(From the "Pictorial Guide to Bedfordshire" by Eric Meadows, White Crescent Press Ltd, Luton, Bedfordshire, UK, 1975. ISBN 0-900804-10-6)
Amphill, created the royal honour by Henry VIII in 1542 lies on the Greensand Ridge in fair countryside. It has a variety of beautiful old buildings, many of them 17-18C and some Tudor. The White Hart, a former coaching inn, was built in the days of Queen Anne and incorporates a Tudor building. Opposite is a Georgian arcaded shop. 28 Church Street, a mid-Georgian house, has the wrought iron gateway and screen from Houghton House. Facing Church Close is Dyvenor House of 1725, Georgian Brandreth House and the little whitened Feoffe Almshouses.

The ironstone church, on the edge of open hill-country, has Decorated Gothic arcades and chancel arch; otherwise is Perpendicular Gothic with carved angels under the roof, but over-restored externally. Four brasses include one to William Hicchecok, a 'wolman' 1450 and to Sir Nicholas Harvey 1532 who attended Queen Katherine; also there is an impressive monument to Richard Nicolls, whose family lived at Ampthill Park in the 17C. Nicolls took over New Amsterdam from the Dutch in 1664 and renamed it New York after his patron the Duke of York, but at the Battle of Solway Bay in 1672 a Dutch cannonball killed him. The ball is in his monument, 'instrumentum mortis et immortalitatis'.

Henry VIII was a frequent visitor to Ampthill Castle, and it was there that Katherine of Aragon lived from 1531 until divorced in 1533, when she was moved to Kimbolton. The site of the castle is in the park, marked by a cross erected by Lord Ossory in 1770, with an inscription by Horace Walpole on its base, commemorating 'the mornful refuge of an injured Queen'. The castle was built in the 15C by Sir John Cornwall, later Lord Fanhope, from ransoms after the Battle of Agincourt.

The present house in the park was built 1686-88 for the Dowager Countess of Ailesbury and Elgin, by architect-mason Robert Grumbold of Cambridge. It was sold to the first Lord Ashburnham in 1690, altered by John Lumley 1705-07 when the north front was made; lastly side wings and redecoration, including elaborate ceilings, were added 1769-71 by Chambers. In 1818 it became the home of the famous Lady Holland (died 1845), whose gatherings at Holland House, Kensington, were the most brilliant of her day. The house is now a Cheshire Home, and the park is a public one with some grand trees including a few old oaks.

On the western edge of the town near Little Farm is the Oxford Hospital, an almshouse of 1607 in Wren style, of chequered brickwork with original windows, dormers and a single-handed clock on a central pediment below a cupola - a little gem, backed by Scots pines in a rural setting.