Formerly part of Watford Parish



Leavesden Woods Avenue, Watford

Valentine Card 60963 JV

Negative date 1908, card posted 1910. Also known in monochrome.

LEAVESDEN is 3 miles north from Watford and is an ecclesiastical parish formed in 1853 from that of Watford, in the Western Division of the county, Watford Union, petty sessional division, county county district and rural deanery and in the archdeaconary and diocese of St Albans.

The Church of All Saints, situated at Garston, is a flint structure with Bath stone dressings, in the Early English style, built in the year 1853 at a cost of about 3,300, chiefly contributed by the late Arthur Currie esq. from designs by the late Sir Gilbert Scott R.A. on a site given by Thomas Clutterbuck esq. of Micklefield Hall, Croxley Green: it consists of chancel, nave, south aisle, south porch and an embattled western tower with shingled spire containing 1 bell: the east stained window is a memorial to Arthur Currie esq. of High Elms, 1875, and there is another to Miss Ellen Louisa Hay Currie, 1857; there is also a brass to Arthur Currie, son, and to the daughter of Leonard Currie esq. of Bromley, Middlesex and Tunbridge Wells, Kent: there are 316 sittings, 240 being free. The register dates from the year 1853. The living is a vicarage, yearly value from tithe rent-charge 116, with 5 acres of glebe and house, in the gift of the vicar of Watford and held since 1855 by the Rev. Edward William Newcombe M.A. of Balliol College, Oxford.

There is a small Baptist chapel at Leavesden Green.

The Grove, the seat of the Earl of Clarendon, is a substantial edifice of red brick, built by Thomas, first Earl Clarendon of the Villiers family, in 1780; greatly altered about 1780 and added to by the later Earl; the chief interest of the mansion consists in the magnificent collection of portraits made by Sir Edward Hyde kt. Earl of Clarendon and Lord Chancellor in the reign of Charles I. arranged in a suite of rooms on the south front of the house, but forming only a part of the original collection; the house stands in a beautifully timbered park, well stocked with deer: the park and grounds contain about 250 acres.

The Metropolitan Asylum, for pauper imbeciles, is a building of white brick, erected in 1869 and stands on elevated ground about 4 miles from Watford; it will hold 2,000 and contains beds for 900 males and 1,100 female, the cost per head for maintenance and clothing being 7d. per day and the cost per bed, including purchase of land, is 89 4s. 10d.: the area devoted to the use of the institution is 85 acres, of which the building cover 18 acres.

St Pancras Parish Schools at Leavesden Woodside, near Watford, built in 1870, are for the reception of pauper children and have now 400 boys and above 250 girls and infants who receive a plain education and are subsequently sent out, the boys as apprentices, many entering the army and navy as musicians, while the girls are trained for and provided with places as domestic servants; the institution occupies a site of about 37 acres.

The Earl of Essex is the principal landowner.

The population of the parish in 1881 was 3,643, including 2,085 in the Metropolitan District Asylum and 639 in St Pancras Workhouse schools. ...

Metropolitan Asylum, Henry Chapman, clerk; Henry Case, medical superintendent; Francis Henry Walmsley M.D. & Charles Theodore Ewart M.D. assistant medical officers; Rev J.R.B. Watson T.A.K.C.L chaplain; Joshua Walker, steward and engineer; Mrs Caroline van Buren, matron.

Kelly's Directory for Hertfordshire, 1886 (CD)

Ganders Ash, Leavesden, Watford, Herts - by Wright
Ganders Ash, Leavesden - postcard circa 1905

By Wright of Leavesden


All Saint's Church

The Grove

Grove School


Metropolitan Asylum

St Pancras Parish Schools

Grand Junction Canal


Selected Answers

Post Office Rifles at

 Leavesden Asylum, 1914-5

BLANDFORD, Leavesden Asylum, Late 19th century
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