Northamptonshire: History spotlight on drive-through county

Harringworth (or Welland) Viaduct Image copyright Richard Thomas/Geograph
Image caption The 19th Century Harringworth or Welland railway viaduct is 1,275 yards (1.1km) long and has 82 arches

An English county more often driven through than stopped in by tourists hopes to attract more people to its hidden gems.

Northamptonshire is bisected by the M1 north-south and the A14 east-west with the Midland Mainline going through it, but it is also home to key sites in the history of England.

The county council wants to set up the Northamptonshire Heritage Trust to champion the area. It will be discussed on Wednesday.

Image copyright Philip Halling/Geograph
Image caption The many stately homes in the county include Boughton House, which has been referred to as the English Versailles and has been largely unchanged since the late 17th Century

Heather Smith, the leader of Northamptonshire County Council, said: "A lot of people don't know Northamptonshire. It is a place they drive through.

"We want to put a spotlight on the county with this over-arching trust. It has hidden gems to be discovered."

Image copyright Philip Halling/Geograph
Image caption The county includes the site of the Battle of Naseby in 1645, one of the key battles of the English Civil War
Image caption A new visitor centre is to open at Chester Farm, near Wellingborough, in 2018, on the site of a 2,000-year-old excavated Roman walled town
Image copyright Mark Percy/Geograph
Image caption George Washington's ancestors lived in Sulgrave Manor in Northamptonshire

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