Cambridgeshire

Oliver Cromwell recognised in Cambridge at site of war effort discussions

The blue plaque honouring Oliver Cromwell
Image caption The blue plaque will be placed at the site where he held meetings to plan parliamentarian war effort

A plaque has been unveiled in honour of Oliver Cromwell in the city he represented as an MP, for the first time in almost 400 years.

Former prime minister Sir John Major unveiled the blue plaque at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, where puritan Cromwell was once a student.

Cromwell led the rebellion against King Charles I which saw the monarch put on trial and beheaded.

The Cromwell Association said a "long-standing oversight" had been corrected.

Chairman John Goldsmith said: "It is terrific that at long last Cromwell has got some kind of public memorial here in Cambridge.

"He was a man who represented Cambridge as an MP throughout the civil war and indeed afterwards and yet there is no public monument to Cromwell in the city at all."

Image copyright PAul Robbins
Image caption Sir John Major unveiled the plaque at Oliver Cromwell's old college in Cambridge

It will be placed in the Market Passage at the site of the Black Bear Inn.

It was there where Cromwell held meetings to plan the parliamentarian effort when England descended into civil war in 1642.

'Lessons learned'

The conflicts broke out between the Roundheads, led by Cromwell, and the royalist Cavaliers after hostilities between Charles I and parliament reached breaking point.

Cromwell became Lord Protector after the king's execution.

Sir John said: "I think we should recognise our history, not just Cromwell but all history.

"It points out what we did wrong, it will show us what perhaps we ought to do today."

He added: "If you look down the long avenue of our history over the last thousand years, there are very few people who have had the same significance on the way Britain lives as Cromwell."

Image caption Cromwell, who was born 20 miles from Cambridge, played a decisive role in the trial and execution of King Charles I

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