Two greens on the Mimram

Poplars Green and Archers Green


I love the little River Mimram. Its name is so ancient – pre-Celtic – that its meaning isn’t known. It rises near Whitwell and, along with the Beane and the Rib, joins the Lea at Hertford. Over-extraction and increasingly dry summers sometimes reduce it to a trickle in places and there are fears for its long-term survival. But when it bubbles through reed beds and over a gravel bottom, it is one of our most charming chalk streams.

It flows under the Digswell viaduct and runs through a shallow valley with Tewin to the north and Welwyn to the south. The B1000 to Hertford tracks it for several miles. And that’s where we find Poplars Green and Archers Green, the latter unmarked by Ordnance Survey. Bericot Green, above the river to the south, I’ve yet to visit because I couldn’t find the footpath signs.

Two families were picnicking and paddling near this bridge at Poplars Green, ignoring the ‘get off of my land’ style signs – good for them.

The couple of houses stand hard on the road and suffer the traffic.


Archers Green is a little off the road with heathland and woods above. It too has a pretty bridge. The land around the farm is being developed for housing, presumably actual or faux barn conversions. And access to the river is marked by depressingly familiar proprietorial notices.


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