Old English, or Anglo-Saxon, is the earliest historical form of the English language, spoken in England and southern and eastern Scotland in the early Middle Ages. It was brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon settlers in the mid-5th century, the first Old English literary works date from the mid-7th century. After the Norman conquest of 1066, English was replaced, for a time, as the language of the upper classes by Anglo-Norman, a relative of French; this is regarded as marking the end of the Old English era, as during this period the English language was influenced by Anglo-Norman, developing into a phase known now as Middle English. Old English developed from a set of Anglo-Frisian or Ingvaeonic dialects spoken by Germanic tribes traditionally known as the Angles and Jutes; as the Anglo-Saxons became dominant in England, their language replaced the languages of Roman Britain: Common Brittonic, a Celtic language, Latin, brought to Britain by Roman invasion. Old English had four main dialects, associated with particular Anglo-Saxon kingdoms: Mercian, Northumbrian and West Saxon.
It was West Saxon that formed the basis for the literary standard of the Old English period, although the dominant forms of Middle and Modern English would develop from Mercian. The speech of eastern and northern parts of England was subject to strong Old Norse influence due to Scandinavian rule and settlement beginning in the 9th century. Old English is one of the West Germanic languages, its closest relatives are Old Frisian and Old Saxon. Like other old Germanic languages, it is different from Modern English and difficult for Modern English speakers to understand without study. Old English grammar is similar to that of modern German: nouns, adjectives and verbs have many inflectional endings and forms, word order is much freer; the oldest Old English inscriptions were written using a runic system, but from about the 9th century this was replaced by a version of the Latin alphabet. Englisc, which the term English is derived from, means'pertaining to the Angles'. In Old English, this word was derived from Angles.
During the 9th century, all invading Germanic tribes were referred to as Englisc. It has been hypothesised that the Angles acquired their name because their land on the coast of Jutland resembled a fishhook. Proto-Germanic *anguz had the meaning of'narrow', referring to the shallow waters near the coast; that word goes back to Proto-Indo-European *h₂enǵʰ- meaning'narrow'. Another theory is that the derivation of'narrow' is the more connection to angling, which itself stems from a Proto-Indo-European root meaning bend, angle; the semantic link is the fishing hook, curved or bent at an angle. In any case, the Angles may have been called such because they were a fishing people or were descended from such, therefore England would mean'land of the fishermen', English would be'the fishermen's language'. Old English was not static, its usage covered a period of 700 years, from the Anglo-Saxon settlement of Britain in the 5th century to the late 11th century, some time after the Norman invasion. While indicating that the establishment of dates is an arbitrary process, Albert Baugh dates Old English from 450 to 1150, a period of full inflections, a synthetic language.
Around 85 per cent of Old English words are no longer in use, but those that survived are basic elements of Modern English vocabulary. Old English is a West Germanic language, it came to be spoken over most of the territory of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms which became the Kingdom of England. This included most of present-day England, as well as part of what is now southeastern Scotland, which for several centuries belonged to the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Northumbria. Other parts of the island – Wales and most of Scotland – continued to use Celtic languages, except in the areas of Scandinavian settlements where Old Norse was spoken. Celtic speech remained established in certain parts of England: Medieval Cornish was spoken all over Cornwall and in adjacent parts of Devon, while Cumbric survived to the 12th century in parts of Cumbria, Welsh may have been spoken on the English side of the Anglo-Welsh border. Norse was widely spoken in the parts of England which fell under Danish law. Anglo-Saxon literacy developed after Christianisation in the late 7th century.
The oldest surviving text of Old English literature is Cædmon's Hymn, composed between 658 and 680. There is a limited corpus of runic inscriptions from the 5th to 7th centuries, but the oldest coherent runic texts date to the 8th century; the Old English Latin alphabet was introduced around the 9th century. With the unification of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms by Alfred the Great in the 9th century, the language of government and literature became standardised around the West Saxon dialect. Alfred advocated education in English alongside Latin, had many works translated into the English language. In Old English, typical of the development of literature, poetry arose before prose, but King Alfred the Great chiefly inspired the growth of prose. A literary standard, dating from the 10th century, arose under the influence of Bishop Æthelwold of Winchester, was followed by such writers as the prolific Ælfric of Eynsham. Th
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is applied to living organisms, most of the time to humans, it is a key geographical term. In simple terms population density refers to the number of people living in an area per kilometer square. Population density is population divided by total land water volume, as appropriate. Low densities may lead to further reduced fertility; this is called the Allee effect after the scientist. Examples of the causes in low population densities include: Increased problems with locating sexual mates Increased inbreeding For humans, population density is the number of people per unit of area quoted per square kilometer or square mile; this may be calculated for a county, country, another territory or the entire world. The world's population is around 7,500,000,000 and Earth's total area is 510,000,000 square kilometers. Therefore, the worldwide human population density is around 7,500,000,000 ÷ 510,000,000 = 14.7 per km2. If only the Earth's land area of 150,000,000 km2 is taken into account human population density is 50 per km2.
This includes all continental and island land area, including Antarctica. If Antarctica is excluded population density rises to over 55 people per km2. However, over half of the Earth's land mass consists of areas inhospitable to human habitation, such as deserts and high mountains, population tends to cluster around seaports and fresh-water sources. Thus, this number by itself does not give any helpful measurement of human population density. Several of the most densely populated territories in the world are city-states and dependencies; these territories have a small area and a high urbanization level, with an economically specialized city population drawing on rural resources outside the area, illustrating the difference between high population density and overpopulation The potential to maintain the agricultural aspects of deserts is limited as there is not enough precipitation to support a sustainable land. The population in these areas are low. Therefore, cities in the Middle East, such as Dubai, have been increasing in population and infrastructure growth at a fast pace.
Cities with high population densities are, by some, considered to be overpopulated, though this will depend on factors like quality of housing and infrastructure and access to resources. Most of the most densely populated cities are in Southeast Asia, though Cairo and Lagos in Africa fall into this category. City population and area are, however dependent on the definition of "urban area" used: densities are invariably higher for the central city area than when suburban settlements and the intervening rural areas are included, as in the areas of agglomeration or metropolitan area, the latter sometimes including neighboring cities. For instance, Milwaukee has a greater population density when just the inner city is measured, the surrounding suburbs excluded. In comparison, based on a world population of seven billion, the world's inhabitants, as a loose crowd taking up ten square feet per person, would occupy a space a little larger than Delaware's land area; the Gaza Strip has a population density of 5,046 pop/km.
Although arithmetic density is the most common way of measuring population density, several other methods have been developed to provide a more accurate measure of population density over a specific area. Arithmetic density: The total number of people / area of land Physiological density: The total population / area of arable land Agricultural density: The total rural population / area of arable land Residential density: The number of people living in an urban area / area of residential land Urban density: The number of people inhabiting an urban area / total area of urban land Ecological optimum: The density of population that can be supported by the natural resources Demography Human geography Idealized population Optimum population Population genetics Population health Population momentum Population pyramid Rural transport problem Small population size Distance sampling List of population concern organizations List of countries by population density List of cities by population density List of city districts by population density List of English districts by population density List of European cities proper by population density List of United States cities by population density List of islands by population density List of U.
S. states by population density List of Australian suburbs by population density Selected Current and Historic City, Ward & Neighborhood Density Duncan Smith / UCL Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis. "World Population Density". Exploratory map shows data from the Global Human Settlement Layer produced by the European Commission JRC and the CIESIN Columbia University
Castle Acre Castle and town walls
Castle Acre Castle and town walls are a set of ruined medieval defences built in the village of Castle Acre, Norfolk. The castle was built soon after the Norman Conquest by William de Warenne, the Earl of Surrey, at the intersection of the River Nar and the Peddars Way. William constructed a motte-and-bailey castle during the 1070s, protected by large earthwork ramparts, with a large country house in the centre of the motte. Soon after, a small community of Cluniac monks were given the castle's chapel in the outer bailey. A deer park was created nearby for hunting. After civil war broke out in England in 1135, the third earl called William, set about improving the defences of the castle, he began to build a tall keep on top of the motte, reinforcing the surrounding earthworks with stone walls. A planned settlement was established alongside the castle, surrounded by its own earthworks and walls, the Peddars Way was redirected to pass by the castle and priory, all important symbols of the de Warennes' power in the region.
Hamelin de Warenne acquired the castle through marriage and curtailed the building work on the keep around 1165, but completed the construction of three large stone gatehouses in the castle and town. One of these, the town's bailey gate, still survives intact; the de Warennes continued to hold the castle until 1347, when it was inherited by Richard Fitzalan, the Earl of Arundel. By 1397 the fortifications were in ruins and, despite restoration work by Sir Edward Coke at the start of the 17th century, the decline continued until the 20th century. In 1971, Thomas Coke, the Earl of Leicester, placed the castle into the guardianship of the state. In the 21st century, it is open to visitors. Historic England consider the castle's huge defensive earthworks to be "among the finest surviving in England". Castle Acre Castle was built by William de Warenne, the Earl of Surrey, in the manor of Acre during the 1070s. William was a Norman lord who had accompanied William the Conqueror in the conquest of England in 1066.
Acre was an Anglo-Saxon estate centre and at the time of the invasion was owned by a wealthy man called Toki, but he was replaced by Frederick, a Flemish lord and William's brother-in-law. When Frederick died around 1070, William acquired control of the manor, which formed part of his massive land holdings across the region; the castle was strategically located where the River Nar met the Peddars Way, an old Roman road, at the centre of Warenne's other estates in Norfolk, may have been built on top of Toki's former house. The castle had a motte-and-bailey design: its large outer and inner baileys were protected by earthworks and palisades, a stone gatehouse was added to the inner bailey shortly afterwards. In the centre of the inner bailey was a grand double-hall built from stone, but this was not fortified and would have been more like a country house than a conventional Norman keep. William gave St Mary's, the former parish church, now surrounded by the castle's outer bailey, to the Cluniac order of monks, along with 110 hectares of farmland.
By 1088 a handful of monks had arrived from Lewes, where William had founded a Cluniac community, to settle at the castle. William's son, the second Earl William de Warrene, gave the monks a more spacious area of land to the west of the castle in 1090, where they built Castle Acre Priory. Monastic sites like the priory would have given their founders, their associated castles, considerable prestige. A deer park was constructed near Castle Acre, with farmed rabbit warrens established around its edges. Robert Curthose, the Duke of Normandy, invaded England in 1101 with the backing of many of the barons, but was persuaded to halt his campaign and return to Normandy after King Henry I bought him off with a substantial annuity. William de Warrenne had backed the duke during his campaign and now found himself politically exposed, he was exiled and disseised of his English estates, including Castle Acre, until in 1103 the duke was able to persuade Henry to permit William to return and reclaim his lands.
After 1135, a civil war known as the Anarchy broke out between the supporters of King Stephen and the Empress Matilda. William supported Stephen, as did his son, the third Earl William de Warenne, when he inherited the earldom in 1138. There was fighting across much of the country, although less so in Norfolk, but William faced challenges to his preeminence in the region from the growing power of the d'Albinis and de Vere families. In response, William remodelled Castle Acre Castle. Around 1140, the earthworks were raised and the double-hall was first strengthened, began to be converted into a tall, square keep; the timber ramparts of the inner bailey were replaced with a stone wall, the height of the earthworks around the outer bailey were raised and topped with a stone wall. A fortified, planned settlement was built alongside the castle around this time; the small community was not quite a proper town and was dependent on the castle. The historians Oliver Creighton and Robert Higham suggest the settlement's earthwork defences and stone walls resemble an "enormous outer bailey" of the castle, rather a more conventional set of town walls.
The walled settlement would have formed an important symbol of William's lordship. As part of these works, the Peddars Way was redirected, it had run straight across the de Warenne es
Archaeology, or archeology, is the study of human activity through the recovery and analysis of material culture. The archaeological record consists of artifacts, biofacts or ecofacts and cultural landscapes. Archaeology can be considered a branch of the humanities. In North America archaeology is a sub-field of anthropology, while in Europe it is viewed as either a discipline in its own right or a sub-field of other disciplines. Archaeologists study human prehistory and history, from the development of the first stone tools at Lomekwi in East Africa 3.3 million years ago up until recent decades. Archaeology is distinct from palaeontology, the study of fossil remains, it is important for learning about prehistoric societies, for whom there may be no written records to study. Prehistory includes over 99% of the human past, from the Paleolithic until the advent of literacy in societies across the world. Archaeology has various goals, which range from understanding culture history to reconstructing past lifeways to documenting and explaining changes in human societies through time.
The discipline involves surveying and analysis of data collected to learn more about the past. In broad scope, archaeology relies on cross-disciplinary research, it draws upon anthropology, art history, ethnology, geology, literary history, semiology, textual criticism, information sciences, statistics, paleography, paleontology and paleobotany. Archaeology developed out of antiquarianism in Europe during the 19th century, has since become a discipline practiced across the world. Archaeology has been used by nation-states to create particular visions of the past. Since its early development, various specific sub-disciplines of archaeology have developed, including maritime archaeology, feminist archaeology and archaeoastronomy, numerous different scientific techniques have been developed to aid archaeological investigation. Nonetheless, archaeologists face many problems, such as dealing with pseudoarchaeology, the looting of artifacts, a lack of public interest, opposition to the excavation of human remains.
The science of archaeology grew out of the older multi-disciplinary study known as antiquarianism. Antiquarians studied history with particular attention to ancient artifacts and manuscripts, as well as historical sites. Antiquarianism focused on the empirical evidence that existed for the understanding of the past, encapsulated in the motto of the 18th-century antiquary, Sir Richard Colt Hoare, "We speak from facts not theory". Tentative steps towards the systematization of archaeology as a science took place during the Enlightenment era in Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries. In Europe, philosophical interest in the remains of Greco-Roman civilization and the rediscovery of classical culture began in the late Middle Age. Flavio Biondo, an Italian Renaissance humanist historian, created a systematic guide to the ruins and topography of ancient Rome in the early 15th century, for which he has been called an early founder of archaeology. Antiquarians of the 16th century, including John Leland and William Camden, conducted surveys of the English countryside, drawing and interpreting the monuments that they encountered.
One of the first sites to undergo archaeological excavation was Stonehenge and other megalithic monuments in England. John Aubrey was a pioneer archaeologist who recorded numerous megalithic and other field monuments in southern England, he was ahead of his time in the analysis of his findings. He attempted to chart the chronological stylistic evolution of handwriting, medieval architecture and shield-shapes. Excavations were carried out by the Spanish military engineer Roque Joaquín de Alcubierre in the ancient towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum, both of, covered by ash during the Eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79; these excavations began in 1748 in Pompeii, while in Herculaneum they began in 1738. The discovery of entire towns, complete with utensils and human shapes, as well the unearthing of frescos, had a big impact throughout Europe. However, prior to the development of modern techniques, excavations tended to be haphazard; the father of archaeological excavation was William Cunnington. He undertook excavations in Wiltshire from around 1798.
Cunnington made meticulous recordings of Neolithic and Bronze Age barrows, the terms he used to categorize and describe them are still used by archaeologists today. One of the major achievements of 19th-century archaeology was the development of stratigraphy; the idea of overlapping strata tracing back to successive periods was borrowed from the new geological and paleontological work of scholars like William Smith, James Hutton and Charles Lyell. The application of stratigraphy to archaeology first took place with the excavations of prehistorical and Bronze Age sites. In the third and fourth decades of the 19th-century, archaeologists like Jacques Boucher de Perthes and Christian Jürgensen Thomsen began to put the artifacts they had found in chronological order. A major figure in the development of archaeology into a rigorous science was the army officer and ethnologist, Augustus Pitt Rivers, who began excavations on his land in England in the 1880s, his approach was methodical by the standards of the time, he is regarded as the first scientific archaeologist.
He arranged his artifacts by type or "typologically, within types by date or "chronologically"
In England, a civil parish is a type of administrative parish used for local government, they are a territorial designation, the lowest tier of local government below districts and counties, or their combined form, the unitary authority. Civil parishes can trace their origin to the ancient system of ecclesiastical parishes which played a role in both civil and ecclesiastical administration; the unit rolled out across England in the 1860s. A civil parish can range in size from a large town with a population of about 75,000 to a single village with fewer than a hundred inhabitants. Eight parishes have city status. A civil parish may be known as and confirmed as a town, neighbourhood or community by resolution of its parish council, a right reserved not conferred on other units of English local government. 35% of the English population live in a civil parish. As of 31 December 2015 there were 10,449 parishes in England; the most populous is Weston super Mare and those with cathedral city status are Chichester, Hereford, Ripon, Salisbury and Wells.
On 1 April 2014, Queen's Park became the first civil parish in Greater London. Before 2008 their creation was not permitted within a London borough. Wales was divided into civil parishes until 1974, when they were replaced by communities, which are similar to English parishes in the way they operate. Civil parishes in Scotland were abolished for local government purposes by the Local Government Act 1929, the Scottish equivalent of English civil parishes are community council areas, which were established by the Local Government Act 1973; the Parish system in Europe was established between the 8th and 12th centuries and in England was old by the time of the Conquest. These areas were based on the territory of one or more manors, areas which in some cases derived their bounds from Roman or Iron Age estates. Parish boundaries were conservative, changing little, after 1180'froze' so that boundaries could no longer be changed at all, despite changes to manorial landholdings - though there were some examples of sub-division.
The consistency of these boundaries, up until the 19th century is useful to historians, is of cultural significance in terms of shaping local identities, a factor reinforced by the adoption of parish boundaries unchanged, by successor local government units. There was huge variation in size between parishes, for instance Writtle in Essex was 13,568 acres while neighbouring Shellow Bowells was just 469 acres, Chignall Smealy 476 acres; until the break with Rome, parishes managed ecclesiastical matters, while the manor was the principal unit of local administration and justice. The church replaced the manor court as the rural administrative centre, levied a local tax on produce known as a tithe. In the medieval period, responsibilities such as relief of the poor passed from the Lord of the Manor to the parish's rector, who in practice would delegate tasks among his vestry or the monasteries. After the dissolution of the monasteries, the power to levy a rate to fund relief of the poor was conferred on the parish authorities by the Act for the Relief of the Poor 1601.
Both before and after this optional social change, local charities are well-documented. The parish authorities were consisted of all the ratepayers of the parish; as the number of ratepayers of some parishes grew, it became difficult to convene meetings as an open vestry. In some built up, areas the select vestry took over responsibility from the entire body of ratepayers; this innovation allowed governance by a self-perpetuating elite. The administration of the parish system relied on the monopoly of the established English Church, which for a few years after Henry VIII alternated between the Roman Catholic Church and the Church of England, before settling on the latter on the accession of Elizabeth I in 1558. By the 18th century, religious membership was becoming more fractured in some places, due for instance to the progress of Methodism; the legitimacy of the parish vestry came into question and the perceived inefficiency and corruption inherent in the system became a source for concern in some places.
For this reason, during the early 19th century the parish progressively lost its powers to ad hoc boards and other organisations, for example the loss of responsibility for poor relief through the Poor Law Amendment Act 1834. Sanitary districts covered England in Ireland three years later; the replacement boards were each entitled to levy their own rate in the parish. The church rate ceased to be levied in many parishes and became voluntary from 1868; the ancient parishes diverged into two distinct, nearly overlapping, systems of parishes during the 19th century. The Poor Law Amendment Act 1866 declared all areas that levied a separate rate: C of E ecclesiastical parishes, extra-parochial areas and their analogue, chapelries, to be "civil parishes". To have collected rates this means these beforehand had their own vestries, boards or equivalent bodies; the Church of England parishes, which cover more than 99% of England, became termed "ecclesiastical parishes" and the boundaries of these soon diverged from those of the Ancient Parishes in order to reflect modern circumstances.
After 1921 each ecclesiastical parish has been the responsibility of the parochial church councils. In the late 19th century, most of the ancient irregularities inheri
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
Swaffham Bulbeck is a village in East Cambridgeshire, England. Swaffham Bulbeck is located about 8 miles from the city of Cambridge, 6 miles from the famous racing town of Newmarket; the parish of Swaffham Bulbeck is part of the Deanery of Fordham and Quy. The benefice consists of five parishes, Swaffham Bulbeck, Swaffham Prior, Bottisham and Quy. Children attend primary school in the village and then go on to Bottisham Village College; the word "Swaffham" is derived from Old English Swæfe ham, meaning "the home of the Swabians" found in the name of the town of Swaffham in Norfolk. The "Bulbeck" part of the name originates from the de Bolbec family, who possessed the manor in the 11th and 12th centuries; every year the village summer theatre company produces and performs one of Gilbert and Sullivan's operas. Established in 1982 the company has run every year since, first at the Long Barn to the south of the village until its redevelopment in 1988 and to a much more capacious setting in a barn central to the village by kind permission of the owner.
This venue too has now come up for redevelopment and the production is now based at Downing Farm by kind permission of the Turner family. Swaffham Bulbeck’s experience of World War II was investigated and commemorated in 2015 in a community project led by Swaffham Bulbeck-based disability charity Red2Green; the project was funded by The Heritage Lottery Fund. During the activities, eight films were made showing oral histories of seven local residents talking about their personal experiences of World War II; these can be viewed on YouTube. A time capsule containing objects representing different elements of the project is buried in front of the village war memorial; the church is dedicated to St Mary the Virgin. The west tower was built in the early 13th century and is the most ancient part of a ancient building; the tower is supported by eight buttresses. It is built of locally quarried clunch; the nave was constructed in the first half of the 13th century. It consists of four uniform bays with six octagonal piers supporting the clerestory, added in the 15th century.
The north aisle was built in the south aisle a few years later. Apart from some fragments of 14th and 15th century stained glass in the north aisle, all the 10 windows in the aisles and 8 in the celestorey are of plain leaded glass; the nave is some 57 feet long by 21 feet wide and the aisles are 11 feet wide. The church can seat about 200 people at full capacity; the churchyard contains many interesting gravestones — there are six tomb chests, the earliest dating from 1742, about 35 headstones with shaped tops dating from 1703 onwards. As regards the vicarage, in the late 1970s it was decided by the parish that the village no longer required a vicarage of its own, it was sold to the public, now provides bed and breakfast accommodation. It is erroneously now called The Old Rectory; the village is located just beyond the end of Swaffham Bulbeck Lode, a man-made waterway connected to the River Cam. The hamlet of Commercial End, at the northern edge of the village, was an important inland port from medieval times, although the waterway had been in use since Roman times.
Principal buildings include the late 17th-century Merchant's House, which had a counting house added in the mid 18th century. Workers' cottages and warehouses were added to the street by Thomas Bowyer, after he acquired the house in 1805. River trade declined once the railways reached the area, the house and contents were sold after 1877; the street retains its 18th and early 19th century character, although the lode is now only navigable as far as Slade Farm, some 2 miles away. Swaffam Bulbeck was the residence of the twice Nobel prize winner Frederick Sanger, of the Lyell Medal winner and world-renowned angler Barrie Rickards. Swaffam Bulbeck was the residence of Sir Bryan Harold Cabot Matthews CBE FRS, he was Professor of Physiology at King's College, Cambridge 1952–1973 and lived in the Grade II listed Priest's House at 99 High Street. Http://www.swaffhambulbeckpc.org.uk/ http://www.genuki.org.uk/big/eng/CAM/SwaffhamBulbeck/index.html http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=18870e http://www.sbstgands.co.uk/ https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLeHsG0nWZZQNXkBqGDXviw