Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Hayes in 1901 was a sleepy agricultural village in West Middlesex owned by just a handful of landlords. With a population of 2,594. However, at the turn of the twentieth centaury and in a hanful of years, Hayes was transformed into one of British Empires major centres for the mass production of the "new" technologies of the day, such as gramophones, typewriters, and printing equipment. Its population increasing from just 4,261 in 1911 to 8,394 by 1921.

It was the decision of Hayes Development Company to acquire land adjacent to Great Western Railway (GWR) in 1899 to build modern factories upon that lead to Hayes rapid expansion.

The choice of Hayes for the site of so many new factories was according to the local newspaper, no accident. The Advertiser, February 1907 staes hayes was chsoen for the following reasons: -

a) The short distance from London
b) Accessibility to rail and canal routes
c) Lower council rates
And ironically
d) Because the labour market in London was not controlled by the London Trades Union Council

Ironic, because Hayes would become one of the most trade unionised areas in Britain, exerting considerable influence on the Hayes Labour party, which itself dominated Hayes politics for the next one hundred years.