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Borehamwood (/ˌbɔərəmˈwʊd/—originally spelt Boreham Wood), is a town in southern Hertfordshire, situated 12 miles (19 km) from Charing Cross, making it the closest town in Hertfordshire to Central London. It has a population of 28,546. It is within the civil parish of Elstree and Borehamwood and the London commuter belt. There is one weekly newspaper, the Borehamwood and Elstree Times. The town is perhaps best-known for its film and TV studios, commonly known as Elstree Film Studios, hence the associated with Elstree.

On of the earliest mentions of Bosci de Boreham (Wood of Boreham), is in 1188:

“In 1188 Pope Clement granted to the kitchen of the monastery the whole land of Elstree. He also gave to the Abbey the wood of Boreham for the feeding of the swine.”

In 1776, the House of Lords granted:

“An Act for dividing and closing the Common or Waste Ground, called Boreham Wood Common, in the Parish of Elstree otherwise Idletree, in the Country of Hertford.”

Up until 1909, the town was part of the ancient parish of Elstree; the two still share a local council, Elstree and Borehamwood Town Council.

From the 1920s onwards, the town became known as one of the main centres of the UK film, and later television, industries due to the presence of production studios.

Following World War II, the town’s population greatly increased, with large areas of council housing set up for displaced Londoners, many of which are now in private ownership. Fast train connections to central London have resulted in the town becoming a primarily residential suburb.

Borehamwood is currently undergoing a substantial housing transformation which has seen hundreds of new homes built over the last five years. There are currently two further developments being built and more are expected.

In addition to the studios, the town is also home to many retail shops, offices and light industry.

On the west side of Borehamwood is a railway station, Elstree & Borehamwood railway station, served by trains operated by First Capital Connect on the Thameslink route. The same railway line is used by East Midlands Trains between London St Pancras and Sheffield, although these trains do not stop.

The A1 road passes just to the east of the town, and the M25 motorway passes about 2 miles (3.2 km) north of it.

Since the 1920s, the town has been home to several film studios and many shots of its streets are included in final cuts of 20th century British films. This earned it the nickname of the “British Hollywood”. Whilst most of these studios have now closed, two still remain.

Many well-known movies including The Young Ones, Summer Holiday, Dr Zhivago, The Confessions of…. series of films,2001: A Space Odyssey, Moby Dick, The Dam Busters, 633 Squadron, The Shining starring Jack Nicholson, the first three Indiana Jones films and the first three Star Wars movies were partially filmed at the former Associated British Studios in Shenley Road. These were partly demolished in the 1980s to make way for a Tesco Extra supermarket on one side and an office block complex on the other.

The area between the supermarket and the office blocks is all that remains of the original studio, which has been much reduced in size and usefulness to production companies as a result. Elstree Studios were more recently used for the popular TV series Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? and Big Brother, as well as several major feature films. The Inspector Morse TV series’ production offices were based in the studios and, although the series was supposedly set in Oxford, several exterior locations (banks, shops etc.) were filmed in the streets of Borehamwood.

The former British National Studios off Clarendon Road referred to locally as “The Douglas Fairbanks studios” (which were later owned by Lew Grade’s ATV) are now the BBC Elstree Studios. The studios have, over the years, been home to Alfred Hitchcock’s movie Blackmail, Gerry Anderson’s TV series UFO not to mention The Muppet Show was also made there by Jim Henson, and now BBC TV’s most popular soap, EastEnders and their popular medical drama Holby City. An episode of Judge John Deed included scenes of the Tesco Extra, but with Borehamwood crossed out and Lewes written in its place. The studio has also been used for Question Time.

Several other studios including The Gate Studio and the Danziger Studios at nearby Elstree have been demolished. The MGM-British Studios complex (demolished in the early 1970s) saw the production of many well-known films such as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Where Eagles Dare and Goodbye, Mr. Chips, as well as many ITV television series including The Prisoner.

Borehamwood itself has seen filming of many series, including the ever popular Most Haunted Live on Halloween, named Nightmare on Elstree and EastEnders is filmed there. although all the buildings investigated were in Borehamwood except the Hollybush Inn, situated in nearby Elstree the McDonald’s drive-thru is what was the Red Lion pub. This pub stood opposite the Associated British Studios on Shenley Road and actors such as Robert Mitchum were often seen drinking in there.

The newer Millennium Studios is situated on Elstree Way, Borehamwood.

Adecco UK Limited had its Head Office based in Borehamwood until 2009 until it relocated to London, Birmingham and Budapest. Adecco House is still owned by Adecco but remains empty.

The UK headquarters of Pizza Hut are based within the town and, until 2003, so were the headquarters of the United Kingdom subsidiary of T-Mobile, with both being based in the office blocks standing on part of what used to be the old Elstree Studios. Regent Inns has its head office on Elstree Way. NatWest, George Wimpey, Barclays, Bradford & Bingley, DVLA and Alstom also have large offices within the town.

Borehamwood has a large shopping area called Borehamwood Shopping Park, featuring large stores such as Marks & Spencer Simply Food, Next, Outfit – which includes Burton, Dorothy Perkins, Evans and Miss Selfridge, WH Smith, Boots, and more recently JD Sports, which takes place of JJB Sports

The village of Well End has a notable pub, the Mops and Brooms, reputedly the site of a battle between travellers and village folk, although another explanation, that it commemorates mop weddings and broomstick weddings which once took place there, has also been advanced. there are 3 privately own publications that serve the area the Borehamwood Times Tried and Trusted and My Borehamwood News. The Town Cryer is the mouth piece of Borehamwood Town council

Borehamwood s twinned with Fontenay-aux-Roses, France; and Offenburg, Germany.

Note: this page is partly based on a Wikipedia page. Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. Where possible, text is being updated to original, fully referenced research. ‘Our photos’ means we took the photographs. The Street View and street map visuals are courtesy of Google.

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