Visit Hemel Hempstead and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Hemel Hempstead, a new town in Hertfordshire, has a population of more than 80,000. Its history goes back to the 8th century when it was called "Henamsted" or "Hean-Hempsted" i.e. High Hempstead in 705 in the reign of Offa, the King of Essex. It is recorded in the Domesday Book as "Hamelamesede".
After the Norman conquest the land thereabouts passed through several hands including: Robert, the elder half brother of William the Conqueror; Thomas á Becket; King John's grandson, the Earl of Cornwal; the monastery at Ashridge until the Reformation and break-up of Ashridge in 1539. In that same year the town was granted a charter by King Henry VIII with the right to hold a Thursday market and a fair. The King and Anne Boleyn stayed in the town at this time.
Hemel Hempstead was an agricultural market town until the late nineteenth century when houses for London commuters began to be built. In 1946 the government designated Hemel Hempstead as a new town to assist in housing the population of London displaced by World War II. The original part of Hemel is still known as the "Old Town".
The M1 motorway opened to the east in 1959, and a new road connecting it to the town was opened. Hemel is divided into residential neighbourhoods, each with its own "village centre" with shops, pubs and services.
Neighbourhoods of Hemel Hempstead: Woodhall Farm, Highfield, High Street Green, Chaulden, Leverstock Green, Grovehill, North End Farm, Bennetts End, Nash Mills, Gadebridge, Apsley, Warner's End, Adeyfield, Felden, Boxmoor
Significant employers include:
- ASOS.com, Online fashion retailer
- BP Oil, petroleum
- Gist Food distribution for Marks And Spencer
- 3Com, Telecommunications equipment
- British Telecom, telecommunications
- ACT (formerly Apricot Computers)
- BSI (British Standards Institution) materials testing
- Steria, computers
- DSG International plc, electrical retailer (global headquarters)
- Dixons, electrical retailer (national headquarters)
- Aquascutum, Clothing manufacturer
- DuPont, petrochemicals
- Epson, computers
- Fujifilm UK HQ electronics and photography
- Hewitt Associates, Human resources out-sourcing organisation
- HSBC Bank, call centre
- Kodak, photography
- NEXT, clothing (distribution centre)
- Northgate Information Solutions, specialist software for human resources
- Sappi group, paper, at Nash Mills. Has announced the mill will close in 2006
- Unisys, computers
- Waverly TBS, wine and spirits wholesale subsidiary of Scottish & Newcastle
- Xerox Office Supplies, Document supplies, paper development
- Kent's Brushes - has manufactured high quality hair and paint brushes at Apsley since 1901.
On 11 December 2005 the Hertfordshire Oil Storage Terminal, known locally as the Buncefield complex, was destroyed by a huge explosion.
At peak times, the Heathrow airport holding area in the sky known as the Bovingdon stack, can be seen to be filled with circling aircraft.
Notable people, past and present
- Nicholas Breakspear (English Pope of Church of Rome)
- Vinnie Jones (footballer and actor)
- Charles Longman (heir to the publisher Longmans)
- Roger Moore (actor)
- Sir Francis Bacon (lord of the manor)
- Bill Morris (trade union leader)
- Paul Boateng, Britain's (Cabinet minister)
- Robert Snooks (Englands last highwayman)
Nearby towns: Amersham, Aylesbury, Berkhamsted, Chesham, Dunstable, Harpenden, Luton, St Albans, Tring, Watford.
Nearby villages: Abbots Langley, Bovingdon, Chipperfield, Little Gaddesden, Kings Langley.
Have you decided to visit Hemel Hempstead or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Hemel Hempstead bed and breakfast (a Hemel Hempstead B&B or Hemel Hempstead b and b)
- a Hemel Hempstead guesthouse
- a Hemel Hempstead hotel (or motel)
- a Hemel Hempstead self-catering establishment, or
- other Hemel Hempstead accommodation