Sunday, 18 December 2016

M25 Ridge Hill


Post to the west Salisbury Hall
Post to the north Coursers farmland
Post to the south Rapley Park

Post to the east Redwell Wood

M25
This section of the M25 was originally the A6 itself adapted from what was Telford’s St. Albans Road.  On the A6 A dual carriageway bypass was built around 1970, and this section became the M25 in 1986.

Old St. Albans Road
This is a pathway between Rectory Lane and Ridge Hill. Mentioned from 1220 the old road to St. Albans followed a tortuous course . It was often flooded and in need of repair. A new road was built the east to carry the A6 and in 1965 it was decided to close the old road to motor vehicles to stop them joining the A6 trunk road. In time it was difficult to see the old road at all. It has now been improved by the County Council.

Redwell Wood Farm
Redwell Wood Farm.The farm buildings and surrounding area support a number of businesses of various sorts as well as farm use and livery. There have been proposals for other uses including a composting facility and a solar panel farm. There is a prominent silo
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Rectory Lane
Shenley Lodge. This is an 18th later used as a health resort. It was extended in the late 19th and early 20th. It was used as a land army hostel in the Second World War. Post Second World War; it was the home of double-agent and gangster, Eddie Chapman. It is now a private fee paying school
Manor Lodge School. This is a fee paying private primary and ‘prep’ school. It opened in 1992 and has caters for over 400 children over this time. The main school building was Shenley Lodge but there are now extensions and other building including a refectory and a sports
Ridgehill Stable and Riding School
Sign post on a small island of grass
Post Box. This stood on the grassy island and is marked on historic maps but has been removed. Brickwork remains of the post-box can still be seen at the foot of the mound.
Steddle stones. These are used ornamentally on the entrance to the riding school
Shenley Lodge Farm. This appears to be a dairy farm
Shenley Lodge Farm Wood. This is a designated wildlife site


Ridge Hill/St.Albans Road
This is what was the St.Albans Road, following the line of the pre-Telford Holyhead Road, which is the route of the M25 and which crosses the old road on Ridge Hill. The section of road from Barnet to South Mimms, completed in 1828, followed a fairly straight line to Ridge Hill.  At the beginning of the 20th the old turnpike had become a green sunken track, but most of it was then repaired and tarred. Raised on an embankment at times over 30 feet higher than the original road, the present road is one carriageway of the 1970 trunk road, running alongside the M25.Tthe north carriageway disappeared when the huge embankment was created to carry the motorway.
The St. Albans Turnpike Trust was established in September 1715, by Private Act of Parliament. The original route began at South Mimms through London Colney to St. Albans. It was the oldest and longest-lived turnpike trust in the county. In 1807 the road between Ridge Hill and South Mimms was straightened and widened and there were plans to lower Ridge Hill itself. It was later decided to avoid it and hence in 1818-1820 the Telford road was built.
Wagon and Horses. This was bought out in 1903 and became the first Trust House with an ex-policeman as manager. The idea was to provide a refreshment house which was not tied to a brewery and thus could provide drinks of all sorts. It was demolished for the motorway.
Packhorse Cottages. Demolished. They stood at the corner of Blackhorse Road and Ridge Hill.
Milestone. South side of the road.


Sources
British Listed Building. Web site
Hertsmere Council. Web site
Historic England. Web site
Manor Lodge School. Web site
Patchetts Green Bridleway Trust. Web site
Randall and Hopkirk (deceased). Web site
Webster. Great North Road
WW2 People’s War. Web site

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