The market town of Northampton has tried unsuccessfully to request for city status in recent years. However, this town, located 108km northwest of London and 80km southeast of Birmingham, has been growing since its original settlers in the 6th and 7th centuries.
Northampton came to life in the 11th century, when Normans built town halls and a castle under the leadership of Norman earl Simon deSenlis, although first signs of human settlement can be traced back to the 6th and 7th centuries. The majestic castle was to play a significant and strategic role for royalty and heads of state, because of its location at the centre of England. This strategic positioning led to Northampton becoming a seat of parliament and the capital of England for 200 years.
Northampton was also known for its academic successes, being the most educated town in Europe at the time. From the 10th century, the town had its own mint. In the 12th century, Northampton was amongst the richest and most affluent towns in England. In 1164, it was chosen as the venue for the trial of Thomas a Beckett, the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Archaeological remains found in the area suggest that the town of Northampton dates back to the Bronze Age. In the 8th century, it was an administrative centre for the Kingdom of Mercia. The town experienced rapid growth after the arrival of the Norman’s, accounting for 1500 residents and 300 houses, at the time of the Doomsday book.
King Richard I awarded the town its first charter in 1189. Just over two decades later, King John was to authorize the appointment of William Tilly as the first mayor of the town. The town had its first university, set up scholars from Cambridge University, in 1261. Nevertheless, the institution was folded in 1265 at the instructions of Henry III.
In the 13th century, Northampton had a large Jewish community. However, in 1277, 300 Jews accused of clipping the King’s coin, were executed and the rest of the Jewish community were driven out of town.
In 1264, Northampton experienced its first major battle at Northampton Castle, when Henry III’s forces took on the supporters of Simon deMontfort. A second battle took place in 1460 and King Henry VI was captured.
During the English Civil War, Northampton sided with Parliamentarians, inviting the wrath of King Charles II who tore down the castle and town halls as a form of punishment.
Growth slowed at the turn of the 20th century up until around 1960. The shoe industry suffered a major decline from its peak in 1642, when the town produced 4000 shoes and 600 boots for the army. Today shoemaking has been overtaken by other industries including engineering in the areas of food processing, brewing and equipment manufacturing. Do you feel stressed and over tired after working in the factory all day? If so, it may be time for you to invest in a memory foam mattress for your bed.
Ease those tired, painful limbs with a mattress or topper if the budget is limited. Both of these memory foam products will work wonders on those tired aching ankles, knees, hips and shoulders. Relax in the warmth and let the blood flow ease tired muscles as well as aching joints.