The small hamlet of Childwickbury is perhaps best known for its association with legendary director Stanley Kubrick.

The Childwickbury Estate is accessed via a grand gatehouse on Harpenden Road, and is a slice of idyllic Hertfordshire countryside with some dazzling Hollywood associations.

Herts Advertiser: Childwickbury Estate

Lying to the north of St Albans, the hamlet was the home of Stanley Kubrick, who directed films including 2001: A Space Odyssey and A Clockwork Orange.

Considered to be one of the most innovative filmmakers of all time, the director, producer and screenwriter lived at Childwickbury Manor with his third wife Christiane from 1978 until his death in 1999 at age 70.

His other screen credits include Stephen King adaptation The Shining, which was made at nearby Elstree Studios, Full Metal Jacket and Eyes Wide Shut - the latter of which starred Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman.

Childwickbury was more than just an English country home for the American Kubrick, as it also served as a workplace where he researched, wrote and edited his later films.

Kubrick died at his Childwickbury Manor home on March 7, 1999, just days after screening a cut of his final movie Eyes Wide Shut.

A private funeral service was held in the garden at his estate, with mourners including Hollywood stars Tom Cruise and his then-wife Nicole Kidman, as well as fellow director Steven Spielberg.

Christiane Kubrick, who is an artists, still lives at Childwickbury Manor, which used to host an annual arts fair until, at 90 years old, Christiane felt it was time to retire earlier this year.

Childwickbury was described as "an immaculate hamlet" by local historian Christine Aitken.

When properties come on the market they are often eye-wateringly expensive.

One, Ladygrove, sold for £4.75m in 2020, an increase of £900,000 on its 2018 selling price. 


The estate, once known as "the dwellings by the well", has a long and complex history which is still being researched and studied by historians today.

From the 13th to 19th century, Childwickbury Manor had among its owners a St Albans bailiff, an MP, the mayor of the city and the High Sheriff of Hertfordshire.

The latter two owners were members of the Toulmin family, who also provided and funded a school in the late 1850s, and built the church of St Mary's on Childwick Green in 1867.

The manor was purchased in 1883 by John Blundell Maple, of Maples Fine Furnishing in London.

He donated Clarence Park and The Sisters Hospital to the citizens of St Albans, and is interred in the family vault in St Mary's churchyard.

In around 1895, the old domestic houses on Childwick Green were pulled down, replaced and extended. 

Estate houses appeared at Shafford, Beesonend Lane, Ayres End Lane and Maple Cottages, adjacent to Harpenden Common.

Childwickbury Manor's imposing entrance lodge was built in 1897 - with its Scottish baronial style turret and wrought iron gate.

The Jacobean style Childwick Green House was built in the same year on the main entrance drive. 

St Mary's Church 

Childwick Green is home to St Mary's Church, which was designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott and commissioned by Henry Joseph Toulmin in 1867. 

Herts Advertiser: Church of St Mary

A schoolroom is adjoined to the church, where Henry and his wife taught reading and writing to the tenants of the estate.

In 1881 the eighth of the couple's 14 children was born, and the Toulmins decided they could no longer afford to live at Childwickbury so moved to The Pre in St Albans.

The Faith, Hope and Charity windows at the church's chancel are in memory of the Toulmin family and their dedicated work throughout the community.


Homes in Childwickbury, with its AL3 postcode, rarely come on the market - but when they do they're usually pretty special. At the moment there are no properties on the market.

Herts Advertiser: Childwickbury Green


Primary schools nearby include Margaret Wix, which was rated 'good' by Ofsted, and Garden Fields JMI School in Townsend Drive, which is now part of Alban Academies Trust.

Herts Advertiser: Margaret Wix Primary School

Options for secondary schools in the area include Townsend School (rated 'good') and St Albans Girls' School (rated 'outstanding). 

Herts Advertiser: 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 (Image: Frost's)