters it is administered by Colnbrook with Poyle civil parish which spans a southern adjunct since 1995, Poyle, also in the large Slough post town. Abutting Longford, London and former outcrops of Bedfont and Stanwell which form the southern part of London Heathrow Airport, it is equidistant between nearby accessible junctions of the M4 and M25 and a suburban parish with significant industrial units, logistical premises and open land.

The parish was created on 1 April 1995 as an amalgamation of Colnbrook hamlet from Iver to the north and lesser-inhabited Poyle from an unparished area in the historic, ecclesiastical parish of Stanwell to the south-east. At the 2011 census the whole civil parish had a population of 6,157 living in 2,533 homes.<ref name=ons>2011 Census</ref>


Mentioned in William the Conqueror's Domesday Book, Colnbrook is on the Colne Brook, a tributary to the River Colne, hence Colnbrook.<ref name="GYLL">History of the Parish of Wraysbury, Ankerwycke Priory, and Magna Charta Island; with the History of Horton, and the town of Colnbrook, Bucks., G. W. J. Gyll, 1862, London: H. G. Bohn. Online version at Google Books OCLC: 5001532</ref> Coaching inns were the village's main industry. In 1106 the first one was founded by Milo Crispin, named the Hospice (now the Ostrich Inn), the third oldest in England. By 1577 Colnbrook had no fewer than ten coaching inns. Colnbrook's High Street was on the main London to Bath road and turn off point for Windsor and was used as a resting point for travellers.

One 17th century landlord, Jarman of the Ostrich Inn, installed a large trap door under the bed in the best bedroom located immediately above the inn's kitchen. The bed was fixed to the trap door and the mattress securely attached to the bedstead, so that when two retaining iron pins were removed from below in the small hours of the morning, the sleeping guest was neatly decanted into a boiling cauldron. In this way more than 60 of his richer guests were murdered silently and with no bloodshed. Their bodies were then disposed of in the River Colne. The murder of a wealthy clothier, Olde Cole or Thomas of Reading, proved to be Jarman's undoing in that he failed to get rid of Cole's horse, leading to his confessing. Jarman and his wife were hanged for robbery and murder.<ref name="PAGE">The hundred of Stoke: Colnbrook, A History of the County of Buckingham: Volume 3. William Page (editor), 1925, pp. 246-249.</ref> The inn is reportedly haunted and has been subject to investigations by the Sussex Paranormal Research Group and Most Haunted. On an episode of "Ghosthunters International" that aired on 21 July 2010, it is mentioned that the Jarman murders at the Ostrich Inn were the inspiration for the story of "Sweeney Todd".

Colnbrook is also the place where Richard Cox (a retired brewer), in 1825, first grafted the Cox's Orange Pippin apple at his orchard named The Lawns.<ref name=robbins>Template:Cite book</ref>

A traditional coaching history has led to no fewer than four inns or public houses remaining, three in Colnbrook, one in Poyle.

Administrative history

Iver and Stanwell ecclesiastical parishes' vestries provided traditional poor relief and road maintenance but lay in the 19th century in different Poor Law Unions. These structures and functions were gradually replaced with the Eton Rural District and Staines Urban District respectively which existed during the early 20th century (created c.1885).

The present combined parish of Colnbrook with Poyle, colloquially known by the more settled area only, was formed on 1 April 1995 on being added to Berkshire, which was the county's last boundary change before its county council was abolished to be replaced by six unitary authorities. The Colnbrook part had previously been in the Iver parish of South Bucks in Buckinghamshire whereas the Poyle part had been in the unparished borough of Spelthorne in Surrey (before 1974 forming part of the Staines Urban District of Surrey which had transferred from Middlesex in 1965). When Berkshire County Council was abolished in April 1998 the borough since three years before became more important for local government; however a Berkshire Fire and Rescue service persists, as do ceremonial roles, judicial roles and sporting competitions.


Colnbrook (with Poyle) is at the eastern end of the borough and is directly west of the M25 motorway which separates it from Heathrow Airport in the London Borough of Hillingdon in Greater London and the borough of Spelthorne in Surrey. Elevations vary between 22 and 20m Above Ordnance Datum with the Thames at 17m AOD Template:Convert south at Staines which is where the natural rivers generally drain toward. The river is unusual for its regional park (and walk) and seven mouths (distributaries).


The town's industrial estates are important in fields such as transportation, food and drinks manufacture, warehousing and distribution and despite almost all being in Poyle, landlords have mostly preferred to let premises under the name Colnbrook - but not all, such as Coca-Cola. Beside the Greater London boundary and a historic part of Stanwell which forms the southern part of London Heathrow Airport, it is also equidistant between nearby accessible junctions of the M4 and M25 and a suburban parish with significant industrial/logistical buildings and open land.<ref name=os>Grid square map Ordnance survey website</ref>


Colnbrook is in the Windsor constituency and its Member of Parliament is Adam Afriyie (Conservative).


At the 2011 census the whole civil parish had a population of 6,157 living in 2,533 homes, giving a density of 10.9 people per hectare (approximately a quarter of the density of the borough as a whole and just under one half of the average for England).<ref name=ons/>


Colnbrook was before the M4 along the Roman-origin A4 (previously the Bath road) as well as to Windsor or Maidenhead by way of Slough, and had been a convenient halting-place for travellers before the introduction of railways.<ref name="PAGE"/>

Local bus services are operated by London United who run services from the main village to Hounslow and First Berkshire & The Thames Valley who run the remainder of the services.

Abandoned railway

Template:Main Colnbrook has a disbanded railway line running into West Drayton, formerly carrying passenger traffic, then for carrying materials for building Heathrow Airport Terminal 5. This railway line formerly continued to Staines-upon-Thames political and transportation efforts are periodically made to re-use the southern part of it for a Heathrow Airtrack rail link from the counties south of London to Heathrow Airport. See Colnbrook railway station for the former rail connection that closed in 1965 under the Beeching Axe.



External links

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