Pinner is now part of Greater London, but for most of its history it was an agricultural backwater, though one which experienced great changes. Pinner's past has many fascinating aspects. In the Middle Ages it was part of the Archbishop of Canterbury's huge manor of Harrow, and Headstone Manor and Pinner Park Farm preserve relics from this time. By the early nineteenth century Pinner had its own workhouse, toll gate and a stagecoach service to London. The railways brought prosperous Victorian and Edwardian commuters, whose families made Pinner their rural idyll. As others followed, the area was transformed with new stations, shopping centres and residential areas. Famous people associated with Pinner include Mrs Beeton and names associated with the arts and comedy such as William Heath Robinson and Ronnie Barker.
Secret Pinner explores lesser-known episodes in Pinner's history including its first policemen, suffragettes and the family of agricultural labourers who gave their name to Rayners Lane. With tales of remarkable people, unusual events and tucked-away historical buildings, it will appeal to all those with an interest in the history of this London suburb.
Thamar MacIver is member of the Pinner Local History Society. Pinner Local History Society was established in 1972 and is now widely consulted on matters of local history. It has always fostered the research of its members. It has produced twenty books itself, written a further two for a commercial publisher, and compiled a collection of photographs to celebrate the Millennium. Several of its researchers have written books for other local organisations.