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St John the Baptist Aldenham.jpg
St John the Baptist, Aldenham
Grid reference: TQ138981
Location: 51°40’20"N, 0°21’17"W
Population: 373
Post town: Watford
Postcode: WD25
Dialling code: 01923
Local Government
Council: Hertsmere

Aldenham is a village in Hertfordshire some three miles northeast of Watford and two miles from Radlett. It was mentioned in the Domesday Book and is all a conservation area. This secluded little village remains unspoilt and this has attracted those seeking a peaceful and pleasant home; it is indeed a prosperous village.

Aldenham Country Park lies nearby, outside the village to the east all around a reservoir in the woods.


The Church of St John the Baptist in Aldenham is seven hundred years old and there is good reason to believe that an earlier Saxon church stood on the site.

After the Reformation the lands were sold off to the highest bidders and Aldenham is probably smaller today than it was 500 years ago.

In 1940, a German air attack damaged stained glass and removed the "Hertfordshire Spike" – the spire on the top of the tower. Restoration work was completed in 1951.

Both the church and the village have been used in many films, advertisements and television programmes, being within easy travelling distance of Elstree Studios. These have included all sorts, from the film Confessions of a Window Cleaner, the BBC television series Pathfinders, to the Coldplay music video for "Life in Technicolor II", to name but a few.

Although it gave its name to the Aldenham Bus Works owned by London Transport, Aldenham Works was actually located at nearby Elstree.

Sights of the village

Close to the church stand a number of buildings of historical interest. The earliest of these is Aldenham Social Club – a late mediæval hall house dating from around 1500. To the west of the churchyard stands Church Farm House (16th – 18th century) and to the east the old vicarage (now two dwellings), a fine example of early 18th century red brick architecture.

East of Aldenham village is Round Bush, a hamlet where three roads meet at a public house. On Hilfield Lane, Patchetts Green is a hamlet of several historic houses, including the Three Compasses public house, Little Patchetts Green Farm and Patchetts Farm.

The parish of Aldenham also has two British public schools: Aldenham School and the Haberdashers' Aske's Boys School (and associated Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls).

Wall Hall

Also situated in Aldenham is Wall Hall, a magnificent Gothic revival mansion with a castellated façade created in the early nineteenth century for George Woodford Thelluson, a prosperous City banker mentioned in Charles Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities.[1] The landscaped grounds reached their prime under John Pierpont Morgan Jnr, an American banker who bought the hall in 1910, where he regularly entertained the Royal Family, including the young Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, later the Queen Mother.

During World War Two, Wall Hall became the residence of the US Ambassador Joseph Kennedy, and was subsequently used as a hospital for recovering soldiers. Later on was used for educational purposes, eventually becoming an annex to the University of Hertfordshire, formerly Hatfield Polytechnic. In 2003, the college site closed down, as it moved to a more centralised campus in Hatfield.

Between 2003 and 2006 Wall Hall was turned into a housing development.

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Aldenham)


  1. Wall Hall, Aldenham, Images of England, English Heritage National Monuments Record.