Cheshunt is a modern town with a delightfully historic back story.

History

Built by the Romans, Cheshunt was well established by 1086 when the Domesday Book recorded it as “Cestrehunt”.

Its name refers to a castle, most thought to be built by the Romans but no longer in existence, according to aboutbritain.com.

At the heart of Cheshunt is the Old Pond area where there is currently a project underway to renovate Grundy Park and restore it to its "former glory".

The Borough of Broxbourne Council £1.33m scheme will see a new entrance and gardens installed as well as a cherry tree walk and an Edwardian-style seating area. Work is due to be completed in the autumn.

Great British Life: Artist's impression of Grundy Park regeneration project (c) Broxbourne Borough Council. Artist's impression of Grundy Park regeneration project (c) Broxbourne Borough Council.

The conservation area of Churchgate it is steeped in history with historical buildings such as the Cottage dating from the 17th century, number 88 Churchgate, an early 19th century Grade II listed cottage, part of the Whit Hern estate, Dewhurst School, St. Mary’s School, the listed boundary walls and Whit Hern Park, among others.

Along Goffs Lane there is the remains of the historically significant Cheshunt Great House. Built in the 15th century, the house was reputed to have been owned by Cardinal Wolsey along with many other distinguished people. With stories of ghosts, murders, secret tunnels part of the building later became a museum before it was destroyed in a fire in 1965.

The urban area covers the eastern end, east of the New River, which flows through the parish.

Cheshunt Common covers a large area to the west of the parish. According to british-history.ac.uk under the Local Government Act of 1894 the parish is governed by an urban district council of twelve members and divided into three wards: the Northern, Central and Southern Wards, known for parochial purposes as Waltham Cross, Cheshunt Street and Woodside Wards.

Notable people to have links with Cheshunt include Elizabeth I, who lived there as a princess. Also, Richard Cromwell, Lord Protector of the Commonwealth, died in Cheshunt in 1712.

The family lived at Pengelly, which was destroyed by fire in 1888, and his grandson's grave is in the local churchyard.

Cheshunt made history as the birthplace of the first monorail in 1825 which had a horse-drawn carriage on rails which transported children to school.

Great British Life: Cedars Park maze (c) Brian ThomasCedars Park maze (c) Brian Thomas

Exploring the town

There are plenty of plans afoot to renovate Cheshunt and make it a draw for visitors and residents alike.

The project to renovate Grundy Park is part of the wider Old Pond scheme planned for Cheshunt, which proposes a communal space outside the Tesco on Turners Hill.

Whether you experience it by foot or by boot, The Lee Navigation is a delightful river that runs from rural Hertfordshire into the heart of London. the pretty walking and cycling route runs the entire length of the river.

For golf fans there is Cheshunt Park Golf Course is an 18 hole, par 71, 6,635 yard course designed by Donald Hawtree in 1971 and is situated within the 232 acres of Cheshunt Park.

Cedars Park covers more than 7.5 hectares and has held Green Flag status for a number of years. There are woodland walks, formal gardens, play maze, ponds, pets' corner, play trail, an arboretum and a conservation area.

The Cedars Park café offers tasty food with locally sourced produce and fairly traded coffees and teas. Cedars Nature Centre, which is located in Cedars Park, is a lovely place to visit to see animals such as meerkats and owls as well as zorillas and tenrecs, see www.cedarsnaturecentre.co.uk.

If you are in the mood to be active head to The Laura Trott Leisure Centre, which named after the gold-medal winning Olympic track cyclist who grew up in the town. There are host of activities to enjoy.

There is also Kidmania Children’s Amusement Centre to occupy little members of the family and Jump City Trampoline Centre.

Great British Life: Cheshunt. (c) Broxbourne Borough CouncilCheshunt. (c) Broxbourne Borough Council

Shopping in the town

At The Brookfield Shopping Centre there is an M&S, fashion chain Footasylum, Flannels, New Look, River Island, Next, JD Sports and more.

On the high street there is occasion wear specialists, Gems the Dress Shop, there is the men's clothes shop Fashion shop Ladz Ragz, The Bed Gallery, Hodsons specialises in lighting and home furnishings and head to the Home Furniture Shop on the high street for unique finds.

There is Harrison’s Menswear at the Cheshunt Centre as well as fashion store Nels Belles Boutique.

Ruff Raggs Boutique is a clothing shop located at Clarendon Parade on Turners Hill.

For all your cycling needs go to Hancocks Cheshunt at 10 Cadmore Lane.

Eating and drinking

The Crocodile is a homely pub with a great garden which serves real ales, classic pub grub and tasty Sunday roasts.

Coach and Horses is inviting pub dating back to the 16th century with an array of dishes on the menu.

Shish Kitchen is a family run Turkish restaurant located in North London, Cheshunt, Waltham Cross. Offering the very best of traditional Turkish dishes, within a contemporary home away from home setting.

On Windmill Lane there is fabulous seafood, steaks and burgers served at Reyna Brasserie and Taste of Cyprus Restaurant, which offers up a range of Cypriot inspired food such as taramasalata,

tzatziki, made with yoghurt, cucumber, mint and garlic, halloumi starters and a range of kebabs.

Great British Life: Cheshunt Old Pond. (c) Broxbourne Borough CouncilCheshunt Old Pond. (c) Broxbourne Borough Council

Case study

Linda Crisp has lived in Cheshunt for 56 years and she owns and runs the popular occasion wear boutique Gems Dress Shop.

She originally moved to Cheshunt aged six and has fond memories of the place.

“I remember visiting The Old Pond as a child and everyone saying "hello". A lot of people had moved from London like us and and would stop and have a chat," reminisces Linda.

"I also have very fond memories of Cedars Park, visiting there with my sister and having photo taken by the tree that is still there, I have photos of my kids and grandkids next to the tree as well."

Linda started her business 12 years ago, specialising in prom dresses, bridesmaids dresses and jewellery.

"It's more than a business to me it’s a bolthole and a passion, I love being there. I have four disabled family members and it’s a place I come to enjoy myself," says Linda.

"I have had some lovely people through my door including the TV presenter Scarlette Douglas who came in before the Pride of Britain Awards in October last year needing a dress that evening. She loved the one I picked and I fitted it that same day. She looked incredible.