Hemel Hempstead Movie Makers Posh History

King Henry VIII to James Bond and all that.

Alan French

Editor’s note: the following originally appeared on the Hemel Movie Makers website in the Alan’s Blog segment. Hemel Movie Makers is being brought to an end in 2021.


Who is posh? No! Not Victoria Beckham! But Us! Yes folks. We Are posh. How come? Read on, in this thrilling article, and the truth will be revealed…

Hemel Hempstead Movie Makers: The Posh History

With Jubilee and Olympic fever being all the rage, it is imperative to make available to the public, the posh connections of Hemel Hempstead Movie Makers. So here goes.

Royal Hemel Hempstead Movie Makers

During the reign of Henry the 8th, this town was visited by this king. It was here that he met a girl who came from Aylesbury. The girl? Anne Boleyn. Where in Hemel Hempstead did this take place? An area known as The Lockers. As we all know, a romance broke out which benefited this town. Because in gratitude for his amourus adventures, King Henry, in 1539, granted Hemel Hempstead the status of bailiwick. This meant that the town could now have a market, which continues to this day.

This was especially important to the residents. It gave them something new to talk about. Some stated that they did not know they lived in Bailiwick, as they thought that they lived in Hemel Hempstead. There were others who knew they lived in Hemel Hempstead, but did not know what a bailiwick was. A tradition which continues today. Because I bet most people living here now do not know either.

Many centuries later Lord Mountbatten was educated in Hemel Hempstead. Where in the town? The Lockers.

Some years later, sometime during the 1960s to be precise, we met as Hemel Hempstead Cine Society. Where was one of our venues? The Lockers. Thus adding poshness to our status. We did return to The Lockers in 1977, to film an event, which in turn, was inserted in our film JUBILEE IN DACORUM.   We have also met in the Boxmoor area. This region also has royal connections.

Leverstock Green: The hub of the 2012 Olympic Games

We did meet from 1986 to 2003 at Leverstock Green Community Centre.   Leverstock Green is one of the nicest regions of Hemel Hempstead. Far superior to the Longdean estate. I mean, that estate has no pubs, no shops etc. It must be so boring. Not like Leverstock Green, which must be more posh. Because famous people have lived there. Including 007.  Mr James Bond himself. Sir Roger Moore.

Other famous people have been Cavan O’Connor, Moss Evans, Christopher Trace, William Lucas and just down in Leverstock Green Road at Cox’s Pond, William Russell of Sir Lancelot and Doctor Who fame.

It is home of The Leverstock Green Players who entertain the residents. An excellent group. Particularly since I left it and stopped performing my rock ‘n’ roll act with them.

They have some good shops and pubs in Leverstock Green. Take The Leather Bottle aka The Olde Leather Bottle for instance. This has character, and features beams which are reputed to date back to the time of The Spanish Armada.

After spending approximately a year at Leverstock Green, Hemel Hempstead Cine Society changed its name to Hemel Hempstead Movie Makers.

In 2012, the start of the Hemel Hempstead torch bearing was at dear old Leverstock. Yes, after it left St. Albans, the Olympic Torch arrived at this beautiful village. Then went down into the town centre and passed our current meeting venue The Carey Baptist Church. Well; we meet at the back of it.


So there we have it. This club has operated in areas absorbed in history and poshness. Even if some of the residents are unaware that Hemel Hempstead has a Lord of the Manor at Gaddesden House, and do not know what a bailiwick is; let alone  that they live in one. But of course, everyone in Hemel Hempstead Movie Makers knows what a bailiwick is. So there is no reason why I should inform you. That is my story and am sticking to it.

Alan French.

Useless information

When I first moved to Hemel Hempstead, I lived in Belswains Farm House.  According to a 1951 edition of the Apsley Parish magazine, Queen Elizabeth 1st stayed or hid there. Particularly if it was called  Belswick. See. I am posh as well.

I was on nodding terms with Moss Evans in The Leather  Bottle.

The name above the entrance to Leverstock Green Community Centre, was designed by Brian Harris.

I was joking about Longdean. I have visited this estate. It is very nice.

Leverstock Green Community Centre was the control centre during The Buncefield Lane Oil Depot crises.

At the film premier of our WALK INTO THE PAST, which was made in conjunction with The Hemel Hempstead History Society, a talk was given by a man who would equate to the present Lord of th Manor of Hemel  Hempstead.

Not so Useless Information

Further information for Leverstock Green, pleaserefer to http://www.lgchronicle.net/

Special information

In this case, BAILIWICK meant that Hemel Hempstead was under jurisdiction of a bailiff. You all thought I did not know. Tut!

copyright Alan French 2012.

This page was added on 24/03/2016.

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