Bourne End old and new explored in book

The district of Bourne End in Hertfordshire reminds one of the agricultural past of Dacorum.

Saturday, 23rd August 2014, 9:00 am
Bourne End & Boxmoor Old and New by Joan and Roger Hands

There are still working farms in the area, but many have now been converted into private homes or other types of business.

Bottom Farm, Bourne End Farm, Broadway Farm, Little Heath Farm, Pix Farm, and Pouchen End Farm are still names to be encountered today.

But Box Lane, Haxter’s End, Little Hay and Westbrook Hay Farm are no longer in existence. The latter is now the home of the splendid new Box Moor Trust Centre.

Bourne End & Boxmoor Old and New by Joan and Roger Hands PNL-140818-095843001

Bourne End Farm is one of the oldest houses in the village. It is said to have been built by Flemish Huguenot refugees, who came to England in the 16th to 17th centuries to escape persecution as Non-Conformists in Catholic Flanders.

The original brick and stone fireplace, the cherry-wood panelling and carvings date from the end of the 16th century.

There is also a Tudor chimney stack and there are massive beams throughout the house.

The finely timbered, large barn was once the scene of many local gatherings, feasts and flower shows.

Previous farmers included Bovingdon, Brown, Chennells, Scott and Ward. Walter Ward was the last farmer to sell fresh milk in the village.

The barns and adjacent buildings have been renovated and it is a livery yard today.

The photographs show ‘then and now’ scenes of Bourne End Farm, taken from the recent book Bourne End & Boxmoor Old and New by Joan and Roger Hands.

The book provides a photographic account of some of the ways in which Bourne End and Boxmoor have changed in the course of the last 200 years.

Many of the snaps are published for the first time in the book.

While not claiming to be an exhaustive history, the 128 pages give an idea of the many changes in a small, mainly agricultural area and in the local population.

The book, which costs £12, is available from the authors on 01442 393381.

Roger Hands is chairman of the Dacorum Heritage Trust (DHT).

The DHT runs a museum in a converted fire station in Berkhamsted where it houses in excess of 110,000 artefacts relating to the history of the borough.

You can visit it by appointment by contacting the DHT on 01442 879525.