NORTHAMPTON

 

HISTORICAL NORTHAMPTON

Northampton is a town in England’s East Midlands region. The house at 78 Derngate, remodeled by architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 1916–1917, is now a museum. Abington Park Museum has local history and fashion exhibits. Barnes Meadow Nature Reserve has grassland and wetland bird habitats. Sywell Country Park, built around a former reservoir, includes meadows, a playground and a native butterfly garden.

VIDEOS OF NORTHAMPTON

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

Following World War I, the shoe industry was increasingly in decline, despite the town's factories supplying over 23 million pairs of boots to the armed forces. A total of 1,700 men from the town were lost of the 6,000 killed from the Northamptonshire Regiment. The town expanded further during the 1920s and saw the erection of Northampton Power Station, which supplied electricity to areas as far away as Wolverton, until its closure in 1975. Much council housing was also built largely to the east, north and south of the town, including Abington, Far Cotton, Kingsley, Kingsthorpe and Dallington – areas which had been incorporated within the borough's boundaries in 1901. However, the population growth slowed down as people moved beyond its boundaries. In 1901, the population had expanded to 90,923; in 1931, the population was 92,341.

After World War II, Northampton vastly changed. In 1959, the M1 motorway was opened to the south-west of the town; in 1968, Northampton was designated a New Town. Both these events and the rail link helped Northampton's growth as a commuter town for London. The Northampton Development Corporation (NDC) was set up in 1968 to substantially redevelop the town in partnership with the local council, spending £205 million to build new housing and industrial estates, initially in Lumbertubs, Moulton Park and Round Spinney to the east, followed by Briar Hill, Camp Hill and East and West Hunsbury in the south of the town, mainly to accommodate the overflow population of new residents from the London area.[16][39] In the town centre, older buildings were demolished and replaced or redeveloped for other buildings, including the former Greyfriars bus station, the Grosvenor Centre, Peacock Place (now Market Walk), shops, flats and hotels.

Although growth was slower than planned, the population grew from 105,421 in 1961 to 157,217 by 1981, with 15,655 new homes added to the town between 1970 and 1985. The borough boundaries also changed following a split of the Northampton parliamentary constituency into Northampton North and Northampton South in 1974. Northampton was reconstituted as a non-metropolitan district which also covered areas outside the former borough boundaries but inside the designated New Town. The town tried for unitary status during the 1990s UK local government reform, but failed and remains a non-metropolitan district to this day, meaning it relies on a two-tier system of government. On Good Friday 1998, Northampton suffered severe flooding, particularly in the areas of Far Cotton and St James; two people were killed and thousands of homes were affected.

Since the turn of the Millennium, the town has continued to expand. Northampton applied for city status in 2000 and again in 2002, but failed on both occasions and remains a town. In 2006, Northampton became a government expansion zone with new growth promoted by West Northamptonshire Development Corporation (WNDC), an unelected quango, which has provoked a series of regeneration schemes across the town. Some have been completed, including the opening of the Radlands Plaza Skatepark and the development of Becket's Park Marina just south of Northampton's town centre, as well as the improvement of the town's Market Square, the building of the new North Gate bus station, the redevelopment of the railway station and the creation of a Cultural Quarter. Current projects include the improvement of Northampton's waterside, the building of a new Council headquarters, the restoration of Delapré Abbey, the expansion of Northampton Museum, the merging of the university into one new campus in town centre and the renovation of both the Grosvenor Shopping Centre and Weston Favell Centre. In 2015, St Giles Street in the town centre was named the "Best British High Street" in a national competition run by the Department for Communities and Local Government.


 

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