Salisbury was one of the earliest ‘new towns’. The city was founded in 1220 to replace the town of Old Sarum, 3 miles to the north. Old Sarum had been founded by the Romans and developed by the Saxons, and was already an important town in the llth and 12th centuries. The water supply was poor, though, and so the town was moved to its present site where smaller rivers join the River Avon. The most striking feature is the cathedral, which was founded at the same time as the town. It was built between 1220 and 1258 and is thought to be one of the most beautiful in Europe, The spire is 404 feet high, making it the tallest church in Britain, and was added in 1334. The cathedral is 473 feet long. Salisbury is a market town for the surrounding agricultural area, and a shopping centre for the large numbers of military bases to the north of the city, on Salisbury Plain. It is also a tourist centre, because of the cathedral and old town, and because of Stonehenge which is 10 miles north-north-west of the city. It’s situated in central Southern England, about 30 miles inland from the south coast. The city centre is particularly pleasant, as a ring road takes heavy traffic away to the East.
As it is the centre of the area of Gwynedd, which is 75 % Welsh-speaking. It is situated in North Wales, and has always been an important strategic and military site. The Romans built a castle here in AD 78. The present castle was started by King Edward I in 1283, and completed in 1322. His son was born here in 1284 and became the first ‘Prince of Wales. Prince Charles was invested as Prince of Wales at the castle on July 1st 1969. The castle, at the top left, is one of the finest surviving castles in Britain. The old town wall is still in good condition. The population is 10.500, and the town is a market centre and a tourism centre for the Snowdonia National Park.
Durham, in County Durham, is in the north-east
of England, about 14 miles from Newcastle, and 260 miles from London. It is built on a bend in the River Wear, and it grew around the Norman castle, which was built in 1072 to protect England from the Scots. A wall blocked off the peninsula. The cathedral was begun in 1093, and has been called the finest Norman building in Britain, if not in Europe. The religious schools developed from the 15th century onwards, eventually becoming the University of Durham in 1832. It is England’s third oldest University, after Oxford and Cambridge. Durham is an administration and market centre, and although it is surrounded by coal mining villages, it has remained reasonably quiet and beautiful. The present population is 24,777.
Leeds, city, in the metropolitan county of West Yorkshire, northern England, on the Aire River. Leeds is located between an agricultural region to the north and east and a manufacturing region to the south and west and serves as the area’s commercial and industrial hub. Excellent rail, road, and canal facilities make it an important distribution point. The city is also a major center for the manufacture and wholesale trade of clothing. Other manufactures include electric equipment, paper products, and metal goods. Located here are a civic theater, the City Art Gallery (1888), and the City Museums (1820). Historic sites include the Tudor-Stuart Temple Newsom House, now a museum, and the ruins of the 12th-century Kirkstall Abbey. Leeds is the seat of the University of Leeds (1904), Leeds Metropolitan University (1992, formerly a polytechnic college), and a grammar school (1552).