At some time in the 3rd century A.D., Alban a citizen of Roman Verulamium was martyred for his Christian faith and it was over his burial place, beyond the city walls, that a church developed which was to become eventually one of the greatest Medieval Abbeys of England. Around the Abbey grew up the town of St. Albans, recorded in Domesday Book when the population was around 500.In the Middle Ages many of the populace of the town were feudal tenants of the Abbey and not freeholders of their property. One of the most hated obligations was that they should have their corn ground at the Abbot's mill, and with few exceptions the use of domestic hand mills was proscribed. Clearly this had economic implications for the tenants but it also, perhaps symbolically, defined their social status as villeins. Friction between town and Abbey was not uncommon the greatest trouble occurring during the Peasants (or Great) Revolt in 1381..
It was not until the dissolution of the Abbey in 1539 that the town gained the civic & economic independence it had sought for so long and then it was not until 1553 that the the town received a royal charter making it a corporate borough governed by a Mayor and Corporation. Although Henry VIII considered making the Abbey Church a Cathedral it was only relatively recently (1877) that St. Albans became a city and for most of its history it served as a local market centre and a place of hospitality for pilgrims and travelers one one of the major roads of the kingdom.
Today the core of the city, around the Abbey and Market Place is of Medieval origin and many medieval buildings, mainly dating from the fifteenth century still survive, although these are often obscured by later modifications. This guide attempts to explain the topography of the Medieval Town.
The area of the map coloured light green is that contained within the "borough" whose boundary was first recorded in 1327 (and not enlarged until municipal reform in 1835). From at least the early 13th century the borough was served by its own court, separate from the Abbeys holdings in the rest of its Liberty, which consisted of a large area of the county, and some Buckinghamshire manors.

Objects found in the Medieval Town may be seen in The Museum of St. Albans in Hatfield Road.

You can navigate around the town using the map below or by using the links in the Index (site map) at the bottom of the page. This will generally take you to a more detailed map which you can use to navigate to more detail or you can scroll down the page.

Map of Medeval St. Albans

the upper end of St. Peters St.

George Street

including Romeland, School Lane (Welclose Street) & Spicer Street

including Salipath (lower end of Fishpool Streeet)

including Sopwell Lane & Shropshire Lane (Victoria Street).

including The Vintry (High Street), French Row & (Chequer Street).

including New Lane (Hatfield Road)

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