Ruislip is an ancient ecclesiastical parish in the historic county of Middlesex. The parish appears in Domesday Book, some of the earliest settlements still exist today, designated as local heritage sites.
The parish church, St Martin's, dates back to the 13th century and remains in use. The buildings at the northern end of Ruislip High Street form the core of the original village square and are now Grade II listed.
The expansion of the Metropolitan Railway in the early 20th century acted as a catalyst for development in the area. A station was opened in Ruislip in 1904 and the parish council created a new urban district to address the forthcoming population growth.
Major landmarks in the area include Ruislip Lido, a former reservoir, now an area of public parkland with its own miniature railway and Manor Farm, a settlement dating from the 9th century which is now designated as a local heritage site. The area also benefits from several parks and open spaces such as Ruislip Woods which is a national nature reserve.
Famous residents have included author Colin Iggulden and actor Andy Serkis and author Leslie Thomas famously wrote his best-selling novel the Tropic of Ruislip based on the area.
Ruislip offers excellent commuter links into London with both the Metropolitan and Piccadilly Line underground services. There is a good mix of schooling for all ages and in both public and private sectors. There is good independent and multiple shopping facilities in Ruislip, Ickenham and West Ruislip.
The village of Ickenham was a settlement dating back to the Roman occupation of Britain and the area appears in the Domesday Book. Buildings from the 14th, 15th and 16th centuries remain standing and have been restored in recent years. The old manorial home of Swakeleys, a 17th-century Jacobean mansion built in 1638, still stands. The village pump is an attractive landmark in the centre of the village and was built in 1866. It faces St Giles church which dates back to 1335 and is next to the Coach and Horses Inn which was first licensed for the sale of alcohol in 1759.
When Ickenham obtained a railway station on the Metropolitan Railway's line between Harrow and Uxbridge, a great deal of residential development started in the village, and it gradually became part of the “Metroland” London commuter belt.
There was a military base at West Ruislip until 2006 that has, subsequently, been developed for a wide range of housing and apartments. West Ruislip has a station on the Central Line that is also part of the National Rail network.