Local Info

Local Info

restaurantStamfordStamford

In 2013 the Lincolnshire town of Stamford, known for the beauty of its buildings and of the surrounding countryside, was placed first in a Sunday Times article featuring the best places to live in the UK, and in recent surveys Stamford continues to be ranked amongst the best towns in England in which to live.

Situated along the River Welland between Rutland to the west and north and Peterborough to the south, the 20,000 inhabitants of Stamford live within the South Kesteven district of Lincolnshire.

With a recorded history going back over 1000 years, Stamford’s wool based economy prospered under the Normans (it was particularly famous for its ‘haberget’ cloth) and it became one of the largest towns in England before it suffered a decline in the 15th century. A lack of industrialisation and a long-term relationship with its landlords, The Cecils, have preserved its stunning 17th and 18th century architecture and the town has over 600 listed buildings, more than half of Lincolnshire’s total.

Probably Stamford’s most famous historical connection is that of Sir William Cecil, 1st Baron of Burghley and the chief advisor of Queen Elizabeth 1. A pupil at The King’s School, Grantham and then Stamford School (both of which continue to flourish today), Cecil became Principal Secretary to Elizabeth in 1558 and eventually the most powerful non-royal in England. He is buried in St Martin’s Church, Stamford.

Cecil’s greatest physical legacy, however, is Burghley House, a grand 16th century country house situated in a park later designed by Capability Brown. Built between 1558 and 1587 as a result of Cecil’s extraordinary wealth, the house is now owned by a charitable trust established by his descendants and is open to the public. Since 1961 Burghley House has hosted the Burghley Horse Trials, one of the leading three-day events in the world.

Stamford has hosted an annual fair for over 1000 years and Stamford Fair is mentioned in Shakespeare’s Henry IV part 2. The mid-lent fair continues to be one of the largest street fairs in England.

watersportsRutland_waterRutland

The smallest of the historic counties of England (18 miles at its greatest length and 17 miles at its greatest width), Rutland is located to the west and north of Stamford and includes the towns of Oakham and Uppingham plus over 50 picturesque villages and a wealth of natural beauty. It was first mentioned as a separate county in 1159.

The county of Rutland is dominated by Rutland Water, a drinking water reservoir almost cut in two by a large spit of land. When construction began in 1917, it was the largest man-made lake in Europe. Set in 3,100 acres of countryside, it offers a 25-mile circular track for walking or cycling, watersports, and outdoor adventure centre and a wetland nature reserve which serves as an overwintering site for wildfowl and a breeding site for ospreys.

The county town of Oakham is well known for its open-air market held in the town square every Wednesday and Saturday; while nearby Uppingham is well known for a fatstock show held in temporary penning in the centre of town. The first recorded show was in 1889 and the event continues to attract farmers from around the area who exhibit their prize sheep, pigs and cattle.

Uppingham also boasts one of the earliest ‘public’ schools in England, with its famous school having been founded in 1584 (the original schoolroom still exists in Uppingham churchyard). Famous alumni include Stephen Fry, Jonathan Agnew, Donald and Sir Malcolm Campbell and Rick Stein.

Reputedly, Rutland is the only county in Britain not to have a McDonalds, Burger King or KFC!

 

 

Credits:

“River Welland.18.6.05”. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:River_Welland.18.6.05.jpg#mediaviewer/File:River_Welland.18.6.05.jpg

By SmileyRose (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

User Kev747 at the English language Wikipedia [CC-BY-SA-3. (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/), GFDL (www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], from Wikimedia Commons

1 Comment

  1. Profile photo of Richard Chumbley

    Richard Chumbley - March 2, 2015, 11:53 pm Reply

    I’d love to know more about the history of the local area. Where can I find that information?

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