Rowley Green

Rowley Green, Barnet

The north-west corner of Arkley, right on the border with the Hertfordshire’s borough of Hertsmere

Horse and buggy on Rowley Lane

The first half of Row­ley Green’s name dates from the late 13th cen­tu­ry, and derives from words mean­ing a ‘rough wood­land clear­ing’. The lat­er sec­ond part indi­cat­ed the pres­ence of a vil­lage green, which was lost to trees and shrubs when cat­tle graz­ing stopped after the Sec­ond World War.

Most of Row­ley Green’s prop­er­ties date from the mid-20th cen­tu­ry and are of lit­tle archi­tec­tur­al mer­it. The most notable excep­tion is Trinders Lodge, which was built around 1830 and is grade II list­ed.

The remark­able Arkley water tow­erdescribed by Dia­mond Geezer as “alien con­crete on stilts” – was built in 1965 at the junc­tion of Row­ley Lane and Row­ley Green Road, and is vis­i­ble in the satel­lite image below. It was the work of the Scher­rer and Hicks archi­tec­tur­al prac­tice, which made some­thing of a spe­cial­i­ty of dis­tinc­tive water tow­ers, includ­ing one in Cock­fos­ters and match­ing shut­tle­cock-shaped struc­tures in Ton­well, Hert­ford­shire, and Charlestown, New South Wales.

Adja­cent to Arkley golf course, the twelve-acre Row­ley Green Com­mon is a rem­nant mead­ow with two large ponds and a bog formed from old grav­el dig­gings, sur­round­ed by mature oaks and birch­es. Bogs, it should be not­ed, are very rare in Lon­don. The com­mon was made a local nature reserve in 1991 and thus accord­ed statu­to­ry pro­tec­tion.

Row­ley Lane and Row­ley Green Road are loose­ly lined with spa­cious homes, many of which pos­sess five or more bed­rooms and fetch prices well in excess of a mil­lion pounds. Accord­ing to the web­site Mouseprice, Row­ley Lodge sold for £2.5m in 2003 and Abbot­s­ley Manor sold for £1.75m in 2011. Num­bers 16 and 24 Row­ley Green Road each sold for over £2 mil­lion in 2017.

Row­ley Lane sports ground has sev­en foot­ball pitch­es, ten­nis courts, a bowls green and a crick­et square. The 48-acre ground is the home of Lon­don Mac­cabi Lions, an all-Jew­ish, mul­ti-team foot­ball club.

For most of his adult life, the prolific actor Trevor Howard lived at Rowley Green House, conveniently close to Elstree film studios – and to the Gate public house in Barnet Gate.

Postcode area: Barnet, EN5


* The picture of a horse and buggy on Rowley Lane on this page is adapted from an original photograph, copyright David Howard, at Geograph Britain and Ireland, made available under the Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic Licence. Any subsequent reuse is freely permitted under the terms of that licence.