Hartham Common Park & Play Areas

Hartham Common is a large well established public open space in the centre of Hertford, comprising wildlife-rich river corridors, cattle-grazed meadows, and a network of paths and various recreational facilities. It is now owned and managed by East Herts Council.

With over 1,000 years of recorded history and located close to the centre of Hertford, Hartham Common has a range of facilities including a leisure centre and swimming pool, two well-equipped play areas, a skate park, football pitches, bowling green, tennis courts and ample public parking, as well as extensive riverside and woodland walks. A network of Public Rights of Way connect with and through the open space, linking Hertford and Ware. In 2013 it was dedicated as a Queen Elizabeth II Field in celebration of the Diamond Jubilee in 2012.

To guide work and future plans a management plan has been developed, and we are now working on several projects to make significant improvements in the open space.  These include new signage and notice boards at the main entrances, conservation works to extend the grazing meadows and improvements to the wildlife habitats and river corridors as part of the new Hartham Common 4 Rivers Project. Hartham Common will soon be supported by its very own Friends Group.

There is more information about the new management plan, becoming a Friend of Hartham Common and current project work in the open space below.

There are two playgrounds over Hartham Common plus a Skate Park.  Playground one is designed for older children with the following features;

  • Freerider Swing Unit
  • Single Low Rotator Unit
  • Multi-Unit with Rotating Section (Galaxy style)
  • Climbing Boulder
  • Mobulus Rotating / Rocking Unit

Playground two is designed for younger children and was redeveloped in 2020/21.

The younger children's play area includes swings for various ages, a roundabout, sandpit with water play (in the summer months) and dinosaur bones, a Viking swing and lots more.

The redevelopment aimed to make it a destination play area and also features the impressive, crowdfunded, two bird nest towers - including slides, rope ladders and a rope tunnel connecting the two together.

There are plenty of benches and spaces to set up a picnic blanket so make sure to visit.

East Herts Council has worked with the Countryside Management Service (CMS) to create a five year action plan for Hartham Common in Hertford. This new five year action plan will form an appendix to the Hartham Common Greenspace Action Plan 2018-23 because the objectives of this document have not changed.

We will be inviting comment on this five year action plan and it can be viewed in our Hartham Common Action Plan 2023-28 engagement document. The maps within the document are unfortunately not accessible. 

Please note consultation on this document closes on Wednesday 14th June 2023. Please view the stakeholder feedback section of this document for information on where to submit comments.

East Herts Council has worked with the Countryside Management Service (CMS) to create a five year management plan for Hartham Common in Hertford. The vision over the next five years is to maintain and enhance Hartham Common, keeping up the same high standards that visitors have come to expect while doing all we can to support and benefit local wildlife and habitats.

After reviewing the initial briefing document feedback and comments on the draft plan we have now created the final version of the management plan which details the aspirations and objectives we have for the site for the next five years - see the  Hartham Common Greenspace Action Plan 2018 - 2023.

You can see a summary of the main comments received from the engagement process on Hartham Common Draft Greenspace Action Plan (GAP) 2018-23, carried out in May 2018 within the Hartham Common GAP Public Engagement Response Document - June 2018 document

Friends of Hartham Common get involved with caring for their local green space through practical conservation work, decision making, organising community events, fundraising and much more. 

Work has been completed to convert two old tennis courts into two new floodlit 3rd generation artificial turf (3G) all weather mini football pitches whilst retaining one tennis court.

More information on what pitches are available in East Herts and how to book please read our Football Pitches page.

We have been working with the Countryside Management Service (CMS) to deliver the 4 Rivers Project which will improve areas of Hartham Common for both wildlife and people.  For further information see River Lea Catchment Partnership.

Together with the Environment Agency, Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust (HMWT) and the Countryside Management Service (CMS), the Council has developed an area of Hartham Common near St Leonard's Church into an enclosed grazing meadow of wetland grassland with new ponds. An additional small grazing meadow was created as part of the Hartham Common 4 Rivers Project in 2015.

Three new circular walking routes have been mapped out as part of an initiative connecting communities in and around Hertford to green open spaces, encouraging low impact exercise and to help improve general health and wellbeing.

Developed by Hertfordshire County Council’s Countryside Rights of Way on behalf of East Herts District Council – these colour coded routes utilize the existing Rights of Way network and guide walkers out of Hartham to explore open green spaces, ancient woodlands and many points of interest along the way.   

There is a map by the skate park near the main entrance introducing the initiative and colour coded directional way markers have been fixed along each of the routes to guide walkers.  These were kindly installed by volunteers as part of our commitment to engage the local community in their environment. 

Download more information on our circular walks [text only version]

Download more information on our circular walks [pdf leaflet]


Hartham Lane
SG14 1QR
United Kingdom