Hereford City Heritage
The Mayor’s Chain
Perambulations of the City Boundaries
1833 Boundaries fixed by Commissioners
1870 10 and 12 May. Charles Anthony, Mayor
1876 11 and 12 May. Orlando Shellard, Mayor
1882 2 and 6 October. Thomas Llanwarne, Mayor
1890 26 and 26 September. Alfred Gurney, Mayor
1933 25 June. Bernard Powell, Mayor
1961 15 April. Percy George Brierley Powell, Mayor
These were fixed by Commissioners in 1833. The area of the city comprises 5,031 and the length of the boundaries is 17.25 miles. At times these follow the middle of main roads, for instance the A438 at Kings Acre, and a long stretch of the Roman Road along the north side of the original urban area, plus the centre of the River Wye, although at one stage this intrudes, for no apparent physical reason, into what was South Herefordshire (formerly the Hereford Rural) District Council.
The original City was defined by boundary stones around its perimeter, although those that still survive are now largely on land in private ownership. One still readily visible adjoins the exit on the Ledbury Road with a monolith on the opposite side of the A438 opposite the ‘Cock of Tupsley’ inn.
Mayors of the City have at intervals perambulated the outer limits of the City - now somewhat easier to do than when foot, horse or hand-propelled boat were the only means of readily available transport, although it has not been unusual for parts of the route to be ridden over on horseback even recently. The ceremony has acquired the title of ‘beating the bounds’ perhaps due to the custom of the Mayor to admonish youths (such as the Mayor’s son) on the stones - a practice no doubt which now would be the subject of formal complaint! It has also been usual during recent perambulations for the Mayor to commission new boundary stones, a prominent example being that in the middle of the A49 roundabout at Holmer Road.
The City Boundary
Starting on the ‘Roman Road’ at ‘Lower Veldifer’, head East along ‘Roman Road’ to the ‘Lugg Bridge’; Follow the track on the west side of the ‘River Lugg’ to a point just opposite the end of ‘Walney Lane’; Cross to the top of the rise and follow its edge around to ‘Netherwood House’; Cross ‘Ledbury Road’ into ‘Hampton Dene Road’ and turn along ‘Hollywell Gutter Lane’; Follow ‘Hollywell gutter Lane’ down to ‘Hampton Park Road’ and a short vdistance east to ‘Franchise Stone’, then south to ‘River Wye’; Continue Westwards along the river bank to the ‘Sewage Works’. The boundary continues anong the south bank to a point west of ‘Marion Fathers House’. Follow a line south to ‘The Pastures’ and then on to the railway line; Follow the ‘Withy Brook’ to just east of the ‘Graftonbury Hotel’, onwards north west past the eastern side of the hotel and along the western side of playing fields in a general west direction towards ‘Belmont Pool’;Turn south east along the southern edge of the houses and northern edge of ‘Kingfisher Road’ turning northwards along ‘Waterfield Road’ and cut to ‘Belmont Road’; Cross to the western edge of ‘Golden Post’ and stright on to the river bank - across the river and along the western side of the ‘Waterworks’ land - around ‘Longmeadow’ then bear west along ‘Breinton Road’; Turn North just past ‘Lower Hill Farm’ on right side then head North along the West side of theb ‘Caravan Park’ to meet ‘Kings Acre Road’; Go West along ‘Kings Acre Road’ to the junction and turn right towards ‘Credenhill’; Turn right, in a short distance, to the East of ‘Clifford House’ and alongside the East of the ‘Nursery Buildings’/’Green Farm’ heading towards ‘Lower Veldifer’ to complete the boundary.