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Explore England's Past

High Street

When the Bishop of Hereford established a borough in his rural manor of Ledbury in the early twelfth century a new market place was laid out in what is now High Street.  It was originally known as Middle Town, though the term High Street was recorded as early as 1461. In some late seventeenth century wills it was called Fore Street.  Medieval market stalls gradually became permanent and by the sixteenth century at least two rows of small shops, Butcher Row and Shop Row, had encroached upon the market place, running north to south along the road. Shop Row was removed in the early seventeenth century to make room for the new Market House. Butcher Row was not finally cleared until the 1830s, having become a great impediment to the increasing traffic - stage coaches in particular.

The individual buildings of the High Street have been renovated and remodelled over the years, although most still occupy the original burgage plots laid out in the twelfth century.  The street scene has changed as architectural fashion changed.  In the eighteenth and early nineteenth century the timber framing of the Feathers Hotel and other buildings was concealed with plaster. On many buildings this has now been removed. Even on others, the underlying frame is often visible in the appearance of the upper storeys, chimneys and roofs. Assets for this page include maps showing occupiers at different dates and old photos of the street. The links below lead to detailed descriptions of the individual properties.

  • Number 1
  • Number 2
  • Number 3
  • Number 8
  • Number 9
  • Number 10
  • Number 16
  • Number 17
  • Number 18
  • Number 19
  • Number 20
  • Number 21
  • Number 22
  • Number 23
  • Number 27
  • Feathers Hotel
  • Market House
  • St Katherine's Hospital
  • St Katherine's Hospital, Master's House
  • War Memorial

Content generated during research for two paperback books 'Ledbury: A Market Town and its Tudor Heritage' (ISBN 13 : 978-1-86077-598-7) and 'Ledbury: People and Parish before the Reformation' (ISBN 13 : 978-1-86077-614-4) for the England's Past for Everyone series

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