Todd Brook – tributary to the river Stort
Todd Brook flows south west towards the Stort
Post to the east Netteswellbury
Post to the west Hare Street
This was laid out as set out in
Gibberd’s overall plan. the “Chief
Shopping Area” to be in the centre with “Civic Squares” and council offices in
the south of the centre focussed and local activities around Market Square to
the north. Now much of the original street structure has been removed
Seen as a unifying element in the original
Redstone House restricts the
original links with the Town Centre South as seen in the original plan
Obelisk by Gibberd,
concrete faced with Portland stone, erected in 1980 to commemorate the building
St. Pauls Church. Harlow’s main parish church built in 1957-9
to the designs of Humphreys and Hurst. It is in brown stock brick with lots of
windows. A covered way goes over a platform
to a bell tower and wayside pulpit. The bells in the tower were brought from a
bomb-damaged East London church. Inside it is all bright colours, with Furniture
and fittings by Reginald Hurst. The Binns organ came from Monmouthshire and was
rebuilt in 1967. There is a 16th sculpture of the virgin and other
artistic elements including a Mural by John Piper his first mosaic. It was designed
to be able to compete with surrounding tower blocks and big buildings. It is joined with St. Marys church Little
College. Harlow Technical College was originally sited near
the Town Hall. It was originally West
Essex College of further education, and was built between 1957 and 1968. It became an area technical college and was
renamed and began to expand into neighbouring buildings. It has since moved to
a new campus. Housing has been built on the old college site.
Harlow Central Library
Beaufort House. Job Centre and other Government offices
Housing on the site of Harlow College.
Northbrook Sports field
Trinity United Reform Church. Opened 1954
Northbrooks House now an adult training centre. Former
Veteran cedar tree beside Northbrooks
Toddbrook House now a veterinary surgery. This was Oldhouse Farm and has a 17th stair and turret
Synagogue. Harlow’s Jewish Community dates to the 1950's. In 1966 a Terrapin
prefabricated building was erected in two days and in 1987 a new building was
The Golden Swift, pub
Opened in 1981. The centre was provided under Gibberd’s plan for which he was consultant
and is a good example of an early British example of a large indoor shopping
mall. Now owned by Great Portland Estates
New road introduced outside of Gibberd’s master plan to allow
for serving of shops
William Aylmer, Wetherspoon's pub. Built in 1958, Alymer
House is named from a family who lived at Moor Hall, the earliest known member
of which was William Aylmer, in the 14th
Hare Street Primary School. Built in the 1950s.
Meadows Children’s Centre
Harlow Leisure Zone. Newly built.
Netteswell Plantation. Woodland with a stream, and willow
Heliport. Opened in 1955.
Originally it was a level grass in an "L," each arm being
100ft by 150ft with a concrete raft in the centre of each arm. There were no
buildings and no landing fees are being charged. It was opened by Royal Air Force Marshall Lord Douglas of Kirtleside, arriving in a B.E.A. Bristol
Sycamore. It is rarely used.
Harlow Magistrates court
Odeon cinema. Rank’s first new cinema after the war which opened in 1960. It was
designed by T. P. Bennett & Son. In 1987, it closed for tripling and the
rear stalls were converted into two small cinemas. It was refurbished in 2001 but
was closed in 2005.
Playhouse Theatre. In 1957, a Theatre Working Party was set
up but it was only in 1970 that a foundation stone was laid by Jennie Lee,
Minister for the Arts. The theatre belonged, as it still does, to Harlow
Council. The Box Office (a hut which stood where Iceland is now) opened in
1971, and The Playhouse opened with a Gala Show starring, Lulu.
The area of the town centre
The Water Gardens
The Water Gardens was designed by
Gibberd with Gerry Perrin of Harlow Development Corporation Architect’s
Department in 1958/59. However they have been greatly changed by the
redevelopment of the town centre and the demolition of Gibberd’s Town Hall. It is
sited on the highest part of the area and the Town Hall tower was a focus. The gardens
were three parallel terraces with canals, fountains and ponds. The south side
of the square open up views of the Essex countryside. Two 250 yard canals were
at the top with fountains and sculptures below. The retaining wall was in blue
mosaic with seven concrete ‘lions head’ bas reliefs designed by William
Mitchell in 1963 and through them water flowed into the lower canal. Seven
smaller pools were below this surrounded by hedges. Rodin’s Eve, was put here
in 1966, Bronze Cross by Henry Moore in 1963, Hebe Comerford’s Bird in 1985 and
Elisabeth Frink’s Boar 1954 albeit replaced with a bronze. The whole area however
is being filled up with shops and restaurants and the like. It is now officially
described as a shopping centre.
Civic Centre built in 2004
Town Hall, Designed by Gibberd and now demolished.
Designed to strengthen the
identity of the town centre with taller buildings so there was a tower with a
rooftop observation pavilion
The Gibberd Gallery exhibition space in Harlow Civic Centre.
It in clued Harlow Council’s permanent art collection, the 'Frederick Gibberd
Collection of British Watercolours and Drawings’.
The manor of Passmores was near the Todd brook and the Netteswell
boundary. It is in Domesday and by the 12th belonged to St. Mary Overy,
Southwark. In 1200 it was held by someone
Passmores House. This was the site for Harlow Museum which
has now moved. It is now a centre for
people with a substance misuse problem.
A house of 1623 survives within the present building which was extended
in 1727, 1832 and 1921. The southern arm of a moat survives as a pond.
Outbuilding 18th Timber-framed and black weather