Hitchin local area and living guide
Hitchin is a market town with a population of over 33,000, located in North Hertfordshire and north-west of Stevenage. London is 30 minutes away by train and the town is located to the west of junction 8 of the A1(M). Hitchin is still a thriving market town with Hitchin Market open each Tuesday, Friday and Saturday. This is complemented by the General Market and Antiques & Collectors Market every Friday, and a car boot and general market on Sunday.
On the last Saturday of each month there is the additional Farmers and Craft market hosted by the New Riverside Market. Hitchin hosts an annual music festival called Rhythms of the World with acts from countries as far away as China and Cuba taking part. The town has a number of sports clubs and was one of the first football clubs to complete in the first ever FA Cup. A poll in the March 2013 The Times newspaper voted living in Hitchin as the 9th best town in the UK.
There are a number of primary schools and three secondary schools in Hitchin, along with the North Hertfordshire College and Benslow Music Trust for further education. Our Hitchin office is located at 6, Brand Street and has free parking in the town.
A Spotlight on Hitchin
Nestled in the north district of Hertfordshire, Hitchin is primarily known for its countless historical boasts and status as one of England's true market towns. Though unlike so many of its kind, it seems Hitchin hasn't dwelled on the past and has been brought right up to speed with modern day living.
Hitchin is one of the two largest towns in the North Hertfordshire District with a population of approximately 33,000. The town was known to pre-historic travellers along the Icknield Way, while various buildings, utensils and coins suggest the Romans were also aware of the area.
An official existence around the eighth century AD makes Hitchin one of the oldest towns in the country, as stunning pieces of architecture like St Mary's church as well as landmarks like the cobbled square remind residents of the area's past - and of how far it's come over the years.
Indeed, the town is now geared up for modern life and ready to serve a range of prospective homebuyers, from high-flying city workers to young couples looking to secure their first property. Here's what's in it for them.
The superfast commuter service to Kings Cross has added a great deal of impetus to the town's residential growth, with this continuously boosted by London's profile. Hitchin has long been viewed as a 'commuter town' for capital workers that prefer to settle down in a place away from the hustle and bustle of the big smoke.
Serving as the junction for the branch line to Cambridge, the towns stands on the main railway line from Kings Cross to York and the North. While a typical journey into London from Hitchin only takes 30 minutes, Network Rail has built a £47 million flyover to reduce journey times even further.
The group has constructed a bridge at Hitchin in preparation for increased demand on the East Coast Main Line. This services trains between London and Cambridge, creating space for more services into the capital as well as reducing delays by nearly 30,000 minutes each year.
Alternatively, city workers always have the option of journeying down the A1 to reach London in around an hour.
Although Hitchin's public transport offering makes it easy for residents to hop on a carriage into London, many prefer to stay local on their weekends and enjoy the delights back home.
Hitchin plays host to an ever-expanding array of pubs, nightclubs and highly-regarded restaurants, with these matching just about every taste and preference imaginable. Locals will also point to the Queen Mother theatre as a fine venue for evening entertainment, while the much smaller Market Theatre never fails to send its crowds into hysterics with its 'unique' take on classics like 'Beauty and the Beast'.
Modern developments in Hitchin include vital office space and big name stores, with most situated near the Market Place. The new commercial buildings are attractively designed and provide the ideal complement to some of town centre's older pieces of architecture.
Another boast that drives people into Hitchin is its parks and open spaces in abundance. Many of the best spots for late afternoon strolls can be found along the banks of the River Hiz on the route into town - ideal for a quick stretch of the legs after work.
Priory Park's one hundred pristine acres are well used by those in the southern area of Hitchin, while Bancroft Recreation Ground is a popular meeting point for those positioned further north.
These spaces almost define what Hitchin has become known for over the years; a welcomed break from the buzz of London and a place where people can find a real sense of comfort in their surroundings.