Emergency medical services in the United Kingdom
Emergency medical services in the United Kingdom provide emergency care to people with acute illness or injury and are predominantly provided free at the point of use by the four National Health Services of England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Emergency care including ambulance and emergency department treatment is free to everyone, regardless of immigration or visitor status; the NHS commissions most emergency medical services through the 14 NHS organisations with ambulance responsibility across the UK. As with other emergency services, the public access emergency medical services through one of the valid emergency telephone numbers. In addition to ambulance services provided by NHS organisations, there are some private and volunteer emergency medical services arrangements in place in the UK, the use of private or volunteer ambulances at public events or large private sites, as part of community provision of services such as community first responders. Air ambulance services in the UK are not part of the NHS and are funded through charitable donations.
Paramedics are seconded from a local NHS ambulance service, with the exception of Great North Air Ambulance Service who employ their own paramedics. Doctors are provided by their home hospital and spend no more than 40% of their time with an air ambulance service. Public ambulance services across the UK are required by law to respond to four types of requests for care, which are: Emergency calls Doctor's urgent admission requests High dependency and urgent inter-hospital transfers Major incidentsAmbulance trusts and services may undertake non-urgent patient transport services on a commercial arrangement with their local hospital trusts or health boards, or in some cases on directly funded government contracts, although these contracts are fulfilled by private and voluntary providers; the National Health Service Act 1946 gave county and borough councils a statutory responsibility to provide an emergency ambulance service, although they could contract a voluntary ambulance service to provide this, with many contracting the British Red Cross, St John Ambulance or another local provider.
The last St John Division, to be so contracted is reputed to have been at Whittlesey in Cambridgeshire, where the two-bay ambulance garage can still be seen at the branch headquarters. The Regional Ambulance Officers’ Committee reported in 1979 that “There was considerable local variation in the quality of the service provided in relation to vehicles and equipment. Most Services were administered by Local Authorities through their Medical Officer of Health and his Ambulance Officer, a few were under the aegis of the Fire Service, whilst others relied upon agency methods for the provision of part or all of their services.” The 142 existing ambulance services were transferred by the National Health Service Reorganisation Act 1973 from local authority to central government control in 1974, consolidated into 53 services under regional or area health authorities. This led to the formation of predominantly county based ambulance services, which merged up and changed responsibilities until 2006, when there were 31 NHS ambulance trusts in England.
The June 2005 report "Taking healthcare to the Patient", authored by Peter Bradley, Chief Executive of the London Ambulance Service, for the Department of Health led to the merging of the 31 trusts into 13 organisations in England, plus one organisation each in Wales and Northern Ireland. Following further changes as part of the NHS foundation trust pathway, this has further reduced to 10 ambulance service trusts in England, plus the Isle of Wight which has its own provision. Following the passage of the Health and Social Care Act 2012, commissioning of the ambulance services in each area passed from central government control into the hands of regional clinical commissioning groups; the commissioners in each region are responsible for contracting with a suitable organisation to provide ambulance services within their geographical territory. The primary provider for each area is held by a public NHS body, of which there are 11 in England, 1 each in the other three countries. In England there are now ten NHS ambulance trusts, as well as an ambulance service on the Isle of Wight, run directly by Isle of Wight NHS Trust, with boundaries following those of the former regional government offices.
The ten trusts are: East Midlands Ambulance Service NHS Trust East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust London Ambulance Service NHS Trust North East Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust West Midlands Ambulance Service University NHS Foundation Trust Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS TrustThe English ambulance trusts are represented by the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives, with the Scottish and Northern Irish providers all associate members. On the 14 November 2018 West Midlands Ambulance Service became the UK's first university-ambulance trust; the service was operated before reorganisation in 1974 by the St Andrews’ Ambulance Association under contract to the Secretary of State for Scotland. The Scottish Ambulance Service is a Special Health Board that provides ambulance services throughout whole of Scotland, on behalf of the Health and Social Care Directorates of the Scottish Government.
Due to the remote nature of many areas of Scotland compared to the other Home Nations, the Scottish Ambulance Service has Britain's only publi
The United Kingdom the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world; the Irish Sea lies between Great Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres, the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world, it is the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017. The UK is constitutional monarchy; the current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state.
The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area; the United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution; the nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language and political systems of many of its former colonies; the United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world, it was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, military and political influence internationally, it is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946.
It has been a leading member state of the European Union and its predecessor, the European Economic Community, since 1973. The United Kingdom is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the World Trade Organization; the 1707 Acts of Union declared that the kingdoms of England and Scotland were "United into One Kingdom by the Name of Great Britain". The term "United Kingdom" has been used as a description for the former kingdom of Great Britain, although its official name from 1707 to 1800 was "Great Britain"; the Acts of Union 1800 united the kingdom of Great Britain and the kingdom of Ireland in 1801, forming the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Following the partition of Ireland and the independence of the Irish Free State in 1922, which left Northern Ireland as the only part of the island of Ireland within the United Kingdom, the name was changed to the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".
Although the United Kingdom is a sovereign country, Scotland and Northern Ireland are widely referred to as countries. The UK Prime Minister's website has used the phrase "countries within a country" to describe the United Kingdom; some statistical summaries, such as those for the twelve NUTS 1 regions of the United Kingdom refer to Scotland and Northern Ireland as "regions". Northern Ireland is referred to as a "province". With regard to Northern Ireland, the descriptive name used "can be controversial, with the choice revealing one's political preferences"; the term "Great Britain" conventionally refers to the island of Great Britain, or politically to England and Wales in combination. However, it is sometimes used as a loose synonym for the United Kingdom as a whole; the term "Britain" is used both as a synonym for Great Britain, as a synonym for the United Kingdom. Usage is mixed, with the BBC preferring to use Britain as shorthand only for Great Britain and the UK Government, while accepting that both terms refer to the United K
Fawley Court is a country house, with large mixed-use grounds standing on the west bank of the River Thames at Fawley in the English county of Buckinghamshire. Its former deer park extended east into the Henley Park area of Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire that abuts it to the south. Following World War II, it was run as Divine Mercy College by the Polish Congregation of Marian Fathers, with its associated library and was one of the cultural centres for the Polish minority in the United Kingdom until its closure and sale in the 2009, it is listed at Grade I for its architecture. The main building sit five times its length away from the river, 600m along the 2112m Henley Royal Regatta course and has a private promenade covering half of the course, adjoining its two small farms to the south, its former deer park extended east into the Henley Park area of Henley-on-Thames, which has an larger estate, but more modest buildings. The town itself adjoins to the south, with the smaller Phyllis Court being the closest neighbour.
Under Edward the Confessor in 1065 the Domesday Book notes Earl Tosti held this land as the manor of Fawley, connected with the village itself which sits atop the hill behind. After the Conquest, Fawley Manor was given by William I to his kinsman Walter Giffard, one of the leading compilers of the Domesday Book, his steward Herbrand de Sackville was holding it when the book was compiled in 1086, the Sackvilles held it until it passed through the marriage of the Sackville heiress Margery, to Thomas Rokes, in 1477. In 1616, Fawley was sold to Sir James Whitelocke, a judge who bought adjoining smaller Phyllis Court and larger Henley Park. On his death in 1632 Fawley passed to his son, Sir Bulstrode Whitelocke, a parliamentarian and judge who owned much land in Remenham. During the Civil War, Fawley was the scene of fighting between the Roundheads and Royalist troops commanded by Prince Rupert of the Rhine. Since Bulstrode Whitelocke was a Parliament supporter, Royalist soldiers were quartered in the house under Sir John Byron having ransacked it in 1642.
After the Restoration of the Monarchy Bulstrode gave the damaged house to his son James Whitelocke, having failed to repair it, sold it to Colonel William Freeman. In 1684 the house was rebuilt for Freeman, a plantation and slave owner and merchant; the resulting house is a large square brick and stone house with two tall storeys, plus basement and attic. The symmetrical plan is ranged either side of an entrance hall entered from the west, with the identically-proportioned saloon beyond; the stair hall in the southwest block opens from the entrance hall. The centres of the north and south fronts are broken forward and capped with pediments. There is an Ionic entrance portico on the west front. During the Glorious Revolution of 1688, William III of Orange stayed in the house during his march from Torbay to London, received a loyal declaration from peers and an address from the Corporation of London. Interior finishing was ongoing however as the plasterwork of the saloon ceiling bears the date 1690.
Its confident bold relief tempted Geoffrey Beard to ascribe it to London plasterer William Parker, whose comparable work at Denham Place is documented. Following Freeman's death the estate passed to John Cooke his nephew, a merchant and amateur architect, who under William's will changed his name to Freeman, he was an early member of the Society of Antiquaries, built the Gothic folly in the grounds and the Freeman family mausoleum in the village based on the design of the tomb of Caecilla Metella in Rome. He buried a time capsule of contemporary artefacts in a mound resembling a round barrow on the estate; these were rediscovered in the early 20th century. Examples of its many day to day household items of the early 18th century are in the River and Rowing Museum in Henley. Between 1764 and 1766 the grounds were landscaped for Sambrooke Freeman by Capability Brown. Shortly thereafter the architect James Wyatt, not yet made famous by his Pantheon, worked on decorations in new rooms in the house, where doorcases and chimneypieces in Wyatt's early neoclassical style and the decoration of the Library reflect his presence.
Fawley may have been Wyatt's first country house commission. He designed "the temple", a folly and fishing lodge, on Temple Island. One of two drawings securely attributed to Wyatt that appeared at a Christie's auction, 30 November 1983, is for the interior of the island temple, the earliest essay in England of an "Etruscan" style, its pale green walls painted as if hung with "antique" black and terracotta figured tablets and medallions; the drawing that accompanied it is for the Drawing Room ceiling. Drawings by James Wyatt's brother Samuel suggested to Eileen Harris that he was responsible for the barn with an apsidal end, which survives at Fawley; the recent improvements at Fawley were praised by Mrs Lybbe Powys in 1771. The brick facades were stuccoed about 1800, were restored with new brick in the nineteenth century. Both George III and George IV visited the house. Strickland Freeman, the son of Sambrooke Freeman, wrote works on equitation and veterinary aspects of horsemanship and botany.
A progressive landlord to his agricultural tenants he participated in advancing farming techniques and practices deemed by some revolutionary. Strickland Freeman died without a heir; this wa
Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service
The Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service is the statutory fire and rescue service covering Herefordshire and Worcestershire in the West Midlands region of England. The two counties consist of around 1,500 square miles, a population of over 750,000 people; the service was created in 1974 when The County Of Hereford Fire Brigade and The Worcester City & County Fire Brigade were merged to create The County Of Hereford and Worcester Fire Brigade. The two counties were split up again in 1998 but the fire service remained, is now run by a joint fire authority; the service has 332 wholetime operational staff, 369 retained staff, 21 Fire Control staff, as well as about 98 non-uniformed support staff. The busiest areas of Hereford and Worcester fire & rescue is Worcester and Redditch both averaging 1,500 call outs a year, the least busiest areas being Peterchurch and Fownhope averaging between 10-20 callouts a year. Evesham & Peterchurch stations are home to the fire services realistic training facilities.
The main training centre is at Droitwich fire station, more complex training is undertaken at the Fire Service College in Moreton In Marsh. The smallest station in the area is Broadway, a small garage situated off a narrow lane & the largest station is the Wyre Forest Hub with 4 pumps & 6 more vehicles Neighbouring fire services include: Gloucestershire, Shropshire, Staffordshire and West Wales, South Wales and the West Midlands; the 4 Wholetime Fire Stations within Herefordshire & Worcestershire have 1 appliance crewed 24/7 by 4 watches of. The 3 Day Crewed Stations within Worcestershire have 1 appliance crewed for 12 hours a day by 2 watches working on a shift pattern of four 12 hour shifts four days off; the appliance is manned by the retained crews at night The one Day Crew Plus Station have the 1 appliance crewed 24/7 by 4 watches of Blue, Green & White, Working on a shift pattern on a self rostering system consisting of two consecutive 24 hour shifts followed by 4 days off. They work within the station for 12 hours and spend the night at an accommodation site within the station boundary.
All stations in Herefordshire & Worcester have Retained crews in which 19 are retained. Retained firefighters are part-time and have to live or work within 5 minutes of the station and be available for up to 50 hours a week. Pump, Standard firefighting appliance based on either.
Henley-on-Thames is a town and civil parish on the River Thames in Oxfordshire, England, 9 miles northeast of Reading, 7 miles west of Maidenhead and 23 miles southeast of Oxford, near the tripoint of Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire. The population at the 2011 Census was 11,619; the first record of Henley is from 1179, when it is recorded that King Henry II "had bought land for the making of buildings". King John granted the manor of Benson and the town and manor of Henley to Robert Harcourt in 1199. A church at Henley is first mentioned in 1204. In 1205 the town received a paviage grant, in 1234 the bridge is first mentioned. In 1278 Henley is described as a hamlet of Benson with a chapel; the street plan was established by the end of the 13th century. As a demesne of the crown it was granted in 1337 to John de Molyns, whose family held it for about 250 years, it is said that members for Henley sat in parliaments of Edward I and Edward III, but no writs have been found to substantiate this. The existing Thursday market, was granted by a charter of King John.
A market was in existence by 1269. The existing Corpus Christi fair was granted by a charter of Henry VI. During the Black Death pandemic that swept through England in the 14th century, Henley lost 60% of its population. A variation on its name can be seen as "Henley up a Tamys" in 1485. By the beginning of the 16th century the town extended along the west bank of the Thames from Friday Street in the south to the Manor, now Phyllis Court, in the north and took in Hart Street and New Street. To the west it included the Market Place. Henry VIII granted the use of the titles "mayor" and "burgess", the town was incorporated in 1568 in the name of the warden, portreeves and commonalty; the original charter was issued by Elizabeth I but replaced by one from George I in 1722. Henley suffered at the hands of both parties in the Civil War. William III rested here on his march to London in 1688, at the nearby rebuilt Fawley Court, received a deputation from the Lords; the town's period of prosperity in the 17th and 18th centuries was due to manufactures of glass and malt, trade in corn and wool.
Henley-on-Thames supplied London with grain. A workhouse to accommodate 150 people was built at West Hill in Henley in 1790, was enlarged to accommodate 250 as the Henley Poor Law Union workhouse. Henley Bridge is a five arched bridge across the river built in 1786, it is a Grade. During 2011 the bridge underwent a £200,000 repair programme after being hit by the boat Crazy Love in August 2010. About a mile upstream of the bridge is Marsh Lock. Chantry House is the second Grade I listed building in the town, it is unusual in having more storeys on one side than on the other. The Church of England parish church of St Mary the Virgin is nearby, has a 16th-century tower; the Old Bell is a pub in the centre of Henley. The building has been dated from 1325: the oldest-dated building in the town. To celebrate Queen Victoria's Jubilee, 60 oak trees were planted in the shape of a Victoria Cross near Fair Mile. Two notable buildings just outside Henley, in Buckinghamshire, are: Fawley Court, a red-brick building designed by Christopher Wren for William Freeman with subsequent interior remodelling by James Wyatt and landscaping by Lancelot "Capability" Brown.
Greenlands, which took its present form when owned by W. H. Smith and is now home to Henley Business School Lloyds Bank's analysis of house price growth in 125 market towns in England over the year to June 2016, found that Henley was the second-most expensive market town in the country with an average property price of £748,001; the town's railway station is the terminus of the Henley Branch Line from Twyford. In the past there have been direct services to London Paddington. There are express mainline rail services from Reading to Paddington. Trains from High Wycombe go to London Marylebone; the M4 motorway and the M40 motorway are both about 7 miles away. The River and Rowing Museum, located in Mill Meadows, is the town's one museum, it was established in 1998, opened by Queen Elizabeth II. The museum, designed by the architect David Chipperfield, features information on the River Thames, the sport of rowing, the town of Henley itself; the University of Reading's Henley Business School is near Henley.
Henley is a world-renowned centre for rowing. Each summer the Henley Royal Regatta is held on Henley Reach, a straight stretch of the river just north of the town, it was extended artificially. The event became "Royal" in 1851. Other regattas and rowing races are held on the same reach, including Henley Women's Regatta, the Henley Boat Races for women's and lightweight teams between Oxford and Cambridge University, Henley Town and Visitors Regatta, Henley Veteran Regatta, Upper Thames Small Boats Head, Henley Fours and Eights Head, Henley Sculls; these "Heads" attract strong crews that have won medals at National Championships. Local rowing clubs include: Henley Rowing Club Leander Club Phyllis Court Rowing Club Upper Thames Rowing Club Henley Whalers focus on fixed-seat rowing and
West Midlands (region)
The West Midlands is one of nine official regions of England at the first level of NUTS for statistical purposes. It covers the western half of the area traditionally known as the Midlands, it contains Birmingham and the larger West Midlands conurbation, the third most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Coventry is located within the West Midlands county, but is separated from the conurbation to the west by several miles of green belt; the region contains 6 shire counties which stretch from the Welsh Border to the East Midlands. The region is geographically diverse, from the urban central areas of the conurbation to the rural western counties of Shropshire and Herefordshire which border Wales; the longest river in the UK, the River Severn, traverses the region southeastwards, flowing through the county towns of Shrewsbury and Worcester, the Ironbridge Gorge, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Staffordshire is home to the industrialised Potteries conurbation, including the city of Stoke-on-Trent, the Staffordshire Moorlands area, which borders the southeastern Peak District National Park near Leek.
The region encompasses five Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Wye Valley, Shropshire Hills, Cannock Chase, Malvern Hills, parts of the Cotswolds. Warwickshire is home to the towns of Stratford upon Avon, birthplace of writer William Shakespeare, the birthplace of Rugby football and Nuneaton, birthplace to author George Eliot; the official region contains the ceremonial counties of Herefordshire, Staffordshire, West Midlands and Worcestershire. There is some confusion in the use of the term "West Midlands", as the name is used for the much smaller West Midlands county and conurbation, in the central belt of the Midlands and on the eastern side of the West Midlands Region, it is still used by various organisations within that area, such as West Midlands Police and West Midlands Fire Service. The highest point in the region is Black Mountain, at 703 metres in west Herefordshire on the border with Powys, Wales; the region contains five Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, including the Shropshire Hills, Malvern Hills and Cannock Chase, parts of the Wye Valley and Cotswolds.
The Peak District national park stretches into the northern corner of Staffordshire. Served by many lines in the urban areas such as the West Coast Main Line and branches; the Welsh Marches Line and the Cotswold Line transect the region as well as the Cross Country Route and Chiltern Line. There are plans to reopen the Honeybourne Line. Numerous notable roads pass with most converging around the central conurbation; the M5, which connects South West England to the region, passes through Worcestershire, near to Worcester, through the West Midlands county, past West Bromwich, with its northern terminus at its junction with the M6 just south of Walsall. The M6, which has its southern terminus just outside the southeast of the region at its junction with the M1, which connects the region to North West England, passes Rugby and Nuneaton in Warwickshire and Birmingham, Stafford and Stoke-on-Trent in Staffordshire; the M6 toll provides an alternative route to the M6 between Coleshill and Cannock, passing north of Sutton Coldfield and just south of Lichfield.
The M40 connects the region through South East England to London, with its northern terminus at its junction with the M42. The M42 connects the M5 at Bromsgrove, passing around the south and east of Birmingham, joining the M40 and M6, passing Solihull and Castle Bromwich, to Tamworth, northeast of Birmingham; the M50 connects the M5 from near Tewkesbury to Ross-on-Wye in the southwest. The M54 connects Wellington in the west, to the M6 near Cannock; the A5 road traverses the region northwest-southeast, passing through Shrewsbury, Cannock and Nuneaton. The longest elevated road viaduct in the UK is the 3 miles section from Gravelly Hill to Castle Bromwich on the M6, opened on 24 May 1972; the section of the A45 in Coventry from Willenhall to Allesley in 1939 was one of the UK's first large planned road schemes. Princes Square in Wolverhampton had Britain's first automatic traffic lights on 5 November 1927. On 13 January 2012, 34-year-old Ben Westwood of Wednesfield, was caught by the police, when speeding at 180 mph, in an Audi RS5 with a Lamborghini engine, from Wolverhampton up to Stafford on the M6, back again.
He was travelling so fast that he was outpacing the Central Counties Air Operations Unit Eurocopter helicopter. He and the vehicle had been in fifteen smash and grab raids and he was jailed for nine years at Wolverhampton Crown Court in August 2012; as part of the transport planning system, the Regional Assembly is under statutory requirement to produce a regional transport strategy to provide long term planning for transport in the region. This involves region wide transport schemes such as those carried out by Highways England and Network Rail. Within the region, the local transport authorities carry out transport planning through the use of a local transport plan which outlines their strategies and implementation programme; the most recent LTP is that for the period 2006–11. In the West Midlands region, the following transport authorities have published their LTP online: Herefordshire, Shropshire U. A. Staffordshire and Wrekin U. A. Warwickshire, West Midlands and Worcestershire; the transport authority of Stoke-on-Trent U.
A. publishes a joint local transport plan in partnership with
Hereford is a cathedral city, civil parish and county town of Herefordshire, England. It lies on the River Wye 16 miles east of the border with Wales, 24 miles southwest of Worcester, 23 miles northwest of Gloucester. With a population of 58,896, it is the largest settlement in the county; the name "Hereford" is said to come from the Anglo-Saxon "here", an army or formation of soldiers, the "ford", a place for crossing a river. If this is the origin it suggests that Hereford was a place where a body of armed men forded or crossed the Wye; the Welsh name for Hereford is Henffordd, meaning "old road", refers to the Roman road and Roman settlement at nearby Stretton Sugwas. Much of the county of Herefordshire was Welsh-speaking, as reflected in the Welsh names of many places in the county. An early town charter from 1189 granted by Richard I of England describes it as "Hereford in Wales". Hereford has been recognised as a city since time immemorial, with the status being reconfirmed as as October 2000.
It is now known chiefly as a trading centre for rural area. Products from Hereford include: cider, leather goods, nickel alloys, poultry and cattle, including the famous Hereford breed. Hereford became the seat of Putta, Bishop of Hereford, some time between AD 676 and 688, after which the settlement continued to grow due to its proximity to the border between Mercia and Wales, becoming the Saxon capital of West Mercia by the beginning of the 8th century. Hostilities between the Anglo-Saxons and the Welsh came to a head with the Battle of Hereford in 760, in which the Britons freed themselves from the influence of the English. Hereford was again targeted by the Welsh during their conflict with the Anglo-Saxon King Edward the Confessor in AD 1056 when, supported by Viking allies, Gruffydd ap Llywelyn, King of Gwynedd and Powys, marched on the town and put it to the torch before returning home in triumph. Hereford had the only mint west of the Severn in the reign of Athelstan, it was to Hereford a border town, that Athelstan summoned the leading Welsh princes.
The present Hereford Cathedral dates from the early 12th century, as does the first bridge across the Wye. Former Bishops of Hereford include Saint Thomas de Cantilupe and Lord High Treasurer of England Thomas Charlton; the city gave its name to two suburbs of Paris, France: Maisons-Alfort and Alfortville, due to a manor built there by Peter of Aigueblanche, Bishop of Hereford, in the middle of the 13th century. Hereford, a base for successive holders of the title Earl of Hereford, was once the site of a castle, Hereford Castle, which rivalled that of Windsor in size and scale; this was a base for repelling Welsh attacks and a secure stronghold for English kings such as King Henry IV when on campaign in the Welsh Marches against Owain Glyndŵr. The castle was landscaped into Castle Green. After the Battle of Mortimer's Cross in 1461, during the Wars of the Roses, the defeated Lancastrian leader Owen Tudor was taken to Hereford by Sir Roger Vaughan and executed in High Town. A plaque now marks the spot of the execution.
Vaughan was himself executed, under a flag of truce, by Owen's son Jasper. During the civil war the city changed hands several times. On 30 September 1642 Parliamentarians led by Sir Robert Harley and Henry Grey, 1st Earl of Stamford occupied the city without opposition. In December they withdrew to Gloucester because of the presence in the area of a Royalist army under Lord Herbert; the city was again occupied from 23 April to 18 May 1643 by Parliamentarians commanded by Sir William Waller but it was in 1645 that the city saw most action. On 31 July 1645 a Scottish army of 14,000 under Alexander Leslie, 1st Earl of Leven besieged the city but met stiff resistance from its garrison and inhabitants, they withdrew on 1 September when they received news that a force led by King Charles was approaching. The city was taken for Parliament on 18 December 1645 by Colonel Birch and Colonel Morgan. King Charles showed his gratitude to the city of Hereford on 16 September 1645 by augmenting the city's coat of arms with the three lions of Richard I of England, ten Scottish Saltires signifying the ten defeated Scottish regiments, a rare lion crest on top of the coat of arms signifying "defender of the faith" and the rarer gold-barred peer's helm, found only on the arms of one other municipal authority: those of the City of London.
Nell Gwynne and mistress of King Charles II, is said to have been born in Hereford in 1650. Another famous actor born in Hereford is David Garrick; the Bishop's Palace next to the Cathedral was continually used to the present day. Hereford Cathedral School is one of the oldest schools in England; the Harold Street Barracks were completed in 1856. During World War I, in 1916, a fire at the Garrick Theatre killed eight young girls, performing at a charity concert; the main local government body covering Hereford is Herefordshire Council. Hereford has a "City Council" but this is a parish council with city status, has only limited powers. Hereford has been the county town of Herefordshire. In 1974 Herefordshire was merged with Worcestershire to become part of the county of Hereford and Worcester, Hereford became a district of the new county. Hereford had formed a historic borough and was reformed by the Municipal Corporations Act 1835. On 1 April 1998 the County of Hereford and Worcester was abolish