From the beginning, we have published works of local history and picture books of East Hertfordshire. Most of these titles were published under the Rockingham Press imprint, but others were published by David Perman either for the Ware Society or Ware Museum – as listed below.

They may all be obtained post-free – except for those costing less than £5.00, in which case add £1.00 – by sending your order (with a cheque) to:

Rockingham Press, 11 Musley Lane, Ware, Herts SG12 7EN

Regretfully, we do not accept credit cards or Paypal.


The small town of Ware was once the most important purveyor of malt to the major breweries of London.  This was partly due to transport links like the Lee Navigation, partly to the traditional skills of Ware maltsters going back to the fourteenth century and partly to the discovery of ‘brown malt’ which was used to brew a new, strong beer called ‘porter’.  As a result every spare plot of land in the town became a malthouse;  in 1880 there were over a hundred operating maltkilns.  In this new book, David Perman (one of the founders of the Ware Museum) relates the history of a business founded on family relationships and religion, particularly Quakerism.

Paperback      £9.99       ISBN 978-1-904851-684


Place House – a thirteenth-century aisled hall and a Grade 1 Listed Building – was once the manor house of Ware.  It is located just a few yards away from the busy High Street, in quiet and picturesque Bluecoat Yard.  But this remarkable house was once a school, purchased in 1685 by the London foundation of Christ’s Hospital.  In this well-researched but sympathetic history, the late Dr Violet Rowe tells the story of the building and the ‘Bluecoat Children’ – as well as the masters who taught them and the women who nursed them through poverty, smallpox and plague.

Paperback     £8.99     ISBN 978-1-904851-592


The small town of Ware in Hertfordshire is now best known as the original location of the ‘Great Bed of Ware’ – mentioned by Shakespeare in Twelfth Night.  But its historical association go much deeper and further back.  A Roman settlement, it sat beside the ford carrying Ermine Street across the River Lea and was later noted for its inns.  Later still it became the main purveyor of brown malt to the brewers of Southwark and Shoreditch.  Ware is still a historic town which boasts a major research and manufacturing site for GlaxoSmithKline (gsk).

Hardback     £19.99    ISBN 978-1-904851-363


Other titles available include:

600 YEARS OF CHARITY: A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE WARE CHARITY TRUSTEES by David Perman    pbk    £3.00    ISBN 0-951704-516

A CENTURY OF ARCHAEOLOGY IN EAST HERTS ed. David Perman    pbk    £4.95    ISBN 978-1-873468-623

AMWELL AND STANSTEAD’S PAST IN PICTURES by Stephen Doree and David Perman    Hardback    £14.95    ISBN 978-1-873468-579

A NEW GUIDE TO SCOTT’S GROTTO by David Perman    pamphlet    £1.00    ISBN 0-95092925-926

BEATING ABOUT THE BUSH: A HISTORY OF HERTFORD HEATH by Pam Kimpton    pbk    £9.99    ISBN 978-1-904851-257

BROXBOURNE AND WORMLEY’S PAST IN PICTURES by David Dent    Hardback    £14.95    ISBN 978-1-873468-388

CHESHUNT’S PAST IN PICTURES by Peter Rooke    Hardback    £14.95    ISBN 978-1-873468-272

HERTFORD’S PAST IN PICTURES by Len Green    Hardback    £16.99    ISBN 978-1-873468-173


The proud history of an Islington grammar school, as remembered by its former pupils – with pen portraits (affectionate or otherwise) of the masters, most of whom had served in the 1914-18 war, and then been evacuated to Somerset with the school in World War II.  Highbury County became a comprehensive in 1964 and later helped launch the political career of Rhodes Boyson MP.

Written by Brian Boyle, edited with additional material by David Perman

Paperback    £9.95    ISBN 978-1-904851-011


OUR BOYS: WARE MEN IN THE FIRST WORLD WAR by Derek Armes   pbk   £9.99    ISBN 978-1-904851-547

RIVERS NURSERY OF SAWBRIDGEWORTH: THE ART OF PRACTICAL POMOLOGY by Elizabeth Waugh    pbk    £10.00    ISBN 978-1-904851-325

ST MARY THE VIRGIN, WARE:  A SOUVENIR HISTORY AND GUIDE by David Perman    pbk   £3.00    ISBN  978-1-904851-226

THE ARTIST AND THE ORGANIST: THE LUPPINOS OF HERTFORD AND WARE by Derek Forbes    Hardback    £9.95    ISBN 978-1-904851-066




The Crocus King tells the story of one of the great gardeners of the Twentieth Century – E.A. Bowles or ‘Gussie’ as his friends and admirers called him.  The propagator of hundreds of plants still cherished today – particularly crocuses – he asked in his will that his garden at Myddelton House, Enfield, should remain as he left it in 1954.  But it is only recently that his wish has come true and his garden has been revitalised, due mainly to a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund.  This expanded edition of the Bowles’ biography tells the story of the new and popular gardens – with a new Foreword by Gussie’s great-nephew, Brigadier Andrew Parker Bowles.

Paperback      £9.99       ISBN 978-1-904851-707


THE GREAT BED IN WARE by David Perman    pbk    £3.00    ISBN 978-1-904851-479

THE WARE MUTINY 1647: ORDER RESTORED OR REVOLUTION DEFEATED by Alan Thomson    pbk    £4.50    ISBN 978-1-873468-395

WARE AT WAR 1939-1945 by Derek Armes    pbk    £12.95    ISBN 978-1-873468-876