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Northants house removals
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Moving to Northants?
Northamptonshire’s (Northants) location, near the centre of England, combined with
its long thin diagonal shape and its increasing economic importance, has led to
it being called “England’s Pancreas”. The biological connotations are really very
unfair: this is a beautiful county and it deserves a more flattering nickname.
The first people to settle here were the Iron Age Hallstatt culture, who came in
around 500 B.C. and built hill forts at Asbury Camp, Borough Hill, Castle Dykes
and Hunsbury Hill among others. The Catuvellauni tribe took possession of the area
in the 1st century B.C., only to be kicked out by the Romans in 43 A.D. They established
Northampton and a town called Lactodorum at modern day Towcester. The Saxons were
followed by the Danes, all quite peacefully. Then the Vikings attacked in 940, devastating
In 1460, during the Wars of the Roses, Henry VI was captured at the Battle of Northampton.
In the 16th century, Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned at Fotheringay Castle; and
in 1645, during the Civil War, the Royalists suffered a terrible defeat at the Battle
of Naseby. Two years later Charles I was imprisoned at Holdenby House. All in all,
an unlucky place for the monarchy: this is also the place that George Washington’s
forebears came from!
In the 18th and 19th centuries, Northamptonshire became a fashionable holiday destination
for the upper classes, drawn by the clean air and beautiful landscape, dotted with
country houses and grazed by extraordinary horned cattle. The Industrial Revolution
saw the beginning of a thriving shoemaking and leather industry: by the turn of
the 20th century this was the shoe capital of the world. Corby became a steel production
centre in the 1930s. Nevertheless, much of the country still remains rural.
People don’t go to Northamptonshire for the fantastic weather: in common with the
rest of the East Midlands, it’s grey and damp a lot of the time, with cold winters
and uninspiring summers. Luckily, there’s plenty to keep your mind off it. This
is part of the “Motor Valley”, hub of Britain’s motor racing industry, and four
top Formula One teams have their headquarters here. The British Grand Prix is held
at Silverstone Circuit and there are races all year round there, at Rockingham Motor
Speedway and at Santa Pod Speedway. The latter is the venue for the European FIA
drag racing championships. It’s also a good place to watch rugby league; the premier
team is Northampton Saints, who are based at Franklin’s Gardens, the second biggest
rugby stadium in the country. The Northampton Balloon Festival is held in August
every year, and the World Conker Championship in Oundle takes place every year on
the second Sunday in October.
People looking for something more cultural will enjoy Rockingham Castle, a motte
and bailey keep built by William the Conqueror and used as a royal retreat until
Tudor times, when it became a hunting lodge for the nobility. Althorp is the ancestral
home of the Spencer family, best known for its memorial exhibition on Diana, Princess
of Wales, who is buried on a small island in the middle of the lake. There is also
a brilliant art collection, including several paintings by Van Dyck. There are a
myriad of other stately homes and abbeys, including Kelmarsh Hall, Kirby Hall, Delapré
Abbey and Burghley House. This has led to another nickname, “the land of spires
and shires”, which seems a lot more appropriate.