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28 October 2014
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Hemingford Grey Manor, courtesy Diana Boston
The Manor, courtesy Diana Boston

Tourist in your own Town - Huntingdon and Hemingford

Jan Reynolds
From a magical story-book house to Oliver's army. Jan visits the Manor that was inspiration for the Green Knowe books and then finds out more about Oliver Cromwell.

Listen to Jan explore Huntingdon and Hemingford:
audio Tourist in your own Town: Huntingdon - Part 1 >
audio Tourist in your own Town: Huntingdon - Part 2 >
Audio and Video links on this page require Realplayer

With so many of its lovely villages situated along the river, the old county of Huntingdonshire offers endless picturesque views and more than enough to satisfy even the most devoted heritage enthusiast.

One of its many old buildings even claims to be the oldest continually-inhabited home in England, and was the inspiration for the famous Green Knowe children's books...

Patchwork by Lucy Boston - courtesy Diana Boston
Lucy Boston's patchwork - photo D Boston

Hemingford Grey Manor is still home to the family of the late Lucy Boston who set her magical and fanciful books in this extraordinary house with a Norman heart.

Visitors can see the originals of the book cover illustrations hanging on the walls, as well as many of the objects featured in the books. Lucy Boston's life-time creations of patchwork – each relating to a different book - attract specialists from far and wide.

Beyond the house is a garden sure to delight traditionalists. Yew topiary, and an array of sweetly-scented old shrub roses in early summer, compete with the colourful herbaceous borders.

The garden is open most days, and the house can be visited by appointment. For more information, visit the website:
Hemingford Grey Manor >
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The birthplace of Cromwell

A portrait of Oliver Cromwell
A portrait of Cromwell

The town of Huntingdon enjoys celebrity status as the birthplace of one of our most controversial historic figures, Oliver Cromwell.

The medieval stone building which became the Grammar School attended by Cromwell, now houses a museum with some of his personal items, as well as documents and portraits.

Visitors have very differing views about Cromwell but the Museum sets out to show sides of this internationally-famous figure not often conveyed in school text books. It is little known that Cromwell was fond of music, and the first opera performed in Britain was during his Commonwealth.

A display at the Cromwell Museum
A display at the Cromwell Museum

Exhibits include some his exquisitely-crafted swords, highly decorated leather gaiters, and a powder cask with the initials OC as sun and crescent moon.

For more information about Oliver Cromwell and the Cromwell Museum, visit the websites below:
The Cromwell Museum >
The Cromwell Collection >
Cromwell Association >
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external websites
Find out more about 'Tourist In Your Own Town' with BBC Radio Cambridgeshire:
A Tourist in your own Town! >
last updated: 30/08/06
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keith hick
tourist in your town pt 1 and 2 are brilliant, I put them on an MP3 for visiting family to use when going to the attractions .... duxford museum next please!!

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