Leighton Buzzard Tourist Information

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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

Positioned within the county of Bedfordshire, the tranquil town of Leighton Buzzard lays right on the border between Bucks and Beds, on the banks of the Grand Union Canal, it has a resident population of around thirty seven thousand and a story stretching back to the days of the Romans, at which time the early Watling St (now the A-5) passed by the town. Today Leighton Buzzard is linked to the neighbouring town of Linslade and it's approximately mid-way between Luton (Beds) and Milton Keynes (Bucks), it lies very close to the Chiltern Hills and boasts an important quarrying industry (sand).

Leighton Buzzard Historic Past: It's thought that there existed settlements in or around what's now named Leighton Buzzard way back in unrecorded times, age-old artefacts and coins discovered near by offer proof of this fact. The longstanding Watling Street (constructed by the Romans), now known as the A5, passed through the neighbouring settlements of Dunstable and Hockliffe over two thousand yrs ago, and the Romans should have at the very least been aware of the Leighton Buzzard settlement at this time.

The Romans were in turn followed by the Anglo-Saxons, and it was Saxons who were using the market place sometime in the tenth century, and artifacts picked up show that they were inhabiting the local area in all likelihood since the sixth century. The village existing at this time is not referred to until 906 when the Danes signed a peace treaty at Tiddenfoot, the Domesday Book (1086) talked about Leighton Manor.

The parish of Leighton Buzzard, over the years, encompassed a far wider area than just the town itself, and incorporated the settlements of Stanbridge, Heath & Reach, Eggington and BIllington. The "Leighton" in the name could have come from the old English for "a clearing in the woods", the "Buzzard" portion wouldn't be put on until the 12th Century at which time the Dean of Lincoln was required to differentiate it from a different "Leighton" that existed inside his diocese. The Manors of Leighton were let to a number of tenants through the eras, for example the Leighs of Stoneleigh, who endorsed Charles I throughout the Civil War (1642-1645).

Leighton Buzzard trainThe town continued to grow through the following decades and the construction of a canal and a railway line during the Nineteenth Century saw the town develop and evolve. Twenty-first century Leighton Buzzard can be termed a prosperous market town which has witnessed greater development in the recent past.

Things to Do in Leighton Buzzard: The All Saints Church first built in 1277, together with its 190 foot high spire, the widely known Leighton Buzzard Light Railway, a narrow guage heritage railway service which extends for approximately four miles from the station at Pages Park, to two now disused sand quarries at Double Arches, the service utilizes reconditioned steam engines, Stockgrove Country Park, a forty acre park at close by Heath and Reach with a lake, woodland walks and a picnic area.

Also: Grebe Canal Cruises, Whipsnade Zoo, Totternhoe Knolls, Ouzel Meadows, Rushmere Park, Leighton Linslade Virtual Museum, Woburn Abbey, Tiddenfoot Waterside Park, Woburn Heritage Centre, Tiddenfoot Leisure Centre, Mead Open Farm, Pitstone Green Museum, Bluebell Wood, Pitstone Windmill, Lancot Meadow, Dropshort Marsh.

A selection of Leighton Buzzard streets and roads: The Heath, Claridge Close, Stephenson Close, Bassett Road, Oxendon Court, Princes Court, Sandy Lane, Firbank Way, St Andrews Close, Southcourt Road, St Leonard's Close, Middle Green, Blakedown Road, Albany Road, The Martins Drive, Commerce Way, Durrell Close, Old Road, Miles Avenue, Golden Riddy, Nevis Close, The Maltings, Springfield Road, Fyne Drive, Heath Road, Apple Tree Close, Grange Close, Hartwell Crescent, Brookside Walk, Mercury Way, Grove Road, Rannock Gardens, Mowbray Drive, Rye Close, Hydrus Drive, Lincombe Slade, Grove Place, Windermere Gardens, King Street, Lindler Court, Bedford Street, Bramble Close, Grasmere Way, Redwood Glade, Deverell Way, Duncombe Drive, Ash Grove, Barnabas Road, Heathwood Close, Almond Road, Clay Furlong.

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The above data should also be pertinent for nearby parishes particularly: Heath and Reach, Stewkley, Horton, Slapton, Billington, Burcott, Eaton Bray, Wing, Dunstable, Eggington, Battlesden, Briggington, Cheddington, Milton Bryant, Grove, Toddington, Little Billington, Clipstone, Hockliffe, Great Brickhill, Tebworth, Mentmore, Wingrave, Stoke Hammond, Soulbury, Little Brickhill, Luton, Bragenham, Stanbridge, Houghton Regis, Linslade, Wingfield. Map - Weather