Liberal Democrats (UK)
The Liberal Democrats are a liberal political party in the United Kingdom. They have 11 Members of Parliament in the House of Commons, 96 members of the House of Lords, one member of the European Parliament, five Members of the Scottish Parliament and one member in the Welsh Assembly and London Assembly. At the height of its influence, the party formed a coalition government with the Conservative Party from 2010 to 2015 with its leader Nick Clegg serving as Deputy Prime Minister, it is led by Sir Vince Cable. In 1981, an electoral alliance was established between the Liberal Party, a group, the direct descendent of the 18th-century Whigs, the Social Democratic Party, a splinter group from the Labour Party. In 1988 this alliance was formalised as the Liberal Democrats. Under the leadership of Paddy Ashdown and Charles Kennedy, the party grew during the 1990s and 2000s, focusing its campaigning on specific seats and becoming the third largest party in the House of Commons. Under its leader Nick Clegg, the Liberal Democrats were junior partners in a coalition government headed by Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron, with Clegg serving as Deputy Prime Minister.
The coalition damaged the Liberal Democrats' electoral prospects: the party was reduced from 57 to 8 seats at the 2015 election. Positioned in the centre ground of British politics, the Liberal Democrats are ideologically liberal. Emphasising stronger protections for civil liberties, the party promotes liberal approaches to issues like LGBT rights, education policy, criminal justice. Different factions take different approaches to economic issues; the party is pro-Europeanist, supporting continued UK membership of the European Union and greater European integration. It calls for electoral reform with a transition from the first-past-the-post voting system to one of proportional representation. Other policies have included further environmental protections and drug liberalisation laws, while it has opposed certain UK military engagements like the Iraq War; the party is a member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe and Liberal International. The Liberal Democrats are strongest in northern Scotland, southwest London, southwest England, mid-Wales.
The Liberal Democrats were formed on 3 March 1988 by a merger between the Liberal Party and the Social Democratic Party, which had formed a pact nearly seven years earlier as the SDP–Liberal Alliance. The Liberal Party, founded in 1859, were descended from the Whigs and Peelites, while the SDP were a party created in 1981 by former Labour Party members, MPs and cabinet ministers, but gained defections from the Conservative Party. Having declined to third party status after the rise of the Labour Party from 1918 and during the 1920s, the Liberals were challenged for this position in the 1980s when a group of Labour MPs broke away and established the Social Democratic Party; the SDP and the Liberals realised that there was no space for two political parties of the centre and entered into the SDP–Liberal Alliance so that they would not stand against each other in elections. The Alliance was led by Roy Jenkins; the two parties had their own policies and emphases, but produced a joint manifesto for the 1983 and 1987 general elections.
Following disappointing results in the 1987 election, Steel proposed to merge the two parties. Although opposed by Owen, it was supported by a majority of members of both parties, they formally merged in March 1988, with Steel and Robert Maclennan as joint interim leaders; the new party was named Social and Liberal Democrats with the unofficial short form The Democrats being used from September 1988. The name was subsequently changed to Liberal Democrats in October 1989, shortened to Lib Dems; the new party logo, the Bird of Liberty, was adopted in 1989. The minority of the SDP who rejected the merger remained under Owen's leadership in a rump SDP. Michael Meadowcroft joined the Liberal Democrats in 2007 but some of his former followers continue still as the Liberal Party, most notably in a couple of electoral wards of the cities of Liverpool and Peterborough; the then-serving Liberal MP Paddy Ashdown was elected leader in July 1988. At the 1989 European Elections, the party received only 6% of the vote, putting them in fourth place after the Green Party.
They failed to gain a single Member of the European Parliament at this election. Over the next three years, the party recovered under Ashdown's leadership, they performed better at the 1990 local elections and in by-elections—including at Eastbourne in 1990 which saw the first success by a Liberal Democrat standing for parliament. They had further successes in Ribble Valley and Kincardine & Deeside in 1991; the Lib Dems did not reach the share of national votes in the 1990s that the Alliance had achieved in the 1980s. At their first election in 1992, they won 17.8 % of twenty seats. In the 1994 European Elections, the party gained its first two Members of European Parliament. Following the election of Tony Blair as Labour leader in July 1994 after the death of his predecessor John Smith, Ashdown pursued co-operation between the two parties becaus
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
The Fens known as the Fenlands, are a coastal plain in eastern England. This natural marshy region supported a rich ecology and numerous species, as well as absorbing storms. Most of the fens were drained several centuries ago, resulting in a flat, low-lying agricultural region supported by a system of drainage channels and man-made rivers and automated pumping stations. There have been unintended consequences to this reclamation, as the land level has continued to sink and the dykes must be built higher to protect it from flooding. A fen is the local term for an individual area of former marshland, it designates the type of marsh typical of the area, which has neutral or alkaline water chemistry and large quantities of dissolved minerals, but few other plant nutrients. Fenland lies around the coast of the Wash, occupying an area of nearly 1,500 sq mi in Lincolnshire and Norfolk. Most of the Fenland lies within a few metres of sea level; as with similar areas in the Netherlands, much of the Fenland consisted of fresh- or salt-water wetlands.
These have been artificially drained and continue to be protected from floods by drainage banks and pumps. With the support of this drainage system, the Fenland has become a major arable agricultural region in Britain for grains and vegetables; the Fens are fertile, containing around half of the grade 1 agricultural land in England. The Fens have been referred to as the "Holy Land of the English" because of the former monasteries, now churches and cathedrals, of Crowland, Peterborough and Thorney. Other significant settlements in the Fens include Boston, Cambridge and Wisbech; the Fens are low-lying compared with the chalk and limestone uplands that surround them – in most places no more than 10 m above sea level. As a result of drainage and the subsequent shrinkage of the peat fens, many parts of the Fens now lie below mean sea level. Although one writer in the 17th century described the Fenland as above sea level, the area now includes the lowest land in the United Kingdom. Holme Fen in Cambridgeshire, is around 2.75 metres below sea level.
Within the Fens are a few hills, which have been called "islands", as they remained dry when the low-lying fens around them were flooded. The largest of the fen-islands is the Isle of Ely, on which the cathedral city of Ely was built: its highest point is 39 m above mean sea level. Without artificial drainage and flood protection, the Fens would be liable to periodic flooding in winter due to the heavy load of water flowing down from the uplands and overflowing the rivers; some areas of the Fens were once permanently flooded, creating small lakes or meres, while others were flooded only during periods of high water. In the pre-modern period, arable farming was limited to the higher areas of the surrounding uplands, the fen islands, the so-called "Townlands", an arch of silt ground around the Wash, where the towns had their arable fields. Though these lands were lower than the peat fens before the peat shrinkage began, the more stable silt soils were reclaimed by medieval farmers and embanked against any floods coming down from the peat areas or from the sea.
The rest of the Fenland was dedicated to pastoral farming, fishing and the harvesting of reeds or sedge for thatch. In this way, the medieval and early modern Fens stood in contrast to the rest of southern England, an arable agricultural region. Since the advent of modern drainage in the 19th and 20th centuries, the Fens have been radically transformed. Today arable farming has entirely replaced pastoral; the economy of the Fens is invested in the production of crops such as grains and some cash crops such as rapeseed and canola. Drainage in the Fenland consists of both river drainage and internal drainage of the land between the rivers; the internal drainage was organised by levels or districts, each of which includes the fen parts of one or several parishes. The details of the organisation vary with the history of their development, but the areas include: The Great Level of the Fens is the largest region of fen in eastern England: including the lower drainage basins of the River Nene and the Great Ouse, it covers about 500 sq mi.
It is known as the Bedford Level, after Francis Russell, 4th Earl of Bedford, who headed the so-called adventurers in the 17th-century drainage in this area. In the 17th century, the Great Level was divided into the North and South Levels for the purposes of administration and maintenance. In the 20th century, these levels have been given new boundaries; the South Level lies to the southeast of the Ouse Washes and surrounds Ely, as it did in the 17th century. The Middle Level lies between the Ouse Washes and the Nene, but was defined as between the Ouse Washes and Morton's Leam, a 15th-century canal that runs north of the town of Whittlesey; the North Level now includes all of the fens in Cambridgeshire and Lincolnshire between the Nene and the River Welland. It included only a small part of these lands, including the ancient parishes of Thorney and Crowland, but excluding most of Wisbech Hundred and Lincolnshire, which were under their own local jurisdictions. Deeping Fen, in the southern part of Lincolnshire, lies between the River Welland and the River Glen with its tributary the Bourne Eau.
The Black Sluice District, much of, known as the Lindsey Level when it was first drained in 1639, extends from the Glen and Bou
England is a country, part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to Scotland to the north-northwest; the Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea lies to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south; the country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight. The area now called England was first inhabited by modern humans during the Upper Palaeolithic period, but takes its name from the Angles, a Germanic tribe deriving its name from the Anglia peninsula, who settled during the 5th and 6th centuries. England became a unified state in the 10th century, since the Age of Discovery, which began during the 15th century, has had a significant cultural and legal impact on the wider world; the English language, the Anglican Church, English law – the basis for the common law legal systems of many other countries around the world – developed in England, the country's parliamentary system of government has been adopted by other nations.
The Industrial Revolution began in 18th-century England, transforming its society into the world's first industrialised nation. England's terrain is chiefly low hills and plains in central and southern England. However, there is upland and mountainous terrain in the west; the capital is London, which has the largest metropolitan area in both the United Kingdom and the European Union. England's population of over 55 million comprises 84% of the population of the United Kingdom concentrated around London, the South East, conurbations in the Midlands, the North West, the North East, Yorkshire, which each developed as major industrial regions during the 19th century; the Kingdom of England – which after 1535 included Wales – ceased being a separate sovereign state on 1 May 1707, when the Acts of Union put into effect the terms agreed in the Treaty of Union the previous year, resulting in a political union with the Kingdom of Scotland to create the Kingdom of Great Britain. In 1801, Great Britain was united with the Kingdom of Ireland to become the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
In 1922 the Irish Free State seceded from the United Kingdom, leading to the latter being renamed the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The name "England" is derived from the Old English name Englaland, which means "land of the Angles"; the Angles were one of the Germanic tribes that settled in Great Britain during the Early Middle Ages. The Angles came from the Anglia peninsula in the Bay of Kiel area of the Baltic Sea; the earliest recorded use of the term, as "Engla londe", is in the late-ninth-century translation into Old English of Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People. The term was used in a different sense to the modern one, meaning "the land inhabited by the English", it included English people in what is now south-east Scotland but was part of the English kingdom of Northumbria; the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle recorded that the Domesday Book of 1086 covered the whole of England, meaning the English kingdom, but a few years the Chronicle stated that King Malcolm III went "out of Scotlande into Lothian in Englaland", thus using it in the more ancient sense.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary, its modern spelling was first used in 1538. The earliest attested reference to the Angles occurs in the 1st-century work by Tacitus, Germania, in which the Latin word Anglii is used; the etymology of the tribal name itself is disputed by scholars. How and why a term derived from the name of a tribe, less significant than others, such as the Saxons, came to be used for the entire country and its people is not known, but it seems this is related to the custom of calling the Germanic people in Britain Angli Saxones or English Saxons to distinguish them from continental Saxons of Old Saxony between the Weser and Eider rivers in Northern Germany. In Scottish Gaelic, another language which developed on the island of Great Britain, the Saxon tribe gave their name to the word for England. An alternative name for England is Albion; the name Albion referred to the entire island of Great Britain. The nominally earliest record of the name appears in the Aristotelian Corpus the 4th-century BC De Mundo: "Beyond the Pillars of Hercules is the ocean that flows round the earth.
In it are two large islands called Britannia. But modern scholarly consensus ascribes De Mundo not to Aristotle but to Pseudo-Aristotle, i.e. it was written in the Graeco-Roman period or afterwards. The word Albion or insula Albionum has two possible origins, it either derives from a cognate of the Latin albus meaning white, a reference to the white cliffs of Dover or from the phrase the "island of the Albiones" in the now lost Massaliote Periplus, attested through Avienus' Ora Maritima to which the former served as a source. Albion is now applied to England in a more poetic capacity. Another romantic name for England is Loegria, related to the Welsh word for England and made popular by its use in Arthurian legend; the earliest known evidence of human presence in the area now known as England was that of Homo antecessor, dating to approximate
Bartlow is a small village and civil parish in the South Cambridgeshire district of Cambridgeshire, about 12 miles south-east of Cambridge and 7 miles west of Haverhill in Suffolk. The River Granta runs through the village. At 385 acres Bartlow is one of the smallest parishes in Cambridgeshire, its southern border, straightened on a few successive occasions to follow the former railway line, divides it from Ashdon parish in Essex. It has borders with the neighbouring parishes of Castle Camps and Shudy Camps to the east, Horseheath to the north, Linton to the west. Though the area has been occupied since Roman times, there is no record of Bartlow itself as a village until 1232 because the settlement south of the River Granta with its Roman burial mounds was part of Ashdon Parish nearby in Essex. Recorded as Berkelawe in 1232, the name "Bartlow" means "mounds or tumuli where birch trees grow". Bartlow is home to Bartlow Hills, a Roman tumuli cemetery with three remaining mounds, though only one falls into the parish of Bartlow.
All of the Bartlow Hills were in Essex County and were part of the parish of Ashdon, a village in Essex, when the boundary between Cambridgeshire and Essex ran from Steventon End to the River Granta along the Granta westwards to Linton, as shown on Ordnance Survey maps including those dated 1805, 1838 and 1882. There were seven Bartlow mounds; the tallest at 15 metres in height is the largest barrow north of the Alps. For centuries the mounds were believed to cover the bodies of those killed at the Battle of Ashingdon in 1016, but excavation demonstrated that they are the graves of a wealthy family and date from the 1st or 2nd century AD. Excavations in the 19th century found large wooden chests, decorated vessels in bronze and pottery and an iron folding chair, most of which were lost in a fire at Bartlow Hall. A small Roman villa, occupied until the late 4th century, was situated north of the mounds and was excavated in 1852, it has long been maintained that the church in Bartlow was built by King Cnut near the site of the Battle of Assandun, but no evidence for a building of that age has been found.
The present parish church, dedicated to St Mary, consists of a chancel, a nave with north porch, a circular west tower. The tower is all that remains of what is believed to be the original church and dates from the late-11th or early-12th century; the nave and chancel were built in the 14th century. Bartlow St. Mary is one of only two existing round-tower churches in Cambridgeshire, the other one being located in Snailwell. There are 3 bells in the tower, all cast by William Chamberlain in 1440 and still hang in their original frame; the 1 & 2's weight is unknown but the tenor is 9cwt in A. Sadly they are not rung full circle due to the frame being unsafe; the church is known for its 15th-century wall-paintings whose fragments include depictions of St Christopher, St Michael weighing souls, St George's dragon. The village has one remaining pub. Bartlow was listed as having two alehouses in 1682; the Three Hills pub is now open again having been refurbished. The railway reached the village in 1865 when the Stour Valley line from Great Shelford to Haverhill opened, running along the southern edge of the parish, with a secondary line on the Saffron Walden Railway branching at Bartlow opening in 1866.
Bartlow railway station was open at the railway bridge on Ashdon Road until closing when the Haverhill line was axed in 1967. The station is now a private house called Booking Hall; the Hundred Parishes Bartlow Village website Bartlow Hills at the Megalithic Portal
Cambridge City Council
Cambridge City Council is a district council in the county of Cambridgeshire, based in the city of Cambridge. Cambridge was granted a Royal Charter by King John in 1207, which permitted the appointment of a mayor; the first recorded mayor, Harvey FitzEustace, did not serve until 1213. Cambridge was granted its city charter in 1951 in recognition of its history, administrative importance, economic success. There are a number of ceremonial items used by the Council which date to different periods of history; the council provides various services within the city. These include open spaces, waste collection, council housing and local planning; the Council organizes numerous events throughout the year, including the Cambridge Folk Festival and a program of free summer entertainment entitled Summer in the City. It runs the Cambridge Guildhall, on the south side of the Market Square in the center of Cambridge, where various events are held. For electoral purposes, the city is divided into 14 wards: Abbey, Castle, Cherry Hinton, East Chesterton, King's Hedges, Newnham, Queen Edith's, Romsey and West Chesterton.
There are forty-two city councilors with three assigned to each ward. The party composition of the council is: 26 Labour; the Mayor from May 2018 was Councillor Nigel Gawthrope, who died in January 2019. The Deputy Mayor is Councillor Gerri Bird; the Mayor's duties are entirely ceremonial, although they do chair meetings of the full Council. The Leader of the Council is Councillor Lewis Herbert, the Deputy Leader is Councillor Anna Smith, the latter following the resignation of Kevin Price; the official opposition is Liberal Democrat, with Councillor Tim Bick leading that group and Zoe O'Connell being deputy leader. The highest non-elected official is Antoinette Jackson. Elections for a third of the seats take place three out of every four years. Cambridgeshire County Council elections take place in the 4th year; the County elections last took place in 2017. Due to pending boundary changes there will be an "all up" election in 2020. Cambridgeshire County Council Cambridge City Council Cambridge Mayor's Office Cambridge City Election Results since 1945 Open data about Cambridge City Council on OpenlyLocal Cambridge City Council YouTube channel
Comberton is a village and civil parish in South Cambridgeshire, just east of the Prime Meridian. Archaeological finds, including a Neolithic polished stone axe and a Bronze Age barrow, suggest there has been a settlement here for thousands of years. A Roman villa was discovered in 1842; the village was mentioned in the Domesday Book as Cumbertone, therefore dates to at least the 11th century. Some houses in the village date from the 14th century. Comberton is about 6 miles south-west of the city of Cambridge, just half a mile east of the Prime Meridian, lying at a modest elevation of around 25 feet above sea level; the civil parish covers 1,954 acres, is part of the local government district of South Cambridgeshire. Nearby villages include Barton to the Toft to the west. Comberton is twinned with a village near Rouen, France; the Prime Meridian is marked by a Meridian Line stone plaque on the north side of the main road between Comberton and the neighbouring village of Toft. The line runs up the 14th fairway of the Cambridge Meridian Golf Club according to the club, but a check of the co-ordinates reveals that it is on the white tee of the 15th hole.
Comberton has a population of about 2,400. It contains two churches: the Church of England St Mary's, a Grade I listed Early English-style building dating from the 13th century, a Baptist church dating from 1868, it has one pub, The Three Horseshoes, shops, a primary school a post office, a recreation ground, a doctor's surgery, a dental surgery, at the centre of the village, a village pond with resident ducks. The village has an infant playgroup, the Meridian Primary School, Comberton Village College and the Comberton Sixth Form; the latter two are part of the Comberton Educational Trust, which has other villages in its catchment area: Barton, Caldecote, Cambourne, Hardwick and Toft. Comberton Village College has been at or near the top of the league tables for state comprehensive schools in England and is a National College'National Support School', offering support to other secondary schools through being part of the Cambridge Consortium, it was the last Cambridgeshire Village College opened by Henry Morris, Chief Education Officer for Cambridgeshire.
List of places in Cambridgeshire Media related to Comberton at Wikimedia Commons Comberton Village website