Wheathampstead Things to Do

  • Things to Do
    by Willettsworld
  • Things to Do
    by Willettsworld
  • Things to Do
    by Willettsworld

Most Recent Things to Do in Wheathampstead

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    Former Two Brewers Inn

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009

    At the turn of the century this building, which, until recently, a house and tea room, was the "Two Brewers" inn. It was built in an L-shape during the 17th century, though part of the tea room is earlier; it had a cross wing and predates the house on the left.

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    Place Farm

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009

    This timber framed farmhouse is also known as Wheathampstead Place. It is a late medieval hall house, formerly with cross-wings at both ends. The left-hand wing has been demolished and the right-hand wing was heightened in the 16th century when new fire-places were put on both floors. In the mid 17th century a red-brick wing was added at the south-east when the entrance was moved to the south. Later in the 17th century the outside of the house was covered in plaster to imitate ashlar stone blocks.

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    The Old Mill

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009
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    The former Corn mill harnessed the power of the River Lea to grind wheat for flour. The beginning of the mill race can be seen from the foot bridge on the left. There has been a mill here for many years, and this is probably the site of one of the four mills mentioned in the Doomsday Survey. It was the property of Westminster Abbey and the miller had to send "sweet wheat" to the Abbey four times a year. The mill we see today is a 16/17th century timber framed building, which was cased in mauve brick in 1890-5. There are tall hoist doors (for lifting sacks) on the first floor at the front of the building.

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    The Old Bakery

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009

    The core of this building is 16th century or earlier, with 17/18th century additions. It is now cased in painted brick and plaster. The rear of the building with its steeply pitched roof was formerly an open medieval hall house and is probably the oldest part. A cross-wing was added in the 1500's to give more living space and the three gabled front sections in the 17th century. It's now a carpet shop.

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    The Bull Pub

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009
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    This pub pretty much dominates the bottom end of the High Street beside the River Lea that flows through the village. It dates back to around the 16th century. The northern end of the long fa├žade, curving away from the road above the River Lea, is late 17/18th century, and was originally two separate riverside cottages. By 1617 it had become the Bull Inn, with 119 acres of land. It was a favourite local fishing resort, and Izaak Walton is said to have been a guest here. In the 18th century it served also as a post office. The pub is now a Beefeater restaurant.

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    White Cottage

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009

    Inside this cottage are the remains of a late medieval hall house open to the roof, with a crown post and beam dating from about 1490. There are traces of smoke blackening on some of the timbers, as there would have been no chimney and smoke had to escape through a hole in the roof. The front of the house was rebuilt around 1630, when it was owned, together with the Bell and Crown, by Francis Sibley.

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    Rosewood Cottage

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009

    Rosewood Cottage built in about 1500 was originally a timber framed hall house, with a central room which extended from the floor to the roof. The steeply pitched roof is typical of medieval buildings. The chimney was added in about 1600; before this the smoke would have escaped through a hole in the roof. During the 18th century the building was brought up to date by the addition of a brick front.

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    Old school

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009
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    Many villages still retain their old schools and Wheathampstead's is very close to the church on Church Street. It was built in 1869 of flint and brick, in the Decorated Gothic style so popular with the Victorians.

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    St Helen's Church

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009
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    This church stands on the site of an earlier Saxon wooden church that pre-dated the Norman conquest in 1066. The present church dates from 1220-1230 and is based on an unusual cross-shaped plan with a central tower that was added in 1290. The church is beautiful inside with over 50 memorials including one very ornate one and a lovely tomb.

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    Devil's Dyke

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009
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    Devil's Dyke is the remains of a defensive ditch around an ancient settlement of the Catuvellauni tribe which dates to around 75-50 BC. The area was excavated by Sir Mortimer Wheeler in 1932, and according to a plaque at one entrance to the dyke, presented by Lord Brocket in 1937 on the occasion of the coronation of King George VI.

    The site is said to be where Julius Caesar defeated Cassivellaunus of the Catuvellauni tribe in 54 BC. Although the historical evidence neither supports nor disproves this, the sign at the entrance to the Dyke states this (based on the assertions of Sir Mortimer), which has led to the claim often being repeated as an established fact. Finds have been found here which can be seen in the Verulamium Museum in St Albans. It can feel quite eerie here plus you can spot a lot of wildlife such as grey squirrels and birds. Also bring some good shoes as it can be muddy.

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    Manor Pharmacy

    by Willettsworld Written May 4, 2009

    This chemist's shop used to be the Corn mill House. It is late 19th century. Behind is the old mill building itself.

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