June 2, 2021 No Comments

The History of Welwyn Garden City and St Albans

Posted by Mario Theodorou in Blog

Totteridge estate agents Maunder Taylor are now looking to provide a range of property services in neighbouring areas of north London and Hertfordshire. Here we look at the history and development of Welwyn Garden City and St Albans.

Welwyn Garden City – Its History…

Welwyn Garden City is unique in being both a new town and a garden city. The garden element came first; in 1920 it was one of the first settlements which was built with its own green belt which developers aren’t allowed to build on. The residential areas which do exist have a lot of tree-lined avenues and wide grass verges. Each part of the city also has ‘proportionate’ amounts of housing and industrial areas.


The new town element came second. Urban planners gave Welwyn Garden City this designation in 1948 as they looked to relocate London families who were living in bomb-damaged or poor-quality housing.

The town owes the Welwyn part of its name to the Hertfordshire village which lies about a mile to the north.

…and The Present Day

Nowadays, Welwyn Garden City is a thriving town with a population of around 50,000 people. Many residents commute into London via the A1(M) or the A414. There is also a railway station in the town centre which is about 20 miles north of Kings Cross.

However, a large percentage of the population also work in the town as a lot of major companies, including Tesco and HSBC, have head offices or major bases there. Welwyn Garden City used to be known as the Home of Shredded Wheat as Nabisco, its manufacturers, had a large presence in the town. They have since moved on but the name lives on – the former site is now a large industrial area known as the ‘Wheat Quarter’.

Maunder Taylor are the people to call if you are interested in residential block management and other legal and property-related services in Welwyn Garden City.

St Albans – Its History…

St Albans is named after the first British saint, Alban, who is believed to have lived near the site of the current city. The settlement dates back to Iron Age times and was subsequently developed by the Romans and the Anglo-Saxons.

The History of Welwyn Garden City and St Albans

Before the 20th Century, St Albans was a rural market town which also served as a major coaching stop on the route out of London. In 1877, Queen Victoria issued a royal charter which granted city status to the town and cathedral status to its Abbey, much of which dates from Norman times. Nowadays, the cathedral, pictured above, also serves as a parish church.

…And the Present Day

Today, St Albans has a population of around 57,000. Although it lies in the county of Hertfordshire, it also lies within both the London Commuter Belt and the London Built-up Area. Most of the city’s major employers are in the financial services sector – accountants KPMG, Deloitte, PricewaterhouseCoopers all have a major presence here. Supermarket Sainsbury’s also has a large distribution centre in the town.

Official figures show that half of the town’s working population commute to a workplace outside the district. The city has two rail stations – St Albans City, which links to London St Pancras, and St Albans Abbey, which is the final stop on the Watford Junction line. There are also excellent road links too – the M1 motorway runs to the west of the city, while the M25 is further south.

Other Services from Maunder Taylor

Maunder Taylor now offers residential block management services in St Albans and Welwyn Garden City and the surrounding area. If you would like to invest in this type of property in these areas, call our Potters Bar office on 01707 665 666 or click here to find out more.

We are happy to represent you, whether you are part of a resident management company, a Right to Manage company, a freehold company or an investor landlord. Our other services include managing commercial property, rent reviews and lease renewals, and property insurance.