This page was last updated on: March 10, 2017
an in-depth history of one village in Hertfordshire UK.

Leverstock Green Village Sign & The Luttrell Psalter.

Many of you may have already seen the old Village Sign, now beautifully restored and hanging in Leverstock Green Village Hall foyer where the wind and rain cannot harm it. One major advantage of it hanging in the foyer of the hall is that you can see the detail on the sign with greater clarity than when studying the sign on the green.

Hanging next to the sign is a document, (a collaboration between John Baldwin & Barbara Chapman) telling the story of the sign and the significance of all the items depicted in it. (See the next item down.)

Two of the main features of the sign are pictures showing aspects of what life was like here in the 14th century. These pictures were copies of two of the many such illustrations to be found in The Luttrell Psalter which s housed in the British Library. It is an extremely precious book - a collection of religious texts, including psalms, prayers and a calendar of Church feast-days, written in Latin on vellum. The Luttrell Psalter was commissioned by Sir Geoffrey Luttrell, Lord of the Manor of Irnham in Lincolnshire, and was created between 1320 and 1345 by one scribe and a number of unknown artists. We can now all enjoy it by going online at  and set to Folio or Open Book. See if you can find our two pictures!

There is also an excellent short documentary film based exclusively on the pictures of life in the 14th century depicted in the Psalter which is also worth watching. It can be found here:  Make yourself a cup of tea or coffee, put your feet up, relax and allow yourself to be transported back to what it would have been like living in Westwick in the mid 14th century.

The acorn and oak leaves at the top are important for several reasons. Firstly, they are used as part of the logo for Leverstock Green School; secondly, the Dacorum Borough Council logo incorporates acorns and oak leaves and, finally, one of the earlier names for the 14th to 17th century tiny Manor of Leverstock Green was Market Oak (more often written as Markate Oake). Oak trees were then a major feature with one in particular known as ‘The Market Oake’.

From Saxon times until the abolition of manorial courts in the 1920's, the Manor of Westwick (or Westwicke) was the principle manor of the village. The name still survives along Westwick Row with Westwick Farm, Westwick Cottage, Westwick Warren and Westwick Row Farm. Westwick was important in medieval times as it supplied the Abbey at St. Albans with all its needs for the refectory, either in kind or in funds from timber etc. Westwick Cottage dates back to the 12th century and was probably the original Long Hall Manor House dating from Saxon times, shown by the medieval peasants ploughing the land.

The bottom half of the sign shows the peasants felling trees. Much of the land had been covered by trees following the demise of Roman rule and these would have had to be cleared to give access to the arable land beneath. This was revealed in old documents and the word ‘stoc’ means tree stump. 

The wording towards the bottom of the shield - Manor of Markate Oak, (Langley with Westwick) or Levestistocke Greene, gives the alternative names and spellings of the small Manor of Market Oak belonging to Markyate Priory mentioned above.  

We have documentary and archaeological proof that people lived and worked in the immediate area of Leverstock Green from the time of the Roman occupation onwards. Recent research indicates that settlement along Westwick Row may well date back even further to the Iron Age and perhaps the Bronze Age with Chambersbury Lane, Bunkers Lane & Blackwater Lane being of Iron Age origin. It seems quite likely that the Westwick area was a "suburb" of the major Iron Age settlement at Pre Wood just outside St. Albans.

This original sign is of wooden construction and it suffered the ravages of the weather for over sixteen years. The cost of refurbishment would have been very high and only offered a temporary solution. Leverstock Green Village Association commissioned the replacement sign in 2016 from Signs of the Times in Tebworth. It is constructed of hand painted polyurethane and, whilst the paint will eventually deteriorate, the sign itself should last for many years to come.  

LGVA is indebted to Steve and Janet Read for restoring the original sign to be admired here, in the Village Hall.


This is our original village sign, unveiled on 11th December 1999 to mark the millennium. The basic design (from images in the Luttrell Psalter) and wording were the work of our local historian, Barbara Chapman, with the final touches, manufacture and installation completed by Teresa and David Woolacott of Amber Signs in Berkhamsted. 

The different elements of the sign are as follows:
 © John Baldwin

 INDIVIDUAL SECTIONS LISTED BELOW -CLICK TO VIEW. Please view @ 100% to ensure items don't overlap visually.