It is not known precisely when construction of Colchester Castle began, but it was probably started in the 1070s or 1080s on the orders of William the Conqueror. 1-71 (p. 22-23). The building is owned by the Victor Batte-Lay Foundation.[65]. Colchester is the only town that was specifically mentioned as being bombed, but the book does say that many cities were destroyed in North America, Europe, and Russia. [39] The tower of Holy Trinity Church is late Saxon work. Construction of the castle began in 1076, probably under the supervision of Gundulf, Bishop of Rochester who built the White Tower at London. Published by Essex County Council (. Its construction dates back to around 1076 when King William It has been suggested that the keep was at one time four storeys high, though for a number of reasons, including the peaceful region of the castle and the lack of local stone, it is now thought that it had only two or three. The University of Essex is located to the east of Colchester in Wivenhoe Park, in the civil parish of Wivenhoe. Since the 1930s the Paxman company's main business has been the production of diesel engines. Colchester is noted for its Victorian architecture. Built in the 11th Century, the Norman keep of Colchester castle is built upon the ruins of a Roman temple. Due to a lack of local quality stone, the Norman builders plundered Roman Colchester to build their keep. Colchester Castle would go on to serve several other roles, including being besieged in 1215 by King John and becoming the site of interrogation and jailing of “witches” in 1645 by a self-proclaimed Witchfinder General called Matthew Hopkins. (Sources: John Foxe, Book of Martyrs; Mark Byford, The Process of Reformation in a Tudor Town). Between 1797 and 1815 Colchester was the HQ of the Army's Eastern District, had a garrison of up to 6,000, and played a main role in defence against a threatened French or Dutch invasion, At various times it was the base of such celebrated officers as Lord Cornwallis, Generals Sir James Craig and David Baird, and Captain William Napier. In 1925, Paxman produced its first spring injection oil engine and joined the English Electric Diesel Group in 1966 – later becoming part of the GEC Group. (, Eilert Ekwall (1928). Colchester railway station is located on the Great Eastern Main Line operated by Abellio Greater Anglia. Colchester’s castle keep (built about 1080) is the largest of its kind in England and now houses a museum of Romano-British antiquities. ", "Maidenburgh, Geoffrey of Wells and Rabanus Maurus", "Colchester Archaeological Trust Online Report Library – Colchester Bays, Says and Perpetuanas by Eliot Howard", "Homepage â€“ Colchester Borough Council", "Bid to make Colchester the nation's next city lost", "The Glasshouse â€“ The Aldershot Military Detention Barracks", "Honour of Royal Salute switches to Colchester town centre â€“ Colc", "Colchester: £2 m more to finish off new art gallery (From Gazette)", "Walk Colchester – A Guide to Colchester's Roman Wall", "Municipal Water Tower (Jumbo), Colchester", "Colchester's 'Jumbo' water tower bought by poultry farmer", "A History of the County of Essex: Volume 9, the Borough of Colchester – Municipal buildings, Pages 274–277", "Colchester: how a shared 'fly pie' may bring Britpop band Blur back to Colchester", "MT at 80 | Margaret Thatcher Foundation", "Twin Town News – Colchester, Avignon, Imola and Wetzlar", "Jumelages et Relations Internationales – Avignon", "Atlas français de la coopération décentralisée et des autres actions extérieures", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Colchester&oldid=993133758, Wikipedia articles incorporating a citation from the 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica with Wikisource reference, Articles with dead external links from May 2016, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles with unsourced statements from October 2020, Articles with unsourced statements from February 2019, Articles with unsourced statements from July 2010, Articles with trivia sections from February 2019, All articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases, Articles with specifically marked weasel-worded phrases from August 2017, Articles with unsourced statements from December 2011, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz area identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Source: 1981–2010 estimated average (records began in 1988) for COL station Colchester NE 2, This page was last edited on 8 December 2020, at 23:55. In 2004, Colchester Archaeological Trust discovered the remains of a Roman Circus (chariot race track) underneath the Garrison in Colchester, a unique find in Britain. Current location: Colchester, Essex, UK. They are commemorated on a tablet near the altar of St Peter's Church. Britannia and Osborne Street. Other sports teams based in the town include Colchester School of Gymnastics, Colchester Rugby Football Club, Colchester Gladiators American Football Club, Colchester Weight Lifting Club, Colchester Powerlifting Club (ColPower) and Colchester & East Essex Cricket Club. Five minutes walk from Colchester Town railway station. [60], Gosbecks Archaeological Park is situated south-west of the town, and consists of a preserved Roman theatre and Romano-British temple marked out on the ground. Ordered by William the Conqueror around 1076, it is built on the foundations of the earlier Roman Temple of Claudius, dating back to AD 54-50. Private schools in Colchester include St. Mary's School, and Colchester High School. The Fox & Fiddler. Engravings by George Vertue after “Boul” (probably Cornelis Boel) and Isaac Whood. "Gazetteer of Mesolithic sites in England and Wales", in CBA Research Report 20, Strachan, David (1998) Essex from the Air, Archaeology and history from aerial photographs. Now a modern museum it is one of the region’s leading heritage attractions. [citation needed] The borough celebrated the 800th anniversary of its charter in 1989. Colchester has also been suggested as one of the potential sites of Camelot,[73] on account of having been the capital of Roman Britain and its ancient name of Camulodunum: this is not considered likely by academics, as in Arthurian times Colchester was under Saxon control. [9] Camulodunon is sometimes popularly considered one of many possible sites around Britain for the legendary (perhaps mythical) Camelot of King Arthur,[18] though the name Camelot (first mentioned by the 12th century French Arthurian storyteller Chrétien de Troyes) is most likely a corruption of Camlann, a now unknown location first mentioned in the 10th century Welsh annalistic text Annales Cambriae, identified as the place where Arthur was slain in battle. Opened in 1972, the Mercury Theatre is a repertory theatre. Nearby are Hollytrees Museum, a social history museum with children's exhibits in the former home of Charles Gray, and the town's Natural History Museum, located in the former All Saints' Church. This is recognised in the emblem of Colchester: a cross and three crowns. a witchfinder, used the Castle to imprison and question suspected witches. Even though Colchester's fortunes were more mixed during the 15th century, it was still a more important place by the 16th century than it had been in the 13th. From 2009, these salutes have taken place in Castle Park. Step inside the award-winning Colchester Castle Museum and uncover over 2,000 years of history. [42] [32], There is evidence of hasty re-organisation of Colchester's defences around 268–82 AD, followed later, during the fourth century, by the blocking of the Balkerne Gate. [33] John Morris (1913 – June 1977) an English historian who specialised in the study of the institutions of the Roman Empire and the history of Sub-Roman Britain, suggested in his book "The Age of Arthur" (1973) that as the descendants of Romanised Britons looked back to a golden age of peace and prosperity under Rome, the name "Camelot" of Arthurian legend was probably a reference to Camulodunum, the capital of Britannia in Roman times. Built from 1076 (some say from 1069) and completed in around 1100, Colchester Castle was constructed under the order of King William I for use as a royal fortress. The Doctor Who episodes The Lodger and Closing Time are set in Colchester, although they were filmed in Cardiff.[75]. from earliest times to the Civil War. H ave a go at building a Norman archway, dressing as an Iron Age Briton or steering a Roman chariot. Another version says that Humpty Dumpty was a cannon on the top of the church. Colchester Castle is a Norman keep (c. 1070) built upon the ruins of an ancient Roman temple to Claudius. Replacing a Victorian town hall which had become unstable,[69] work on the present building started in 1897 to the design of John Belcher in the Edwardian Baroque style,[70] and was opened in 1902 by former prime minister, the Earl of Rosebery. Colchester has a bus system (run mostly by First Essex and Arriva Colchester, as well as Hedingham, Beeston's, Ipswich Buses, Panther Travel (Essex) and Chambers) which mostly uses the bus station in Osborne Street on the southern edge of the town centre. [70] At the top of the tower is a large bronze figure representing Saint Helena (the patron saint of Colchester) holding the True Cross; a local story says that a councillor was dispatched to Italy to find a statue of the saint, but could only find one of the Virgin Mary, which then had to be modified locally.[71]. Many of Colchester's parish churches date from this period. She is now the patron saint of Colchester. Colchester's medieval town seal incorporated the biblical text Intravit ihc: in quoddam castellum et mulier quedam excepit illum Despite standing in ruin, this is one of the most impressive Norman castles to be seen in England today with its Norman… It … Rovers Tye Farm, now a pub on Ipswich Road, has been documented as being established by 1353. Published by Colchester Archaeological Trust (, Wymer, J. The name Colchester is from Latin: the place-name suffixes chester, cester, and caster derive from the Latin word castrum (fortified place). All that now remains consists of the ruined "Keep," of … Colchester Castle is the largest Norman keep ever built in England. Thompson was shot down (Humpty Dumpty had a great fall) and, shortly after, the town was lost to the Parliamentarians (all the king's horses and all the king's men / couldn't put Humpty together again.) However the inside of the castle is a huge history museum with many of the displays devoted to the Roman history of the area. (A priory wa… [26] The Roman town of Camulodunum, officially known as Colonia Victricensis, reached its peak in the Second and Third centuries AD. [9][10] The earliest forms of the name Colchester are Colenceaster and Colneceastre from the 10th century, with the modern spelling of Colchester being found in the 15th century. Gundulf, the Bishop of Rochester took control of the construction as well as the White Tower in London and building work may have started in 1080. Today it remains the largest surviving example of a Norman keep [3][4] It was for a time the capital of Roman Britain, and is a member of the Most Ancient European Towns Network.[5]. Located nearby is Colchester Arts Centre,[63] a multi-function arts venue located in the former St Mary-at-the-Walls church, and home of the Colchester Beer Festival. Snow falls on average 13 days a year during winter and early spring. the temple below the castle meant that its keep was the largest ever built in [16] Its Celtic name, Camulodunon, variously represented as CA, CAM, CAMV, CAMVL and CAMVLODVNO on the coins of Cunobelinus, means 'the fortress of [the war god] Camulos'. St Botolph's Priory was founded around 1100. Read all 1,093 reviews. Colchester's town walls c. 3,000 yd. [9] In the Roman period the site was the location of a large Romano-British temple and Britain's largest Roman theatre, twice as large as the one in the town. Some contend that is derived from the Latin words colonia (referring to a type of Roman settlement with rights equivalent to those of Roman citizens, one of which was believed to have been founded in the vicinity of Colchester) and castra, meaning fortifications (referring to the town's walls, the oldest in Britain). Following the Battle of Hastings, William the Conqueror ordered the construction of Colchester Castle and, while it took some thirty years to be built, when it was completed, it had the largest keep of any castle ever built in Britain.Today, it’s the largest surviving keep in Europe. In the Asterix comic book Asterix in Britain the Camulodunum rugby team wins a game against Durovernum (Roman name for Canterbury). The Army's only military corrective training centre, known colloquially within the forces and locally as "The Glasshouse" after the original military prison in Aldershot,[56] is in Berechurch Hall Road, on the outskirts of Colchester. William was linking his authority to that of the Roman emperors before him. The latter was destroyed by Boudica but the settlement was rebuilt and in the eleventh century the Normans added Colchester Castle. The French soldiers occupied Colchester castle. John's men besieged the castle and expelled the French. It was unsuccessful. by the French invaders. Colchester's distinctive heritage is nowhere more apparent than in Castle Park. Likely started in the 1070s or 1080s on the orders of William the Conqueror, Colchester castle is a large Norman fortification built on the site of an old Roman temple of Claudius. Colchester houses several museums. In 1216 some barons rebelled against King John and brought soldiers from France to help them. address: The identification of Colonia with Colchester is doubtful. Published by The Breedon Books Publishing Company Limited. In 1095 St John's Abbey was founded outside the South Gate. [50] The £22.7M 8-mile (13-kilometre) A120 Colchester Eastern Bypass opened in June 1982. The closest car parks are St Botolph's, The urban area of Colchester contains only one parish council (Myland Community Council) with the rest of Colchester Town being unparished. The Conservatives are the official opposition. William the Conqueror caused to be built at Exeter in 1068. Two of the town's secondary schools are selective, Colchester Royal Grammar School and Colchester County High School for Girls, the remainder being comprehensives. The Roman historian Tacitus mentions Colchester (Camulodunum) in The Annals of Imperial Rome. Britain. Colchester Castle experienced little military action during its history. [34], The archaeologist Sir Mortimer Wheeler was the first to propose that the lack of early Anglo-Saxon finds in a triangle between London, Colchester and St Albans could indicate a 'sub-Roman triangle' where British rule continued after the arrival of the Anglo-Saxons. (Sources:--Eastern Command, 11 Corps, various divisional, brigade and battalion, and Colchester Garrison war diaries in WO 166 series at National Archives, Kew; 4 Civil Defence Region reports in HO 192/193 series at National Archives; CW 1 Police Incident records at Essex County Record Office). They built first a Legionary fortress and then a colony for veteran soldiers on the site. The first part of Daniel Defoe's Moll Flanders was set in Colchester. The Colchester School of Art and Design is based in the Colchester Institute near the centre of the town. Colchester is a widely credited source[citation needed] of the rhyme Humpty Dumpty. [41], Colchester developed rapidly during the later 14th century as a centre of the woollen cloth industry, and became famous in many parts of Europe for its russets (fabrics of a grey-brown colour). There are notable medieval ruins in Colchester, including the surviving gateway of the Benedictine abbey of St John the Baptist (known locally as "St John's Abbey"), and the ruins of the Augustinian priory of St Botolph (known locally as "St Botolph's Priory"). [61] The park was the location of a large high-status late Iron Age farmstead, known as "Cunobelin's farm" after the Catuvellauni king, whose coin moulds were found in large quantities at the site. Colchester United Ladies play in the FA Women's Premier League Southern Division. In the legend Helena, the daughter of Cole, married the Roman senator Constantius Chlorus, who had been sent by Rome as an ambassador and was named as Cole's successor. The 162-foot clock tower was presented by James Paxman; it is topped by a figure of St Helena, who is linked by legend to the town. Published by the Society of Antiquaries of London in 1732. (ed.) [12] Colchester is surrounded by Neolithic and Bronze Age monuments that pre-date the town, including a Neolithic henge at Tendring, large Bronze Age barrow cemeteries at Dedham and Langham, and a larger example at Brightlingsea consisting of a cluster of 22 barrows. Colchester Borough Council is the local authority. In 1334 it would not have ranked among England's wealthiest fifty towns, to judge from the taxation levied that year. This may be so, but it takes a considerable leap to conclude from this, as one historian has done, that the whole castle was “militarily ineffectual”. [24] Colchester's town walls c. 3,000 yd. Colchester Zoo is a large zoo based in the Stanway area on the outskirts of town. It houses an archaeological collection of international significance. The Royalists surrendered in the late summer (on 27 August Lord Goring signed the surrender document in the Kings Head Inn) and Charles Lucas and George Lisle were executed in the grounds of Colchester Castle. [citation needed] The charter was granted at Dover with the king about to embark on one of his many journeys away from England. 457 x 286 mm and 453 x 285 mm. William I ordered a stone castle on the strategic route between East Anglia and London. Construction of the walls of Colchester took place between 65 and 80 AD, shortly after the destruction of the undefended colonia by Boudicca, and they continued in use until after the Siege of Colchester in 1648. The (fictional) Atomic Wars took place during the 1950s. Mediaeval Colchester's Lost Landmarks. None of these attacks hit its target, but in the 11 August raid bombs exploded on Severall's psychiatric hospital, killing 38 elderly patients. Local legend places Colchester as the seat of King Cole (or Coel) of the rhyme Old King Cole, a legendary ancient king of Britain. [64], The Minories houses The Minories Galleries, which is managed by Colchester Institute and presents contemporary exhibitions by artists from the region. [12][13] In the 1980s an archaeological inventory showed that over 800 shards of pottery from the Neolithic, Bronze Age and early Iron Age have been found within Colchester, along with many examples of worked flint. There has always been debate as to the original height of the castle. It features four allegorical figures by L J Watts representing engineering, military defence, agriculture and fishery. It was built on top of the ruins of a Roman Temple. in 1645 Matthew Hopkins, This is because, like most areas in southeast England, Colchester's weather is influenced more by Continental weather patterns than by Atlantic weather systems. In 2009, an art collective called 'Slack Space' took up some of the closed-down shops in the town and converted them into art galleries with the hope of promoting art and design in the town. [9][27] It may have reached a population of 30,000 in that period. [59] In 2014 brick and marble columns from the monumental façade of the precinct of the Temple of Claudius were discovered behind the High Street, with plans to make them visible to the public. It is the only town in Britain to have been explicitly mentioned in George Orwell's novel Nineteen Eighty-Four as being the target of a nuclear attack. The huge size of [25] In 2004, Colchester Archaeological Trust discovered the remains of a Roman Circus (chariot race track) underneath the Garrison in Colchester, a unique find in Britain. open: The castle was built on the vaults of the old temple of Claudius. It was probably begun around 1079 and was complete by 1100. This Norman keep known as Colchester Castle was built around AD 1078 on the foundations of the Roman Temple of Claudius. The fortress covered twenty hectares in the town centre from the area which is now the Mercury Theatre to Lion Walk. Medieval Colchester's main landmark is Colchester Castle, which is an 11th-century Norman keep, and built on top of the vaults of the old Roman temple. [37] Colchester was in the area assigned to the Danelaw in c.880, and remained in Danish hands until 917 when it was besieged and recaptured by the army of Edward the Elder. In February 1944 a single raider caused a huge fire in the St Botolph's area which gutted warehouses, shops and part of Paxman's Britannia Works. Colchester was the first Roman-founded colonia in Britain, and Colchester lays claim to be regarded as Britain's oldest recorded town. The total wartime bombing death toll in the borough was 55. Two large stretches of the wall are still standing on the west and north sides and a number of fragments are visible along the rest of the circuit. She plays croquet and harpsichord, and sews her own clothes.". Colchester and the surrounding area is currently undergoing significant regeneration,[51] including controversial greenfield residential development in Mile End and Braiswick. The castle also boasts the largest stone spiral staircase in (1994) Late Roman Colchester, In Oxford Journal of Archaeology 13(1), (Sources--Records of Army's Eastern Command at National Archives, Kew; Julian Foynes "East Anglia against the Tricolor 1793-1815, Poppyland Press, 2016), FA Women's Premier League Southern Division, List of twin towns and sister cities in the United Kingdom, List of natural disasters in the United Kingdom and preceding states, Military history of the United Kingdom during World War II, Church of St Leonard at the Hythe, Colchester, https://www.citypopulation.de/php/uk-parishes-eastofengland.php?adm2id=E43000228, "Colchester – Britain's Oldest Recorded Town", "King Commute: the best new property deals within an hour of central London", "Camelot: discovering the legend of King Arthur around Britain", "The Fenwick Treasure at Williams & Griffin! Bank defences are open to the public as wooded parkland. [ 50 ] the tower was decommissioned in and. 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