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Bishop's Stortford
Windhill.jpg
Looking down Windhill towards the town Centre
Bishop's Stortford is located in Hertfordshire
Bishop's Stortford
Bishop's Stortford
Population 41,088 (2020)
OS grid reference TL495215
Civil parish
  • Bishop's Stortford
District
  • East Hertfordshire
Shire county
Region
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town Bishop's Stortford
Postcode district CM22, CM23
Dialling code 01279
Police Hertfordshire
Fire Hertfordshire
Ambulance East of England
EU Parliament East of England
UK Parliament
  • Hertford and Stortford
List of places
UK
England
Hertfordshire
51°52′19″N 0°10′21″E / 51.8720°N 0.1725°E / 51.8720; 0.1725

Bishop's Stortford is a historic market town in Hertfordshire, England, just west of the M11 motorway on the county boundary with Essex, 27 miles (43 km) north-east of central London, and 35 miles (56 km) by rail from Liverpool Street station. Bishop's Stortford had an estimated population of 41,088 in 2020. The district of East Hertfordshire, where the town is located, has been ranked as the best place to live in the UK by the Halifax Quality of Life annual survey in 2020.

History

Edward VII driving through Bishops Stortford, October 1905
King Edward VII driving through Bishop's Stortford, October 1905

Nothing is known of Bishop's Stortford until it became a small Roman settlement on Stane Street, the Roman road linking Braughing and Colchester. The settlement was abandoned in the 5th century after the breakup of the Roman Empire.

A new Saxon settlement grew up on the site, named Steort-ford, the ford at the tongue of land. In 1060, William Bishop of London bought Stortford manor and estate for eight pounds, leading to the town's modern name. At the time of the Domesday Book the village had a population of around 120. The Normans built a wooden motte-and-bailey edifice known as Waytemore Castle (see below).

Only the baptismal font survives from the Norman church of St Michael's, which was rebuilt in the early 15th century and altered and restored in the 17th and 19th centuries. Its conspicuous belfry and spire were built in 1812.

Bishop's Stortford 3
St Michael's Church

Despite outbreaks of the plague in the 16th and 17th centuries, the town continued to grow, reaching a population of about 1,200.

The River Stort is named after the town, and not the town after the river. When cartographers visited the town in the 16th century, they reasoned that the town must have been named for the ford over the river and assumed the river was called the Stort.

After 1769, the River Stort was made navigable, and the town became a stop on the mail coach road between Cambridge and London.

By 1801, Bishop's Stortford was a market town, and a corn exchange had been established. while the main industry was malting. In 1842 the railway came to Bishop's Stortford. Another Victorian introduction was the opening of a hospital in 1895.

In 1901 the population exceeded 7,000. The 1901 house known as Carfield Castle was used as an officers' billet in World War I.

During World War II, Bishop's Stortford was the evacuation centre for many Britons, including Clapton Girls Technology College. By 1951, Bishop's Stortford's population had reached 13,000, and growth as a commuter town continued through the second half of the 20th century. The M11 motorway, Stansted Airport, and rail links to London and Cambridge contributed to its rise in population to about 35,000 in the 2001 national census.

Of the six suburbs of Thorley, Thorley Park, Havers, Bishop's Park, St Michael's Mead and Hockerill, the last is a separate ecclesiastical parish east of the River Stort, centred around the old coaching inns, All Saints in Stansted Road and the railway station. Post-war development has enlarged the town's area further.

Incidents

CornExchange
The Corn Exchange

In March and April 1825, a number of buildings in Bishop's Stortford were set alight, causing great alarm. A committee that formed offered a £500 reward for information on the arsonist. Several threatening letters were received, warning, for example, that "Stortford shall be laid in ashes". Thomas Rees was arrested and found guilty on the charge of sending the letters, but not of arson. He was transported to Australia as a convict.

In 1935 the parish church of All Saints was destroyed by fire, and in 1937 a new church, to a spacious, light, and airy design by the architect Stephen Dykes Bower, was erected in its place. This is a Grade II listed building and the tower dominates the eastern skyline of the town. The church contains a notable rose window designed by Hugh Ray Easton and a two-manual Henry Willis II organ. Concerts are also held there.

Castle Mound

Waytemore Castle, Bishop' s Stortford - geograph.org.uk - 1764727

Waytemore began as a motte and bailey castle in the time of William the Conqueror. A rectangular great tower was added to the motte in the 12th century. It was improved in the 13th century under King John and a licence for crenellation was granted in the mid-14th century. It lost significance after the Civil War and was used as a prison in the 17th century.

Only earthworks, the large motte, and the foundations of a square tower can now be seen.

Demography

Population
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1801 2,305 —    
1811 2,630 +1.33%
1821 3,358 +2.47%
1831 3,958 +1.66%
1841 4,681 +1.69%
1851 5,280 +1.21%
1861 5,390 +0.21%
1871 6,250 +1.49%
1881 6,704 +0.70%
1891 6,595 −0.16%
1901 7,143 +0.80%
1911 8,721 +2.02%
Year Pop. ±% p.a.
1921 8,858 +0.16%
1931 9,510 +0.71%
1939 13,374 +4.35%
1951 12,772 −0.38%
1961 18,342 +3.69%
1971 22,121 +1.89%
1981 22,535 +0.19%
1991 27,874 +2.15%
2001 34,857 +2.26%
2011 37,374 +0.70%
2020 41,088 +1.06%
Source: 1801-1961 & 1939 Register Census via Vision of Britain, 1971-1991 Hertfordshire Populations 1801-1991 (Hertfordshire County Council, undated), 2001-2020 ONS Mid-Year Population Estimates

Demographic History

The earliest reliable population figure for Bishop's Stortford was 120 at the publication of the Domesday Book in 1086. Over the successive centuries the population waxed and waned as a result of economic growth and plagues, and generally only rough population estimates exist. By the time of the first nationwide census in 1801 Stortford's population had reached 2,305 spurred by the town's position on the Hockerill Turnpike and the canalisation of the River Stort. Steady growth continued over the coming decades as the railways spurred industrialisation. Population growth averaged 1.12% per annum through to 1911 and the advent of World War 1. Inter-war growth averaged 1.54% per annum. Stortford's population exceeded the county town of Hertford in the 1961 census, even though Stortford's average population growth slowed to 1.39% between World War 2 and 2020. Sources of population growth have been predominantly natural growth and in-migration, but on a number of occasions the boundaries of Bishop's Stortford parish have been expanded. Most recently this occurred in 1992 when some neighbouring parts of Essex were moved into the town and in 2018 when homes were moved into Stortford from neighbouring Thorley Parish. In 2020 Bishop's Stortford was the largest town in East Herts.

Ethnicity and nationality

At the 2011 census, 93.6% of the population of Bishop's Stortford described themselves as white, which was lower than the 96.2% recorded in the 2001 census. The number of people describing themselves as having a white background in 2011 was significantly higher than the England aggregate of 85.4%, but slightly lower than the overall East Hertfordshire figure.

Ethnic group, 2011 census
Bishop's Stortford, % East Hertfordshire, % England, %
White 93.6 95.5 85.4
Mixed/multiple ethnic groups 2.2 1.6 2.3
Asian/Asian British 2.9 1.9 7.8
Black/African/Caribbean/Black British 1.0 0.7 3.5
Other ethnic group 0.4 0.3 1.0

The proportion of Bishop's Stortford residents reporting having been born in the United Kingdom was 87.8%, and was only slightly higher than the English average of 86.2%. Stortford recorded a significantly higher proportion of European Union-born residents that either East Herts or England. The number of UK-born residents in 2011 was down from the 92.4% recorded in 2001.

Country of birth, 2011 census
Bishop's Stortford, % East Hertfordshire, % England, %
United Kingdom 87.8 92.0 86.2
Ireland 1.1 0.8 0.7
Other EU 5.3 3.0 3.7
Other countries 5.8 4.3 9.4

Housing

The number of occupied dwellings in Bishop's Stortford rose from 13,733 in 2001 to 14,920. In Stortford 3.0% of properties were recorded as empty in 2011, compared with 4.3% across England. Overall, the dominant type of housing are detached and semi-detached housing, although the proportion of flats has grown from 13.0% in 2001 to 17.6% in 2011. The proportion of flats is well below the English average of 22.1%

Dwellings By Type, Census 2011
Bishop's Stortford East Hertfordshire England
Number % Number % Number %
All Dwellings 15,377 100 58,356 100 23,044,097 100
Occupied Dwellings 14,920 97.0 56,577 97.0 22,063,368 95.7
Empty Dwellings 457 3.0 1,779 3.0 980,729 4.3
Detached Houses 5,198 33.8 16,294 27.9 5,128,552 22.3
Semi-Detached Houses 4,528 29.4 17,459 29.9 7,076,395 30.7
Terraced Houses 2,940 19.1 13,397 23.0 5,642,969 24.5
Flats (Purpose Built) 2,368 15.4 9,615 16.5 3,854,451 16.7
Flats (Converted) 219 1.4 912 1.6 984,284 4.3
Flats (In Commercial Buildings) 122 0.8 562 1.0 257,218 1.1
Caravan or other mobile or temporary structure 2 0.0 117 0.2 100,228 0.4

Home ownership is high in Bishop's Stortford at 72.3% of households, which is above both the East Hertfordshire and English averages. The proportion of properties available for social rent has risen from 9.8% in 2001 to 10.1% in 2011.

Dwellings By Tenure, Census 2011
Bishop's Stortford East Hertfordshire England
Number % Number % Number %
All households 14,920 100.0 56,577 100.0 22,063,368 100.0
Owned 10,781 72.3 40,665 71.9 13,975,024 63.3
Owned outright 4,594 30.8 18,186 32.1 6,745,584 30.6
Owned with a mortgage or loan 6,187 41.5 22,479 39.7 7,229,440 32.8
Shared ownership (part owned and part rented) 226 1.5 508 0.9 173,760 0.8
Social rented 1,510 10.1 7,185 12.7 3,903,550 17.7
Private rented 2,261 15.2 7,446 13.2 3,715,924 16.8
Living rent free 142 1.0 773 1.4 295,110 1.3

Redevelopment

The town centre recently underwent changes with the demolition of a multi-storey car park and surrounding area to make way for a new town centre area and city-type apartments and penthouses on the riverside and elsewhere. Jackson Square (a modern shopping complex) was rebuilt and an extension added. The Havers estate, on the edge of the town, is being redeveloped with new houses and flats.

Rhodes Arts Complex

North side Rhodes Arts Complex Museum Theatre Bishop's Stortford Hertfordshire England
Rhodes Arts Complex theatre and museum

The Rhodes Arts Complex incorporates a theatre, cinema, dance studio and conference facilities. Situated within the complex, in the house where Cecil Rhodes was born, is the Bishop's Stortford Museum. It has a local history collection, a unique collection relating to Rhodes and the British Empire in Africa, as well as a temporary exhibition gallery.

Transport

Bishop's Stortford Station
Bishop's Stortford railway station

Bishop's Stortford owes its continued growth to developments in transport.

Rail

Bishop's Stortford railway station is on the West Anglia Main Line, and was first opened in 1842. There were 3.18 million passenger entries and exits at Bishop's Stortford in 2017/18. All trains are run under the East Anglia franchise, with most services calling at the station operated by Greater Anglia.

Greater Anglia trains provide Bishop's Stortford with a direct link southbound to Harlow, Tottenham Hale and London Liverpool Street, with many services calling at intermediate stations. A direct service to Stratford in East London also operates, which calls at most intermediate stations.

Northbound services link Bishop's Stortford to Cambridge, and at certain times, to Ely and King's Lynn.

Stansted Express services call at the station, providing Bishop's Stortford with a direct link to Stansted Airport. Southbound services call at Tottenham Hale, which can be reached in under 30 minutes, and Liverpool Street station.

With the City of London under one hour away, Bishop's Stortford railway station places the town in the London commuter belt, but Transport for London's Oyster Cards are not valid for travel to Bishop's Stortford.

Epping tube station on the Central line is about 12 miles (19 km) away from Bishop's Stortford.

Bishop's Stortford is one of the 42 locations bidding for the headquarters of Great British Railways.

Road

The M11 motorway passes to the east of Bishop's Stortford. Junction 8 links the motorway to the town, and the M11 carries traffic from Bishop's Stortford directly to Cambridge, Harlow and London. As the road passes the town, Bishop's Stortford falls in the M11 corridor for innovation.

The A120 runs east–west along the northern edge of the town. To the west, the A120 meets the A10 at Puckeridge (for Hertford or Royston). To the east, the A120 passes Stansted Airport en route to Braintree, Colchester, the A12 and Harwich.

Other key routes in the town include:

Air Pollution

East Herts District Council monitors nitrogen dioxide (NO2) levels at Hockerill Junction in the town centre. There are four diffusion tubes around the junction for air quality monitoring. In 2017, three out of four tubes failed to meet the UK National Objective of 40μg/m3 (micrograms per cubic metre):

NO2 levels at
Hockerill Junction
(2017 average)
Location NO2 concentration
(μg/m3)
Stansted Road 36.0
Hockerill Street 41.3
Dunmow Road 45.6
London Road 56.3

Air

Stansted Airport is to the east of the town, with rail and bus links to Bishop's Stortford. Stansted serves over 200 destinations globally.

Bus and coach

The town is on the Arriva Shires & Essex bus network. Buses 309, 508, 509 and 510 connect the town to Stansted Airport. Buses 508, 509 and 510 all terminate to the south in Harlow.

Other key routes include the 301 to Saffron Walden, the 351 to Hertford, and the 386 to Stevenage (via Letchworth). There are further routes to rural destinations in Hertfordshire and Essex.

Cycling

Bishop's Stortford is served by cycle routes on regional networks and the National Cycle Network.

National Cycle Route 11 is an incomplete cycle route which will run through the town centre. Completed sections of the route currently pass through Harlow, Sawbridgeworth, Stansted Mountfitchet and Cambridge. The section between Sawbridgeworth and Bishop's Stortford is in development, but when completed, the route will provide a direct, non-stop connection from Bishop's Stortford to the Lea Valley (southbound) and King's Lynn (northbound).

National Cycle Route 16 passes just to the northeast of Bishop's Stortford. The route is segregated from traffic, running non-stop to Great Dunmow. The route continues east on on-road and off-road routes to Braintree and Witham.

The Bishop's Stortford Circular Ride is a recreational cycle route on country lanes to the north of the town. The route begins and ends on Northgate End in the town centre. It passes through Patmore Heath, Stocking Pelham, Brent Pelham, Little Hormead, Braughing and Albury.

The River Stort towpath is a shared-use path which begins in Bishop's Stortford. Running parallel to the river, the path links the town directly to Sawbridgeworth and Harlow, and eventually to the River Lea towpath towards Hertford, or Tottenham and London's East End. Parts of the towpath carry NCR 11. The route is maintained by the Canal and River Trust.

Leisure and entertainment

Sports

Semi-professional football team Bishop's Stortford F.C. were formed in 1874, and play at Woodside Park in the town. Currently members of National League South, the sixth tier of the English football pyramid, the club have won two national titles - the 1973–74 FA Amateur Cup and the 1980-81 FA Trophy, the first club to win both competitions. Bishop's Stortford Swifts, who play in the Essex Olympian Football League, are also based in the town. They play at Silver Leys, the home of Bishop's Stortford Rugby Football Club, who play in National League 2 South, the fourth tier of English rugby.

Bishop's Stortford Cricket Club play their home matches at Cricket Field Lane, which is also a home venue for Hertfordshire County Cricket Club. Hockerill Cricket Club play at their ground on Beldams Lane which they share with Bishop's Stortford Running Club. BSRC supports road running and cross-country running.

Bishop's Stortford Hockey Club share the Cricket Field Lane clubhouse with the cricket club and have 10 senior sides – 6 men's and 4 ladies' – along with a junior section. The club has a number of former international players still involved with coaching or playing, including Rob Clift (gold medalist), in addition to a number of senior members who still represent their country at Masters level.

Public sports facilities including the Grange Paddocks swimming pool and gym, a tennis club, a squash club, and a golf club.

Youth organisations

The town is home to various youth organisations and youth groups, including an Army Cadet Force detachment and an Air Training Corps Squadron. GAP Youth Group is affiliated with St James the Great Church in Thorley.

Live music

Rhodes Arts Complex is the town's largest live music venue. A recipient of a National Lottery grant in 2006, the venue hosts both local and international artists, including Midge Ure, The Beat, Ade Edmondson.

Stortford Film Festival

The Stortford Film Festival, the main sponsor of which was Hertfordshire Community Foundation, started in 2010 with a one-day showcase of short films. The 2nd Stortford Film Festival, which took place between 21 and 26 May 2011 at Rhodes Arts Complex, featured over sixty feature films, shorts, animations, documentaries and music videos from over twenty countries. The 2nd Stortford Film Festival jury featured screenwriter and author Hanif Kureishi and award-winning filmmaker Eran Creevy.

Pubs

Bishop's Stortford 2
The Black Lion

Being a market town and major coach stop between London and Cambridge, Bishop's Stortford has many large public houses within the town centre. In 1636 The Star in Bridge Street was run by John Ward. The Inn was acquired by Hawkes and Co. and bought in 1808. In the early 20th century The Star catered for cyclists, providing cycle sheds that attracted people from local villages. John Kynnersley Kirby (1894–1962), painted local scenes and portraits of local characters, painted the interior of The Star for a painting entitled 'The Slate Club Secretary'.

Other public houses included the 15th century Boars Head, 16th century Black Lion, and the Curriers, now a restaurant. Between 1644 and 1810, The Raindeer operated which is now the site of the Tourist Information Centre.

Other

Located in the town centre is Anchor Street Entertainment, a multiplex which contains a cinema, health club, bowling alley, and a number of food outlets. A concrete skateboard park and metal halfpipe is located in the town park. The town is home to two amateur dramatics groups, The Water Lane Theatre Group and Bishop's Stortford Musical Theatre Company.

Geography

Climate graph BS
Climate graph of Bishop's Stortford

Bishop's Stortford has grown around the River Stort valley, with the town centre lying about 60 metres above sea level, rising to over 100 metres above sea level on the eastern and western margins of the town.

Being in the southeast, the town enjoys a warmer climate than most of Britain and has some of the hottest summers in Britain; it is also one of the driest places in the country. Temperatures may sometimes reach the mid-30s Celsius in the summer. Snow is often seen in the winter months because the town is near to the east coast, where cold, moist air is brought in from the North Sea and cold fronts from northern Europe. In recent years there has been up to three inches of snow early in the year which has resulted in minor disruption to transport and caused some schools to close for several days. However, the snow tends not to persist in any noticeable quantity.

Water for the town is supplied by Veolia Water Central. The water is classed as very hard with over 345 mg/l of minerals and 0.225 mg/l of fluoride.

Climate

Bishop's Stortford, along with the rest of Britain, has a temperate maritime climate, with cool summers and mild winters. The nearest weather station for which averages and extremes are available is Stansted Airport, about 2.5 miles (4.0 km) due east of Bishop's Stortford's town centre. Located at over 100m, the weather station, and parts of Bishop's Stortford in general are marginally cooler throughout the year than the Cambridgeshire area to the north or the London area to the south. Nonetheless, Bishop's Stortford is still warmer than the English average.

The highest temperature recorded at Stansted was 35.0 °C (95.0 °F) during the August 2003 heatwave. In an average year the hottest day should reach 28.8 °C (83.8 °F), and 12.3 days will record a temperature of 25.1 °C (77.2 °F) or more. The lowest temperature recorded at Stansted was −14.7 °C (5.5 °F) during December 1981. Notably cold minimum temperatures tend not to occur due to the lack of higher terrain meaning little cold air drainage occurs. The average annual coldest night should fall to −7.6 °C (18.3 °F), with 47.3 air frosts being recorded in an 'average' year.

Typically, the Bishop's Stortford area will receive an average of 622mm of rain during the course of the year. 1mm or more of rain will be recorded on 114.7 days of the year.

Temperature averages refer to the period 1971-00, rainfall averages 1961–90.

Climate data for Stansted, elevation 101m, 1971–2000, Rainfall 1961–1990
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 6.5
(43.7)
6.9
(44.4)
9.8
(49.6)
12.2
(54.0)
16.1
(61.0)
19.0
(66.2)
21.7
(71.1)
21.8
(71.2)
18.4
(65.1)
14.1
(57.4)
9.6
(49.3)
7.4
(45.3)
13.5
(56.3)
Average low °C (°F) 0.9
(33.6)
0.7
(33.3)
2.4
(36.3)
3.8
(38.8)
6.8
(44.2)
9.7
(49.5)
12.0
(53.6)
12.0
(53.6)
9.9
(49.8)
7.0
(44.6)
3.4
(38.1)
1.9
(35.4)
5.9
(42.6)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 53.97
(2.12)
39.54
(1.56)
49.31
(1.94)
46.53
(1.83)
45.95
(1.81)
50.20
(1.98)
53.37
(2.10)
56.54
(2.23)
52.66
(2.07)
55.01
(2.17)
59.50
(2.34)
59.51
(2.34)
622.09
(24.49)
Source 1: YR.NO
Source 2: KNMI

Location grid




Economy and business

Bishop's Stortford is a prosperous town. The key drivers of its growth according to the Town Wide Employment Study for Bishop's Stortford are "Stansted Airport, an excellent rail service into central London and good road links via the M11 to London, the M25 northern sub-region and Cambridge. Bishop’s Stortford is well positioned in relation to the UK’s most dynamic economies." This study also highlights Stortford's skilled population, as well as the importance of "quality of life" as an important economic asset. In addition to East Herts topping the Halifax Quality of Life survey in 2020, Stortford has been highlighted as a popular commuter town in articles in The Times and The Evening Standard.

Like the UK as a whole, Bishop's Stortford has a highly service-based economy. In the 2011 census, 84.5% of Stortford residents in employment stated that they worked in a service industry, which was higher than East Herts (81.2%) and England (81.2%). Of particular note is that 7.9% of local workers are employed in Transportation and Storage at 7.9% than the English average of 5.0%. The most significant employer in this industry is Stansted Airport, which was estimated in 2013 to employ at least 1,000 people who live in Stortford.

Employment By Industry of Bishop's Stortford Residents, UK SIC Classifications (2011 census)
Bishop's Stortford East Hertfordshire England
Number % Number % Number %
Primary Industries (A-B) 25 0.1 459 0.6 203789 0.8
Manufacturing (C) 1468 7.4 6161 8.5 2226247 8.8
Utilities (D-E) 139 0.7 566 0.8 315362 1.3
Construction (F) 1,446 7.3 6,355 8.8 1,931,936 7.7
Services (G-U) 16,851 84.5 58,635 81.2 20,442,085 81.2
Wholesale and Retail Trade (G) 3,327 16.7 11,268 15.6 4,007,570 15.9
Transportation and Storage (H) 1,581 7.9 3,553 4.9 1,260,094 5.0
Accomdation and Food Service (I) 893 4.5 3,058 4.2 1,399,931 5.6
Other Services (J-U) 11,050 55.4 40,756 56.4 13,774,490 54.7
All usual resident 16-74 in employment 19,941 100 72,225 100 25,162,721 100

Commuters represent a sizeable proportion of the local working age population. The Town Wide Employment Study estimated in 2013 around 3,000 people (round 15% of those in employment) commute from Stortford by rail, with the largest proportion "in all probability" travelling into Central London. This is reflected in Stortford in the 2011 census having a much higher proportion of workers in managerial and professional occupations than the national average, as shown in the table below.

Employment By Industry, UK SIC Classifications (2011 census)
Bishop's Stortford East Hertfordshire England
Occupations Number % Number % Number %
All usual resident 16-74 in employment 19,941 100.0 72,225 100.0 25,162,721 100.0
Managers, directors and senior officials 2,682 13.4 10,639 14.7 2,734,900 10.9
Professional 4,058 20.4 14,636 20.3 4,400,375 17.5
Associate professional and technical 3,056 15.3 11,160 15.5 3,219,067 12.8
Administrative and secretarial 2,377 11.9 8,968 12.4 2,883,230 11.5
Skilled trades 1,776 8.9 7,589 10.5 2,858,680 11.4
Caring, leisure and other service 1,839 9.2 5,740 7.9 2,348,650 9.3
Sales and customer service 1,546 7.8 4,345 6.0 2,117,477 8.4
Process plant and machine operatives 979 4.9 3,573 4.9 1,808,024 7.2
Elementary 1,628 8.2 5,575 7.7 2,792,318 11.1

Bishop's Stortford itself has a strong internal economy, with an estimated 16,985 people employed within the town boundaries. There are 329 businesses established in the town centre (as of 2018) represented by the Bishop's Stortford Business Improvement District (BID). There is also a Bishop's Stortford Chamber of Commerce.

Stortford is considered the Principal Town Centre in East Herts by East Herts District Council's District Plan, serving as a destination for visitors from beyond the town. There is both an indoor shopping centre, Jackson Square, and a traditional high street running along the axis of South Street, Potter Street and North Street, as well as the adjoining streets. The town has a twice weekly market and a monthly farmers market run by Bishop's Stortford Town Council.

Estimated Employment in Bishop's Stortford (Usual Place of Work), UK SIC Classifications
Industry 2020 %
Agriculture, forestry & fishing (A) 0 0
Mining, quarrying & utilities (B,D and E) 35 0.2
Manufacturing (C) 800 4.7
Construction (F) 1000 5.9
Motor trades (Part G) 700 4.1
Wholesale (Part G) 700 4.1
Retail (Part G) 2500 14.7
Transport & storage (inc postal) (H) 350 2.1
Accommodation & food services (I) 1250 7.4
Information & communication (J) 800 4.7
Financial & insurance (K) 600 3.5
Property (L) 350 2.1
Professional, scientific & technical (M) 1750 10.3
Business administration & support services (N) 1750 10.3
Public administration & defence (O) 100 0.6
Education (P) 1750 10.3
Health (Q) 1750 10.3
Arts, entertainment, recreation & other services (R, S,T and U) 800 4.7
Total 16,985 100

Education

Bishop's Stortford schools regularly appear with rankings of the best schools in the country, with Hockerill Anglo-European College, Herts and Essex High School, Bishop's Stortford High School frequently being top performers in the Sunday Times Schools Guide Hertfordshire County Council is the education authority for the state schools in Bishop's Stortford, and is responsible for admissions.

All of the state primary schools in Bishop's Stortford have nurseries attached, while all of the state secondaries have sixth forms. Bishop's Stortford High School and Herts and Essex High School are a single sex boys and girls school, respectively, from years 7-11 but both have mixed-sex sixth forms. There is also an independent school, the Bishop's Stortford College, which covers the whole educational spectrum from ages 4 to 18.

There are no further education or higher educational institutions in Bishop's Stortford. However, nearby educational options include Stansted Airport College, Harlow College, Hertford Regional College, and Cambridge Regional College.

Schools
State Nursey and Primary Schools All Saints C of E Primary and Nursery School, Avanti Meadows Primary School (opening September 2022), Hillmead Primary School, Manor Fields Primary School, Northgate Primary School, St Joseph's Catholic Primary, St Michael's C of E VA Primary, Summercroft Primary School, The Richard Whittington Primary School, Thorley Hill Primary School, Thorn Grove Primary School, Windhill21
State Secondary Schools Avanti Grange (opening September 2023), Birchwood High School, Bishop's Stortford High School, Herts and Essex High School, Hockerill Anglo-European College, St Mary's Catholic School
Private Shools Bishop's Stortford College

Notable people

CecilRhodes
Cecil Rhodes
  • Cecil Rhodes, (1853–1902) as the son of the vicar of St Michael's Church, was the effective founder of the state of Rhodesia (now Zambia and Zimbabwe), and of the De Beers diamond company and the Rhodes Scholarship.
  • Walter Gilbey, a businessman, wine merchant and philanthropist.
  • Caroline Spelman, Conservative MP and former cabinet minister, was born in Bishop's Stortford and attended the Hertfordshire and Essex High School.
  • Sam Smith (born 1992), an English singer/songwriter, winner of the 2014 BRIT Critics' Choice Award and BBC's Sound of 2014, attended St Mary's Catholic School.

Images for kids

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Bishop’s Stortford para niños

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