Enfield: Growth before 1850

A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 5, Hendon, Kingsbury, Great Stanmore, Little Stanmore, Edmonton Enfield, Monken Hadley, South Mimms, Tottenham. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1976.

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A P Baggs. Diane K Bolton. Eileen P Scarff. G C Tyack, 'Enfield: Growth before 1850', in A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 5, Hendon, Kingsbury, Great Stanmore, Little Stanmore, Edmonton Enfield, Monken Hadley, South Mimms, Tottenham, (London, 1976) pp. 212-218. British History Online https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/middx/vol5/pp212-218 [accessed 26 May 2024].

A P Baggs. Diane K Bolton. Eileen P Scarff. G C Tyack. "Enfield: Growth before 1850", in A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 5, Hendon, Kingsbury, Great Stanmore, Little Stanmore, Edmonton Enfield, Monken Hadley, South Mimms, Tottenham, (London, 1976) 212-218. British History Online, accessed May 26, 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/middx/vol5/pp212-218.

Baggs, A P. Bolton, Diane K. Scarff, Eileen P. Tyack, G C. "Enfield: Growth before 1850", A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 5, Hendon, Kingsbury, Great Stanmore, Little Stanmore, Edmonton Enfield, Monken Hadley, South Mimms, Tottenham, (London, 1976). 212-218. British History Online. Web. 26 May 2024, https://www.british-history.ac.uk/vch/middx/vol5/pp212-218.


An oval camp in Hadley wood, covering 15 a. and from 1850 bisected by the main line of the G.N.R., is evidence of prehistoric settlement in the thickly wooded western part of the parish. (fn. 1) Farther east there were probably Bronzeand Iron-age dwellings near the Lea at Ponders End and some houses were built west of the Roman Ermine Street, especially in the region of Bush Hill Park. (fn. 2) Other Roman finds were at a moated site south of Queen's Road, called Oldbury Moat and later filled in, (fn. 3) and at another site, of uncertain date, by Salmon's brook on the modern Enfield golf course. (fn. 4)

A church probably existed by 1086, (fn. 5) near the feld or clearing which gave its name to Enfield. (fn. 6) Most of the parish seems at that date to have been covered by woodland, part of which already had been inclosed as a park. (fn. 7) The park was probably the area known in 1324 as the Frith or inner park (fn. 8) and was later called the Old Park, to distinguish it from the much larger Enfield Chase. In 1650 the Old Park occupied 553 a. south-west of Enfield Town and its eastern edge ran from Park Gate to the Edmonton boundary. It was divided into meadows between 1661 and 1686. (fn. 9)

By 1223 the park, inclosed within a paling, had been extended almost to the northern parish boundary at Cattle gate (porta de Catthal'). (fn. 10) This new outer park was called the Chase in 1326 (fn. 11) but later was sometimes called Enfield wood. (fn. 12) In 1572 it covered the entire western half of the parish and was entered from the east by four gates: Park, Parsonage Lane, Phipps Hatch, and Mores Hatch. (fn. 13) Two more gates, at the end of New Lane (later Lavender Hill) and at Whitewebbs, led into the Chase from the east in 1656, when there were entrances from the north at Cattle, Hook, and Coopers Lane gates, from the west at Potters Bar and Monken Hadley, and from the south at Bourne gate, Southgate, and Hammonds Hook gate. (fn. 14) Carterhatch Lane seems to preserve the name of an earlier gate, suggesting that the Chase may once have stretched east of the boundary recorded in 1572. (fn. 15) In 1611 500 a. in the north-east of the Chase were inclosed within the park of Theobalds (Herts.) (fn. 16) and in 1650 the total area was estimated at 7,904 a. (fn. 17) In 1658 the eastern boundary of the Chase was marked by the western and northern limits of the Old Park as far as Park gate, west of the church. Thence it followed the later Gentleman's Row, Chase Side, and Brigadier Hill, crossing Maiden's brook and running along the line of Flash Road and around the eastern edge of the modern Whitewebbs estate. Turning west, it followed Whitewebbs and Theobalds Park roads to meet the county boundary at Cattle gate. (fn. 18) There were no further changes until the Chase was split up in 1779, (fn. 19) an attempt to do so during the Interregnum having been thwarted by the Restoration. (fn. 20)

Apart from three lodges, built for keepers but converted into gentlemen's seats, (fn. 21) the Chase was virtually uninhabited. In 1593 it contained only deer, (fn. 22) whose number by 1724 had been reduced by poachers. (fn. 23) In 1676 the diarist John Evelyn was impressed that so large a tract near London should have no building except the three lodges, 'the rest a solitary desert yet stored with no less than 3,000 deer'. (fn. 24) Accusations of witchcraft between 1591 and 1615 probably arose from suspicious gatherings in the Chase, (fn. 25) where a chapel had been found equipped for black masses. (fn. 26) Plotters were said to be hiding in the woods in 1666 (fn. 27) and gangs of robbers to lurk there in 1742. (fn. 28)

Medieval settlement was concentrated in the eastern part of the parish, between the wooded heights of Enfield Chase and the marshes by the Lea. Common arable fields were first recorded in the 13th century (fn. 29) and by 1572 they occupied well over half of the cultivated land, mostly in the low-lying area east of the road through Enfield Town to Forty Hill and Bull's Cross. (fn. 30) Immediately adjoining the Lea were the common marshes, used for grazing. (fn. 31) The three northernmost, Rammey, Wild, and Mill marshes, were all so named by the 14th century. (fn. 32) To the south were Leathersey, mentioned in 1484, (fn. 33) and South marsh, mentioned in 1419. (fn. 34) Inclosures in the 16th century were mainly on the fringe of the central common field area: (fn. 35) near Enfield Town, west of Baker Street, east of Ponders End, and in the north-east of the parish near Painters Lane. After further inclosures an Act was passed in 1801 and put into effect in 1803, covering the whole of the parish east of the former Chase, together with that part of the Chase which had been allotted to the parish in 1777. (fn. 36)

With a few exceptions, including the manorhouses in the east of the parish, medieval settlement was on the main routes from north to south. In 1572 most people lived in villages or hamlets along the road through Enfield Town near the Chase or along Hertford Road, which ran on flat, lower ground, (fn. 37) while the intervening fields remained almost uninhabited until the end of the 19th century. (fn. 38) Many unauthorized cottages were erected c. 1600: in 1605 over 60 were said to have been built during the previous 50 years (fn. 39) and more had appeared by 1618. (fn. 40) There were 562 houses in 1664, 200 of them in Enfield Green ward which contained Enfield Town. The four other wards or quarters which then served as local government units were Bull's Cross, with 144 houses, Green Street (otherwise Horsepool Stones or Enfield Highway), with 100, Ponders End, with 58, and Parsonage, with 50. (fn. 41) By 1801 the total number of houses had nearly doubled, to 993, and by 1851 it had reached 1,891. (fn. 42)

Many rich maltmen lived in Enfield in the 15th and 16th centuries, before local prosperity was undermined by the Act of 1571 for improving the Lea. (fn. 43) Large houses were also built, at least from the 16th century, for families attracted by Enfield's accessibility from London and its royal connexions. In 1664 nine houses had 10 hearths or more. (fn. 44) The parish continued to be a fashionable place of residence in the 18th century and in 1832 was noted for its many handsome seats, most of them in or around Enfield Town and the roads to its north. (fn. 45)

Enfield Town, so called from the 17th century, was named from a green south of the parish church. (fn. 46) A market and fairs were granted in 1303, houses overlooked the green in 1364, (fn. 47) and Whitelocks Lane led there in 1511. (fn. 48) South of the green was the manor-house later known as Enfield Palace, (fn. 49) while near by other large 16th-century houses included the Vine, mentioned in 1562. (fn. 50) The Greyhound inn stood on the eastern side of the green in 1596; (fn. 51) as an early-17th-century brick building with 'Dutch' gables it afterwards served as a vestry hall and magistrates' court but was demolished in 1897. (fn. 52) The old King's Head, demolished soon after 1897, (fn. 53) had been built on the north side of the green by 1670 (fn. 54) and the George stood on the south side in 1666. (fn. 55) There was a school-house west of the churchyard in 1572 (fn. 56) and it survived as a red-brick building, part of Enfield grammar school, in 1972. (fn. 57) Much property was destroyed by fire in 1657. (fn. 58)

Enfield Town began to assume its modern layout after a market-place had been established in 1632 on the site of the Vine. (fn. 59) In 1670 it contained a market house, a market cross, a weigh-house, 6 shops on the west side, and 24 stalls in the market-place. (fn. 60) A pump existed by 1764. (fn. 61) Although Enfield was described in 1806 as the skeleton of a market town, (fn. 62) the early-19th-century market-place was shown as a busy square, with many buildings used as shops. (fn. 63) The wooden octagonal market house was replaced in 1826 by a stone Gothic cross, (fn. 64) parts of which were moved to the grounds of Myddelton House in 1904, when an octagonal market building on Corinthian columns was erected to the designs of Sydney W. Cranfield. (fn. 65) Most of the older buildings in the square were demolished in the later 19th century.

By 1656 Enfield Town had spread westward along Church Lane as far as the Chase, northward along Silver Street, and southward along London Road. (fn. 66) Most of the larger houses of the 16th and 17th centuries, like Redlingtons, mentioned in 1641, were later demolished, (fn. 67) although some survived in Church Street into the 19th century. Burleigh House was built c. 1700 west of the market-place but replaced soon after 1913 by a cinema, with shops along the street frontage of the grounds. (fn. 68) Chaseside House, a large stuccoed building on the south side of Church Street, was erected c. 1830 by James Farrer Steadman on the site of an earlier house and later also made way for shops. (fn. 69) The Rising Sun inn stood near by in 1752 (fn. 70) and was replaced by shops in 1933. (fn. 71) The area enclosed by Church Street, Silver Street, and the New River was never completely built up; in 1754 most of it was still covered by private grounds and orchards (fn. 72) and in 1972, apart from some rows of 19th-century cottages and late19th-century houses, it was largely devoted to schools' sports grounds.

There were houses on the boundary of the Chase, north of Park gate, in 1572. (fn. 73) One belonged to Sir Francis Wroth and another, that of a Mr. Fortescue, may have occupied the site of the large timber-framed Fortescue Hall, which bore the date 1608 and was demolished in 1816. (fn. 74) Among smaller timber-framed houses of the 16th and 17th centuries was one where Charles Lamb, the writer, came to live in 1825. (fn. 75) In 1972 the house, no. 17, had an 18th-century plastered facade. Some brick houses were built near by in the 18th century when the path facing the Chase became known as Gentleman's Row. They include the former Little Park, to the south, a large building with a pedimented centre and later wings, in 1974 occupied by the council, and, at the northern end of the row, Archway House, a pedimented building in grey brick of c. 1750, through which an arch leads to Love's Row (later Holly Walk). Gentleman's Row faces Chase Green, a remnant of the Chase preserved as an open space when the parish was inclosed in 1803.

North of Gentleman's Row building was sparse until the end of the 18th century. Some houses on the edge of the Chase included a cottage called Wolfes in 1572 (fn. 76) and another called Goddards in 1608. (fn. 77) By 1656 more houses had been built (fn. 78) and by 1686 the area was known as Chase Side. (fn. 79) Ivy House was built there, by a pond at the corner of Parsonage Lane, in the early 18th century and demolished after a fire c. 1900. (fn. 80) On the inclosure of the Chase in 1779 Chase Side became a through road and buildings, including an Independent chapel and the surviving no. 60, were built on its western side to face older ones on the east. (fn. 81) Early-19th-century houses include two more of Charles Lamb's homes: the Poplars, 1827-29, and Westwood Cottage, 1829- 33. (fn. 82) Gloucester Place, a terrace on the western side of the road, is dated 1823 and other cottages on the opposite side are of about the same date. West of Chase Side Gordon House was built on the Chase near the top of Gordon Hill. It was named after an early occupant, Lord George Gordon (1751-93), instigator of the Gordon Riots, (fn. 83) later belonged to Sir Thomas Hallifax (1721-89), Lord Mayor of London and a founder of the bank which became Glyn, Mills & Co., (fn. 84) and was demolished c. 1860. (fn. 85) Chase Lodge, to the south, was built after the inclosure of the Chase. It belonged in 1834 to T. Cotton, (fn. 86) then to Thomas Holt White, a commentator on Shakespeare, after whom Holtwhite's Hill is named, (fn. 87) and was demolished shortly before 1911. (fn. 88)

Farther north buildings clustered at the junction of Chase Side and New Lane (later Lancaster Road) in 1656 (fn. 89) and by 1754 stretched intermittently from Parsonage Lane northward to Phipps Hatch gate. (fn. 90) Some small 18th- and early-19th-century houses and shops survive in Chase Side and its northern continuation, Brigadier Hill. The Holly Bush inn was recorded in 1752 (fn. 91) and a large weatherboarded house at the bottom of Brigadier Hill is 18thcentury. Other large houses farther up the hill, including the Cedars, Brigadier House, and Warwick House, (fn. 92) have been demolished.

Another ribbon of building ran northward from the eastern end of the town, along Silver Street and Baker Street where the Rectory, the Vicarage, and the first manor-house of Worcesters stood in the 16th century, with several smaller dwellings. (fn. 93) Houses called Blakes and Mortimers Farm stood near by, while in Parsonage Lane there was another called Bates in 1608. A house called Woodcock Hall existed in 1656 (fn. 94) and towards the northern end of Baker Street there was a stone cross. (fn. 95) The five-bay front of Enfield Court (later part of Enfield grammar school), at the northern end of Silver Street, was built in the late 17th century but afterwards greatly extended; a riding house was added in 1858 and the south wing rebuilt in 1864 by Col. Alfred Plantagenet Somerset. (fn. 96) A chapel was built on the eastern side of Baker Street in 1689 (fn. 97) and houses extended on both sides of the road from the town north to New Lane by 1754. (fn. 98) More houses were built in the later 18th century, including three in Baker Street in 1774 (fn. 99) and two which were built speculatively by John Copeley in 1786. (fn. 100)

Eighteenth-century survivals in Silver Street include White Lodge, a striking weatherboarded building with a symmetrical facade and classical doorcase. From 1862 until 1895 it was the home of Joseph Whitaker, founder of Whitaker's Almanack. (fn. 101) No. 90, with a hipped roof, was built c. 1700, and nos. 60 and 62, a pair south of White Lodge, in the later 18th century. John Sherwen (1749-1826), the physician and archaeologist who is said to have grown the first rhubarb in England, had a house in Silver Street from the 1770s. (fn. 102) Baker Street, with the exception of nos. 174 and 278, with their mansard roofs, has lost its 18th-century appearance. Large houses which survived until the 20th century included Fox Hall, north of the Rectory, Lee House, used as a school in the 19th century under the name of Gothic Hall, and Holmwood and Pattensweir, adjacent 18th-century buildings at the corner of Clay Hill. (fn. 103) Pettins Ware, recorded in 1686, (fn. 104) had been a name for the northern end of Baker Street at the junction of the road leading to Clay Hill. In 1719 Henry Gough, M.P., a director of the East India Company, (fn. 105) bought a house there to which c. 1779 his son Richard, antiquary (1735-1809), added a library with a Gothic window and fireplace designed by James Essex. (fn. 106) Richard Gough left his topographical material, including two volumes of notes on Enfield, (fn. 107) to the Bodleian Library, Oxford, and in 1806 recalled many pleasing hours of research in his native parish. (fn. 108) His house, which became known as Gough Park, was demolished in 1899. (fn. 109) John Abernethy (1764-1831), surgeon and teacher, and James Rennell (1742-1830), geographer, both retired to houses in Baker Street. (fn. 110) The Hop Poles inn at the corner of Lancaster Road was built in 1909 on the site of a weatherboarded building. (fn. 111)

Forty Green, near Gough Park, formed a triangular open space at the junction of Baker Street, Carterhatch Lane, and Forty Hill. Richard atte Forteye held an estate in Enfield in the 14th century (fn. 112) and houses bordered the green in 1572. (fn. 113) Sir Samuel Starling lived in one called Garretts Place in 1635 (fn. 114) and the White House stood there, together with some shops, in 1686. (fn. 115) The area around Forty Green and Forty Hill became fashionable in the 18th century. Brigadier Hall was built on the south side of the green by William Bridger, a former Lord Mayor of London, between 1764 and 1779 (fn. 116) and Adelaide House was built to the west shortly before 1828. (fn. 117) Both have been demolished but the Hermitage, dated 1704, survives, with a terrace on the west side of the green called Cottage Place, built in 1833.

On Forty Hill there were houses in 1572 (fn. 118) near the Little Park, which was first recorded in 1543 as the park of Elsing Hall. (fn. 119) The park was later incorporated into the Forty Hall estate and by 1656 had been turned into farmland. The large 16th- or early17th-century Dower House survives within the Forty Hall estate, where Forty Hall itself was built near the site of an older dwelling between 1629 and 1636, (fn. 120) and several houses were erected on the eastern side of the hill in the 18th century, opposite the Forty Hall grounds. Worcester Lodge, of c. 1700, is at the corner of Goat Lane, at the other corner of which the Goat inn stood in 1911 (fn. 121) before its replacement by an inn of the same name at Forty Green. Elsynge House, with Venetian windows on the ground floor, was built farther north in the late 18th century and the Elms, a large stuccoed house, in the early 19th. Sparrow Hall, at the top of Forty Hill, dates from c. 1787 (fn. 122) and Clock House, near by, has a late-19th-century facade. (fn. 123) George Birkbeck (1776-1841), the founder of mechanics' institutions, lived at Forty Hill after 1824. (fn. 124) A church was built in 1835. (fn. 125)

Clay Hill existed in 1572 as a small settlement near the bridge over Maiden's brook west of Forty Green. (fn. 126) The name presumably derived from a tenement there called Clays and perhaps from William atte Cleye, who was resident in the parish in 1274. (fn. 127) The hamlet was reached by a road running from Forty Green through land inclosed by the mid 18th century (fn. 128) to enter the Chase at Mores Hatch gate, near the site of St. John's church and the Fallow Buck inn. The area by the bridge later became known as Bull Beggars' Hole. (fn. 129) Clay Hill consisted in the 18th century of houses scattered along the road on either side of the bridge for almost a mile. (fn. 130) The Rose and Crown, by the bridge in 1686, (fn. 131) and the timber-framed Fallow Buck, on the hill to the west, are the oldest surviving buildings. Bramley House, a large 18th-century house east of the bridge, was known as Great Pipers (fn. 132) in the 18th century and in 1972 served as a mental hospital. The adjacent Little Pipers, an early-19th-century cottage orné with bargeboarded gables, preserves the name of a tenement mentioned, with Great Pipers, in 1572. (fn. 133) The Firs, farther east, is 18th-century. Claysmore, a plain stuccoed house in wooded grounds west of the bridge, was built in the early 19th century, (fn. 134) extended with a picture gallery designed by John Hill, a local builder, and later demolished. (fn. 135) James Whatman Bosanquet (1804-77), the Biblical chronologist, lived there and was active in local affairs, financing the building of the near-by St. John's church. (fn. 136) In 1972 the road which climbed the hill from the bridge to the church was still lined by the gardens of large 18th- and 19th-century houses, although some of the houses themselves, like the early-19th-century Hill Lodge, (fn. 137) had disappeared. The Italianate Clay Hill House survived, as did Clay Hill Lodge to the west and Wildwood to the north.

Buildings were scattered on the edge of the Chase near Mores Hatch gate and Whitewebbs in 1572 (fn. 138) and formed a small group at Whitewebbs in 1656. (fn. 139) The King and Tinker inn and some houses still stand alone by the old boundary of the Chase near White Webbs House, which was built on the former Chase to the south. (fn. 140) The land north of Whitewebbs Road was inclosed within Theobalds Park in 1611 and later turned over to farming. It can be distinguished from the Chase itself by its old farmhouses, the most noteworthy being the Glasgow Stud farm-house, a 17th-century gabled building with an elaborately carved contemporary fireplace. (fn. 141) White Webbs farm-house, 18th-century and with a hipped roof, stands about ½ mile farther east.

Cockfosters, mentioned in 1524, (fn. 142) was the only hamlet in the western part of the parish before the inclosure of the Chase. The settlement was isolated on the edge of the woodland about half way along the road between Southgate (Edmonton) and Potters Bar (South Mimms). Edmund Kendall of Lincoln's Inn lived in a house called Cockfosters in 1613 (fn. 143) and there was a small group of houses in 1754, the largest of which was Buckskin Hall (fn. 144) on the East Barnet boundary west of the later Chalk Lane. Renamed Dacre Lodge, (fn. 145) in 1884 it was a plain stuccoed building reputedly on the site of a hunting box of James I (fn. 146) and after a fire in 1895 it was rebuilt. (fn. 147) Norrysbury, to the north, was said in 1890 to stand near the site of Norris Farm, an outlying part of Elsing manor. (fn. 148) The only large house within the tongue of the parish which projected south of Cockfosters was Mount Pleasant, or Belmont, on the East Barnet boundary on the site of the residence of the antiquarian Lord William Howard (1563-1640). (fn. 149) The Cock inn existed in 1798 (fn. 150) and a church from 1839 but mid-19th-century Cockfosters was still a remote hamlet. (fn. 151)

The hamlet of Bull's Cross, Bedelescrosse in 1465, (fn. 152) grew up by the cross roads east of Whitewebbs. Its chief buildings were the manor-houses of Goldbeaters and Honeylands (fn. 153) and a house called the Dairy House, described as very ancient c. 1656, whose site is unknown. (fn. 154) There were two new cottages at Honeylane corner in 1572 and other houses along the later Bullsmoor Lane. (fn. 155) The Pied Bull, a timber-framed inn surviving in 1974, existed in 1752 (fn. 156) and Bullsmoor Place, the house of Col. Thomas Boddam, in 1800. (fn. 157) The hamlet consisted in 1972 of a few scattered houses and terraced cottages surrounded by agricultural land. Another cluster of houses grew up about ¼ mile farther south, at the junction of Bull's Cross with Turkey Street. Bowling Green House, on the west side of the road, was conveyed to Daniel Parker, a London pewterer, in 1678 (fn. 158) but had been demolished by 1823. (fn. 159) Myddelton House, in 1972 the headquarters of the Lee Valley regional park authority, was built on an adjoining site in 1818 by Henry Carington Bowles to the designs of Messrs. Ferry and Wallen of Spital Square (Stepney) (fn. 160) and extended before 1873. (fn. 161) On the east side of the road are Winterton Lodge, an early-19th-century stuccoed building later divided into three, and Garnault, a mid-19th-century Italianate house. Some 19th-century cottages and a late-17th-century house form an extension of the hamlet along the road sloping down to Maiden's brook, which acts as a natural boundary between Bull's Cross and Forty Hill to the south.

Turkey Street ran eastward across open fields from the wooded hills around Forty Hill and Bull's Cross to Hertford Road. Along the street was one of the main pre-19th-century settlements, containing ten houses in 1572, two of them new and another belonging to a London brewer. (fn. 162) A house called Sweeting existed in 1658 (fn. 163) and the Plough inn, later rebuilt, by 1752. (fn. 164) In 1754 the cottages in Turkey Street formed a group near the inn, a little to the east of the bridge over the New River. (fn. 165) In the mid 19th century the only substantial house was the 18thcentury Roselands, belonging to the Jones family, (fn. 166) whose grounds from 1968 were occupied by the upper school of St. Ignatius's college. In 1972 a row of small houses of c. 1800, the central pair with a mansard roof, survived on the south side of the street amid extensive modern building.

The hamlet of Enfield Wash grew up at the eastern end of Turkey Street, where Hertford Road forded Maiden's brook. (fn. 167) Grove House, in large grounds near the junction with Turkey Street, was built in the 18th century (fn. 168) and demolished between 1920 and 1935. (fn. 169) It was visited by the artist Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827), a close friend of the owner Matthew Michell, a London banker. (fn. 170) Freezy Water farm, commemorated in the name of a modern district, lay to the north in 1768. (fn. 171) Enfield Wash was so named in 1675 (fn. 172) but more commonly known as Horsepool Stones until the 18th century, (fn. 173) by which time it marked the northernmost end of a line of houses scattered along Hertford Road for about 1½ mile. (fn. 174)

Enfield Highway, south of Enfield Wash, by 1754 was the name of a settlement where houses stood closely together along Hertford Road, between Hoe Lane and Green Street. (fn. 175) The hamlet was called Cocksmiths End in 1572 (fn. 176) and again in 1658, when it contained a house called Drakes. (fn. 177) It extended eastward towards the marshes along Green Street, where thirteen houses were recorded in 1572, (fn. 178) and included a house called Mitchells in 1742. (fn. 179)

The north-east part of Enfield parish, in contrast to the hillier country west of the open fields, possessed few large houses. In 1658 traffic along Hertford Road was served by the Chequers inn at Horsepool Stones and the Four Swans at Cocksmiths End (fn. 180) and in 1752 by the Sun and Woolpack, the Fox and Crown, the Bell, the Red Lion, and the Black Horse, (fn. 181) all later rebuilt. St. James's church, the façade of the Bell, and some villas in Hertford Road, among them nos. 372, 472-4, and 651, survive from the early 19th century amidst later suburban housing.

Ponders End stood on Hertford Road about ½ mile south of Enfield Highway, separated from it by the old manorial lands of Durants and Suffolks. Probably the name derived from John Ponder (fl. 1373), whose own family may have held land on the border of Enfield and Edmonton c. 1200. (fn. 182) In 1572 the settlement contained a mansion belonging to Richard Gaywood of London, a new cottage in Bungeys Lane (later Lincoln Road), and some houses along South Street, which led eastward towards the Lea. (fn. 183) A large 16th-century house called Lincoln House was reputedly the residence of William Wickham, bishop of Lincoln and later of Winchester, from 1577 to 1594 (fn. 184) and of Henry Fiennes, earl of Lincoln (d. 1616). (fn. 185) The house was much altered in the early 19th century (fn. 186) and was severely damaged by fire before 1873. (fn. 187) In 1972 an early-19th-century stuccoed villa called Lincoln House stood on the corner of Lincoln Road. Eagle House, later demolished, was built near by c. 1750 by Richard Darby of Gray's Inn. (fn. 188) The Goat, Two Brewers, and White Hart inns existed in 1752. (fn. 189) A hamlet called Scotland was mentioned in 1607 (fn. 190) and there were some houses at Scotland Green, a little to the north of South Street, in 1754. (fn. 191) Romantic drawings of derelict cottages at Scotland Green, with others at Bull's Cross and Green Street, were published by J. T. Smith of Edmonton in 1797. (fn. 192)

The hamlets along Hertford Road marked the eastern limit of settlement until the 19th century. A few farmhouses stood alone amid the open fields, with the moated manor-houses of Durants and Elsing, (fn. 193) but there were no buildings on the marshy ground by the Lea, apart from those connected with river traffic, like the flour mill at the end of South Street (fn. 194) and the Swan and Pike inn farther north at Enfield Lock. An arms factory which was opened at Enfield Lock c. 1804 had cottages for 2 foremen and 60 workers by 1828 (fn. 195) but did not lead to rapid growth until its own enlargement, as the Royal Small Arms factory, in 1854. (fn. 196)

The western half of the parish, comprising the former Chase, also remained very thinly populated before 1830. Some small encroachments made in the 18th century and earlier, notably by main roads near Monken Hadley and Potters Bar, were said in 1767 to be of little value, consisting only of labourers' wooden cottages on small plots. (fn. 197) Inclosure did not radically alter the pattern of settlement within the former Chase but it wrought great changes on the landscape: scarcely any trees were left by 1823 (fn. 198) and the remaining patches of woodland were largely confined to the estates of Trent Park and other seats which had been built after inclosure. New buildings included the farm-houses of Holly Hill and Fernyhill farms, which survive, Home Villa (fn. 199) and other early-19th-century villas on the Ridgeway, and isolated houses like Owls Hall at Crews Hill. A small hamlet grew up at the junction of the Ridgeway and East Lodge Lane. By 1819 it was called Botany Bay, probably to emphasize its remoteness, (fn. 200) and by 1868 it consisted of a few brick cottages and a farm-house. (fn. 201)

Despite the emptiness of the Chase, Enfield until the later 19th century contained more inhabitants than Edmonton or Tottenham. In 1547 the parish had 1,000 communicants (fn. 202) and in 1642 the protestation oath was taken by 496 adult males. (fn. 203) In 1676 there were 1,489 conformists, 1 papist, and 10 other nonconformists. (fn. 204) The population increased from 5,581 in 1801 to 6,636 in 1811 and 8,227 in 1821 but thereafter rose less steeply to reach 9,453 by 1851. (fn. 205) Enfield Town ward or quarter was the most populous in 1642, with 179 adult males, followed by Bull's Cross with 112, Horsepool Stones (otherwise Green Street or Enfield Highway) with 97, Ponders End with 65, and Parsonage with 43. (fn. 206) By 1811, when there were only four divisions, as many as 3,055 persons were in Enfield Town, which included Baker Street, Clay Hill, and the eastern edge of Chase Side; 1,698 lived in Green Street and Ponders End ward, in the south-east of the parish, 1,048 in Chase and 835 in Bull's Cross wards. (fn. 207)


  • 1. T.L.M.A.S. x. 98-9.
  • 2. V.C.H. Mdx. i. 50-1, 57, 65, 69-70.
  • 3. Ibid. ii. 5; Whitaker, Enfield, 174.
  • 4. V.C.H. Mdx. ii. 2-3, 5.
  • 5. Ibid. i. 126.
  • 6. Possibly 'Eana's open space': P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 71.
  • 7. V.C.H. Mdx. i. 126.
  • 8. Cal. Close, 1323-7, 217-18.
  • 9. See p. 230.
  • 10. Cur. Reg. R. xi. 18; D.L. 25/20.
  • 11. Cal. Close, 1323-7, 439-40. For the admin. hist. of the Chase see V.C.H. Mdx. ii. 226-30.
  • 12. M.R.O., Acc. 312/4.
  • 13. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 14. M.P.C. 145 (D.L. 31/175).
  • 15. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 72.
  • 16. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1611-18, 81.
  • 17. E 317/Mdx./17.
  • 18. M.P.C. 50A (D.L. 31/50A).
  • 19. See above, p. 207.
  • 20. V.C.H. Mdx. ii. 228-9; see below, p. 231.
  • 21. See p. 231.
  • 22. Norden, Speculum Britanniae (1723 edn.), 26.
  • 23. Daniel Defoe, Tour through Eng. and Wales (Everyman edn.), ii. 3.
  • 24. Diary of John Evelyn, ed. E. S. de Beer, iv. 92.
  • 25. Mdx. Cnty. Recs. i. 196, 237; ii. 57-8, 79-80, 116.
  • 26. Ford, Enfield, 126-7.
  • 27. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1665-6, 195.
  • 28. Hist. MSS. Com. 53 Bath, i, p. 270.
  • 29. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 213; see below, p. 233.
  • 30. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 31. See p. 233.
  • 32. D.L. 43/7/1.
  • 33. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 213.
  • 34. S.C. 6/915/26.
  • 35. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 36. Enfield Incl. Act, 41 Geo. III, c. 143.
  • 37. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 38. Cf. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754); Enfield Incl. Map (1803); O.S. Maps 6", Mdx. I. SE.; II. SE., SW.; VI. NE.; VII. NE., NW. (1868 and 1897 edns.).
  • 39. D.L. 43/7/6.
  • 40. S.C. 2/118/55.
  • 41. M.R.O., MR/TH/5. The distribution of housing in 1664 corresponds with the population figures for 1642; see below, p. 218.
  • 42. Census, 1801, 1851.
  • 43. Pam, Tudor Enfield, 3,7-8.
  • 44. M.R.O., MR/TH/5.
  • 45. Pigot, Com. Dir. (1832-4).
  • 46. e.g. M.R.O., MR/TH/5.
  • 47. M.R.O., Acc. 903/41.
  • 48. Ibid. /19b.
  • 49. See p. 225.
  • 50. M.R.O., Acc. 903/2.
  • 51. Ibid. /50.
  • 52. Mdx. & Herts. N. & Q. iii. 27; see below, p. 221.
  • 53. Mdx. & Herts. N. & Q. iii. 28.
  • 54. M.R.O., Acc. 903/32; see p. 221.
  • 55. C 5/633/40.
  • 56. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 57. Except where otherwise stated, all buildings of the 17th cent. and later were of brick.
  • 58. Cal. S.P. Dom. 1657-8, 329.
  • 59. M.R.O., Acc. 903/20; see p. 237.
  • 60. M.R.O., Acc. 903/32.
  • 61. Ibid. /38.
  • 62. Camden, Britannia, ed. Gough, ii. 107.
  • 63. Prints penes Enfield libr.
  • 64. Robinson, Enfield, i. 8-9; Tuff, Enfield, 28-9.
  • 65. Whitaker, Enfield, 194.
  • 66. M.P.C. 145.
  • 67. M.R.O., Acc. 16/5, f.5.
  • 68. Whitaker, Enfield, 223; M.R.O., Acc. 1084/1.
  • 69. Ford, Enfield, 33-4; Whitaker, Enfield, 224.
  • 70. M.R.O., L.V. 7/29.
  • 71. Photograph penes Enfield libr.
  • 72. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754).
  • 73. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 74. Robinson, Enfield, i. 252-3.
  • 75. Whitaker, Enfield, 308.
  • 76. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 77. Trinity Coll. Cambridge, Estate MSS., box 43.
  • 78. M.P.C. 145.
  • 79. D.L. 42/126.
  • 80. Photograph penes Enfield libr.
  • 81. See p. 250.
  • 82. Whitaker, Enfield, 233, 312, 321-2, 334.
  • 83. Whitaker, Enfield, 296.
  • 84. D.N.B.; F. G. Hilton Price, Handbk. of Lond. Bankers, 66.
  • 85. Whitaker, Enfield, 292.
  • 86. C. F. Partington, Nat. Hist. and Views of Lond. and Environs, ii, facing p. 45.
  • 87. Ford, Enfield, 56.
  • 88. Whitaker, Enfield, 244.
  • 89. Date on house.
  • 90. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754).
  • 91. M.R.O., L.V. 7/29.
  • 92. Whitaker, Enfield, 238-42.
  • 93. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 94. M.R.O., Acc. 16/8.
  • 95. Trinity Coll. Cambridge, Estate MSS., box 43.
  • 96. Ford, Enfield, 95.
  • 97. See p. 250.
  • 98. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754).
  • 99. M.R.O., Acc. 98/22.
  • 100. M.R.O., Acc. 801/43.
  • 101. Whitaker, Enfield, 112.
  • 102. D.N.B.; J. G. L. Burnby, John Sherwen and Drug Cultivation in Enfield (Edmonton Hund. Hist. Soc. 1973).
  • 103. Whitaker, Enfield, 113-26.
  • 104. D.L. 42/126.
  • 105. M.R.O., Acc. 531/19; Robinson, Enfield, i. 259.
  • 106. Colvin, Dict. of Architects, 200.
  • 107. Bodl. MS. Gough Mdx. 8-9.
  • 108. Camden, Britannia, ed. Gough, ii. 107.
  • 109. Whitaker, Enfield, 126.
  • 110. Ibid. 295, 297.
  • 111. Enfield Gaz. 21 Aug. 1970; Whitaker, Enfield, 122.
  • 112. D.L. 43/7/1.
  • 113. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 114. D.L. 42/125.
  • 115. D.L. 42/126.
  • 116. M.R.O., Acc. 371/5-6; Ford, Enfield, 97.
  • 117. M.R.O., Acc. 371/88; Whitaker, Enfield, 127.
  • 118. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 119. See p. 226.
  • 120. See p. 227.
  • 121. Whitaker, Enfield, 133.
  • 122. M.R.O., Acc. 262/1/36b.
  • 123. Whitaker, Enfield, 139.
  • 124. Ibid. 299.
  • 125. See p. 247.
  • 126. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 127. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 73.
  • 128. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754).
  • 129. Whitaker, Enfield, 149.
  • 130. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754); Enfield Incl. Map.
  • 131. D.L. 42/126.
  • 132. Robinson, Enfield, ii. 254.
  • 133. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 134. Ford, Enfield, 57.
  • 135. Tuff, Enfield, 34, 62.
  • 136. D.N.B.; Whitaker, Enfield, 303-4; see below, p. 248.
  • 137. Pevsner, Mdx. 52.
  • 138. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 139. M.P.C. 145.
  • 140. See p. 230.
  • 141. Min. of Town and Country Planning, List of Bldgs. (1949).
  • 142. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 73.
  • 143. Mdx. Sess. Recs. i. 172.
  • 144. Trinity Coll. Cambridge, Estate MSS., Enfield survey and map.
  • 145. Whitaker, Enfield, 265 and n; O.S. Map 6", Mdx. VII. NW. (1897 edn.).
  • 146. B.M. Maps 137 a.2(10).
  • 147. Kelly's Dir. Mdx. (1908).
  • 148. Ibid. (1890).
  • 149. D.N.B.; Whitaker, Enfield, 285.
  • 150. Bodl. MS. Top. Mdx. b.1, f. 91.
  • 151. Thorne, Environs, i. 185.
  • 152. M.R.O., Acc. 903/125.
  • 153. See pp. 228-9.
  • 154. M.R.O., Acc. 16/8.
  • 155. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 156. M.R.O., L.V. 7/29.
  • 157. Sales parts. penes Enfield libr.
  • 158. M.R.O., Acc. 39/1023-4.
  • 159. Robinson, Enfield, i. 269.
  • 160. Ibid. 270.
  • 161. Ford, Enfield, illus. facing p. 76.
  • 162. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 163. M.R.O., Acc. 16/4.
  • 164. M.R.O., L.V. 7/29.
  • 165. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754).
  • 166. Ford, Enfield, 88-9; O.S. Map 6", Mdx. II. SE. (1868 edn.).
  • 167. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 73. For the ford, see above, p. 209.
  • 168. Sales parts. penes Enfield libr.; Trinity Coll. Cambridge, Estate MSS., Enfield survey and map.
  • 169. O.S. Map 6", Mdx. II. SE. (1920 and 1935 edns.).
  • 170. J. Hayes, Rowlandson, Watercolours and Drawings, 11, 20, 23.
  • 171. Bodl. MS. Gough Mdx. 9, f. 18v.
  • 172. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 73.
  • 173. e.g. D.L. 43/7/5; M.R.O., Acc. 133, f. 48.
  • 174. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754); Enfield Incl. Map.
  • 175. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754).
  • 176. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 177. M.R.O., Acc. 16/4.
  • 178. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 179. M.R.O., Acc. 133, f. 59.
  • 180. M.R.O., Acc. 16/4.
  • 181. M.R.O., L.V. 7/29.
  • 182. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 74.
  • 183. D.L. 43/7/5.
  • 184. D.N.B.; Whitaker, Enfield, 157-8.
  • 185. Lysons, Environs, ii. 304-5.
  • 186. Robinson, Enfield, i. 252.
  • 187. Ford, Enfield, 97.
  • 188. Whitaker, Enfield, 159.
  • 189. M.R.O., L.V. 7/29.
  • 190. M.R.O., Acc. 16/5, f. 2.
  • 191. Rocque, Map of Mdx. (1754).
  • 192. J. T. Smith, Remarks on Rural Scenery (1797).
  • 193. Bodl. MS. Gough Mdx. 8, f. 36v.; see p. 226.
  • 194. See p. 236.
  • 195. Jnl. Soc. Army Hist. Research, xii. 199.
  • 196. See below, p. 238.
  • 197. Lease bk. penes Duchy of Lanc. Office; see pp. 261, 278.
  • 198. Robinson, Enfield, i. 224.
  • 199. Sales parts. penes Enfield libr.
  • 200. P.N. Mdx. (E.P.N.S.), 74-5.
  • 201. O.S. Map 6", Mdx. II. SW. (1868 edn.).
  • 202. E 301/34/184.
  • 203. H.L., Mdx. Protestation Rets.
  • 204. Wm. Salt Libr., Stafford, Salt MS. 33, p. 40.
  • 205. Census, 1801-51.
  • 206. H.L., Mdx. Protestation Rets.
  • 207. Census, 1811. The ward boundaries are described in Tuff, Enfield, 33.