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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Coordinates: 52°20′11″N 0°10′18″W / 52.3364°N 0.1717°W / 52.3364; -0.1717

Huntingdon is located in Cambridgeshire

 Huntingdon shown within Cambridgeshire
Population 19,830 
OS grid reference TL245725
District Huntingdonshire
Shire county Cambridgeshire
Region East
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Postcode district PE29
Dialling code 01480
Police Cambridgeshire
Fire Cambridgeshire
Ambulance East of England
EU Parliament East of England
UK Parliament Huntingdon
List of places: UK • England • Cambridgeshire

Huntingdon is a market town in the county of Cambridgeshire in East Anglia, England. The town was chartered by King John in 1205. It was formerly the county town of Huntingdonshire, and is currently the seat of the Huntingdonshire district council. It is known as the birthplace in 1599 of Oliver Cromwell.

Signpost in Huntingdon



Very early man may have roamed the area, but does not appear to have settled for long nor in great numbers. Signs of early hunter-gatherers have been found nearby.

Huntingdon was founded by the Anglo-Saxons and Danes. Mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, it seems that it was a staging post for Danish raids outside of east Anglia until 917, when he Danes relocated to Tempsford, before being crushed by Edward the Elder. It prospered successively as a bridging point of the River Great Ouse, as a market town, and in the 18th and 19th centuries as a coaching centre, most notably The George Hotel. The town has a well-preserved medieval bridge that used to serve as the main route of Ermine Street over the river. The bridge only ceased to be the sole crossing point to Godmanchester in 1975, with the advent of what is now the A14 bypass.

Its valuable trading position was secured by the now vanished Huntingdon Castle. The site is now a Scheduled Ancient Monument, and is home to a beacon used to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the Spanish Armada.

The town has been represented in parliament by two prominent MPs: Oliver Cromwell in the 17th century, and former Conservative Prime Minister John Major from 1979 to 2001. It is currently represented by Conservative MP Jonathan Djanogly.

Original historical documents relating to Huntingdon, including the original borough charter of 1205, are held by Cambridgeshire Archives and Local Studies at the County Record Office Huntingdon.[1]

Between the railway station and the old hospital building stands a cannon. In the 1990s this replica cannon was installed to replace an original Crimean War one that stood until the Second World War, when it was scrapped for the war effort. When it was installed again in the 1990s it faced the opposite direction from the original.


The town lies on the north bank of the River Great Ouse, opposite Godmanchester and close to the market town of St Ives in the east and the village of Brampton in the west. Huntingdon now incorporates the village of Hartford to the east, and the developing areas of Oxmoor, Stukeley Meadows and Hinchingbrooke to the north and west.

Between Godmanchester, Huntingdon and Brampton lies England's largest meadow, Portholme Meadow.[2] Around 257 acres (1 km²) in size and containing many rare species of grass, flowers and dragonfly, it is the only known habitat of the Marsh Dandelion[3] in Britain. It also acts as a huge natural reservoir for holding excess water in times of flood enabling the river to be run off more slowly, thereby helping to prevent flooding of nearby towns. It has also served as a horse race course and centre for early aviation.

There is a local Horseracing Course, Huntingdon Racecourse.

The Old Bridge across the Great Ouse, to Godmanchester.

There are 3 RAF bases within 4 miles of the town: RAF Brampton, once home to Headquarters RAF Support Command and now part of the Defence Logistics Organisation (DLO); RAF Wyton, once a major flying station but now also part of the DLO; and RAF Alconbury currently occupied by the United States Air Force.

Once renowned for many more churches within the town, there are now four Church of England churches in Huntingdon, which together with the churches in the adjacent villages Great and Little Stukeley are members of the Huntingdon Team Ministry[4] in the Diocese of Ely. The four churches are All Saints' (next to the Market Square), St Marys (opposite Pathfinder House), St Barnabas (on the Oxmoor estate) and All Saints', Hartford.

Local Primary schools include Huntingdon Junior School, Thongsley Fields Primary School, St John's Primary School, Stukeley Meadows Primary School and Hartford Junior School. Special needs schools include Spring Common School. Secondary schools include St Peters and Hinchingbrooke School. Further Education colleges include Huntingdonshire Regional College[1].


  • Regular animal rights protests take place outside the local Huntingdon Life Sciences laboratory. Huntingdon Life Sciences is one of the world's largest Contract Research Organisations. Founded in 1952 in the UK, the company is now an international business with resources on three continents. Originally the company concentrated upon nutrition, veterinary and biochemical research.
  • A photograph of the old Cash Converters store (the one-time Post Office in Chequer's Court) in Huntingdon features on the front cover of the book Crap Towns II, despite the fact that the town does not feature in the book.
Huntingdon railway station, which has a direct link to Kings Cross in London.




Huntingdon and St Neots stations are connected with London Kings Cross station by a frequent service operated by First Capital Connect.

Huntingdon is connected to Peterborough station by First Capital Connect, and then on to the North and Scotland by East Coast while other trains link to Stansted Airport, Cambridge, Lincoln Birmingham and Nottingham.


Luton and Stansted airports are both within an hour's drive.

Huntingdon town centre, looking North along the High Street towards All Saints' Church.


Once a convent, Hinchingbrooke House is said to be haunted. The bridge over the Alconbury Brook named Nun's bridge[5] is said to be haunted also by one of the nuns which once lived at the old convent that is now Hinchingbrooke House. It's said she is often accompanied by another ghost which resembles the appearance of a nurse. The myth goes that the nun had a lover, a monk that caused them to be murdered. In 1965 a married couple reported seeing the ghosts on the bridge, and again when they returned home the same night.

Another Huntingdon legend is Jamie Lidell, a musician and soul singer who was born here in september 1973. A different kind of legend, but a legend nevertheless.

See also


External links

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

For other places with the same name, see Huntingdon (disambiguation).

Huntingdon is a sleepy historic town in Cambridgeshire, England, on the banks of the River Ouse, best known as the birthplace of English Civil War leader Oliver Cromwell.

Get in


Huntingdon is served by regular First Capital Connect trains between London and Peterborough.

  • Pop Bellies, 25 high street (Opposite the Saxongate Centre), 01480357575. 08:15 - 21:30. Small friendly family run restaurant in the centre of Huntingdon, well worth a visit for their good cooked meals all reasonably priced. Don't forget to try Andrew's famous Mousakka!  edit
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1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

="">See Huntingdon (disambiguation) for articles sharing the title Huntingdon.

HUNTINGDON, a market town and municipal borough and the county town of Huntingdonshire, England, on the left bank of the Ouse, on the Great Northern, Great Eastern and Midland railways, 59 m. N. of London. Pop. (1901) 4261. It consists principally of one street, about a mile long, in the centre of which is the market-place. Of the ancient religious houses in Huntingdon few traces remain. The parish church of St Mary occupies the site of the priory of Augustinian Canons already existing in the 10th century, in which David Bruce, Scottish earl of Huntingdon, was afterwards buried. The church, which was restored by Sir A. W. Blomfield, in 1876, contains portions of the earlier building which it replaced in 1620. All Saints' church, rebuilt about a century earlier, has slight remains of the original Norman church and some good modern, as well as ancient, carved woodwork. The church registers dating from 1558 are preserved, together with those of the old parish of St John, which date from 1585 and contain the entry of Oliver Cromwell's baptism on the 29th of April 1 599, the house in which he was born being still in existence. Some Norman remains of the hospice of St John the Baptist founded by David, king of Scotland, at the end of the 12th century were incorporated in the buildings of Huntingdon grammar school, once attended by Oliver Cromwell and by Samuel Pepys. Hinchingbrooke House, on the outskirts of the town, an Elizabethan mansion chiefly of the 16th century, was the seat of the Cromwell family, others of the Montagus, earls of Sandwich. It occupies the site of a Benedictine nunnery granted by Henry VIII. at the Dissolution, together with many other manors in Huntingdonshire, to Sir Richard Williams, alias Cromwell, whose son, Sir Henry Cromwell, entertained Queen Elizabeth here in 1564. His son, Sir Oliver Cromwell, was the uncle and godfather of the Protector. Among the buildings of Huntingdon are the town hall (1745), county gaol, barracks, county hospital and the Montagu Institute (1897). A racecourse is situated in the bend of the Ouse to the south of the town, and meetings are held here in August. The town is governed by a mayor, 4 aldermen and 12 councillors. Area, 1074 acres.

Huntingdon (Huntandun, Huntersdune) was taken by the Danes in King Alfred's reign but recovered c. 919 by Edward the Elder, who raised a castle there, probably on the site of an older fortress. In 10ro the Danes destroyed the town. The castle was strengthened by David, king of Scotland, after the Conquest, but was among the castles destroyed by order of Henry II. At the time of the Domesday Survey Huntingdon was divided into four divisions, two containing 116 burgesses and the other two 140. Most of the burgesses belonged to the king and paid a rent of Do yearly. King John in 1205 granted them the liberties and privileges held by the men of other boroughs in England and increased the farm to X20. Henry III. further increased it to X40 in 1252. The borough was incorporated by Richard III. in 1483 under the title of bailiffs and burgesses, and in 1630 Charles I. granted a new charter, appointing a mayor and 12 aldermen, which remained the governing charter until the Municipal Corporations Act of 1835 changed the corporation to a mayor, 4 aldermen and 12 councillors. The burgesses were represented in parliament by two members from 1295 to 1867, when the number was reduced to one, and in 1885 they ceased to be separately represented. Huntingdon owed its prosperity to its situation on the Roman Ermine Street. It has never been noted for manufactures, but is the centre of an agricultural district. The market held on Saturday was granted to the burgesses by King John. During the Civil Wars Huntingdon was several times occupied by the Royalists.

See Victoria County History, Huntingdon; Robert Carruthers, The History of Huntingdon from the Earliest to the Present Times (1824); Edward Griffith, A Collection of Ancient Records relating to the Borough of Huntingdon (1827).

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Simple English

File:Huntingdon town
Huntingdon Town Centre

Huntingdon is a town in Cambridgeshire in the United Kingdom. It stands on the River Ouse near the A1, a major road in England.

The town was chartered in 1205 and founded by Anglo-Saxons.

Huntingdon also has the largest meadow in England; Portholme Meadow. There are many small villages in Huntingdon, it has a high street and a main supermarket. The A14 runs through it.


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