The county town of Hertford is located in a valley where three rivers meet and has been the focal point of the county of Hertfordshire for many centuries. It is now a commuter town, with most residents working in the London area.
Salisbury Arms Hotel © TAB
The town centre contains a mix of old and new buildings, one of the most interesting being the Quaker Meeting House on Railway Street, which is the oldest purpose built Quaker Meeting House in the world. Hertford's oldest hotel, 'The Salisbury Arms Hotel', on Fore St, has very attractive pargetting (patterned moulded plaster work) on its exterior walls, with a very fine plaster vine frieze along the jetting. The River Lea runs through the town, providing an attractive waterfront and a pleasant area to walk or sit and enjoy the passing river cruisers and narrow boats.
A statue of Hertford's famous son, Samuel Stone, a 17th century Puritan Minister who helped establish the American town of Hartford in Connecticut, stands in dominant preaching pose, overlooking the river near Mill Bridge.
Tourist Information Centre:
|10 Market Place, Hertford, SG14 1DF, Tel: 01992 584322|
The Normans built the stone keep beside the River Lea on a site first fortified by Prince Edward (King Alfred's son) to protect Saxon London from the Danes. Elizabeth I spent many happy days there as a child and later moved Parliament to the castle during the Great Plague of London. Today its fortified walls house the local Town Council. A large section of the castellated outer wall is still standing and can be viewed from within the surrounding grounds and gardens, which are open to the public.
Small town museum is located in a charming 17th-century town house (circa 1610) in Bull Plain, near the town centre. The museum collection includes local archaeology, geology, costumes, toys, and military exhibits. Examples of the local Hertfordshire puddingstone are also on display. The museum also provides activities for children and local schools. The small courtyard at the rear is planted in the format of a Jacobean Knot Garden.
A conservation area on an island of the River Lea. A popular point of interest is the Old Barge Inn, a local free house built in the 1880's. Next to which is a row of workmen's cottages facing the main river. This is a pleasant area to walk around and enjoy the riverside.
A trail which follows a five mile route through the towns and countryside of Hertford, Ware and Great Amwell, in Hertfordshire. Along the way you will find 31 contemporary miniature bronze statues made by seven and eight year old children from schools in the area. For details pick up a leaflet from the local tourist information centre.
Ashridge Estate | Berkhamsted Castle | de Havilland | Gorhambury | Knebworth House | Hatfield House | Letchworth Museum | St Albans Museum | Verulamium | Shaw's Corner | Scott's Grotto | St Albans Cathedral | Tring National History Museum | Verulamium Museum