What to See in England
By Gordon Home
Public Domain Books
=How to get there.=–Train from Euston. L. and N.W. Railway. =Nearest Station.=–Harrow. =Distance from London.=–11-1/2 miles. =Average Time.=–1/2 hour.
1st 2nd 3rd =Fares.=–Single 1s. 6d. 1s. 0d. 0s. 9d. Return 2s. 3d. 1s. 6d. 1s. 0d.
=Accommodation Obtainable.=–"King’s Head,” etc. =Alternative Routes.=–Train from Baker Street, Metropolitan Railway. Train from Broad Street, L. and N.W. Railway. Train from Marylebone, Great Central Railway.
Harrow, from its high position, 200 feet above the sea, was selected by the Romans as an important military station. By the Saxons it was called Hereways, and was purchased in 822 by Wilfred, Archbishop of Canterbury. The ancient manor-house, of which no traces now remain, was formerly the residence of the Archbishops of Canterbury, and it was here that Thomas à Becket resided during his banishment from Court. Cardinal Wolsey, who was once Rector of Harrow, resided at Pinner, and is said to have entertained Henry VIII. during his visit to Harrow. The manor was exchanged by Archbishop Cranmer with the king for other lands, and was subsequently given to Sir Edmund Dudley, afterwards Lord North.
At the bottom of the hill, and spreading rapidly in all directions, are quantities of modern houses and villas, but the point of greatest interest in Harrow is the celebrated school, wonderfully situated on the very summit of the hill, with views extending over thirteen counties. Founded in the reign of Queen Elizabeth by John Lyon, a yeoman of the parish, the school has now grown enormously, the oldest portion being that near the church, which was erected three years after the founder’s death. In the wainscotting of the famous schoolroom are the carvings cut by many generations of Harrovians, among them being the names of Peel, Byron, Sheridan, the Marquess of Hastings, Lord Normanby, and many others.
The church stands on the extreme summit of the hill, and from the churchyard the view is simply magnificent. In the building are some interesting tombs and brasses, and a monument to John Lyon, the founder of the school.
The grave shown on the opposite page is known as “Byron’s tomb,” on account of his fondness for the particular spot it occupied in the churchyard, from whence the fascinating view just mentioned can be seen, from the shade of the trees growing on either side.
[Illustration: Photochrom Co., Ltd. “BYRON’S TOMB” IN HARROW CHURCHYARD.]