Chorleywood shown within Hertfordshire
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Ambulance||East of England|
|EU Parliament||East of England|
|UK Parliament||Hertfordshire South West|
Chorleywood is a village and civil parish in the Three Rivers district of Hertfordshire in the United Kingdom. It had a population of 6,814 people at the 2001 census. The parish of Chorleywood as a whole has a population of 10,775. The town lies in the far south west of Hertfordshire, on the border with Buckinghamshire. Chorleywood is located 31.8 kilometres (19.8 mi) north-west of Charing Cross in London. It is part of the London commuter belt, and included in the government-defined Greater London Urban Area.
In popular slang, Chorleywood is referred to as "The Chood".
In a 2004 survey of neighbourhoods carried out by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, Chorleywood West was found to be the neighbourhood in England with the highest quality of life. Of the 32,482 neighbourhoods surveyed, Chorleywood West came out top using thirty-seven criteria.
In the early 1960s, researchers at the British Baking Industries Research Association in Chorleywood improved upon an earlier American bread making process. This resulted in the Chorleywood Bread Process, which is now used in over 80% of commercial bread production throughout the UK.
Settlement at Chorleywood dates to the Paleolithic era, when the plentiful flint supply led to swift development of tools by early man. The Romans built a small village on the ancient site, complete with a mill and brewery. The likely ruins of a Roman villa are thought to be found under the M25, which passes through the outskirts of Chorleywood.
A large influx of Saxon settlers in Chorleywood led to it being an important town. The Saxons called it 'Cerola Leah', meaning a meadow in a clearing. Through Chorleywood runs the line that once divided the Kingdoms of Mercia and Wessex and now divides the counties of Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire. Edward the Confessor gave the town of Chorleywood to the Monastery of St Albans.
By 1278, it was known as 'Bosco de Cherle' or 'Churl's Wood', Norman for 'Peasant's Wood'. Upon the Dissolution of the Monasteries, it passed to the Bishopric of London, being renamed 'Charleywoode'. It became Crown property during the reign of Elizabeth I. The Turnpike Act (1663) gave Chorleywood a chance to exploit its strategic position, allowing locals the opportunity to charge civilians to use the road from Hatfield to Reading.
Chorleywood is most famous for its Quakers. Non-conformists flocked to Chorleywood, promised sanctuary by the locals. William Penn founded the Pennsylvania Colony with settlers from Chorleywood, Rickmansworth, and nearby towns in southern Buckinghamshire, having lived and married in Chorleywood.
With the boom in the paper and printing industries, on which much of southwestern Hertfordshire's economy was based in the 19th century, came new prosperity. The extension of the Metropolitan Railway to Chorleywood on 8 July 1889 brought with it incredible population growth, which continued until the 1960s. From a population of 1,500 people in 1897, the population has grown to over 9,000 today.
A Regency mansion called Chorleywood House was built here in 1822 by John Barnes, replacing an earlier farm house. John Saunders Gilliat, who was Governor of the Bank of England in 1883-1885 lived in this house. In 1892, the house was bought by Lady Ela Sackville Russell, eldest daughter of the 9th Duke of Bedford. She modified and enlarged the house, turning the grounds into a model estate with market gardens.
When the Local Government Act 1894 created districts as subdivisions of the newly created county councils, Chorleywood became part of the Watford Rural District, which encircled Watford. In 1913, the town was separated from Watford Rural District to become Chorleywood Urban District, formalising its current name. In the BBC TV documentary Metro-land (1973), Sir John Betjeman described Chorleywood as “essential Metro-land”. In 1974, the Urban District, along with Rickmansworth Urban District and most of Watford Rural District were merged to form the Three Rivers non-metropolitan district.
Chorleywood Common is a tract of 0.8 square kilometres (200 acres) of wooded common land. The common is a County Heritage Site, and is home to significant biodiversity. Since cattle grazing ended soon after the First World War, the land has been used for recreational purposes. Chorleywood Golf Club maintains a nine-hole golf course on the Common. In the 19th Century, the MCC established a cricket pitch on the Common, which is used by Chorleywood Cricket Club's senior and junior teams to this day. It's a lovely place to enjoy your afternoon.
Next to the common is an Anglican church and primary school, both called Christ Church. The school and church are strongly linked together.
Three Rivers District Council are currently proposing the reintroduction of grazing on the Common, which would mean the partial enclosure, or fencing off, of sections of the common.
The grounds of Chorleywood house now form a 170-acre (0.69 km2) public park.
The parish of Chorleywood is divided between two wards: Chorleywood East and Chorleywood West. The latter covers most of the village itself, whilst the former covers the less-populous area to the east, including on the other side of the M25.
On Three Rivers District Council, which is controlled by the Liberal Democrats, Chorleywood is represented by two councillors from Chorleywood East and three from Chorleywood West. East is represented by two Conservatives (Chris Hayward and Leonard Spencer), whilst Chorleywood West is represented by three Liberal Democrats (Harry Davies, Barbara Green, and Martin Trevett).
Hertfordshire County Council is controlled by the Conservatives. At the County Council, a larger Chorleywood constituency, including not just the parish of Chorleywood, but also Sarratt and part of Langleybury, is represented by Chris Hayward of the Conservatives.
According to the 2001 census, Chorleywood has a resident population of 9,215, of whom:
- 19.8% are under 16 years of age (cf. 20.2% for England & Wales)
- 10.0% are over 75 years of age (cf. 7.6%)
- 64.5% are married (cf. 50.9%)
- 4.5% are divorced (cf. 8.2%)
- 1.8% are unemployed (cf. 3.4%)
- 4.8% are full-time students over 16 years of age (cf. 5.1%)
Based on 2001 Census returns
- 89.5 % are White
- 7.8% are Indian or British Indian
- 1.0% are Other Asian or Other British Asian
- 0.4% are Black or Black British
- 0.9% are Chinese or of another race
- 1.4% are of mixed race
- 71.1% are Christians (cf. 71.8%)
- 3.3% are Jewish (cf. 0.5%)
- 3.2% are Hindu (cf. 1.1%)
- 1.3% are Muslim (cf. 3.0%)
- 0.9% are of another religion (cf. 1.1%)
- 13.7% are of no religion (cf. 14.8%)
- 6.5% refused to categorise themselves (cf. 7.7%)
The results of the Census emphasised the affluence of the town:
- qualification (cf. 19.8%)
- 88.3% of homes are owned by the occupant (cf. 68.9%)
- 56.82% of households own two or more cars (cf. 29.4%)
- The average number of rooms per house is 7.0 (cf. 5.3)
The town has grown remarkably in the past century, thanks primarily to the extension of the Metropolitan line of the London Underground, which reached Chorleywood in 1889. Junction 18 of the M25 motorway, with the A404, is at Chorleywood.
Chorleywood station is in Zone 7 on the Metropolitan line, situated between Chalfont and Latimer and Rickmansworth. The majority of trains passing through Chorleywood are operated by London Underground, but the station is also a stop for Chiltern Railways services running between Marylebone and Aylesbury stations.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Chorleywood.|
- Chorleywood village directory with photos.
- Chorleywood Parish Council.
- Chorleywood Residents' Association.
- History of Chorleywood House, and present day.
- "Office for National Statistics, 2001 Census, Key Statistics for HCC Settlements" (PDF). Hertfordshire County Council. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
- "Area: Chorleywood CP (Parish)". United Kingdom Census 2001. Office for National Statistics. 2001. Retrieved 2008-06-11.
- "Suburbs score in quality of life". BBC News. 6 May 2004. Retrieved 2006-09-10.
- "The Chorleywood Bread Process, Training course, Campden and Chorleywood Food Research Association (CCFRA)".
- "Local History". Chorleywood Parish Council. Retrieved 2008-06-11.
- Davidson, Max (5 June 2002). "End of the line for a poet's scorn". London: The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2008-06-11.
- "Welcome Chorleywood House Estate". Official website. Chorleywood House Estate. 2010. Retrieved 22 March 2010.
- "David Gauke MP". Conservative Party. Retrieved 2008-06-10.
- Neighbourhood statistics - 2001 census Chorleywood Retrieved 2 September 2010