Thursday, November 10, 2016

Kingston upon Hull

Kingston upon Hull usually abbreviated to Hull, is a city and unitary authority in the East Riding of Yorkshire, England. It lies upon the River Hull at its junction with the Humber estuary, 25 miles (40 km) inland from the North Sea, with a population of 257,710 (mid-2014 est.).

The town of Hull was founded late in the 12th century. The monks of Meaux Abbey needed a port where the wool from their estates could be exported. They chose a place at the junction of the rivers Hull and Humber to build a quay.

The exact year the town was founded is not known but it was first mentioned in 1193. Renamed Kings-town upon Hull by King Edward I in 1299, Hull has been a market town, military supply port, trading hub, fishing and whaling centre, and industrial metropolis.

Hull was an early theatre of battle in the English Civil Wars. Its 18th-century Member of Parliament, William Wilberforce, played a key role in the abolition of the slave trade in Britain.

The city is unique in the UK in having had a municipally owned telephone system from 1902, sporting cream, not red, telephone boxes.

After suffering heavy damage in the Second World War (the 'Hull Blitz'), Hull weathered a period of post-industrial decline, gaining unfavourable results on measures of social deprivation, education and policing. In the early 21st-century spending boom before the late 2000s recession the city saw large amounts of new retail, commercial, housing and public service construction spending.

Tourist attractions include the historic Old Town and Museum Quarter, Hull Marina and The Deep, a city landmark. The redevelopment of one of Hull's main thoroughfares, Ferensway, included the opening of St Stephen's Hull and the new Hull Truck Theatre. Spectator sports include Premier League football and Super League Rugby. The KCOM Stadium houses Hull City football club and Hull FC rugby club and The Lightstream Stadium rugby club Hull Kingston Rovers. Hull is also home to the English Premier Ice Hockey League Hull Pirates.

In 2013, it was announced that Hull would be the 2017 UK City of Culture.

In 2015 it was announced that the Ferens Art Gallery will be hosting the prestigious annual art prize, The Turner Prize, in 2017. The prize is held outside London every other year.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Blubberhouses

Blubberhouses is a small village and civil parish located in the Washburn Valley in the borough of Harrogate in North Yorkshire, a county in the north of England. The population as at the 2011 Census was less than 100. Details are included in the civil parish of Fewston. It is situated to the south of the Yorkshire Dales national park, and to the north of a Roman road and Fewston Reservoir.

The village is on the A59 road from Harrogate to Skipton.

The Anglican village church of St Andrew's (designed by Edward Buckton Lamb), is part of the ecclesiastical parish of Fewston. The village has two cricket teams who play at a ground on the River Washburn.

On 6 July 2014, Stage 2 of the 2014 Tour de France from York to Sheffield, passed through the village. It was also the location of the first climb of the stage, the Category 4 Côte de Blubberhouses, at the 47 kilometres (29 mi) point. It was 1.8 kilometres (1.1 mi) long at an average gradient of 6.1%. The 1 point for the King of the Mountain competition was claimed by Frenchman, Cyril Lemoine of Cofidis

Several suggestions have been made for the origins of the name Blubberhouses:-

From the blueberry: Ely Hargrove's History of Knaresborough.
From the Blue Boar, a former inn.
Early spellings include "Bluburgh", "Bluborrow", "Bluburhouse", (1172) "Bluberhusum". These may come from:-
Anglo-Saxon burh = "fort".
From "Blueberg" = "blue mountain".
Anglo-Saxon bluberhūs = "the house(s) which is/are at the bubbling stream", with a later regularised plural; the -um form came from the Anglo-Saxon dative plural case æt bluberhūsum = "at the houses which ...".

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Remember Remember the 5th of November

The Gunpowder Plot of 1605, in earlier centuries often called the Gunpowder Treason Plot or the Jesuit Treason, was a failed assassination attempt against King James I of England and VI of Scotland by a group of provincial English Catholics led by Robert Catesby.

The plan was to blow up the House of Lords during the State Opening of England's Parliament on 5 November 1605, as the prelude to a popular revolt in the Midlands during which James's nine-year-old daughter, Princess Elizabeth, was to be installed as the Catholic head of state. Catesby may have embarked on the scheme after hopes of securing greater religious tolerance under King James had faded, leaving many English Catholics disappointed. His fellow plotters were John Wright, Thomas Wintour, Thomas Percy, Guy Fawkes, Robert Keyes, Thomas Bates, Robert Wintour, Christopher Wright, John Grant, Ambrose Rookwood, Sir Everard Digby and Francis Tresham. Fawkes, who had 10 years of military experience fighting in the Spanish Netherlands in suppression of the Dutch Revolt, was given charge of the explosives.

The plot was revealed to the authorities in an anonymous letter sent to William Parker, 4th Baron Monteagle, on 26 October 1605. During a search of the House of Lords at about midnight on 4 November 1605, Fawkes was discovered guarding 36 barrels of gunpowder—enough to reduce the House of Lords to rubble—and arrested. Most of the conspirators fled from London as they learned of the plot's discovery, trying to enlist support along the way. Several made a stand against the pursuing Sheriff of Worcester and his men at Holbeche House; in the ensuing battle, Catesby was one of those shot and killed. At their trial on 27 January 1606, eight of the survivors, including Fawkes, were convicted and sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered.

Details of the assassination attempt were allegedly known by the principal Jesuit of England, Father Henry Garnet. Although he was convicted of treason and sentenced to death, doubt has been cast on how much he really knew of the plot. As its existence was revealed to him through confession, Garnet was prevented from informing the authorities by the absolute confidentiality of the confessional. Although anti-Catholic legislation was introduced soon after the plot's discovery, many important and loyal Catholics retained high office during King James I's reign. The thwarting of the Gunpowder Plot was commemorated for many years afterwards by special sermons and other public events such as the ringing of church bells, which have evolved into the Bonfire Night of today.