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Themes Explorers and Adventurers Nobel Prize Winners
Actors/Actresses and Directors Famous People Places of Interest
Anglo-Saxons and Danes Historic Events Prime Ministers
Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty Inventors and Scientists Royal Consorts and Heirs
Artists and Architects Monarchs World Heritage Sites
Composers National Parks Writers and Poets

Staffordshire

Staffordshire lies in north-central England. In 1974 the new county of the West Midlands was formed from part of the county together with parts of Warwickshire and Worcestershire. The West Midlands has since been broken up into smaller authorities.



Towns include the county seat of Stafford and the six towns which make up the Potteries, the centre of china and earthenware production in England.


Anglo-Saxons and Danes
Once part of the kingdom of Mercia. Occupying a large part of central England, Mercia stretched from Wales in the west to the kingdom of the East Angles (East Anglia) in the east and from the West Saxon kingdom of Wessex in the south to Northumbria in the north.



Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty

The county's only AONB is Cannock Chase which was designated in 1958. Once home to an ancient forest and in medieval times used as a royal hunting ground the area now includes the remnants of these forests and also a large expanse of rare heathland scenery.



Famous People

Robert Catesby, the leader of the Gunpowder Plot, was shot dead in 1605 while resisting arrest at Holbeche House near Kingswinford. A few days earlier in the night from November
4-5th the plot to blow up Parliament and kill James I had been foiled when Guy Fawkes was arrested in a cellar under Westminster Palace preparing the explosives.

The Gunpowder Plot Conspirators James I
The Gunpowder Plot
The Gunpowder Plot Society



National Parks
In 1951 the Peak District became Britain's first National Park.



Nobel Prize Winners

Chemistry
The physicist Francis Aston was born in the village of Harborne near Birmingham in 1877. In 1922 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry for his invention of the mass spectograph.




Places of Interest


Cathedrals and Abbeys
Lichfield Cathedral



Historic Buildings
Samuel Johnson's birthplace, Lichfield




Prime Ministers
The Prime Ministers
Sir Robert Peel, twice Prime Minister in 1834-35 and 1841-46, was buried at St Peter's in the village of Drayton Bassett in 1850. He had lived nearby at Drayton Manor, a now demolished stately home. Peel was responsible for creating London's police force whose members were nicknamed "Bobbies" after him.

Sir Robert Peel



Writers and Poets
The author Izaak Walton was born in Stafford in 1593. In 1653 his The Compleat Angler - a book on the delights of fishing - was published. It became a classic and is the most reprinted work in English literature.

Izaak Walton


Sir Henry Wotton ... was also a most dear lover, and a frequent practiser of the art of angling; of which he would say, "it was an employment for his idle time, which was then not idly spent ... a rest to his mind, a cheerer of his spirits, a diverter of sadness, a calmer of unquiet thoughts, a moderator of passions, a procurer of contentedness; and that it begat habits of peace and patience in those that professed and practised it."
The Compleat Angler (1653)




The writer Samuel Johnson, later better known as Dr Johnson, was born in 1709 in Breadmarket Street in Lichfield.

Samuel Johnson
Birthplace museum, Lichfield


Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.
Attributed to Johnson in 1775 (James Boswell's biography "The Life of Johnson", 1791)


I am always sorry when any language is lost, because languages are the pedigree of nations.
Tour to the Hebrides (1785)




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