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Photos surface showing Harrow in the 1980s and 1990s

We’re taking a look back at Harrow in the 1980s and 1990s with a few images from our library today. The photos, obtained exclusively by Harrow Online, formed a post card selection taken by local photographer Tony Cowham.

In these snapshots taken around 1984, we transport ourselves back to a Harrow of yesteryears, a mere two years before the inception of St Anns Shopping Centre. Notably absent in this photograph is the bustling shopping complex we know today, as construction had yet even to commence.

Photos surface showing Harrow in the 1980s and 1990s Harrow Online
Harrow Town Centre, 1980s. Image: Tony Cowham

Front and center in the image stands the beloved Adams Furniture Store, part of College Road’s history, some of our older readers will definitely remember this store. It served as a destination where locals could peruse elegant furniture, occupying the very ground on which St Ann’s would soon be constructed.


Again in the 1980s, we find ourselves at the historic Harrow on the Hill, largely unchanged in its appearance. Although the exact year of this photograph remains elusive, it offers a captivating look at a time when the charm of the past harmonised with the trends of the present.

Prominently featured in the image is the former King’s Head public house, a place with a storied past. This public house and hotel, believed to have been constructed in the late 18th century on the grounds of King Henry VIII’s hunting lodge, stood as a testament to Harrow’s historical significance. Sadly, its existence as a pub and hotel came to an end around 2001 when it was converted into flats.

Photos surface showing Harrow in the 1980s and 1990s Harrow Online
Harrow on the Hill, 1980s. Image: Tony Cowham

In the foreground, a 1982 Volkswagen Golf and an old fine arts shop stand as relics of a time when Harrow on the Hill was a tapestry of eclectic establishments.

Moving on to the next image, we move to back to the late 1990s, around 1997 to be precise, we find ourselves walking towards Harrow’s St George’s Shopping Centre on St Anns Road. There’s an interesting detail in this photograph – the conspicuous absence of Taz, one of the three iconic characters that sat at the top of the centre.

Photos surface showing Harrow in the 1980s and 1990s Harrow Online
Harrow, 1997. Image: Tony Cowham

St George’s Shopping Centre had opened its doors in 1996, and Taz’s removal remains a puzzle, we thought he looked pretty cool up there!.

During the 1990s, St George’s Shopping Centre was unquestionably the place to be in Harrow, as we’ve explored in previous articles. The image encapsulates the 90s shopping scene in Harrow Town Centre, complete with familiar stores of the era, such as Dorothy Perkins and Mothercare, which have since bid farewell to Harrow’s streets. The snapshot provides a glimpse of Virgin Megastore, which quickly became the destination for music enthusiasts (nod to Jammin With Edward too!), situated just left of the entrance to St George’s Shopping Centre.

In the next image we explore the interiors of Harrow’s St Anns Shopping Centre. This photograph, taken around 1995, offers a window into a Harrow that’s both familiar and tinged with nostalgia. While the shopping centre’s layout remains relatively consistent to this day, the shops that once lined its corridors have evolved, making this image more interesting.

Photos surface showing Harrow in the 1980s and 1990s Harrow Online
St Anns Shopping Centre in the 1990s. Image: Tony Cowham.

To the immediate right of the image, we find Clarks, a presence in St Ann’s Shopping Centre that has weathered the test of time and continues to serve Harrow’s residents to this very day. A bit further down, you can see Dixons, situated on the right-hand side. Although partially obscured in the photo, Dixons was a go-to destination for all things electronics and gadgets back in the 1990s.

Do you have any old photos of Harrow? we’d love to see them! Get in touch with Harrow Online now, drop us an email to info@harrowonline.org

Photos surface showing Harrow in the 1980s and 1990s Harrow Online


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