Steve's World Blog Information and articles on cities, towns and villages around the world.

December 29, 2010

Geevor Mine Pendeen St Just

Filed under: England,Travel,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 2:01 pm

A museum and heritage centre located in a former tin mine in western Cornwall, the Geevor Tin Mine is a great place to visit if you are in the Penzance, St Just area. Learn a little about the historic tin mining industry, you can take the underground tour, visit the Hard Rock Museum, take a look down the Victory Shaft, visit The Dry, left as it was when the mine was operational, or try your hand at mineral panning an see what you can find. Located near to the village of Pendeen, north of the town of St Just, the Geevor Mine is open Sunday to Friday.

December 18, 2010

Hoddesdon Hertfordshire

Filed under: England,History,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , , , — needahand @ 5:44 pm

A a small commuter town located in the valley of the River Lea in Hertfordshire, Hoddesdon has a population of 20,250, and is an ancient town which mostly developed as a stopping point for horse drawn coaches travelling between London and Cambridge, heading north on the Great North Road. Hoddesdon originated as a Saxon settlement probably deriving its name from the Old English or Danish, it was significant enough in the 11th century to be listed in the Domesday Book and later received a charter to hold a market. As the importance of horse drawn carriages declined, another industry provided income for the town in the form of gravel, though this ran out by the 1970’s, leaving water filled gravel pits providing water sports facilities for its modern day residents. Hoddesdon is just north of Broxbourne and surrounding villages include Roydon, Great Amwell, Hunsdon, Lower Nazeing and Stanstead Abbotts.

December 11, 2010

Aston Clinton Aston Martin

Filed under: England,Facts,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 3:57 pm

Interesting facts, did you know that the Aston Martin car derived the “Aston” part of its name from the Buckinghamshire village of Aston Clinton? The co founder of the Aston martin company, Lionel Martin road tested his early cars in a hill climb competition which took place on Aston Hill, close to the village of Aston Clinton, you can even view a plaque that has been placed on the site to commemorate this event. The company was founded in 1913 in London, and the other co-founder was Robert Bamford, the DB5 appeared in the James Bond film Goldfinger. Aston Clinton is a village situated east of Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire.

December 10, 2010

Hemel Hempstead Hertfordshire

Filed under: England,History,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 6:52 pm

A large town located in the county of Hertfordshire, Hemel Hempstead has a population of over 80,000 and though settled as long ago as Anglo-Saxon times, mostly grew as a New Town after the second world war. Recorded in the Domesday Book as Hamelamesede, the town received its charter in 1539, after which it held a street market every Thursday, its parish church of St Mary dates from the 12th century. In 1946 Hemel Hempstead was named as the site of a New Town, and quickly developed into a busy town, surrounding its older parts on all sides. Popular with shoppers from surrounding towns, Hemel Hempstead is a commercial centre for the region. Interesting places to visit in the Hemel Hempstead area include the historic village of Kings Langley, formerly the location of a priory and a royal palace (of the Plantagenet Kings), and the former coaching station of Redbourn sitting on Watling Street, a charming village with a 12th century church.

December 8, 2010

Chesham Buckinghamshire

The largest town in the Chiltern District of Buckinghamshire, lying in the south-east of the county, Chesham is a market town situated in a steep sided valley at the source of the River Chess. A progressive town with a population of around 20,000, Chesham is a popular commuter town which is on the London Underground line (Metropolitan), giving good access to the capital. Chesham holds a market twice a week, much as it has done for centuries, and a more recent addition, the Elgiva Theatre attracts thousands of visitors to the town, providing much needed entertainment for both its residents and those living nearby. Surrounded by wide expanses of beautiful countryside, Chesham offers plenty of opportunity for walking and cycling, while providing a relaxed and friendly shopping experience for those choosing to stay in the town centre. Places of interest nearby include the Hertfordshire village of Bovingdon, which holds a well known Saturday market on its disused airport, on the same airport you can try out paintballing or watch banger racing, should you wish, and also the pretty village of Ashley Green, a charming place to spend an hour or two.

December 7, 2010

Princes Risborough Buckinghamshire

Lying in a broad gap in the western Chilton Hills, the small town of Princes Risborough has a history going back to Anglo Saxon times and beyond, it was recorded in the Domesday Book, and the manor eventually passed to Edward the Black Prince, giving it the “Princes” part of its name.  Later Princes Risborough received its charter to hold a weekly market from Henry VIII in 1523, it also from this time held 2 annual fairs. This expanding town still has many thatched and timbered cottages in its historic centre, its brick market house is topped with a wooden cupola, the National Trust run manor house dates from the 17th century, it has a Jacobean staircase and 18th century wainscoting. Princes Risborough is situated roughly midway between Aylesbury and High Wycombe.

December 6, 2010

Newport Pagnell Buckinghamshire

Filed under: England,History,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 6:47 pm

A town which has now been virtually swallowed up by the ever growing Milton Keynes, Newport Pagnell is a historic town standing beside the River Ouzel in Buckinghamshire. Recorded as Neuport in the Domesday Book of 1086 this former Saxon settlement was taken over by the Normans and the Pagnell suffix was added later as the manor was taken over by the Pagnell family. A significant river crossing over the River Ouzel, the Tickford Bidge at Newport Pagnell, is the oldest constantly used iron bridge in the world, dating from 1810. For many years Newport Pagnell was where Aston Martin cars were built, though production has now been moved to Gaydon (Warks). Newport Pagnell has a population of around 15,000.

Abbotsbury Dorset

Filed under: England,Travel,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , — needahand @ 2:37 pm

A picturesque, and peaceful rural village located inland of Chesil Bank, in the county of Dorset, England, Abbotsbury attracts many thousands of visitors each year, who not only arrive to enjoy the charm of the place but also to see the famous Abbotsbury Swannery and also the nearby Subtropical Gardens. The Swannery was established by Benedictine Monks, hundreds of years ago, and now visitors can feed over 600 friendly mute swans and walk amongst these extraordinary birds. The Abbotsbury Subtropical Gardens were established by the Countess of Ilchester in 1765 and contain many rare and exotic plants over an area of 20 acres of Dorset countryside.

Buckingham Buckinghamshire

Filed under: England,History,United Kingdom — Tags: , , , , — needahand @ 2:08 pm

The original county town of Buckinghamshire, Buckingham was replaced by Aylesbury during the 16th century. A settlement since Saxon times it was founded by the Saxon chieftain Bucca close to the River Great Ouse. The town was controlled at various times by both Danes and Saxons as the two rivals battled with each other. A market town since ancient times, Buckingham still holds 2 weekly markets on Tuesdays and Saturdays and also holds a monthly Farmers Market. Buckingham these days has a population of 11,572 though is an expanding town so this will no doubt grow over the coming years. Its historic centre and market place is mostly unspoilt and boasts a number of fine 18th century buildings. The University of Buckingham is situated roughly where the original Saxon settlement was located in a loop of the Great Ouse, attracting academics and students to Buckingham from Buckinghamshire, Oxford and the rest of the UK.

December 3, 2010

Gulliver’s Land Milton Keynes

Filed under: England,Travel,United Kingdom — Tags: , — needahand @ 8:10 pm

To entertain the kids on a visit to Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire, pay a visit to Gulliver’s Land, a children’s theme park, located at Newlands, just outside the town. Perfect for a day out especially when the weather is fine, Gulliver’s land boasts 7 distinct sections, Toy Land, Lilliput Land, Junior Discovery Cove, Adventure Land, Discovery Bay, Lilliput Land Castle and Main Street, and offers lots to keep the kids amused for a few hours. Standard entry prices fro 2010 are £13.50 for both adults and children, and a daily passport is £49.99. To find Gulliver’s Land, head for the Willen Lake area of Milton Keynes, and follow the brown Gulliver’s Land signposts.

See a map of Milton Keynes here:

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