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History of Slough

  • council: Slough
  • population: 119,070
  • phone code: 01753
  • postcode area: SL1-SL3
  • county: Berkshire

Slough is situated in a prime location on the edge of Berkshire and the borders of central London. With easy access to major road, rail and air routes, Slough has a population of 110,000.

Described as a dazzling mix of cultures, Slough without doubt is an economic success story for the South-East and provides world class global communication links, a highly skilled flexible and stable workforce, first class industrial, commercial and technology based developments, all matched by quality business and community partnerships, public, private and voluntary sector organisations.

London is just 20 minutes by rail and 30 minutes by road. Heathrow Airport is literally 10 minutes, with Slough a proven location for business with the country’s motorway infrastructural junction just minutes away (M25, M40, M4, M3, M1).

Slough’s Trading Estate, founded in 1920, was the UK’s first business park. Today as one of the largest in Europe, the Trading Estate covers 700,000 hectares and has over 450 companies now resident. Shops, banks and leisure outlets make Slough Trading Estate a pleasant environment for workers and visitors.

Langley Business Park and Langley Business Centre are other thriving business estates in Slough, with other companies, industries and enterprises found throughout the Borough. Slough is home to companies such as Centrica plc, Yell, ICL, Electrolux, GlaxoSmithKline, Mars Confectionery, ICI Paints, and Sara Lee. It is also home to important small, medium and large businesses.

The town centre occupies an important place in the Slough story, with three shopping centres, pedestrianised High Street, and events areas. Allders, Marks & Spencer, Boots, and a whole host of shopping names lead the way in providing everything for the would-be shopper. Excellent bus and rail services together with ample parking, make Slough an excellent shopping venue - 7 days a week. The town centre is on the verge of tremendous development with the culmination being the “Heart of Slough” project. The changing face of the town centre is the blueprint for a changing face for the Borough.

Slough has a place in history before 1920s, with it’s close proximity to Windsor. Indeed the town has received much Royal patronage, and many notable squires have enjoyed residence in or close to Slough. None more so famous as Sir William Herschel, who moved to Slough in 1786. Sir William was a famous astronomer who had discovered the Planet for the first time using a telescope. It is telescopes that he is most noted for in Slough, with the present ICL building in Windsor Road being the original site for Sir William’s 40 foot reflecting telescope (the position now marked by a special monument). Indeed the Herschel family remained residents in Slough well into the twentieth century, with Observatory House finally being demolished in 1960. The town’s museum tells the story of the Herschel family together with other notable events and people of past Slough.

Slough as a town grew from the initial Roman road, still called Bath Road. Designated as the A4, the road remains roughly in the same line as first laid out, with only change being the short bypass around the town centre. The east-west orientation made urban development easier to the north and south axis with Stoke Road and Windsor Road marking the applicable north-south crossroads with the A4. As urban development arrived (particularly as a result of the Great Western Railway which runs through the town centre), Slough became a vibrant and economically viable area to move to. With the added benefits of a diverse cultural community, Slough has become a place of pride and passion among its community. Celebrations, events and spectacles, play a vital role in today’s Slough, with communities working together to achieve the best. Slough is an tremendous example of a town and Borough heading in the right direction on all business and community fronts.

There is no doubt that today’s Slough marks a whole bright new future in town urban planning, development and continued community spirit. In summary, Slough offers good employment, good living and good life!

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