After the Second war Hemel Hempstead was chosen as a replacement Town to answer the UK’s need for extra housing, and what was once a little settlement on the River Gade is now home to 90,000 people. The core of the urban area is often found at Marlowes on the east bank of the Gade, where you’ll find a plaza filled with national chains. If you’d sort of a bit more personality, the Old Town is simply to the north and has timber-framed houses, little passageways, and cultural amenities just like the Old government building theatre. For walks, Hemel Hempstead is on the Grand Union Canal and is simply off the eastern flank of the Chilterns. You can tour a vineyard minutes from the town and pore over the ruins of a once luxurious Tudor mansion where Elizabeth was a guest. Old Town Although Hemel Hempstead ballooned as a replacement Town following the Second War, it received its town charter from Henry VIII in 1539 and features a fine historic center along its main street. With pavements laid with York stone and granite, the main street is traced by two long rows of listed buildings dating back to Tudor times, a number of which are half-timbered. There are traditional pubs, antique shops, upmarket cafes, design shops, galleries, and a really international selection of restaurants. The main street has been described as “the prettiest street in Hertfordshire”, and is you’ll end up returning for the Old government building theatre, Gadebridge Park, and therefore the St Mary’s Church.
Buffet Catering Service Hemel Hempstead Gadebridge Park The largest public space within the surrounding Dacorum Borough, Gadebridge Park hugs the banks of the River Gade to the north of Hemel Hempstead’s Old Town. In 80 acres the park is split by the Leighton Buzzard Road and has all the facilities you’d want like children’s playgrounds, a prim walled garden, cycle, and walking paths, and a skate park. You wouldn’t realize it to face here, but within the very north of the park is that the site of a Roman Villa, inbuilt the first century and first excavated in 1962. The River Gade maybe a picturesque chalk stream that rises at Dagnall within the Chilterns, and is 7wide and shallow, supporting large numbers of pike, roach, perch, bream, and carp. Grand Union Canal The 137-mile Grand Union Canal, linking London with Birmingham, is that the longest single canal within the UK, and is an amalgamation of various, older waterways that each one merged in 1929. The canal cuts through Hemel Hempstead via Apsley, a mill village that grew around what was then called the Grand Trunk Canal after it came through in 1798. the straightforward flow of raw materials allowed Apsley’s paper-making industry to flourish, and this was an enormous employer until the top of the Second war. You can tap into this history at the intact Frogmore factory, which has held onto its huge machinery and stages tours on Thursdays also because of the first Sunday of the month. Make sure to steer a length of the canal, diverting to the Apsley Lock Marina with dozens of moored narrowboats. Old Gorhambury House Bounding Hemel Hempstead to the east is that the Gorhmbury Estate, the residence for the Bacon and therefore the Grimston families. The main attraction here is Old Gorhambury House (1563-68), a ruined Elizabethan Prodigy House built for Sir Nicholas Bacon, the Lord Keeper of the good Seal. Houses like this were a manifestation of power intended to impress Elizabeth, and therefore the queen visited several times. The house had begun to deteriorate by the 18th century, and a replacement mansion was built on the estate. Old Gorhambury home is maintained as an English Heritage site, and therefore the stonework still bears the arms of Elizabeth and a Latin inscription recording the completion date. On the Far East side of the Gorhambury Estate, you’ll also discover the ruins of the Roman Theatre of Verulamium, dating to AD 140. Gorhambury House Robert Taylor, the 18th-century architect who worked on the Bank of England building, was commissioned for the new Gorhambury House at the turn of the 1780s, using material from the old building. The Palladian mansion is Grade II* listed and therefore the double-height hallway and spiral staircase are trademarks of Taylor’s style. When this text was written in 2018 Gorhambury House was closed to the general public for restoration work, but continued to open during the summer for the Gorhambury focused series of talks. If you are doing get the chance to explore the inside there’s much to enjoy, like portraits of the Grimston and Bacon family, 17th-century windows rescued from Old Gorhambury, an early English pile carpet, and objects gathered during a tour like two Piranesi fireplaces.