The area of Fallow Corner was recorded in 1429. By the 18th century there was a small hamlet of houses next to Cobley Farm. The access roads from the corner to the main road formed the distinct bow shape of Bow Road we see today. The clown Joseph Grimaldi lived here (1806-1827) and it was while ghostwriting Grimaldi's memoirs (1836 and 1837) that Charles Dickens probably first stayed at the farm. Later, in 1843, Dickens returned while writing Martin Chuzzlewit. He thought of 'Sairey' Gamp (one of the great Victorian fictional characters) while out walking in Finchley.
Etchingham Park Estate, built between 1878 and 1920, gradually developed over Cobley Farm, which had finished as a farm in 1905. Finchley Cottage Hospital opened with 18 beds in 1908. After the First World War, Finchley council decided not to erect a war memorial and instead used the money raised to extend and rename the hospital as Finchley Memorial Hospital in 1922.
Finchley County School was opened in 1903, and the building was demolished in 2004.