Friday, 5 April 2013

Mymshall Brook - Bell Lane

Mymshall Brook
A tributary stream rises in this area and flows north and north west and then turns south west.
TL 25310 05068

The Great North Road heading north to Hatfield and the earlier road is replaced as a bypass.  The remains of road side inns and other service buildings lie along them,

Post to the west Foxes Lane

Bell Lane
This is on the line of the medieval road which was replaced by the Great North Road
Lower Farm. It was built around 1540 with a 17th back range and a 20th extension. It is timber framed with brick infill. This is said to have been the Bell Pub itself and to also have been called the Kings Head. 
The Old Bakery at the corner of Bulls Lane. This was once the Bell Bar Stores. It is now a private house
Iron Mission Hall, This was licensed in 1878 as a chapel for services and prayer meetings. It remained as such until 1939. It is now a house.
58 A1 Dairies Home Farm. They are an old established Barnet dairy. They have a circular metal water tower on site
48 Carpenter's Cottage. 17th tmber framed house
56 House once called Elm Tree Farmhouse. Built 1850s and extended later. It is also said that this was the Bell Inn, later called the Lord Melbourne, and that the Bell Bar gate would have been adjacent to it.
The Legg. Linear Wood to the south west of Bell Lane.  Fenced and walled estate boundaries and the ornamental garden planting still remains here from previous park land use.

Great North Road
The line of the medieval road is a straight course between Littleheath at Potters Bar, and Old Hatfield. At Bell Bar it meets the Great North Road. The old route is here followed by Bell Lane and it is possible to follow the old route through field and farm tracks.
The Great North Road running between Littleheath at Potters Bar and Old Hatfield has several double bends, making it nearly a mile longer. The curve north of Bell Bar is because after Hatfield Park was exchanged by James I for Theobalds,  Cecil, the new owner laid out the parkland and moved the road to get more space in the park - hence the detour.
Bell Bar was on the Great North Road halfway between Littleheath, in Potters bar, and Old Hatfield.  Here the road is crosses by the older medieval route. Bell Bar was the third turnpike gate on the Great North Road and was on Bell Lane to the south of the current road junction.
Swan Lodge. This corner brick house was the Swan Inn. It replacing an earlier posting house - The White Swan. It is now a private house. As The White Swan it was open from 8am to 10pm. and had horse drawn vehicles to take people to around the area.
The White Hart. Posting house at Bell Bar. Demolished in the late 19th
Cock O' The North. 1930s roadhouse style pub.
Dutch Nursery. This was established by Hans and Anna Henn in 1957, and moved here after their previous nursery was ruined in the winter of 1963.
Nolita.  This is an Italian restaurant run by a family with a base in Soho. The Polledri family opened a coffee bar in Soho in 1949. Following a fire in their exiting restaurant they opened this branch in 2005 calling it Nolita for North of Little Italy.

Woodside Lane
This is the abandoned old road and is a good example of how it may have looked in the past - a cleared paved way through the woods
The Firs

Sources
British Listed Buildings. Web site
Brookman’s Park. Web site
Hatfield Welwyn Council. Web site
Hertsmere Council. Web site
Nolita. Web site
Webster. Great North Road

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