England's 'Finest Stone Town.'
(Photos © Mike Slocombe, Sept 2006)
Stamford is an attractive town in south Lincolnshire, apparently proclaimed 'the finest stone town in England.'
Situated close to the borders of Northamptonshire, Rutland and Cambridgeshire, the unspolit town features extensive Medieval and Georgian architecture, faced with local stone.
According to legend, Stamford was the seat of an ancient university founded over 800 years before the birth of Christ, with other tourist-luring guff linking the town with King Bladud, the Trojan king of Britain and even Merlin the Wizard.
By the 13th century, Stamford was one of the 10 biggest towns in England, sporting a castle, 14 churches, 2 monastic institutions, and 4 friaries - even parliaments met there.
However, it is recorded that its university only survived until 1335 when the king heeded the requests of Oxford and Cambridge universities to get rid of their breakaway rival.
Oliver Cromwell paid a visit to Stamford during the Civil War in 1643, laying siege to Burghley House which was being used as a Royalist refuge.
Despite frantic bell-ringing activities, Royalist support was not forthcoming, leaving the Cavaliers no choice but to surrender.
King Charles I tried to get the mo'fo' hell out of town, galloping off to Southwell where the guv'nor was betrayed and handed over to Parliament.
No longer an important coaching stop on the Great North Road between London and York, Stamford still sports many inns and hotels and in 1967 became the first conservation town in England.
More views of Stamford