Leighton Buzzard Family Historians

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15 Century market cross, Leighton Buzzard - geograph.org.uk - 956627

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Leighton Buzzard Factfile:

Location: Bedfordshire, East of England, United Kingdom.

Population: 37,000

Situated in the county of Bedfordshire in the East of England, the charming town of Leighton Buzzard sits very near to the border betwixt Beds and Buckinghamshire, on the banks of the Grand Union Canal, Leighton Buzzard has a resident population of around thirty seven thousand and a historical past going back to Roman days, when the early Watling Street (now the A-5) passed by the town. At present Leighton Buzzard is more or less connected to the neighbouring town of Linslade and it is approximately mid-way between Milton Keynes (Buckinghamshire) and Luton (Beds), it sits near to the Chiltern Hills (Chilterns) and boasts a vital quarrying industry (sand).

Leighton Buzzard Through the Ages: It is thought that there existed settlements in or around what is now named Leighton Buzzard stretching back to unrecorded times, ancient relics and coins stumbled upon in the area offer proof of this. The ancient Watling Street (erected by the Romans), now named the A5, came through the close by towns of Hockliffe and Dunstable around two thousand yrs ago, and the Romans should have at least known of the Leighton Buzzard settlement at that time.

The Romans were ultimately followed by the Anglo-Saxons, and it was Saxons who set up a market sometime in the 10th Century, and artefacts stumbled on reveal that they were staying in the region probably since the sixth century. The commune as it was then isn't observed till 906 at which time the Danes wrote a peace treaty at Tiddenfoot, the Domesday Book (1086) specified Leighton Manor.

The ecclesiastical parish of Leighton Buzzard, over time, embraced a way greater area than merely the town itself, and included the hamlets of Heath & Reach, Billington, Stanbridge and Eggington. The "Leighton" in the name is thought to come from the old English meaning "a clearing in the woods", the "Buzzard" piece was not to be applied till the twelfth century when the Dean of Lincoln needed to distinguish it from another "Leighton" that he had inside his diocese. The Manors of Leighton would be leased to a variety of tenants through the centuries, like the Leighs of Stoneleigh, who endorsed Charles I during the English Civil War (1642-1645).

Leighton Buzzard trainLeighton Buzzard grew even larger during the succeeding years and the arrival of a canal and a railway in the 19th Century saw the town grow and develop. Modern Leighton Buzzard is a successful market town which has seen increased development in the past several years.

Places to Visit in Leighton Buzzard: The All Saints Church dating from 1277, together with its one hundred and ninety foot spire, the well known Leighton Buzzard Light Railway, a narrow guage heritage railway service which runs for around 4 miles from the station at Pages Park, to two now disused sand quarries at Double Arches, the service utilizes renovated steam engines, Stockgrove Country Park, a park encompassing 40 acres at nearby Heath and Reach with a lake, woodland walks and a picnic area.

Also: Ouzel Meadows, Leighton Linslade Virtual Museum, Woburn Abbey, Dunstable Downs, Rushmere Park, Woburn Heritage Centre, Whipsnade Zoo, Mead Open Farm, C2 Gallery, Aspley Woods, Lancot Meadow, Tiddenfoot Leisure Centre, Bluebell Wood, Leighton Lady Cruises, Ascott House, Dropshort Marsh.

A selection of Leighton Buzzard streets and roads: Greenhill, Hollies Court, Billington Court, Southcourt Road, Saturn Close, Willow Bank Walk, Jupiter Drive, Poplar Close, Maree Close, Stoke Road, Adaern Close, Ascot Drive, White House Court, Bridge Street, Chaloner Court, Leven Close, Carina Drive, Greenlands, Mardle Road, Oakridge Park, Mentmore Road, Plantation Road, Knaves Hill, Wyngates, Bragenham Lane, Victoria Road, Lime Grove, Barnabas Road, Lindler Court, Draper Way, Lomond Drive, Drakes Avenue, Churchill Road, Carlton Grove, Summer Street, Capshill Avenue, Crossway, Mowbray Drive, King Street, Chestnut Rise, The Walnuts, Himley Green, Almond Road, Avery Close, Weston Avenue, Lovent Drive, Greaves Way, Beaudesert, Miles Avenue, Southcott Village, Harcourt Close.

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This facts should be useful for neighbouring towns and parishes ie: Stanbridge, Cheddington, Hockliffe, Great Brickhill, Houghton Regis, Dunstable, Battlesden, Wingfield, Stoke Hammond, Linslade, Burcott, Clipstone, Soulbury, Tebworth, Slapton, Briggington, Stewkley, Billington, Eaton Bray, Mentmore, Eggington, Little Brickhill, Toddington, Wingrave, Horton, Grove, Milton Bryant, Little Billington, Bragenham, Luton, Heath and Reach, Wing. Map - Weather