Bell Bar's WWII Tett turret and tank traps

Was this defending the Brookmans Park Transmitting Station?


The Bell Bar Tett turret, North Mymms, Hertfordshire Photograph by the North Mymms History Project Released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
The Bell Bar Tett turret, North Mymms, Hertfordshire
Photograph by the North Mymms History Project
Released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

Close to a public footpath to the east of Woodside Lane and to the north of the A1000 Great North Road lies a heap of concrete and metal. It appears to be the remains of a Tett turret, part of the WWII defences. Almost directly to the west, at the side of Woodside Lane, are seven tank traps, part of the same wartime anti-invasion precautions. Clearly, Bell Bar was a strategic spot during the war.

Foundling Hospital wet nurses of North Mymms

Scan of The Foundling Hospital, Holborn, London: a bird's-eye view of the courtyard. Coloured engraving by T. Bowles after L. P. Boitard, 1753. Image from Wikimedia Commons

The Foundling Hospital, Holborn, London: a bird's-eye view of the courtyard
Coloured engraving by T. Bowles after L. P. Boitard, 1753
Image from Wellcome Images via Wikimedia Commons

In the mid 1700s a register was kept of local nursing mothers who were prepared to feed and nourish unwanted babies from the Foundling Hospital in London. In North Mymms, South Mimms, London Colney, St Albans, and Hatfield, there were a total of 80 women named. Seven lived in North Mymms and six in South Mimms, with five in Colney Heath.

The East India Company and North Mymms

Photograph of drawing of East India House in Leadenhall Street, London as drawn by Thomas Hosmer Shepherd, c.1817 [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
East India House in Leadenhall Street, London as drawn by Thomas Hosmer Shepherd, c.1817
[Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

This article, which looks at the influence of the East India Company (EIC) on North Mymms, was written by local historian Peter Kingsford and appeared in Volume 34, Spring 1993 edition of 'Hertfordshire’s Past', published jointly by the Hertfordshire Archaeological Council and the Hertfordshire Association for Local History.

The East India Company's impact on North Mymms 1757-1857

Growing up in a Company town


image of the cover of the book The East India Company At Home 1757-1857


Former local resident, historian, academic, and author, Chris Jeppesen, who grew up in Brookmans Park, traces the area's links to the East India Company's wealth, amassed from the exploits of the British Empire, and slavery.
 

North Mymms delivery and collection services over the years

Photograph of Stan, the Express Dairies roundsman in Skimpans Close October 1968 Image from Ron Kingdon, part of the Images of North Mymms collection
Stan, the Express Dairies roundsman in Skimpans Close October 1968
Image from Ron Kingdon, part of the Images of North Mymms collection

The following slideshow is made up of photographs from the Images of North Mymms collection recording the history of the area. This selection depicts the various delivery and collection services from 1900 onwards. Click on the square button below the slideshow to view full screen (recommended). Below the slideshow is a newspaper article (courtesy of local historian Mike Allen) about local milkman John Swain being voted Milkman Of The Year 1986.

The Brookmans Park water metering trial 1989-1992

Photograph of a Brookmans Park EWI - External Wall Interface - unit. Image by the North Mymms History Project released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0
A EWI (External Wall Interface) unit on the outside of a Brookmans Park house
Image by the North Mymms History Project released under Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 4.0

In April 1989, Brookmans Park was selected to be one of several areas nationwide to trial domestic water metering. More than 1,000 local properties were chosen, joining 60,000 households around the country where water meters were also installed. The trial was to last three years.

The history and evolution of Gobions from 1718 onwards

Scan of a coloured etching of Gobions Canal Image from the former Gobions Woodland Trust
A coloured etching of Gobions Canal
Image from the former Gobions Woodland Trust

In 2000, the former Gobions Woodland Trust (GWT) commissioned a study to "help inform the development of a restoration and management plan for Gobions Wood, North Mymms, Hertfordshire". The resulting Heritage Report was prepared by Landscape Design Associates from Peterborough, and published in March 2002.

Savings clubs for the North Mymms poor

Photograph of a family in Welham Green in Victorian times. Image from A Nott / G Knott, from the Images of North Mymms collection
A Welham Green couple in Victorian times, likely subscribers to the clubs
Image from A Nott / G Knott, from the Images of North Mymms collection

In the 1880s North Mymms had a number of savings clubs, set up by the parish in order to help the poor.  The clubs were funded by regular weekly or monthly payments by both the rich and poor in the parish, and were managed by the church. It's estimated that the club which provided clothing for the poor was used by 75% of people living in the parish.

Apprenticeship under the parish charities

Scan of reference for Thomas Nott 1916. From A Nott, part of The Peter Miller Collection
Reference for Thomas Nott 1916
From A Nott, part of The Peter Miller Collection
Imagine if your first job depended on you making a promise that, for seven-years, you wouldn't go to the pub, wouldn't play cards or dice, and would stay celibate. Tough rules back in 1818.

Gleanings of North Mymms

Scan of the cover of the St Mary's Church parish magazine for May 1883. Image from The Peter Miller Collection
The cover of the St Mary's Church parish magazine for May 1883
Image from The Peter Miller Collection

Historian and researcher, Merle G. Rafferty wrote this article, 'Gleanings of North Mymms' after reading through old parish magazines from St Mary's Church. What the author uncovered was described as a "jigsaw of past events in the village", which was put together for a feature published in the Hertfordshire Countryside magazine in August 1972.