Wheathampstead, a village and a parish in Herts. The village stands on the river Lee and on the Hertford, Luton, and Dunstable branch of the G.N.R., on which it has a station, 5 miles NNE of St Albans. It was known at Domesday as Watamestede, and was the meeting-place of the barons, in 1312, against Edward II. It has a post, money order, and telegraph office under St Albans. The parish includes several hamlets, and comprises 5187 acres; population, 2371. There is a parish council consisting of twelve members. The manor was given by Edward the Confessor to Westminster Abbey, and it now belongs, with that of Harpenden, to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. The manor of Wheathampstead rectory belongs to the rector. Wheathampstead House is a seat of the Earl of Cavan. Lamer Park and Mackrey End are chief residences. A very old British fortification, known as the Devil's Dyke, stands partly in this parish, about three-quarters of a mile SE of the village. The living is a rectory in the diocese of St Albans; net value, £458. Patron, the Bishop of Peterborough. The church, dedicated to St Helen, is an ancient cruciform edifice of flint and stone, chiefly in the Early English style, but with Decorated and Perpendicular insertions. It has some ancient brasses, some fine tombs and memorials, a beautiful reredos, and some good stained windows. There are Congregational and Wesleyan chapels. The charities are worth about £210 a year. Abbot Bostock, who died in 1440, was a native of St Albans, generally known as " John of Wheathampstead," having been born at Mackrey End.
The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.
|Ecclesiastical parish||Wheathampstead St. Helen|
|Poor Law union||Ware|
Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.
Directories & Gazetteers
We have transcribed the entry for Wheathampstead from the following:
- Samuel Lewis' A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858. (Wheathampstead (St. Helen))
Land and Property
A full transcript of the Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Hertfordshire is online.
Online maps of Wheathampstead are available from a number of sites:
- Bing (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- Google Streetview.
- National Library of Scotland. (Old maps)
- old-maps.co.uk (Old Ordnance Survey maps to buy).
- Streetmap.co.uk (Current Ordnance Survey maps).
- A Vision of Britain through Time. (Old maps)
Newspapers and Periodicals
The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Hertfordshire newspapers online:
- Hertford Mercury and Reformer
- Herts Guardian, Agricultural Journal, and General Advertiser
- Watford Observer
The Visitations of Hertfordshire, 1572 and 1634. Edited by Walter C. Metcalfe, F.S.A. is available on the Heraldry page.