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

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Location: Bedfordshire (Beds), East of England, UK.

Population: 37,000

Located in the county of Beds in the East of England, the small town of Leighton Buzzard is close to the county boundary betwixt Beds and Buckinghamshire, on the Grand Union Canal, the town has a populace of approximately thirty seven thousand and a heritage extending back to Roman times, at which time the Roman built A5 (then known as Watling Street) passed by the town. Today Leighton Buzzard is linked to the adjoining town of Linslade and it's roughly mid-way between Milton Keynes (Buckinghamshire) and Luton, it is found near to the Chilterns and boasts a substantial sand quarrying industry.

Leighton Buzzard Through the Ages: It's thought that there were settlements in or around what is now known as Leighton Buzzard going back to unrecorded times, ancient artefacts and coins discovered in close proximity give evidence of this. The age old Watling Street (built by the Romans), now named the A5, passed through the neighbouring towns of Hockliffe and Dunstable some 2,000 years ago, and the Romans should have at least been aware of the Leighton Buzzard settlement during those times.

The Romans were followed by the Anglo-Saxons, and it was them who were using a market in around the tenth century, and artifacts uncovered suggest that they were settling the area undoubtedly from the 6th Century. The village existing then was not referred to till 906 after the Danes signed a peace treaty at Tiddenfoot, the 1086 Domesday Book reported Leighton Manor.

The parish of Leighton Buzzard, in the past, embodied a significantly bigger area than only the town itself, and incorporated the settlements of Stanbridge, Billington, Eggington and Heath & Reach. The "Leighton" in the town's name is thought to originated from the old English for "a clearing in the woods", the "Buzzard" part wasn't appended prior to the 12th Century when the Dean of Lincoln had to differentiate it from the other "Leighton" that existed within his diocese. The Manors of Leighton would be tenanted to many different tenants through the generations, for example the Leighs of Stoneleigh, who helped Charles I throughout the Civil War (1642-1645).

Leighton Buzzard trainThe settlement continued to grow throughout the coming years and the construction of a canal and a railway service in the Nineteenth Century saw the town develop and grow. Twenty-first century Leighton Buzzard can be described as a thriving market town that's witnessed greater development in recent times.

Leighton Buzzard Tourist Attractions: The All Saints Church initiated in 1277, along with its 190 foot spire, the well known Leighton Buzzard Light Railway, a narrow guage heritage railway service which extends for around four mls from the station at Pages Park, to 2 now disused sand quarries at Double Arches, the line makes use of restored steam engines, Stockgrove Country Park, a 40 acre park at neighbouring Heath and Reach with lake, picnic area and woodland walks.

Also: Dropshort Marsh, Pitstone Windmill, Dunstable Downs, Leighton Linslade Virtual Museum, Tiddenfoot Leisure Centre, Aspley Woods, Bluebell Wood, Whipsnade Zoo, Grebe Canal Cruises, C2 Gallery, Woburn Abbey, Lancot Meadow, Rushmere Park, Leighton Lady Cruises, Toddington Manor Gardens, Mead Open Farm.

A selection of Leighton Buzzard streets and roads: North Street, Cleveland Drive, Baker Street, The Wood, St Andrew's Street, Atterbury Avenue, Water Lane, Eden Way, Springfield Road, Lathwell Way, Craddocks Drive, Cetus Crescent, Cheviot Close, Leighton Road, Aries Court, White House Court, Enterprise Way, Phoenix Close, Pegasus Road, Adams Bottom, Bragenham Lane, Robinswood Close, The Maltings, Mardle Road, Garden Leys, Woodland Avenue, Oak Bank Drive, St Andrews Close, Bedford Street, Mentmore Gardens, Fyne Drive, Roosevelt Avenue, Dingle Dell, Church Square, Old Linslade Road, Copper Beech Way, Croxley Court, Chartmoor Road, Village Court, Duncombe Drive, Highcroft, Grange Close, Jupiter Drive, Basildon Court, Nelson Road, Greaves Way, Lee Don Furlong, Marley Fields, Knaves Hill, Plantation Road, Broomhills Road.

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