Cheshunt

Cheshunt

[ches-uhnt]
Cheshunt, town (1991 pop. 49,616), Hertfordshire, SE England. A suburb of London, it is a market-gardening center with some electronics industries. Theobalds Park, an 18th-century mansion, is noteworthy.
For the Australian village of the same name, see Cheshunt, Victoria
Cheshunt (pronounced [ˈtʃɛzənt]) is a town in the Broxbourne district of Hertfordshire in the East of England with a population of around 52,000 according to the UK's 2001 Census It is a dormitory town and part of the Greater London Urban Area and London commuter belt served by Cheshunt railway station.

The town name comes from the Roman name for the area, Cestrehunt. This is commemorated in the arms of the former Cheshunt urban district council. (See below)

Cheshunt is famous in several ways. Richard Cromwell, Lord Protector of the Commonwealth, died here in 1712. The town's Bury Green neighbourhood was once the home of singer Cliff Richard. Lotus Cars as well as the nationally famous Debenhams were also founded in Cheshunt, and the headquarters of Tesco, the UK's largest and most profitable supermarket chain, is also located here. The nearby village of Goffs Oak is the original home of Victoria Beckham of Spice Girls fame. In 2002, Cheshunt hosted the only officially licensed European BotCon convention ever.

Services in Cheshunt include the Brookfield Centre, which includes Next, Boots, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, Argos and Marks & Spencer stores, as well as a large Tesco Extra store. There is a Marriott Hotel nearby, and the town centre includes a wide variety of smaller shops.

Being located in the Lea Valley, Cheshunt has access to the Lee Valley Park.

Up until 2004, Cheshunt was home to the famous Temple Bar, moved from London at the turn of the 19th century, but the gateway was re-installed in London.

Transport

Road

Cheshunt is located on the A10 trunk road (also known locally as the Great Cambridge Road) which provides links to the M25 Junction 25, as well as to Enfield, London and the famous university city of Cambridge.

Rail

Trains from Cheshunt railway station run into Liverpool Street and Stratford, with connections to the London Underground Victoria Line at Tottenham Hale and Seven Sisters. Away from London, Cheshunt trains serve Broxbourne, Hertford East, Stansted Airport and Cambridge.

Other nearby stations include Theobalds Grove and Cuffley. Oakwood and Cockfosters tube stations, on the Piccadilly Line, are located further afield.

Industry

Cheshunt's best known employer is Tesco, whose head office has been in Cheshunt for many years. A small store has been in the town centre for many years and is still open today, and a separate "Home and Ware" store used to be opposite (now closed). In 1983 a new out of town Tesco store located to the north of the town opened, named "Brookfield Farm". It later expanded, and a branch Marks & Spencer built next door, the entire estate renamed "The Brookfield Centre".

Until the late 1960s the main land use around Cheshunt was for its Nursery industry, and many new techniques for growing under glass were developed here. Thomas Rochford had a large concern here, although now almost all the glasshouses have been re-developed into housing estates. This is often reflected in the names of the roads or estates, such as Rosedale or Thomas Rochford way. A small amount of nursery trade survives to the west of the town. The neighbouring town of Goff's Oak still has a large number of nurseries as well as a large garden centre.

The River Lee Navigation passes through Cheshunt and was used for the transport of flowers and crops to the London markets for many years until road transport became more viable. A wharf existed just east of the railway on the site now occupied by Herts Young Mariners Base and the Youth Hostel which was built on the site of the derelict open air swimming pool. Photos of the pool are exhibited at the hostel.

"Cheshunt Compound" a fungicide developed at the Cheshunt Research Station is still manufactured today.

From the end of World War II a large area of the River Lea flood plain was used for sand and gravel extraction which resulted in the creation of the now mature lakes which are popular with anglers, birdwatchers and naturalists. The area now forms part of the 1000 acre River Lee Country Park and the Turnford and Cheshunt Pits (SSSI).

Education

Cheshunt has four secondary schools:

The non-conformist theological college Bishop's College, Cheshunt (1768-1969), moved to Cheshunt in 1792 from Trevecca, Brecknockshire, as Cheshunt College. It moved to Cambridge in 1905.

Music

Cheshunt's best known son is the rock singer Cliff Richard and the town was also home to the band Unit 4 + 2 whose song Concrete and Clay topped the UK charts in 1964. UFO drummer Andy Parker was born in the town in the 1950's. In 2003 the song Compassion Fatigue by History Of Guns contained the line, "Waltham Cross, Cuffley and Cheshunt must be drowned".

There is now a thriving music scene in the town which focuses on the genres of indie and pop-punk. The popular underground band Neils Children who have recently gained attention originally hail from Cheshunt.

Sport

Cheshunt has its own football Club in Cheshunt F.C. who play in the Isthmian League Division One North. Founded in 1946, their most famous player was Iain Dowie who played for them in the 1980's.

Cheshunt also have long established rugby and cricket clubs and an 18-hole golf course.

Town twinning

References

External links


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