Chesham is nestled in the centre of four dry valleys in the Chilterns AONB. The River Chess is a rare chalk stream once famous for watercress beds.
Although Chesham has been occupied since 5000BCE, it was known for its four Bs; brushes, boots, beer and Baptists. Artefacts of the brick industry dating back to the 13th century have been found. Most of the buildings in the town and surrounding area were made of local bricks. Between the wars there were 23 brickworks in the Chesham area. Long known for religious dissent, there is still a memorial to Protestant martyr Thomas Harding on White Hill.