Huntingdonshire Day in England Date in the current year: April 25, 2024

Huntingdonshire Day in England Huntingdonshire Day is an annual observance celebrating the history and culture of the historic county of Huntingdonshire in England. Initiated by the Huntingdonshire Society, it has been celebrated every April 25 since 2002.

Huntingdonshire is non-metropolitan district of Cambridgeshire and a historic county, which means that it was established as a county after the Norman Conquest but lost this status as a result of modern local government reforms. Huntingdonshire has a total population of almost 178,000; its major towns are Huntingdon (the administrative center), Godmanchester, St Ives, St Neots, and Ramsey.

The earliest settlers in the area were Anglo-Saxon tribes. After the Danish conquest of East Anglia in the 9th century, Huntingdon became an important military center. It was first mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle as Huntandun; the name most likely means “the huntsman’s hill”.

Around 915–917, King of the Anglo-Saxons Edward the Elder reconquered the region from the Danes and incorporated it into his kingdom. During the reign of Edward the Confessor, the earldom of Huntingdon was one of the seven earldoms of Saxon England. Its territory covered the counties of Huntingdonshire, Bedfordshire, and Northamptonshire. The title Earl of Huntingdon exists to this day.

In 1154, King Henry II declared all of Huntingdonshire a royal forest (a hunting area reserved for the monarch or the aristocracy invited by the monarch), but by the end of the 18th century, not much of forests survived and the county was largely farmland.

After the enactment of the Local Government Act 1888, Huntingdonshire became an administrative county. In 1961, the Local Government Commission for England proposed that Huntingdonshire and the Soke of Peterborough be merged to form the new administrative county of Huntingdon and Peterborough. The new county was formed in 1965, but it was short-lived. Following the enactment of the Local Government Act 1972 on April 1, 1974, Huntingdon and Peterborough became part of Cambridgeshire.

In the 1990s, local activists launched a campaign to make Huntingdonshire a unitary authority, but the Local Government Boundary Commission eventually decided against it. After the failure of their campaign, the activists established the Huntingdonshire Society to promote Huntingdonshire as a historic county and celebrate its culture.

In 2002, the Huntingdonshire Society created Huntingdonshire Day. It was decided to celebrate the new holiday on April 25 to commemorate the birthday of Oliver Cromwell, an English general and statesman who ruled Britain as Lord Protector after the defeat of King Charles I in the English Civil War, since Cromwell was born in Huntingdon and even served as the Member of Parliament for Huntingdon.

Huntingdon Day is marked by various events held in the main towns of the historic county. They include public readings of the Huntingdonshire Declaration (a document reasserting Huntingdonshire’s status as a county), concerts, fairs, and other events celebrating the history, traditions and heritage of the county.

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Huntingdonshire Day in England, county days in England, Huntingdonshire, historic county of Huntingdonshire, Oliver Cromwell