Heritage Gateway

Online access to Hertfordshire archaeological records

Thousands of archaeological records held by Hertfordshire County Council and St Albans City and District Council have been amalgamated and can now be accessed online through the national Heritage Gateway website at www.heritagegateway.org.uk.

The Hertfordshire Historic Environment Record (HHER) and the St Albans Urban Archaeological Database hold information on archaeology within the county as a whole and on the historic core of St Albans in particular. This includes information about archaeological work that has taken place as well as individual ‘find-spots’ and artefacts. Until now, the two authorities have held the records separately.

While the records have always been fully accessible to members of the public, with the information now available through the Heritage Gateway website, anyone can log on and explore the records online.

Over 14000 records

The HHER is the definitive source of information on Hertfordshire’s historic environment. It contains more than 14000 records on archaeological sites and find-spots, along with buildings and landscapes of historic significance. Among them are Stone Age and Bronze Age sites, nationally important late Iron Age and Roman remains and many medieval moated sites.

It also contains information on the county’s historic parks, timber farm buildings, pioneering 20th century architecture from the Garden Cities and New Towns, and Second World War remains. On top of that, it maintains an archive of over 2000 unpublished fieldwork reports, together with local journals, publications and photographs, including over 3000 aerial photographs – and members of the public can arrange to visit County Hall, or St Albans District to see these.

Includes St Albans Urban Archaeological Database

The St Albans Urban Archaeological Database focuses more closely on the archaeology of the historic city of St Albans, including Roman and pre-Roman Verulamium and the medieval Abbey and town, with records going up to AD 1600.

“Increasingly, new technology is giving us the opportunity to make our records more widely available – and to work more closely with other organisations working in the same field,” said County Councillor Stuart Pile, Executive Member for Highways, Transport and Rural Affairs. “This is an exciting development which will be a great advantage to anybody, anywhere, who wants to search the vast array of records available on archaeological sites, finds and research in the county.”

Cllr Melvyn Teare, portfolio holder for culture and heritage at St Albans City and District Council, commented: “It is a great opportunity for people to access information about Roman Verulamium and I would encourage an many people as possible to use the Heritage Gateway site.”

[Published in May 2009]

‘The Heritage Gateway is managed by Historic England in partnership with ALGAO and IHBC. The website provides access to local and national records on the historic environment including the following resources:

      • Local authority records from approximately 60% of England’s Historic Environment Records (HERs)
      • National records from the National Heritage List for England including listed buildings and scheduled monuments
      • The National Record of the Historic Environment (PastScape)
      • Records from the National Trust Historic Buildings Sites and Monuments Record
      • Historic photographs of England (Viewfinder)
      • The NMR Excavation Index
      • Information of historic parks, gardens and historic landscapes (Parks & Gardens UK)
      • Designation Decision Records

You can cross search all the above resources on this website, including by using the map. Not all resources can display their results on the map, but all can be viewed in the results list. More local and national resources continue to be added to the website on a regular basis, so keep checking for updates.’  From the Heritage Gateway website.