“PINNER, a parish and post town in the hundred of Gore, county Middlesex, 2¾ miles N.W. of Harrow, and 12½ from London. It is a station on the London and Birmingham railway. The village is situated near a feeder of the Colne river, and on the high road to Buckinghamshire.

It was formerly part of Harrow, and had a weekly market by grant of Edward III., under the Archbishops of Canterbury, who had a moated seat at Headstone. The land is partly in common, with pasture. The impropriation belongs to the Dean and Canons of Christ Church, Oxford. The living is a perpetual curacy* with the curacy of All Saints annexed, in the diocese of London, value £100, in the patronage of the Vicar of Harrow. The church, dedicated to St. John the Baptist, is a flint structure, erected in 1321. It contains an octangular font, and tombs of lawyers Clitherow and Shower of Pinner Hill. The parochial charities produce about £41 per annum. Miss Howard's college for widows of navy and army officers and clergymen is situated in the village, and is of recent erection. Here is also the commercial travellers' school, founded in 1846, and opened by his late Royal Highness the Prince Consort in 1855. It is entirely supported by voluntary contributions. Pinner Place was formerly the seat of J. Z. Holwell, Governor of Bengal, who died here in 1798, having been one of the survivors confined in the Black Hole of Calcutta.

from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868


Archives & Libraries




Business & Commerce Records

Chalk Mining

Chalk occurs close to the surface in parts of Pinner. It was extracted 'open cast' at first and later by sinkng mines. Extraction is recorded from 1647, with the open cast area forming what is now called 'The Dell'. Charles Blackwell, a brickmaker from Harrow Weald, had shaft mines sunk in the area at Pinner Green known as 'The Dingles from 1840 to about 1870. Work in the mines was seasonal, so the men who worked there appear on census returns and parish records as plain labourers or agricultural labourers. Some pictures of the mine are available on an archived page of the Open University Geological Society (London Branch). For details of the mines see Kirkman, Ken, Pinner chalk mines, (1992, Pinner Local History Society).



The Pinner churchyard was the sole place of burial until the 19th century. The following table shows the opening and closure date of known cemeteries within the parish.

CemeteryOpenedClosedRegisters and their locationNotes/Memorial Inscription transcripts
St John the Baptist, Pinnerancient1861LMA 
Paines Lane Cemetery, Pinner18601924Harrow Cemetery Office; copy at Harrow Local History Collection, also Day Book 1860-1919 and detailed plansMIs transcribed by Pinner LHS and/or Central Middlesex FHS (now LWMFHS) before 1990 and available on fiche.
Harrow Cemetery, Pinner Road, Harrow1888still in useHarrow Cemetery Office*municipal cemetery
Pinner New Cemetery, Pinner Road, Pinner1933still in useHarrow Cemetery Office*municipal cemetery

Harrow Cemetery Office, Harrow Weald Cemetery, Clamp Hill, Stanmore, Middlesex, HA7 3JS. * indicates registers not searchable by the public.



For all censuses of general use to the family historian, Pinner Parish, and the later subdivisions of it, fell within the Hendon Registration District and Harrow Sub-district.

Apart from the several censuses with national indexes available online and on CD, there is an index to the 1851 census available on microfiche. Pinner Local History Society have indexed the 1841-1881 censuses and the Harrow Local History collection holds copies.


Church History

Until 1766 Pinner Church was a chapel of ease to Harrow-on-the-Hill. The subsequent history of Pinner Parish is one of division and sub-division as population has grown and new parishes have been created. The number of churches of all denominations has multiplied greatly since the beginning of the twentieth century, and especially as the ancient parish became largely covered by the expanding suburbs of London. Here we attempt only to summarise the churches and parishes created up to circa 1911. For further details the Victoria County History is a good place to start. Websites for current churches can be found via www.findachurch.co.uk. Anglican Parishes

ParishFormed fromDate formedNotes
St Mary the Virgin, Harrow-on-the-Hill ancient 
St John the Baptist, PinnerHarrow1766registers start in 1754
All Saints, Harrow WealdHarrow and small parts of Pinner and Bushey (Hertfordshire)1844burial register starts in 1838
Holy Trinity, WealdstoneHarrow, Harrow Weald and Pinner1881 
St Anselm, Hatch EndPinner and a small part of Harrow Weald1895 
St George, HeadstoneHatch End, with small parts of Pinner and Greenhill1911 

Church Records

Prior to 1766 Pinner inhabitants may well have been recorded at Harrow. The table below lists the pre-1911 parishes and what is known of the coverage of their deposited registers. Some, but not all are indexed with images on Ancestry. Phillimore published the marriages 1654-1837, and these are aavailable at the Middlesex marriages website. Boyd's marriage index and the West Middlesex Marriage Index also cover the same period. Pallots Marriage Index covers 1790-1837.

All deposited original records are at LMA, and the appropriate call numbers can be found on the London Metropolitan Archives catalogue.

St Mary the Virgin, Harrow-on-the-HillJul 1562-Jul 19051754-Mar 1967Jan 1559-Jul 1918Nov 1558-Nov 1884
St John the Baptist, Pinner1654-19851654-1812, 1950-19991754-May 19791654-Dec 1861
All Saints, Harrow WealdDec 1838-May 1937Oct 1845-Apr 1901, Jan 1956-May 1959, Jun 1974-Jul 1972Dec 1845-Dec 1977Dec 1845-Sep 1972
Holy Trinity, Wealdstoneappear not to be deposited at LMA
St Anselm, Hatch Endappear not to be deposited at LMA
St George, Headstoneappear not to be deposited at LMA

Description & Travel

Description(s) from The National Gazetteer (1868)]

"PINNER, a parish and post town in the hundred of Gore, county Middlesex, 2¾ miles N.W. of Harrow, and 12½ from London. It is a station on the London and Birmingham railway. The village is situated near a feeder of the Colne river, and on the high road to Buckinghamshire. " (There is more of this description).

Description(s) from "The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland" (1868), transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003; intended for personal use only, so please respect the conditions of use.

You can see pictures of Pinner which are provided by:





Some general histories are:

  • The Victoria County History of Middlesex volume 4 covers Pinner and is available on-line.
  • Clarke, Patricia, A history of Pinner (2004, Phillimore, Chichester).
  • Druett, W W, Pinner through the ages, (1st edn. 1937, 3rd edn. 1965 Kings and Hutchings, Uxbridge, reprinted 1980, Ringstead Press).
  • Ware, Edwin M. Pinner in the vale, (1955-6, 2 vols.).


Pinner fell within the Manor of Harrow Alias Sudbury. The Lord of the Manor was the Archbishop of Canterbury until the dissolution of the monasteries, when in 1544-45 the manors passed to the crown. In the post-medieval period, there were various lords, but mostly the Lords North and later the Lords Northwick. The records of the manor are deposited at the London Metropolitan Archive, though a few medieval records are also to be found at the Lambeth Palace Library. At LMA the records span the dates 1315-1913. There are surname indexes to some of the records compiled by manorial officials in the early 19th century. Details of the holdings can be found on Access to Archives (A2A) and the Manorial Documents Register (MDR). There are also significant manuscript transcripts of the manorial court rolls in the Percy Davenport Collection within the Harrow Local History Collection. A selection of the manorial records have been published in Forde, Helen, Harrow Manor Records: The Manor of Harrow 1639-1670: a miscellany (1975, Pinner and Hatch End Local Historical and Archaeological Society, vol.4).



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference TQ115894 (Lat/Lon: 51.592426, -0.391804), Pinner which are provided by:



Prior to the twentieth century the major local newspapers were the Harrow Gazette and the Harrow Observer, which merged early in the 20th century. Good runs of both are to be found at the British Library Newspaper section at Colindale. The Harrow Local History collection also holds microfilm copies, as do the Brent Archives. There were also more local versions in the Pinner Gazette and Pinner Observer.



The Royal Commercial Travellers School was founded in 1845 at Wanstead in Essex, it moved to a site next to the London and Northwestern Railway at Hatch End in 1855 and remained there until it closed in 1967. In 1855 the new buildings had a capacity of 140 scholars, and were extended several times over the subsequent years. Children came from all over the country to the school. The buildings are now the Harrow Arts Centre. The Old Mercurians (past pupils) have a website with some history and memorabilia. The school's records from its whole existence are at LMA.


Social Life & Customs

Pinner Fair has occurred annually for 650 years, traditionally on the Feast of St John the Baptist (24 June). PLHS have published a book about it.