Hertsmere is a local government district and borough in Hertfordshire, England. Its council is based in Borehamwood. Other towns in the borough include Bushey, Elstree, Radlett and Potters Bar. The borough borders the three north London boroughs of Harrow, Barnet and Enfield, and is located mainly within the M25 Motorway.

Borough of Hertsmere
Hertsmere shown within Hertfordshire
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Constituent countryEngland
RegionEast of England
Non-metropolitan countyHertfordshire
StatusNon-metropolitan district, Borough
Admin HQBorehamwood
Incorporated1 April 1974
  TypeNon-metropolitan district council
  BodyHertsmere Borough Council
  LeadershipLeader & Cabinet (Conservative)
  MPsOliver Dowden
  Total39.06 sq mi (101.16 km2)
Area rank214th (of 317)
 (mid-2018 est.)
  Rank229th (of 317)
  Density2,700/sq mi (1,000/km2)
88.9% White
4.7% S.Asian
2.5% Black
2.0% Mixed
1.8% Chinese or Other
Time zoneUTC0 (GMT)
  Summer (DST)UTC+1 (BST)
ONS code26UE (ONS)
E07000098 (GSS)
OS grid referenceTQ195975


The district was formed on 1 April 1974, under the Local Government Act 1972, by a merger of the former area of Bushey Urban District and Potters Bar Urban District with Elstree Rural District and part of Watford Rural District (the parish of Aldenham).

The name "Hertsmere" was invented for the new district by combining the common abbreviation of "Hertfordshire" ("Herts") with "mere", an archaic word for boundary. The name is doubly appropriate as the district straddles the historic county boundary between Middlesex and Hertfordshire and forms the administrative boundary between Hertfordshire and Greater London. The name is reflected in the council's coat of arms, which shows a hart upon the battlements of a boundary wall.

The district was awarded borough status by Royal Charter in 1977.

The borough was originally in the Metropolitan Police District, despite being outside the modern Greater London boundaries. It was transferred to Hertfordshire Constabulary in 2000.


Hertsmere is the location of Elstree Studios, which produces such shows as Strictly Come Dancing, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, Dancing on Ice, and is the location for the Big Brother house.

Hertsmere is also the location for BBC Elstree, the site of EastEnders, Holby City, and formerly the home to Top of the Pops, before its move to BBC TV Centre.

The area was also home to other TV and film studios, including MGM, until this was demolished for residential development, and is now an area called Studio Way.


In the 2011 census, Hertsmere polled as the second most Jewish local authority in the United Kingdom, with Jews composing of one in seven residents (the highest being the North London borough of Barnet).[1]


The borough council currently consists of 39 elected councillors, with a third being elected at each election. As of the 2014 election there are 34 Conservative and 5 Labour councillors.[2]

Until 1983 the borough was included in the parliamentary constituency of Hertfordshire South. In 1983 the constituency was renamed Hertsmere.

Hertsmere had been represented in Parliament by Conservative, James Clappison since 1992. He succeeded Cecil Parkinson who had been Member of Parliament for the area since 1974. It is now represented by the Conservative, Oliver Dowden.


The borough contains five parishes:

Four parishes have parish councils[3] Ridge, which has fewer than 200 electors, is governed by a parish meeting following the dissolution of its parish council.[4]

The areas of the former Bushey and Potters Bar urban districts are unparished.


  1. Office for National Statistics 1 June 2006 accessed 1 January 2012
  2. "England council elections". BBC News Online. 13 May 2014. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
  3. "Parish/Town Councils and Councillors". Hertsmere Council. Archived from the original on 17 May 2011. Retrieved 20 October 2011.
  4. "Ridge Parish Council". St Giles’ Church, South Mymms and St Margaret’s Church, Ridge. Archived from the original on 25 April 2012. Retrieved 20 October 2011.

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