St Albans (//) is a city in Hertfordshire, England and the major urban area in the City and District of St Albans. It lies east of Hemel Hempstead and west of Hatfield, about 20 miles (32 km) north-northwest of central London, 8 miles (13 km) southwest of Welwyn Garden City and 11 miles (18 km) south-southeast of Luton. St Albans was the first major town on the old Roman road of Watling Street for travellers heading north, and it became the Roman city of Verulamium. It is a historic market town and is now a dormitory town within the London commuter belt and the Greater London Built-up Area.
View from the west in front of St Albans Cathedral
Coat of Arms
|Area||6.99 sq mi (18.1 km2)|
|• Density||8,268/sq mi (3,192/km2)|
|OS grid reference||TL148073|
|• London||19 mi (31 km) SSE|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Post town||ST ALBANS|
|Ambulance||East of England|
|EU Parliament||East of England|
St Albans takes its name from the first British saint, Alban. The most elaborate version of his story, Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People, relates that he lived in Verulamium, sometime during the 3rd or 4th century, when Christians were suffering persecution. Alban met a Christian priest fleeing from his persecutors and sheltered him in his house, where he became so impressed with the priest's piety that he converted to Christianity. When the authorities searched Alban's house, he put on the priest's cloak and presented himself in place of his guest. Consequently, he was sentenced to endure the punishments that were to be inflicted upon the priest, unless he renounced Christianity. Alban refused and was taken for execution. In later legends, his head rolled downhill after execution and a well sprang up where it stopped.
There was an Iron Age settlement known as Verulamium, Verlamion, or Verlamio, near the site of the present city, the centre of Tasciovanus' power and a major centre of the Catuvellauni from about 20 BC until shortly after the Roman invasion of AD 43. The name "Verulamium" is Celtic, meaning "settlement over or by the marsh". The town was on Prae Hill, 2 km to the west of modern St Albans, now covered by the village of St Michael's, Verulamium Park and the Gorhambury Estate. Although excavations done in 1996 produced finds which included silver coins from the Roman Republican era dating from 90/80 bc evidence of trade with the republic and that a settlement already existed on the site 50 years before Julius Caesar attempted to invade Britain, yet it is believed that the tribal capital was moved to the site by Tasciovanus (around 25 to 5 BC). Cunobelinus may have constructed Beech Bottom Dyke, a defensive earthwork near the settlement whose significance is uncertain.
The Roman city of Verulamium, the second-largest town in Roman Britain after Londinium, developed from the Celtic settlement and was granted the rank of municipium around AD 50, meaning that its citizens had what were known as "Latin Rights", a lesser citizenship status than a colonia possessed. It grew to a significant town, and as such received the attentions of Boudica of the Iceni in 61, when Verulamium was sacked and burnt on her orders:excavations preceding the museum's new entrance done in 1996-7 within the centre of the Roman town gave archaeologists the chance to date a black ash layer to 60-65 AD, thus confirming the Roman written record. It grew steadily; by the early 3rd century, it covered an area of about 125 acres (0.51 km2), behind a deep ditch and wall. Verulamium contained a forum, basilica and a theatre, much of which were damaged during two fires, one in 155 and the other in around 250. These were repaired and continued in use in the 4th century. The theatre was disused by the end of the 4th century. One of the few extant Roman inscriptions in Britain is found on the remnants of the forum (see Verulamium Forum inscription). The town was rebuilt in stone rather than timber at least twice over the next 150 years. Roman occupation ended between 400 and 450 AD
The body of St Alban was probably buried outside the city walls in a Roman cemetery near the present cathedral. His hillside grave became a place of pilgrimage. Recent investigation has uncovered a basilica there, indicating the oldest continuous site of Christian worship in Great Britain. In 429 Germanus of Auxerre visited the church and subsequently promoted the cult of St Alban.
A few traces of the Roman city remain visible, such as parts of the city walls, a hypocaust - still in situ under a mosaic floor, and the theatre, which is on land belonging to the Earl of Verulam, as well as items in the museum. Further remains beneath nearby agricultural land have only had a few exploratory trenches, have never been fully excavated and were, for a while, seriously threatened by deep ploughing, which ceased in 2005 after compensation was agreed. Test trenches in 2003 confirmed that serious damage had occurred to buildings on the northern side of Old Watling Street by deep ploughing. Permission needs to be granted to enable the full extent of the damage to the western half of Verulamium to be investigated.
St Albans Abbey and the associated Anglo-Saxon settlement were founded on the hill outside the Roman city where it was believed St Alban was buried. An archaeological excavation in 1978, directed by Martin Biddle, failed to find Roman remains on the site of the medieval chapter house. As late as the eighth century the Saxon inhabitants of St Albans nearby were aware of their ancient neighbour, which they knew alternatively as Verulamacæstir or, under what H. R. Loyn terms "their own hybrid", Vaeclingscæstir, "the fortress of the followers of Wæcla", possibly a pocket of British-speakers remaining separate in an increasingly Saxonised area.
The medieval town grew on the hill to the east of Wæclingacaester where the Benedictine Abbey of St Albans was founded by Ulsinus in 793. There is some evidence that the original site was higher up the hill than the present building, which was begun in 1077. St Albans Abbey was the principal medieval abbey in England. The scribe Matthew Vickers lived there and the first draft of Magna Carta was drawn up there. It became a parish church after the dissolution of the Benedictine abbey in 1539 and was made a cathedral in 1877.
St Albans School was founded in AD 948. Matthew Paris was educated there and it is the only school in the English-speaking world to have educated a Pope (Adrian IV). Now a public school it has, since 1871, occupied a site to the west of the Abbey and includes the 14th-century Abbey Gateway. One of its buildings was a hat factory, a link with the city's industrial past.
Between 1403 and 1412 Thomas Wolvey was engaged to build a clock tower in the Market Place. It is the only extant medieval town belfry in England. The original bell, named for the Archangel Gabriel sounds F-natural and weighs one ton. Gabriel sounded at 4 am for the Angelus and at 8 or 9 pm for the curfew. The ground floor of the tower was a shop until the 20th century. The first- and second-floor rooms were designed as living chambers. The shop and the first floor were connected by a flight of spiral stairs. Another flight rises the whole height of the tower by 93 narrow steps and gave access to the living chamber, the clock and the bell without disturbing the tenant of the shop.
Two battles of the Wars of the Roses took place in or near the town. The First Battle of St Albans was fought on 22 May 1455 within the town, and the Second Battle of St Albans was fought on 17 February 1461, just to the north.
A street market on Wednesdays and Saturdays, founded by Abbot Ulsinus, still flourishes.
Before the 20th century St Albans was a rural market town, a Christian pilgrimage site, and the first coaching stop of the route to and from London, accounting for its numerous old inns. Victorian St Albans was small and had little industry. Its population grew more slowly than London, 8–9% per decade between 1801 and 1861, compared to the 31% per decade growth of London in the same period. The railway arrived relatively late, in 1858. In 1869 the extension of the city boundaries was opposed by the Earl of Verulam and many of the townsfolk, but there was rapid expansion and much building at the end of the century, and between 1891 and 1901 the population grew by 37%.
In 1877, in response to a public petition, Queen Victoria issued the second royal charter, which granted city status to the borough and Cathedral status to the former Abbey Church. The new diocese was established in the same year, in the main from parts of the large Diocese of Rochester.
In the inter-war years it became a centre for the electronics industry. In the post-World War II years it expanded rapidly as part of the post-War redistribution of population out of Greater London. It is now a popular tourist destination.
Government and administration
St Albans was an ancient borough created following the dissolution of the monastery in 1539. It consisted of the ancient parish of St Albans (also known as the Abbey parish) and parts of St Michael and St Peter. The municipal corporation was reformed by the Municipal Corporations Act 1835 and the boundary was adjusted to additionally include part of the parish of St Stephen. In 1887 the borough gained city status, following the elevation of St Albans Abbey to cathedral, and the boundary was adjusted to include part of the parish of Sandridge.
The Local Government Act 1894 divided parishes that were partly within municipal boroughs. The parts of St Michael, St Peter and Sandridge within the borough became the new parishes of St Michael Urban, St Peter Urban and Sandridge Urban. The part of St Stephen within the borough was absorbed by the parish of St Albans. The parishes that were formed outside the borough, that is St Michael Rural, St Peter Rural, Sandridge Rural and the reduced St Stephen, became part of St Albans Rural District in 1894.
In 1898 the parish of St Albans absorbed St Michael Urban, St Peter Urban and Sandridge Urban so the parish and borough occupied the same area. In 1901 the population of the borough was 16,019, growing to 18,133 in 1911. St Albans expanded in 1913 by gaining parts of Sandridge Rural (241 acres), St Michael Rural (138 acres), St Peter Rural (992 acres) and St Stephen (335 acres). In 1921 the population of the enlarged borough was 25,593, growing to 28,624 in 1931. It expanded again in 1935 as part of a county review order gaining more of St Michael Rural (890 acres), St Peter Rural (436 acres) and St Stephen (712 acres). The population of the borough was 44,098 in 1951 and 50,293 in 1961.
The borough was abolished on 1 April 1974 and St Albans became part of the new, larger City and District of St Albans. City status was transferred to the entire district by letters patent dated 9 July 1974. Local government services are now provided by Hertfordshire County Council (strategic services), St Albans City and District Council and eight local parish councils (limited local services). Within the town, the Ashley, Batchwood, Clarence, Cunningham, Marshalswick South, St Peters, Sopwell and Verulam wards have no parish councils, but since June 2013 a City Neighbourhood Committee has had comparable responsibilities for small parks, playgrounds, open spaces, war memorials, allotments and public conveniences within those wards.
St Albans is a parliamentary constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Established in 1885, it is a county constituency in Hertfordshire, and elects one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election.
|Climate data for Rothamsted, elevation: 128 m (420 ft), 1981–2010 normals, extremes 1914–present|
|Record high °C (°F)||14.2
|Average high °C (°F)||6.7
|Daily mean °C (°F)||4.0
|Average low °C (°F)||1.2
|Record low °C (°F)||−16.7
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||67.0
|Average precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm)||12.1||9.4||10.2||10.2||8.8||8.6||8.0||8.8||8.9||11.0||11.6||11.0||118.5|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||60.6||77.3||111.7||159.0||193.9||199.1||207.1||199.1||143.7||133.2||69.1||50.6||1,585.3|
|Source #1: Met Office|
|Source #2: KNMI|
Nearby towns and villages
- Other nearby towns: Borehamwood, Luton, Stevenage, Berkhamsted, Barnet (historically a separate town, a London borough since the 1960s)
- Nearby villages: Abbots Langley, Kings Langley, Bricket Wood, Colney Heath, Elstree, Frogmore, Lemsford, London Colney, Markyate, Park Street, Radlett, Redbourn, Sandridge, Wheathampstead, Shenley
- Nearby hamlets: Chiswell Green, Colney Street
Two railway stations serve the city, St Albans City station, which is situated 0.5 miles (800 m) east of the city centre, and St Albans Abbey station, which is situated approximately 0.7 miles (1 km) south-west of the city station.
St Albans City station is served by Thameslink on a frequent and fast rail link to central London. Suburban services stop at all stations on the route, while express services are non-stop to London St Pancras International (St Albans City station to St Pancras International – 18 minutes). Trains run north to Harpenden, Luton, Luton Airport Parkway and on to Bedford.
Culture and media
St Albans has a thriving cultural life, with regular concerts and theatre productions held at venues including Trestle Arts Base, St Albans Abbey, Maltings Arts Theatre, the Alban Arena, the Abbey Theatre, St Peter's Church and St Saviour's Church, given by numerous organisations including St Albans Bach Choir, St Albans Cathedral Choir, St Albans Cathedral Girls' Choir, St Albans Symphony Orchestra, St Albans Chamber Choir, St Albans Chamber Opera, The Company of Ten, St Albans Choral Society, and St Albans Organ Theatre. St Albans is also home to Trestle Theatre Company, who have been creating professional, innovative and inspirational physical storytelling theatre since 1981. Originally known for their work with masks, Trestle collaborates with UK and international artists to unify movement, music and text into a compelling theatrical experience. The Sandpit Theatre is a theatre attached to Sandringham School which hosts a wide variety of plays throughout the year, mainly performances put on by the pupils of Sandringham School. The school also hosts Best Theatre Arts, a part-time theatre school for children aged 4 to 16.
The Odyssey Cinema (formerly the Odeon) on London Road is an independent, arthouse cinema that was restored and re-opened in 2014. Originally opened in 1931, it stands on the site of the Alpha Picture House, Hertfordshire's first cinema, which was opened in 1908 by film-making pioneer Arthur Melbourne-Cooper.
The St Albans Museum service runs two museums: Verulamium Museum, which tells the story of everyday life in Roman Britain using objects from the excavations of the important Roman Town; and the Museum of St Albans, which focuses on the history of the town and of Saint Alban. The Watercress nature reserve is by the River Ver and is run by the Watercress Wildlife Association.
St Albans Museums and Galleries Trust, in partnership with St Albans Museums and the University of Hertfordshire, have launched a project, "Renaissance: St Albans", to convert the old town hall into a museum and art gallery, combining the university's Margaret Harvey Gallery and the Museum of St Albans, which have closed in anticipation of the move. The cost of the project is £7.75m, of which (at February 2016) £6.3m has been raised.
The area is served by 92.6FM Radio Verulam, a community radio station.
The mixed character of St Albans and its proximity to London have made it a popular filming location. The Abbey and Fishpool Street areas were used for the pilot episode of the 1960s ecclesiastical TV comedy All Gas and Gaiters. The area of Romeland, directly north of the Abbey Gateway and the walls of the Abbey and school grounds, can be seen masquerading as part of an Oxford college in some episodes of Inspector Morse (and several local pubs also appear). Fishpool Street, running from Romeland to St Michael's village, stood in for Hastings in some episodes of Foyle's War. Life Begins was filmed largely in and around St Albans. The Lady Chapel in the Abbey itself was used as a location for at least one scene in Sean Connery's 1995 film First Knight, whilst the nave of the Abbey was used during a coronation scene as a substitute for Westminster Abbey in Johnny English starring Rowan Atkinson. The 19th-century gatehouse of the former prison near the mainline station appeared in the title sequence of the TV series Porridge, starring Ronnie Barker. The 2001 film Birthday Girl starring Ben Chaplin and Nicole Kidman was also partly filmed in St Albans.
More recently, several scenes from the film Incendiary, starring Michelle Williams, Ewan McGregor and Matthew Macfadyen, were filmed in St Albans, focusing in particular on the Abbey and the Abbey Gateway. It has also been used the setting for the fictional town Waltringham, in the TV show Humans.
In December 2007, Sport England published a survey which revealed that residents of St Albans were the 10th most active in England in sports and other fitness activities. 30.8% of the population participate at least 3 times a week for 90 minutes.
Clarence Park plays host to St Albans Cricket Club. The club currently runs four Saturday sides, playing in the Saracens Hertfordshire Cricket League and also two Sunday sides in the Chess Valley Cricket League. In 2008 the club's 1st XI won the Hertfordshire League Title. In the previous two seasons, the first XI came 5th (2011) and 4th (2012) in division one.
The local football team is St Albans City FC: its stadium is on the edge of Clarence Park and the team won promotion from the Conference South League in 2005–06. It played in the Nationwide Conference Division of the Football Conference for the 2006–07 season, but finished at the bottom of the table and was relegated.
St Albans is also home to St Albans Hockey Club, based in Oaklands, St Albans. The club is represented at National league level by both women's and men's teams, as well as other local league competitions. The club's nickname is The Tangerines.
St Albans Centurions Rugby league Club have their ground at Toulmin Drive, St Albans. They play in the London Premier League. In 2007 and again in 2010 'The Cents', as they are known, won 'the triple' – topping the league, and becoming the Regional and National Champions of the Rugby League Conference Premier Divisions.
Old Albanian RFC is a rugby union club that plays at the Old Albanian sports complex. They play in National League 1 the third tier of the English rugby union system. Saracens A team and OA Saints Women's Rugby team also play here. This complex hosts the offices of the Aviva Premiership club Saracens (and have recently moved their home ground to Barnet). St Albans RFC play at Boggymead Spring in Smallford. Verulamians RFC (formerly Old Verulamians) play at Cotlandswick in London Colney.
St Albans is home to one of the country's oldest and finest indoor skateparks, the Pioneer Skatepark in Heathlands Drive, next to the former fire station. Its ramps are available to all skateboarders and inliners. A new outside mini ramp was built in March 2005. A second outdoor mini ramp was opened at Easter 2009.
Links with other sports
St Albans was once home to the then most prestigious steeplechase in England. The Great St Albans chase attracted the best horses and riders from across Britain and Ireland in the 1830s and was held in such high esteem that when it clashed with the 1837 Grand National the top horses and riders chose to bypass Aintree. Without warning the race was discontinued in 1839 and was quickly forgotten.
St Albans was once home to Samuel Ryder, the founder of the Ryder Cup. He ran a very successful packet seeds business in the 1890s which at one time he ran from a packing warehouse on Holywell Hill (now Café Rouge). His interest in golf and sponsorship led to his donation of the now famous Ryder Cup. He is buried in Hatfield Road Cemetery, where in July 2012 the Olympic Torch Relay passed by to honour him.
St Albans has many state primary and secondary schools, and a number of independent schools.
The law school of the University of Hertfordshire used to be based in Hatfield Road in St Albans until it moved to the university's De Havilland campus in Hatfield in 2011. Hertfordshire County Council purchased the site. The interior of the former law school building has since been refurbished and now forms part of Alban City School, a state-funded Free School for primary aged children, which started taking reception class children in September 2012.
|School||Gender||Age range||Religious affiliation||Location||School website|
|St Albans School||Boys||11–18||Christian||AL3||http://www.st-albans.herts.sch.uk/|
|St Albans High School for Girls||Girls||4–18||Christian||AL1||http://www.stahs.org.uk/|
|St Columba's College||Boys||4–18||Roman Catholic||AL3||http://stcolumbascollege.org/|
- Primary schools
|School||Gender||Age range||Religious affiliation||Location||School website|
|The Abbey CE VA Primary School||Mixed||4–11||Church of England||AL1||http://www.abbey.herts.sch.uk/|
|Aboyne Lodge Primary and Nursery School||Mixed||3–11||Does not apply||AL3||http://www.aboyne.herts.sch.uk/|
|Alban City School||Mixed||4–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://albancityschool.org.uk/|
|Bernards Heath Infant School||Mixed||3–7||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.bernardsheath.herts.sch.uk/|
|Bernards Heath Junior School||Mixed||7–11||Does not apply||AL3||http://www.bernardsheathjnr.herts.sch.uk/|
|Camp Primary and Nursery School||Mixed||3–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.camp.herts.sch.uk/|
|Cunningham Hill Infant School||Mixed||4–7||Does not apply||AL1||http://cunninghaminfants.herts.sch.uk/|
|Cunningham Hill Junior School||Mixed||7–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.cunninghamhill-jun.herts.sch.uk/|
|Fleetville Infant and Nursery School||Mixed||3–7||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.fleetvilleinfants.herts.sch.uk/|
|Fleetville Junior School||Mixed||7–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.fleetvillejm.herts.sch.uk/|
|Garden Fields JMI||Mixed||5–11||Does not apply||AL3||http://www.gardenfields.herts.sch.uk/|
|Killigrew Primary and Nursery School||Mixed||3–11||Does not apply||AL2||http://www.killigrew.herts.sch.uk/|
|Mandeville Primary School||Mixed||3–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.mandeville.herts.sch.uk/|
|Maple School||Mixed||4–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.maple.herts.sch.uk/|
|Margaret Wix Primary||Mixed||3–11||Does not apply||AL3||http://www.margaretwix.herts.sch.uk/|
|Oakwood Primary School||Mixed||4–11||Does not apply||AL4||http://www.oakwood.herts.sch.uk/|
|St Adrian Roman Catholic Primary School||Mixed||3–11||Roman Catholic||AL1||http://www.stadrians.herts.sch.uk/|
|St Alban and St Stephen RC Infant & Nursery School||Mixed||3–7||Roman Catholic||AL1||http://www.ssasinfants.herts.sch.uk/|
|St Alban and St Stephen Catholic Junior School||Mixed||7–11||Roman Catholic||AL1||http://www.ssasjm.herts.sch.uk/|
|St Michael's C of E VA Primary School||Mixed||4–11||Church of England||AL3||http://www.stmichaels.herts.sch.uk/|
|St John Fisher Primary School||Mixed||4–11||Roman Catholic||AL4||http://www.sjfisher.herts.sch.uk/|
|St Peter's School||Mixed||3–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.stpeters.herts.sch.uk/|
|Wheatfields Infants' and Nursery School||Mixed||3–7||Does not apply||AL4||http://www.wheatfieldsinfants.herts.sch.uk/|
|Wheatfields Junior School||Mixed||7–11||Does not apply||AL4||http://www.wheatfieldsjm.herts.sch.uk/|
|Windermere Primary School||Mixed||5–11||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.windermere.herts.sch.uk/|
- Secondary schools
|School||Gender||Age Range||Religious Affiliation||Location||School website|
|Beaumont School||Mixed||11–18||Does not apply||AL4||http://www.beaumontschool.com/|
|Loreto College||Girls||11–18||Roman Catholic||AL1||http://www.loreto.herts.sch.uk/|
|Marlborough Science Academy||Mixed||11–18||Does not apply||AL1||https://web.archive.org/web/20130315061153/http://www.marlborough.herts.sch.uk/|
|Nicholas Breakspear Catholic School||Mixed||11–18||Roman Catholic||AL4||http://www.nicholasbreakspearschool.co.uk/|
|Sandringham School||Mixed||11–18||Does not apply||AL4||http://www.sandringham.herts.sch.uk|
|St Albans Girls' School||Girls||11–18||Does not apply||AL3||http://www.stags.herts.sch.uk/|
|Samuel Ryder Academy||Mixed||4–19||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.samuelryderacademy.co.uk/|
|Townsend School||Mixed||11–18||Church of England||AL3||http://www.townsend.herts.sch.uk/|
|Verulam School||Boys||11–18||Does not apply||AL1||http://www.verulamschool.co.uk|
- The St Albans printer, an anonymous printer who produced eight works, the first six in Latin, the last two in English between 1480 and 1486. The most important and last of these was the famous 'Boke of St Albans'
- Olivia Allison (b. 1990), GB synchronised swimmer, attended St Albans Girls' School
- Rod Argent (b. 1945), musician and songwriter with the group The Zombies, formed while the members (Colin Blunstone, Chris White, Paul Atkinson, Hugh Grundy, and Paul Arnold) were at school in St Albans
- Francis Bacon (1561–1626), philosopher, scientist and statesman, lived at Old Gorhambury House. Bacon was made Viscount St Albans in 1618
- Nicholas Bacon (1509–1579), Lord Keeper of the Great Seal under Queen Elizabeth I, built Old Gorhambury House
- John Ball (c. 1338–1381), Lollard priest, played prominent part in the English Peasants' Revolt of 1381
- Edmund Beckett, 1st Baron Grimthorpe (1816–1905), lawyer, amateur horologist, and architect; best known locally for rebuilding the west front of St Albans Cathedral in 1880–1885 at his own expense, but also designed the clock movement for Big Ben. Lived at Batchwood Hall
- William Henry Bell (1873–1946), musician, composer and first director of the South African College of Music
- Steve Blinkhorn (b. 1949), occupational psychologist, has lived in St Albans for many years
- Nicholas Breakspear (c.1100–1159), later Pope Adrian IV, born in Abbots Langley, attended school in St Albans
- Jez Butterworth, (b. 1969), writer, attended Verulam School.
- Cheryl Campbell (b. 1949), actor
- Paul Cattermole (b. 1977), former member of S Club 7, was born in St Albans
- Ralph Chubb (1892–1960), lithographer
- Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough (1660–1744), wife of John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough and close friend of Queen Anne, was born in St Albans
- Chris Clark (b. 1979), electronic musician, attended school in St Albans
- Steve Collins (b. 1964), former boxer
- Sally Connolly (b. 1976), author and academic, attended St Albans School
- William Cowper, 1st Earl Cowper (c. 1665–1723), Lord Chancellor of England
- Dark Stares, rock band, all members born in St Albans
- Christopher Debenham (b.1953), cricketer
- Joanna Dennehy, serial killer
- Donovan, (b. 1946), Songwriter and folk singer lived in St Albans during the 1960s
- Stacey Dooley (b. 1987), television presenter, lives in St Albans
- Tom Dyckhoff (b. 1971), architecture critic and TV presenter, was born in St Albans
- Enter Shikari, post-hardcore band, all members born and raised in St Albans
- David Essex (b. 1947), singer, lives in St Albans
- Siobhan Fahey (b. 1957), singer from Bananarama and Shakespear's Sister, attended Loreto College
- Robert Fayrfax (1464–1521), composer and musician, worked in St Albans Abbey where he is buried
- Friendly Fires, indie pop band from St Albans
- Nigel Gibbs (b. 1965), former Watford footballer, was born in St Albans
- Russell Green (b. 1959), cricketer
- Willis Hall (1929–2005), playwright and TV scriptwriter, lived in St Albans for many years and was for a while president of St Albans City F.C.
- Tommy Hampson (1907–1965), athlete, Olympic gold medal winner and world record holder, taught at St Albans School
- Tim Hart (1948–2009), musician and former guitarist in Steeleye Span, lived in St Albans and attended St Albans School
- John Hartson (b. 1975), footballer, lived in St Albans
- Stephen Hawking (1942–2018), theoretical physicist, educated at St Albans School
- Nick Helm (b. 1980), Actor, comedian and musician, born in St Albans and attended Cunningham Hill School and Sandringham School.
- Christopher Herbert (b. 1944), 9th Bishop of St Albans 1995–2009
- Jimmy Hill (1928–2015), TV presenter and football personality, lived in St Albans
- Ian Holloway (b. 1963), Millwall F.C manager, lived in St Albans
- Matthew Holness, comedian, better known as Garth Marenghi, lives in St Albans
- Edward Robert Hughes (1851-1914), artist, lived and died in St Albans. He is buried in Hatfield Road cemetery
- Kurt Jackson, artist, lived in St Albans and attended Francis Bacon School as a teenager
- Jeffrey John (b. 1953), Dean of St Albans since 2004
- Minhyong Kim, mathematician, lives in St Albans
- Stanley Kubrick (1928–1999), film director, lived at Childwickbury Manor from 1978 until his death
- Source Direct, acclaimed drum and bass act. Both original members were born and schooled in St Albans.
- Adam Lallana (b. 1988), footballer, born in St Albans
- Stephen Lander (b. 1947), former head of MI5, has lived in St Albans for many years
- Mark Lawson (b. 1962), broadcaster and columnist for The Guardian, attended St Columba's College
- Christopher Lewis (b. 1944), Dean of St Albans 1994–2003
- John Mandeville (14th century), compiler of a singular book of supposed travels, reputedly born in St Albans
- Rosie Marcel (b. 1977), actor, Jac Naylor in BBC One's Holby City, lives in St Albans
- Nigel Marven, television wildlife presenter, was brought up in St Albans and attended Francis Bacon School
- Arthur Melbourne-Cooper (1874–1961), pioneering film-maker, born in St Albans
- Peter Mensah (b. 1959), actor, Oenomaus in the TV series Spartacus, grew up in St Albans
- Michael Morpurgo (b. 1943), author, born in St Albans
- Albert Moses (b. 1937), actor, Mind Your Language, producer and director, lives in St Albans
- John Motson (b. 1945), football commentator, lived in St Albans
- Herbert Mundin (1898–1939), character actor, lived in St Albans from a young age and was educated at St Albans School
- David Munrow,(1942–1976), a noted pioneer of Early music, lived in St Albans
- Mike Newell (b. 1942), film director, lived in St Albans and attended St Albans School
- Ardal O'Hanlon (b. 1965), Father Ted star and stand-up comedian, lives in St Albans
- Eleanor Ormerod (1828–1901), entomologist, lived and died in St Albans
- William Page (1861–1934), historian and editor, lived here 1896–1904 and took part in archaeological excavations in the city
- Matthew Paris (c.1200–1259), Benedictine monk, chronicler of the history of St Albans Abbey
- Rupert Parkes (b. 1972) a.k.a. Photek, record producer and DJ, was born in St Albans
- Julian Perretta (b. 1989), singer-songwriter
- Allan Prior (1922–2006), TV scriptwriter, co-creator of Z-Cars, and father of Maddy Prior (b. 1947), lived in St Albans
- Chris Read (b. 1978), England cricketer, lives in St Albans
- Tim Rice (b. 1944), lyricist, attended St Albans School
- Ben Richards (b. 1972), actor, singer, Footballers' Wives, The Bill, lives in St Albans
- Luke Roberts, actor, Holby City, lives in St Albans
- Jim Rodford (1941–2018), musician, member of Argent, The Zombies and The Kinks and cousin of Rod Argent
- James Runcie, author and film maker, lives in St Albans
- Robert Runcie (1921–2000), Bishop of St Albans 1970–1980, later Archbishop of Canterbury 1980–1991. Now buried in the grounds of St Albans Cathedral
- John D. Rutherford (b. 1941), hispanist, born in St Albans
- Samuel Ryder (1858–1936), seed merchant, founder of the Ryder Cup
- George Gilbert Scott (1811–1878), architect, restored St Albans Abbey 1856–1877
- John Sessions (b. 1953), actor and comedian, attended St Albans Boys' Grammar School (now Verulam School), patron of St Albans Arts
- Brett Reylander, Actor and Television presenter
- Gilberto Silva (b. 1976), Brazilian footballer, played for Arsenal FC and lived in St Albans
- Clive Sinclair (author), (b.1948), lives in St Albans.
- Alan Smith, (b. 1957), Bishop of St Albans since 2009
- Justin Somper, author, born in St Albans
- Jonathan Stroud (b. 1970), author, lived in St Albans
- Nathan Byrne (b. 1992), footballer, born in St Albans
- John Turner (1864–1949), Australian naval officer
- Ulsinus (fl. 10th century), Abbot of St Albans Abbey, reputed founder in 948 of St Albans School, and St Michael's, St Peter's and St Stephen's churches
- Mike Walling (b. 1950), comedy actor and scriptwriter, lived in St Albans 1997–2010
- Richard of Wallingford (1292–1336), Abbot of St Albans Abbey, mathematician, horologist and astronomer
- Private Edward Warner VC (1883–1915), soldier in the Bedfordshire Regiment, awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross for his actions during the Battle of Hill 60
- Thomas Spencer Wells (1818–1897), surgeon to Queen Victoria and president of the Royal College of Surgeons of England, born and educated in St Albans
- Charles Williams (1886–1945), writer and publisher, lived in St Albans 1894–1917 and attended St Albans School
- Helen Wyman (b. 1981), cyclist, seven times British cyclo-cross champion, 2012 European cyclo-cross champion; born in St Albans
- Graham Frederick Young (1947–1990), the infamous "Teacup Poisoner", tried at St Albans Crown Court in 1972
- Bruce Forsyth (1928–2017) lived in a house called Forsythier in Admirals Walk until 1958.
In popular culture
- The 1957 April Fools' Day spoof edition of BBC documentary series Panorama, which dealt with the fictitious Swiss spaghetti harvest, was filmed partly at the (now closed) Pasta Foods factory on London Road, St Albans.
- The 2001 film Birthday Girl, featuring Nicole Kidman and Ben Chaplin, is set in St Albans.
- A number of places across the world are named after the City of St Albans, most notably in Australia, New Zealand and the United States.
- St Albans was the name of a planet in the cult science-fiction television series Firefly.
- In September 2007, St Albans replaced Mayfair as the most expensive square on a special UK Here and Now Edition Monopoly board, having won an internet vote.
- Enter Shikari's song "All eyes on the Saint" (B-side of "Juggernauts" single) tells the story of St Alban.
- The BBC used the Main Gate House of the former St Albans Prison in Victoria Street as the main gate of "Slade Prison" in the sitcom Porridge.
- The fictional town of Waltringham, in the TV show Humans was filmed here.
- Office for National Statistics, 2011 Census, Table PP04. Published 23 November 2012.
- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica. 23 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 1012..
- "Medieval St. Albans". Retrieved 3 November 2013.
- Rosalind Niblett, Roman Hertfordshire, Wimborne: Dovecote Press, 1995
- John Wacher, 1976, The Towns of Roman Britain, p. 202, both for Tasciovanus and the Catuvellauni.
- "BBC - History - Boudicca".
- Garcia, Michael. "Saint Alban and the Cult of Saints in Late Antique Britain". www.academia.edu. Retrieved 19 November 2014.
- Constantius of Lyon; Trans. Vermaat, Robert. "The text of the Vita sancti Germani". vortigernstudies.org.uk. Retrieved 19 November 2014.
- Martin Biddle, "Alban and the Anglo-Saxon Church", in Robert Runcie (ed), Cathedral and City: St Albans Ancient and Modern, Martyn Associates, 1977
- "Story of St Alban", Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Alban.
- Kenneth. S. Painter, "Recent discoveries in Britain", Publications de l'École française de Rome, 1989, Vol. 123, No. 1, pp. 2031–2071
- Williamson, Tom (2000). The Origins of Hertfordshire. Manchester: Manchester University Press. p. 64. ISBN 071904491X. Retrieved 13 September 2014.
- "Chapter House History – The Cathedral and Abbey Church of Saint Alban". Stalbanscathedral.org. Archived from the original on 13 November 2013. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
- Loyn, Anglo-Saxon England and the Norman Conquest, 2nd ed. 1991:11.
- St Albans Millenary Pageant Souvenir Programme, n.p, 1948
- Kitton, F.G. (1899–1900). "The Old Inns of St Albans". Transactions of the St Albans & Hertfordshire Architectural & Archaeological Society: 260.
- History of Verulam and St. Alban's S. G. Shaw, 1815 pages 64–66. Accessed April 2011
- Asa Briggs, "The Victorian City", in ‘’Cathedral & City: St Albans Ancient and Modern’’, ed. Robert Runcie, Martyn Associates, 1977
- Kate Morris. "Other publications | Research papers | Places | St Peter's in the Borough | A lecture given by Kate Morris on 26 November 2010". St Albans History.
- "St Albans Borough through time | Census tables with data for the Ancient District". Visionofbritain.org.uk.
- "St Albans AP/CP through time | Census tables with data for the Parish-level Unit". Visionofbritain.org.uk.
- "St Albans AP/CP through time | Population Statistics | Total Population". Visionofbritain.org.uk.
- "No. 46352". The London Gazette. 24 September 1974. p. 7920.
- "St Albans City & District Council – City Neighbourhood Committee takes on local agenda". Stalbans.gov.uk. 1 July 2013.
- "St Albans City & District Council – Proposed City Neighbourhoods Committee under scrutiny". Stalbans.gov.uk. 1 March 2013.
- "Rothamsted 1981–2010 averages". Met Office. Retrieved 7 March 2019.
- "Indices Data - Rothamsted Station 1844". KNMI. Retrieved 7 March 2019.
- "St Albans City [SAC] to London St Pancras International [STP]".
- "Abbey Line Passenger Survey Final Report" (pdf). June 2006. Retrieved 24 January 2016.
- "Trestle Theatre Company, St Albans". trestle.org.uk. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "The Maltings Arts Theatre, St Albans". Stalbans.gov.uk. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "Abbey Theatre, Trestle Arts Base, St Albans". Abbeytheatre.org.uk. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "St Albans Bach Choir". St Albans Bach Choir. 10 July 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "St Albans Symphony Orchestra". Saso.org.uk. 11 July 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "St Albans Chamber Choir". St Albans Chamber Choir. 25 April 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "St Albans Chamber Opera". Hertsdirect.org. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "The Company of Ten, St Albans". Hertsdirect.org. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "St Albans Choral Society". Choralsociety.com. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "St Albans Organ Theatre". St Albans Organ Theatre. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "Trestle Theatre Company History". trestle.org.uk. Archived from the original on 13 January 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "Best Theatre Arts". Best Theatre Arts. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "The Odyssey History". Odyssey Cinema St Albans. Archived from the original on 23 March 2018. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
- "Restored art-deco cinema reopens". BBC News. 13 December 2014. Archived from the original on 23 March 2018. Retrieved 23 March 2018.
- "St Albans Museums". St Albans Museums. Archived from the original on 17 August 2011. Retrieved 11 August 2011.
- "Watercress Wildlife Association, St Albans". Watercress Wildlife Association. Retrieved 23 May 2013.
- "renaissance: St Albans your new museum and gallery".
- "Sport England—Active People Survey". Sportengland.org. Archived from the original on 25 February 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "St Albans Cricket Club". Stalbanscc.com. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "Football Conference - League Table - Nationwide Conference". 27 November 2005. Archived from the original on 27 November 2005.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
- "St Albans Gymnastics Club". stalbansgymclub.com. Retrieved 2 September 2010.
- "St Albans Hockey Club". Stalbanshc.co.uk. 17 April 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "Hertfordshire Parkour". Hertsparkour.co.uk. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- William of Wallingford Berkshire History. Final paragraph. Accessed March 2013
- "Papers of David Munrow". The National Archive. Retrieved 13 November 2013.
- "Private 7602 Edward Warner, V.C." bedfordregiment.org.uk. Retrieved 16 May 2013.
- ""The muddiest, funnest sport of attrition": an interview with Helen Wyman on her life in Cyclo-Cross". 25 October 2010. Retrieved 5 November 2010.
- Whieldon, Fraser. "Did you know Sir Bruce Forsyth used to live in St Albans?". Herts Advertiser. Retrieved 9 September 2017.
- "Enter Shikari – "All eyes on the Saint" lyrics". Songmeanings.net. Retrieved 17 July 2010.
- "The British Comedy Guide – Porridge – location details". Retrieved 22 July 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to St Albans.|
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for St Albans.|
|Wikisource has the text of The New Student's Reference Work article "St. Albans".|
- St Albans in the Domesday Book
- St Albans council website
- Once Upon a Time in St Albans – a graphic journey to St Albans past
- enjoystalbans – visitor website for St Albans – what's on, where to go, what to see, accommodation, etc
- allaboutstalbans – events and leisure website for visitors to St Albans
- Herts Advertiser newspaper
- St Albans & Harpenden Review newspaper
- Radio Verulam – St Albans based community radio station, covering West Herts on 92.6FM
- St Albans Museums
- St Albans Remarkable Heritage
. Collier's New Encyclopedia. 1921.