A large council estate and its vicinity in north-west
Harlesden. The name derives from the Stone Bridge of 1745 that carried the Harrow Road over the River Brent. Until very late
in the nineteenth century this was the site of Stonebridge Farm and of Willesden’s first sewage works, but it was then
rapidly built over, although some earlier large houses survived. After the First World War the massive Stonebridge estate
was built as part of Willesden’s response to Lloyd George’s call for ‘homes for heroes’. Many of these
properties were replaced during the 1970s and 80s by council tower blocks. Some of these have in turn been replaced recently
with less austere terraced housing as part of a multi-million pound effort to improve the quality of life here. A number of
refugee families have been placed on the estate, many from sub-Saharan Africa. Stonebridge has the second highest proportion
of black residents of any ward in London, after Peckham.
Stonebridge provided the setting for the Channel 4-backed
film Babymother (1998), a largely affirmative black musical by Julian Henriques with a cast of local people.