The New River is a feature of the Enfield landscape. Sir Hugh Myddelton's project to bring water 38 miles from Amwell Springs in Hertfordshire through Enfield to Islington was completed in 1613.
In 1890 the portion of the New River around Enfield village was piped underground, thereby making this stretch redundant. It was saved from being filled in by a public campaign to preserve it for its ornamental value and it is essentially a linear lake. With the aid of a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £1.8 million in 1997, the New River Loop Restoration Project has since 1998 restored the historic watercourse, listed bridges and railings and reinstated the timber banks.