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Coordinates: 51°35′46″N 0°01′03″W / 51.596°N 0.0176°W / 51.596; -0.0176

Walthamstow is a district of northeast London, England, located in the London Borough of Waltham Forest. It is situated 6.4 miles (10.3 km) north-east of Charing Cross. The area is identified in the London Plan as one of 35 major centres in Greater London.[1]

Walthamstow is bordered to the north by Chingford, south by Leyton and Leytonstone, east by the southern reaches of Epping Forest at Woodford and west by Tottenham and the River Lea valley. Leyton High Road, Hoe Street, Chingford Road, Chingford Mount (passing south-north through Walthamstow and its neighbouring towns) form part of an ancient route from London to Waltham Abbey.



Walthamstow is recorded circa 1075 as Wilcumestowe ("The Place of Welcome") and in the Domesday Book of 1086 as Wilcumestou.[2] King John visited Shern Hall (Shernhall Street), in 1213; the building survived until 1896. At one point Walthamstow was just a culmination of five small villages, and affairs were discussed at Vestry House, acting as the first town hall. In 1870 it had grown to the size of a small suburb and a town hall was built in Orford Road from which affairs of the village were run ( which now takes place in Forest Road - since 1941). Until the 19th century it was largely rural, with a small village centre (now Walthamstow Villagesee below) and a number of large estates. The main route through the district, was the aforementioned Hoe Street. Additionally, there were various smaller lanes, crossing the town. The road now known as Forest Road was originally named Clay Street. Further south, the High Street was named Marsh Street, and led from the original settlement out to the marshes. Shernhall Street is an ancient route, as is Wood Street, to the east.

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