Established in 1897
The History of Lombard House

Lombard House is Grade II* listed by English Heritage and, it is thought, was originally a 15th century hall house, extended in the early 17th century and re-fronted in the 18th century, a porch added in the early 20th century and replaced in the 1970s.

Inside the building is much altered but retains a number of 15th to 17th century features plus more modern additions.

Significant internal renovations and alterations in the 1960s, and later after a fire in 1979, have led to the open plan ground floor layout.

The grounds of Lombard House were once more substantial than today with gardens to the north around the banks of the River Lea and to the east. The Grecian urns, either side of the current front gate, are over two hundred years old and were made in Lambeth.

The wall-mounted street-light dates from 1897 when the Council provided it at the request of the Club, provided the Club met half of the cost.

It is thought that in the 15th century a Robert Mallory lived at the property which was then recorded as “Malloryes”. Later the house became locally as Lumber House – this persisting as late as the 18th century.

By the 1560s the Tooke family were in residence – the shields on the central fireplace opposite the front door, bear the arms of the Tooke and Tichbourne families, representing the marriage of William Tooke, bailiff of Hertford in 1577, to Mary Tichborne of Roydon.

The Tookes continued in residence until around 1620 after which they let the property, first to Gabriel Barber who in 1635 was made Mayor of Hertford.

Perhaps Lombard House’s most famous resident was Henry Chauncy who became bailiff of Hertford and the town`s first Recorder under the Charter of 1681, subsequently writing “The Historical Antiquities of Hertfordshire” in 1700. A wall-mounted plaque commemorates his occupation.

In the 18th and 19th Centuries the house was used as lodgings for the circuit judge. By 1810 a Mr Arthur Davies was the tenant, and by 1823 a Mrs Amelia Ann Towes rented the building to run a ladies’ boarding school in the house, a school that survived for 30 years.

In 1835 ownership moved to James Gilbertson who bought Lombard House complete with a nearby maltings and other outbuildings for the sum of £2,000. John Harrington a local maltster acquired the property in the 1860s.