Waltham Cross

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Waltham Cross is the most southeasterly town in Hertfordshire, England. It is 12 miles from the City of London and immediately north of the M25 motorway, forming part of the Greater London Urban Area and London commuter belt. Part of Waltham Cross is located within Greater London.

It is bordered by Greater London to the south and Essex to the east. It is located south of Cheshunt, west of Waltham Abbey and immediately north of the London Borough of Enfield, with the southern section of the town bordering the M25 motorway and Freezywater. Although located just outside Greater London, the town forms part of the Greater London Urban Area. The Waltham Cross post town includes some northern sections of Enfield, including the Holmesdale Estate.

Waltham Cross formed part of the ancient parish of Cheshunt in the Hertford hundred of Hertfordshire. It formed part of Cheshunt Urban District from 1894 to 1974. In April 1974 the town together with Cheshunt and the Hoddesdon urban district councils merged to form the Borough of Broxbourne. The town takes its name from the Eleanor Cross which stands in its centre.

At the centre of the town is one of the three surviving medieval Eleanor Crosses, a memorial commemorating the over-night resting place of Queen Eleanor’s coffin on its processional journey from Lincoln to Westminster Abbey in 1290. The cross is hexagonal in plan,in three stages. The main stage has three statues of the Queen, each standing in a niche under a canopy, while the other three faces have a niche bisected by a buttress. The original sculptures were by Alexander of Abingdon. These have been replaced in the course of restoration,but one of the originals can be seen on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

The monument was surveyed by the Society of Antiquaries of London who, advocating its conservation, printed and illustrated the results in the pages of Vetusta Monumenta. in 1721. However, restoration did not take place until 1832, when extensive rebuilding was carried out under WB Clarke. A further major restoration was carried out in 1885-92, and yet another in 1950-53.

The High Street is spanned by a gantry sign supporting four sculpted swans. It was originally the sign of the since- demolished Four Swans (or “Swannes”) public house. The present sign is a replica erected in 2007.

Victorian novelist Anthony Trollope lived at Waltham House, Waltham Cross for 12 years between 1859 and 1871, where he wrote twenty-six novels and entertained his illustrious London friends. His home was demolished in 1936 and on the general site now stands the Moon and Cross, a J D Wetherspoon public house, decorated with a literary theme.

The town centre includes the pedestrianised High Street with a mix of chain stores, independent shops and banks; a covered shopping mall and the Fishpools department store which has been in the town since 1899. A general market is held on Wednesdays and Fridays; there are occasional French and farmers’ markets.

The Borough of Broxbourne at Park Plaza is home to the world’s largest printing plant, which produces publications for News International including The Sun, The Times and formerly the News of the World. Employing 200 people on a 23-acre (93,000 m2) site to produce 86,000 newspapers per hour on each of its twelve printing presses (a total capacity of over 1,000,000 newspapers per hour), the plant cost £187 million (part of a £650m initiative including plants in Knowsley, near Liverpool, and Motherwell, near Glasgow) and replaced the News International press in Wapping.

There is a large bus station, a result of Waltham Cross being just outside Travelcard Zone 6 and a place where London Buses terminate and link with services for Hertfordshire and Essex. The town is the only settlement outside London to be served by a Transport for London Night Bus – route N279.

The area is served by two train stations on different lines. Waltham Cross railway station links directly with London Liverpool Street the journey taking approximately 25 minutes or 12 minutes, stopping via Tottenham Hale. Theobalds Grove railway station also links with London Liverpool street via Seven Sisters station.

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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