Although early records of Hampstead can be found in a grant by King Ethelred the Unready to the monastery of St Peter's at Westminster (AD 986) and it is referred to in the Domesday Book (1086), the history of Hampstead is generally traced back to the seventeenth century. Much luxurious housing was created during the 1870s and 1880s in the area that is now the political ward of Frognal & Fitzjohns. A lot of this housing remains to this day.
Historically, Highgate adjoined the Bishop of London's hunting estate. The bishop kept a toll house where one of the main northward roads out of London entered his land. In later centuries, Highgate was associated with the highwayman Dick Turpin. Highgate Hill, the steep street linking Archway and Highgate Village, was the route of the first cable car to be built in Europe. It operated between 1884 and 1909. Today, Hampstead and Highgate retain their village feel.
Robert Bard is an author and historian, a former pilot for Jersey European Airways, and a long time keen yachtsman who has had a continuous contact with Alderney, Guernsey and Jersey for over thirty-five years. He has written several books for Amberley Publishing, including Elstree & Borehamwood Through Time and Tyburn, the Story of London's Gallows. He lives in Elstree.