Local History Month

Well, I live in the county town of Staffordshire in the middle of England!  It’s a pretty nice place to live in and is very convenient when you want to visit anywhere as north, south, east and west, you can get to most places in under three hours!!  (Of course the far extremities of the UK take a bit longer!!)

We are on the West coast main railway and can get to London in one and a half hours, Birmingham in 40 minutes and Manchester in 1 hour.

We are south of Stoke on Trent and the potteries (so many places of interest here, including Wedgwood, Barlaston, Emma Bridgewater, the Peak District and many more).

The people are friendly, the weather is ok and I rest assured that if the ice caps do melt, we’re in a very good position for survival!!

History bit!….After William the Conqueror took over England in 1066, he had our castle built in 1069.  This was lived in until the 1950’s and fell into disrepair.  When a boy was climbing on it and fell to his death it was partially knocked down.  Councils in those days didn’t care about history or the preservation of buildings.

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The castle years ago with two of its turrets still standing, and us walking on the hills around the ruins!!

We also have the largest timber frame house in the UK which stands on our high street.  It’s called The Ancient High House and is now a museum.  Prince Charles (before he became Charles II shot at the weather vane on top of St. Mary’s from a window there many many years ago.  Or it could have been his cousin, Prince Rupert.  I forget which.

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Oh, and Mary, Queen of Scots was held at Chartley castle on her way to the tower of London where she was imprisoned before being beheaded by Elizabeth 1st.  Yep we have another ruined castle!!  You can see this one on the route from Stafford to Uttoxeter.

As a town, Stafford is changing a lot at the moment.  New developments are being built, we’re getting a new shopping centre and restaurants, the MOD is bringing back some troops who’ve been in Germany for the past decade so we have a lot of house building going on, and we’re also getting 3000 new houses opposite another business park which promises 2500 jobs.

And yes, I’m sure you’ve all heard of Stafford for the hospital, but having used the facilities a lot over the past two years I can honestly say that I had great treatment and the staff were wonderful.  I really hope that they don’t take it away.  Things have changed such a lot there.

It does feel as though history is being made at the moment.  I wonder what will become of this town.  With losing the University campus and possibly part of the hospital it feels like a chunk is being ripped away but with all the new things arriving we will have to see what happens.

 

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