Crane Park island Nature Reserve was once part of the old Hounslow Gunpowder Mills. The mills operated on the site between 1766 and 1926. The large mounds that can still be seen throughout Crane Park were built by the mills to help absorb the impact of the explosions. The area that is now Crane Park Island Nature Reserve once contained a large millpond, used to drive mill machinery.
Crane Park island Project offers schools, colleges and other educational establishments the opportunity to carry out valuable field studies in a safe and welcoming environment. Students of all ages can benefit from a visit to the reserve. Work is currently in progress to turn the imposing old Shot Tower, a grade 2 listed building which stands at the entrance to the island, into a nature and visitor centre.