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Welham Green shown within Hertfordshire
|Population||3,639 (2001 Census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Ambulance||East of England|
|EU Parliament||East of England|
|UK Parliament||Welwyn Hatfield|
Welham Green is a village in the parish of North Mymms, Hertfordshire, England. It is situated a mile to the west of the Great North Road coaching route that used to run through the neighbouring hamlet of Bell Bar from London to York and the north. The Great North Road is now by-passed by the A1(M). Even so, Welham Green has developed into a large village over the last 20 years, helped by the 1986 opening of its own railway station between Brookmans Park and Hatfield on the East Coast Main Line. Recent housing development has portended the joining of the village with the neighbouring town of Hatfield. Some residents, including the North Mymms Green Belt Society, wishing to maintain Welham Green's character, have resisted such development.
First balloon landing in England
In the village, on the corner of Huggins Lane and Parsonage Lane, is a stone plinth marking a point close to which in 1784 (at 3.30pm on 15 September) the Italian balloonist Vincenzo Lunardi, while on the first hydrogen filled balloon flight in England, is reputed to have made his first landing, although there is reason to believe that the site was probably nearer Northaw. The plinth states that on landing Lunardi handed a cat and a dog that had accompanied him from London before re-ascending and continuing north east. According to legend, the recipient of the animals was a local woman.
The plinth reads:
Near this spot at 3.30 in the afternoon of September 15, 1784 Vincenzo Lunardi the Itialian Balloonist made his first landing whilst on his pioneer flight in the English atmosphere. Having handed out a cat and dog the partners of his flight from London he re-ascended and continued North Eastward.
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