Area Guide: The Hertfordshire village of Abbots Langley

Abbots Langley's busy high street. Picture: Kevin Lines

Abbots Langley's busy high street. Picture: Kevin Lines - Credit: Archant

A busy village best known these days for its proximity to the Harry Potter studio tour, Abbots Langley is also ideally located for Watford, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead. We found out more about it...

Abbots Langley is an old settlement with a rich history, dating back to 1045.

It was mentioned in the Domesday Book under the name ‘Langelai’. At the time it was inhabited by 19 families and valued at £10!

Leisure

For keen Harry Potter fans, just a five minute-drive away from the village is the Leavesden studio tour – one of the most popular tourist attractions in the country. It includes a behind-the scenes tour of the film sets and props used in the making of the movies.

Leavesden Park, Abbots Langley. Picture: Kevin Lines

Leavesden Park, Abbots Langley. Picture: Kevin Lines - Credit: Archant


Lovers of green space are served well by Leavesden Country Park, which offers more than 27 hectares to explore, including a football pitch, tennis courts, a kids' play area and an outdoor gym for adults.

Abbots Langley is also home to a range of sports club, including cricket, football and bowls. 

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Transport

Kings Langley station is on the edge of the village, offering regular services into London that take about half an hour.

The village also has excellent motorway links. The M25 passes directly through the parish, and the M1 is very close, just to the east side.

The Grand Union Canal runs through the village, offering great water connections to major UK cities, such as Leicester, Birmingham, and Nottingham.

Property

Some of Abbots Langley's period homes. Picture: Kevin Lines

Some of Abbots Langley's period homes. Picture: Kevin Lines - Credit: Archant

According to Rightmove, Abbots Langley had an overall average sold price of £486,998 over the last year.

Homes currently on the market in the village include a five-bed detached house on Upper Highway for £1.25m, a £625,000 three-bed house within a former dairy farm on – appropriately enough – Dairy Way, and a one-bed ground floor flat on College Road for offers over £220,000.

Eating and drinking

The high street is lined with a diverse selection of food outlets, including four highly regarded Indian restaurants – The Noor Mahal, Abbots Tandoori, Forest of India, and Village Tandoori – plus the popular Pin Wei Chinese restaurant. 

Abbots Langley is home to a wine shop and a post office, among other amenities. Picture: Kevin Lines

Abbots Langley is home to a wine shop and a post office, among other amenities. Picture: Kevin Lines - Credit: Archant

The Royal Oak is a family-friendly pub with play equipment and a wide range of food while The Swan also offers a range of meals and a warm welcome. 

The Compasses is a traditional, family-owned pub with a large beer garden and a special claim to fame: it’s the closest pub/restaurant to the Harry Potter studio tour.

Finally, The Unicorn, which is located next to Kings Langley train station, offers live music and plenty of food options.

Famous faces

Nicholas Breakspear, who would later become Pope Adrian IV – the only Englishman to ever be Pope – was born in neighbouring Bedmond in 1100. The site where his home stood, on Breakspear Farm, is marked by a plaque. The village contains several roads named after its most famous inhabitant, as well as Breakspeare School.

Entertainer Bradley Walsh grew up in Abbots Langley and attended what is now Francis Combe Academy.

Abbots Langley also featured in hit comedy The Inbetweeners; the four lead characters' homes are on Edinburgh Drive, Cardiff Way and Whitley Close

Abbots Langley village centre. Picture: Kevin Lines

Abbots Langley village centre. Picture: Kevin Lines - Credit: Archant

Schools

There is a choice of popular primary schools in the village, including Abbots Langley School and Tanners Wood Junior Mixed and Infant School (both rated ‘good’ by Ofsted).

Nearby secondary options include the hugely popular Parmiter’s School (‘outstanding’), Kings Langley School (‘good’) Francis Combe Academy ('requires improvement') and Saint Michael's Catholic High School ('outstanding'). 

Breakspeare School (‘outstanding’) is an excellent option for children aged three to 19 with severe learning difficulties, and offers a highly individualised curriculum for all its students.

Local independent options include Abbot's Hill, which accepts girls up to age 16 and boys in its nursery, and High Elms Manor, a co-educational Montessori prep school. 

This area guide is sponsored by Frost's, who have offices in St Albans, Marshalswick, Wheathampstead and Harpenden...

This area guide is sponsored by Frost's, who have offices in St Albans, Marshalswick, Wheathampstead and Harpenden (www.frosts.co.uk/branches) - Credit: Archant


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