Arlesey extends about three miles along the River Hiz valley and has been inhabited for many centuries The 13th century Church of St Peter, located at the northern end has architecture from several periods. The tower and north doorway are 15th century; the south early 14th century; and the font with octagonal carved panelled sides late 14th century. The tower was rebuilt in 1877
East of the village are the yellow brick buildings of Fairfield Hospital, formerly Three Counties Hospital, much of which dates from 1857. Once Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire were joined by an isolated section of Huntingdonshire, which gave rise to the name
Although still mostly agricultural, there are small pockets of light engineering established at both ends of the parish
Regular bus services link the town with Bedford and Hitchin. Shops include greengrocers, butchers, chemists, small supermarkets, fish & chip shop and off licence. Other facilities include a Health Centre, library, nursery and Lower Schools, dentists and Village Hall, which houses several voluntary organisations.