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DLIGHTING RED BANK, DRESDEN Stafford EN ST3 4EY
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ERP Experts (Europe) Limited Britannia House, 6/7 Eastgate Street Stafford EN ST16 2NQ
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Burton Damp Proofing Ltd 37 Saxon Street Burton-on-Trent Stafford EN DE15 9RL
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Redbitz Performance 200 Watling St, Cannock, Staffordshire WS11 0BD, United Kingdom
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Essalon 8 Eastgate St, Stafford, Staffordshire County ST16 2NQ, United Kingdom
+44 1785 211721
Stafford Leisure Centre Lammascote Rd, Stafford ST16 3TA, United Kingdom
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William Emery & Sons Ltd The Laurels, 13 County Road, Stafford ST16 2PU, United Kingdom
+44 1785 251205
Bodytech Therapy and Beauty Rooms Clay St, Penkridge, Staffordshire ST19 5AF, United Kingdom
+44 1785 713306
Kenneth Ingram Diecasts Staffordshire, Stafford ST20 0SH, United Kingdom
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Britannia North Stafford Hotel Winton Square, Station Rd, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire ST4 2AE, United Kingdom
+44 871 222 0097
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About Stafford

Stafford

 

 

 

Stafford is the county town of Staffordshire, in the West Midlands of England. It lies approximately 16 miles (26 km) north of Wolverhampton and 18 miles (29 km) south of Stoke-on-Trent. The population in 2001 was 63,681[1] and that of the wider borough of Stafford 122,000, the fourth largest in the county after Stoke-on-TrentTamworth and Newcastle-under-Lyme

 

 




Stafford town centre.jpg
Stafford town centre

 

 

 

 

 

 

History

 


 

Stafford on the fourteenth century Gough Map, at bottom centre. Stone is bottom left, Lichfield centre left. North is to the Left




Stafford means 'ford' by a 'staithe' (landing place). The original settlement was on dry sand and gravel peninsula that provided a strategic crossing point in the marshy valley of the River Sow, a tributary of the River Trent. There is still a large area of marshland northwest of the town, which has always been subject to flooding, such as in 1947, 2000 and 2007.

 

 

It is thought Stafford was founded in about 700 AD by a Mercian prince called Bertelin who, according to legend, established a hermitage on the peninsula named Betheney or Bethnei. Until recently it was thought that the remains of a wooden preaching cross from this time had been found under the remains of St Bertelin's chapel, next to the later collegiate Church of St Mary in the centre of the town. Recent re-examination of the evidence shows this was a misinterpretation – it was a tree trunk coffin placed centrally in the first, timber, chapel at around the time Æthelflæd founded the burh, in 913 AD. The tree trunk coffin may have been placed there as an object of commemoration or veneration of St Bertelin.

Already a centre for the delivery of grain tribute during the Early Middle Ages, Stafford was commandeered in July 913 AD by Æthelflæd, Lady of Mercia and daughter of King Alfred the Great, after the death of her father and of her husband, Æthelred, then ealdorman of Mercia in 911, in order to construct a burh there. This new burh was fortified and provided with an industrial area for the centralised production of Roman-style pottery ("Stafford Ware")  which was supplied to the chain of west midlands burhs.

She and her younger brother King Edward the Elder of Wessex, both children of King Alfred the Great and Ealhswith, wife of Æthelredealdormanof the Angles of Mercia, were attempting to complete their father King Alfred the Great's programme of unifying England into a single kingdom. Æthelflæd was a formidable military leader and tactician, and she sought to protect and extend the northern and western frontiers of her overlordship of Mercia against the Danish Vikings, by fortifying burhs, including Tamworth and Stafford in 913, and Runcorn on the River Mersey in 915 among others, while King Edward the Elder concentrated on the east, wresting East Anglia and Essex from the Danes. Anglo-Saxon women could play powerful roles in society. Her death effectively ended the relative independence of MerciaEdward the Elder of Wessex took over her fortress at Tamworth and accepted the submission of all who were living in Mercia, both Danish and English. In late 918, Aelfwynn, Æthelflæd's daughter, was deprived of her authority over Mercia and taken to Wessex. The project for the unification of England took another step forward.

Stafford was one of Æthelflæd's military campaign bases and extensive archaeological investigations, and recent re-examination and interpretation of that evidence now shows her new burh was producing, in addition to the Stafford Ware pottery, food for her army (butchery, grain processing, baking), coinage and weaponry, but apparently no other crafts and there were few imports

The Lady of Mercia, Æthelflæd, ruled Mercia for five years after the death of her father and husband, dying in Tamworth in 918.

At around this time the county of Staffordshire was formed. Stafford lay within the Pirehill hundred.

In 1069, a rebellion by Eadric the Wild against the Norman conquest culminated in the Battle of Stafford. Two years later, another rebellion, this time led by Edwin, Earl of Mercia, culminated in Edwin's assassination. This meant his lands were distributed amongst the followers of William the ConquerorRobert de Tonei was granted the manor of Bradley and one third of the king's rents in Stafford. The Norman Conquest in Stafford was therefore particularly brutal, and resulted not only in the imposition of a castle, but in the destruction and suppression of every other activity except the intermittent minting of coins for about a hundred years.

 

 

 

 

[9]

Stafford Castle


 Stafford Castle was built by the Normans on the nearby hilltop to the west in about 1090. It was first made of wood, and later rebuilt of stone. It has been rebuilt twice since, and the ruins of the 19th century gothic revival castle on the earthworks incorporate much of the original stonework.

Redevelopment began in the late 12th century, and while the church, the main north to south street (Greengate) and routes through the late Saxon industrial quarter to the east remained, in other ways the town plan changed. A motte was constructed on the western side of the peninsula, overlooking a ford, and facing the site of the main castle of Stafford, on the hill at Castle Church, west of the town. Tenements were laid out over the whole peninsula and trade and crafts flourished until the early 14th century, when there was another upset probably associated with the plague of Black Death, which was followed in the mid 16th century by another revival.

In 1206, King John granted a Royal Charter which created the Borough of Stafford. In theMiddle Ages, Stafford was a market town mainly dealing in cloth and wool. In spite of being the shire town, from Æthelflæd to Queen Elizabeth I, Stafford required successive surges of external investment.

King Richard II was paraded through the town's streets as a prisoner in 1399, by troops loyal to Henry Bolingbroke (the future Henry IV).

When James I visited Stafford, he was said to be so impressed by the town's Shire Hall and other buildings that he called it 'Little London'.

Charles I visited Stafford shortly after the out-break of the English Civil War. He stayed for three days at the Ancient High House. The town was later captured by the Parliamentarians, while a small-scale battle was fought at nearby Hopton Heath. Stafford later fell to the Parliamentarians, as did Stafford Castle, following a six-week siege. The town's most famous son is Izaak Walton, author of The Compleat Angler, who was a staunchRoyalist.

In 1658, Stafford elected John Bradshaw, the man who judged the trial of King Charles I, to represent the town in Parliament. During the reign ofCharles II, William Howard, 1st Viscount Stafford became implicated in the Popish Plot, in which Titus Oates whipped up anti-Catholic feelings with his claims that there was a plot to have the king killed. Viscount William Howard was among those accused and he was unfortunate to be the first to be tried and was beheaded in 1680. The charge was false and over five years later, on 4 June 1685, the bill of attainder against Viscount Stafford was reversed.

The town was represented in Parliament by the famous playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan in the eighteenth century. During the same era, the town's mechanised shoe industry was founded, the most well-known factory owner being William Horton. The industry gradually died out, with the last factory being redeveloped in 2008.

In 1837 the Grand Junction Railway built the first railway line (Birmingham to Warrington) and station in the town, and at Warrington this linked, via another line, with the Liverpool to Manchester railway. Birmingham provided the first connection to London. Other lines followed, Stafford became a significant junction and this helped attract a number of industries to the town.

On 31 March 2006 Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II visited the town to join in the 800th anniversary civic celebrations.

In 2013 Stafford celebrated its 1,100th anniversary year with a number of history-based exhibitions, while local historian Nick Thomas and writer Roger Butters were set to produce a two volume 'A Compleat History of Stafford'(sic).

 









Culture

 

 

Stafford Gatehouse Theatre is the town's main entertainment and cultural venue. The Met Studio within the Gatehouse is a dedicated venue for stand-up comedy and alternative live music. There is an art gallery in the Shire Hall. Staffordshire County Showground, just outside the town, is the venue for many national and local events. There is an annual Shakespeare Festival at Stafford Castle.

Victoria Park, opened in 1908, is a 13 acre (53,000 m2Edwardian riverside park with a play park, bowling green, bird cages and greenhouses; Victoria Park has recently undergone a major redevelopment in places, incorporating a new children's play area, new sand and water jet area which has replaced the previous open-air paddling pool and also a brand new bmx/skateboard area. Stafford is also home to a 9 hole golf coursenear the town centre.

The three screen Apollo Cinema, showing mainstream releases, is in the centre of town. Stafford Film Theatre is based at the Gatehouse Theatre, and shows independent and alternative films. There is also a tenpin bowling alley at Greyfriars Place. The new Stafford Leisure Centre opened in 2008 on Lammascote Road.

Nightlife in the town consists of smaller bar and club venues such as Casa, The Grapes, The Picture House and nightclub Couture/Noir et Blanc, most of which are in walking distance of each other. There is a big student patronage, with coaches bringing students from Stoke-on-Trent,Cannock and Wolverhampton.

 

 

 

 

 

Transport

 

 

 

 

Stafford Railway Station

 

Stafford railway station was once a major hub on the railway network, but the suspension of passenger services on the Stafford to Uttoxeter line in 1939 and Beeching's closure of the Stafford to Shrewsbury Line in 1964 completely halted east-west traffic through Stafford. The years up to 2008 saw cross-country trains stopping at Stafford less frequently. Since the CrossCountry trains franchisee change, more CrossCountry trains are now stopping at Stafford Station. Stafford railway station is still a stop for a number of Virgin Trains services on the West Coast Main Line enabling easy commuting toLondon (Euston) and Liverpool. CrossCountry trains operate a regular service to Stoke-on-trent andManchester Piccadilly normally every 30 Mins during the weekdays; Since December 2008 London Midland have operated a service stopping at Stafford which also serves Crewe and London and also a Birmingham - Liverpool Lime Street service which departs Stafford Station normally every 30 mins during the weekdays. At least one train each way between Birmingham New Street and Crewe is operated by Arriva Trains Wales.

Junctions 13 (Stafford South & Central) and 14 (Stafford North) of the M6 motorway provide access to the town, therefore the major cities ofBirmingham and Manchester and beyond are easily reached. The A34 road runs through the centre of the town, linking it to Stone and Stoke-on-Trent to the north and Cannock and the West Midlands conurbation to the south. The A518 road connects Stafford with Telford to the south west and Uttoxeter to the north east, and therefore is the main route to the major theme park at Alton Towers. The A449 runs south from the town centre and connects with the nearby town of Penkridge and Wolverhampton. Finally, the A513 runs east from Stafford to the local towns of Rugeley andLichfield.

Local bus travel within the town is provided by Arriva Midlands, Wardle Transport and also some small bus companies who provide to mainly rural communities, while services to Stone and Stoke-on-Trent are handled by First PMT and Bakerbus.

Stafford is served by four large taxi companies: Aerobrights, Anthony's AJ's, Kaminski Hire and Westside. There are also a large number of independent operators who work from the ranks at the station, Bridge Street, Broad Street and Salter Street.

The Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal runs close to the Baswich and Wildwood areas, and was previously linked to the River Sow by theRiver Sow Navigation.

 


 

 


 

Education

 

 

Primary schools

 

 

 

 

 

 

Secondary schools

 

 

 


 

 

 

Tertiary education

 

 

 

The Chetwynd Centre also provides Higher Education in the town. It normally teaches specialised A-levels, some vocational qualifications and subjects taught by teachers with no school base. The centre has joined up with all the town's secondary schools, except the grammar school, to provide better resources for students.

Stafford College is a large College of Further Education. Stafford College also provides some Higher Education courses on behalf of Staffordshire University and focuses heavily on computing and engineering.

South Staffordshire College has a base in the village of Rodbaston, on the edge of Stafford. It is an agricultural college and provides most of its training in this sector.

Staffordshire University has a large campus in the east of the town and focuses heavily on computing, engineering and media technologies (Film, Music and Computer Games). It also runs teacher training courses. The University has 2 halls of residence opposite the campus, the smaller Yarlet with 51 rooms and the larger Stafford Court with 554 Rooms. Stafford Court is divided into 13 'houses' named after local villages.


 

 

 

Nearby places

 

 


 

 

 

 

 Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stafford


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