Area Guide: The Bedfordshire village of Slip End
Herts Ad Property team
- Credit: Archant
Just over the border into Bedfordshire is the pretty village of Slip End.
Ideally located for both Harpenden and Luton, Slip End is a thriving community within easy reach of the neighbouring towns' many amenities.
As well as the village itself, Slip End parish is also home to the surrounding hamlets of Pepperstock, Woodside and part of Aley Green.
The village's name is an historic reference to the building works that were a major feature of the area in the 19th century. Slip is an old word for clay and End is used commonly in Bedfordshire in place names, especially for small settlements outside bigger villages. Markyate, just up the road, has a 'Slype End', which may or may not be connected.
The village church, St Andrews, is relatively new, having been built in 1889.
The first school in the village opened its doors in 1877, providing education to children aged five to 13. Located at the Pepperstock end of Front Street, the site is now filled with flats and houses named Old School Walk. It was replaced with the newly built Slip End Lower School on Rossway in 1979.
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Now known as Slip End Village School, it currently has around 160 pupils on roll aged three to 11; it was rated 'good' by Ofsted at its last inspection in 2019. The report said that "pupils are happy, safe and well cared for in this small primary school," adding: "Pupils say that bullying happens rarely. Parents and staff agree." Unusually for a state primary school, it has its own pool.
Slip End Village School currently has around 140 pupils on roll aged three to 11; it was rated 'good' by Ofsted at its last inspection in 2019. The report said that "pupils are happy, safe and well cared for in this small primary school," adding: "Pupils say that bullying happens rarely. Parents and staff agree."
The M1 runs adjacent to the village, while Luton and Luton Airport Parkway train stations are under four miles away, as is the airport itself.
The village hall, built around 1901, is a popular children's party venue. It has parking for up to 40 cars and an entertainment licence for 100 guests (dancing) or 200 (meeting).
The friendly Slip End Superstore is a licensed grocery shop on Markyate Road. It stocks a fine selection of wine, among other goods, and is open daily until 9pm.
Woodside Animal Farm on Woodside Road is popular attraction for families of young children. Kids can cuddle anything from bunnies to boa constrictors, tour the farm on a tractor and enjoy fairground rides, crazy golf and indoor soft play. There's also a café on site.
The Harpers food hall and tearooms in nearby Pepperstock is a short walk from Slip End. It stocks a range of food, including meat, fish, jams and chutneys, plus tasty home prepared meals. The licensed coffee shop has indoor and outdoor seating, so you can take your ploughman's lunch or award-winning sausage roll outdoors if the weather's obliging.
Stockwood Park is located just outside the village, across the M1. It is home to the Stockwood Discovery Centre, a free attraction with gardens, café, playground and ever-changing exhibitions. The venue is also available for hire.
Food and drink
There are two pubs in Slip End. The Rising Sun on Front Street recently came under the ownership of Wheathampstead-based brewery, Farr Brew. Not surprisingly, real ale features highly here as well as locally sourced gins and a food menu including meaty offerings as well as gluten free and vegan options.
The smart and modern Frog & Rhubarb on Church Road offers an inviting, family-friendly dining experience, with a menu including rump steak and roasted vegetable tagliatelle.
Sport and leisure
The Peter Edwards Recreation Hall and playing fields at the Luton end of the village, next to the church, has facilities, such as tennis courts and a football pitch.
There is a lively gardening club, which meets regularly, a Good Neighbour Scheme, and Slip End Photography Club always welcomes new members.
Allotments are available on the corner of New Street and Front Street.
The bulk of Slip End's housing stock is terraced cottages. According to Rightmove, properties in the village had an overall average price of £336,307 over the last year, some way off the 2018 peak of £367,381.
Homes currently on the market in the village include a three-bed end terrace with bonus one-bed annex on Front Street for offers in excess of £375,000 and a two-bed terrace on Church Road for £259,950.