On the map! – Spotlight on Brent… 

Ah fair Brent, the Ireland of Northwest London and the 2020 London Borough of Culture. We have had a big increase in records in the borough in the past few months, thanks to our cultural hub in Willesden Green Library back in May and thanks to some enthusiastic Brent-based Layers fans on social media! Some highlights of the history of Brent on the site are:
  • Dollis Hill was home to the Grunwick strikes led by Jayaben Desai in the 1970s. There is now a mural at Dollis Hill commemorating Desai and the strike (above) and there is a documentary about it available online.
  • Our Brent correspondent Annika has put together a wonderful collection with many interesting records on the area. One of them is on "Starlight Records" - "With just two record shops, Starlight and Hawkeye, left in Harlesden, it’s hard to believe that in the 1970s and 1980s there were literally dozens of record shops and record labels on the Church Road, Craven Park Road and High Street thoroughfare between Neasden (Trojan) and Harlesden (Creole and Champion)." This ties in with one of Brent 2020's flagship projects No Bass Like Home.
  • There is a great new collection called Historic Cinemas of Brent. One of these cinemas was variously a cinema, a bingo hall, a comedy club and a church. It has avoided demolition and is now home to a television studio - tangentially continuing its role in the entertainment business.
We hope to have many more Brent related records to the site over the coming months and to return for another community hub. Please get in touch if you are in the borough and would like to collaborate with Layers of London!