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Abbey Church Spectacular Wooden Ceiling

1238

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The new abbey church was consecrated in 1238 and the structure of the building has remained essentially as it was on completion. Most significantly the original wooden ceiling still survives in the nave. It is the only ceiling of its type in the whole country. Furthermore, it is one of only four wooden ceilings of this period surviving in the whole of Europe. It was completed between 1230 and 1250 by skilled painters working by hand, which is not easy at that height. The ceiling has been over-painted twice, but retains its original style and pattern.





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John Clare, Poet

1793-1864

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John Clare, the poet, was born in Helpston on 13th July 1793 and became one of our leading environmental poets. Despite having had little education he went on to write over 3500 poems. His poems are very descriptive of the wildlife, the people and the way the people lived in the rural 19th century villages. The works were created by a man who lived and worked in that environment and was able to relate to his surroundings. His first book of poems, 'Poems Descriptive of Rural Life and Scenery' was published to great acclaim in 1820, he went on to have three more books printed. He left Helpston in 1832 to go to Northborough, from where he went into High Beech mental asylum in Epping in 1837. He walked home, back to Northborough in 1841, taking 4 days. Later in 1841 he was sent to Northampton General Lunatic Asylum, now St Andrews, in Northampton. This is where he died in 1864. His body was brought back to Helpston, where he is buried in the churchyard.





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Longthorpe Tower

1260

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A manor house was built by the Thorpe family in what is now known as Longthorpe. The tower was a later addition (about 1300), now noted for its 14th century wall paintings, the best preserved medieval wall paintings in a domestic setting in Europe.





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Image of people using the Bishops Gardens

1902-1910

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The Bishops Gardens, just to the South of the Cathedral show a young family walking through them.The buildings which appear to be part of the gardens are now separated from them. This is where the water fountain dedicated to Henry Spencer Gates, Peterborough’s first Mayor was moved to from the Old Market Square. From an original postcard. Publisher Wrench, from the Keith Gill Collection.





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Image of a Boy by a Pond, Thorpe Village

1902-1910

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A view of a young boy sitting on the edge of the pond in Thorpe Village near Peterborough. Now known as Longthorpe. This image has been produced from an original postcard of the time. Publisher Wrench, from the Keith Gill Collection.      





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Image of Cumbergate

1909

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Cumbergate, is still easily recognisable today, take away the horse and cart and little has changed. With Queensgate to the rear and St Johns Church at the top of the picture. The shops on the right hand side are still there as are Miss Pears Almshouses on the left (now Carlucci’s Italian Restaurant). The postcard is dated September 1909. The address indicates that Werrington would have been a very small village than as there are no street details in the address. From an original postcard of the time. Publisher Valentines, from the Keith Gill Collection.  





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Image of The Entrance to Thorpe Park.

1902-1910

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This image shows a horse and carriage near the entrance to Thorpe Park.  What this space was and what it part of now is unknown. This image has been produced from an original postcard of the time. Publisher Unknown. From the Jacqui Catling Collection





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Image of The Fox and Hounds Public House

1902-1910

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This is a picture of the Fox and Hounds Public House, Thorpe Village near Peterborough. Shown here is a tranquil rural scene recorded outside the Fox and Hounds between 1902-1910. The building is believed to originate from the 16th century and was destroyed by fire in the 1920’s and replaced by the current two story building. This village is now known as Longthorpe and is an integral part of Peterborough City. This image has been produced from an original postcard of the time. Publisher unknown, from the Jacqui Catling Collection.





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Image of Long Causeway

1902-1910

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This image shows a view looking north from the Old Market Square, now Cathedral Square. In the foreground you can see the memorial water fountain which is now situated in the Bishop Road Gardens. This fountain was a gift in 1898 to the people of Peterborough from the widow of Peterborough’s first Mayor, Henry Pearson Gates (1813-1893) Peterborough’s tram system began in 1903 and was superseded  by more flexible motor buses in 1930.There were three tram routes, Westgate, via Lincoln Rd to Sages Lane, Westgate via Lincoln Rd to St Pauls Rd and Midgate to Eye Rd. This image has been produced from an original postcard of the time. Publisher unknown, from the Jacqui Catling Collection.  





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Image of Thorpe Village

1902-1910

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This is an enchanting rural scene of Thorpe Village, showing a young girl watching the Postman on his rounds. Thorpe Village is now known as Longthorpe. This image has been produced from an original postcard of the time. Publisher Unknown. From the Jacqui Catling Collection  





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