Stony Stratford

From Academic Kids

Stony Stratford (sometimes shortened to Stony) is a town in the Unitary Authority of Milton Keynes, England. It is located on the border with Northamptonshire, to the north-west of and (somewhat reluctantly, included in) Milton Keynes itself. Prior to boundary changes in the 1990s the town was in Buckinghamshire.

Stony Stratford
OS Grid Reference:Template:Gbmappingsmall
Lat/Lon:Template:Coor dm NW
Population:around 5,000?
Formal status:Part of Milton Keynes new city.
Borough: Milton Keynes
Region:South East England
Ceremonial County:Buckinghamshire
Traditional County:Buckinghamshire
Post Office and Telephone
Postcode:MK11 1**
Dialling Code:01908


The town name 'Stratford' is Anglo Saxon in origin, and means 'ford on a Roman road'. The Roman road in this sense is the Watling Street that runs through the middle of the town. The ford is the crossing of the river Ouse. The prefix 'Stony' refers to the stones on the bed of the ford, differentiating the town from nearby Fenny Stratford.

There has been a market in Stony Stratford since 1194 (by charter of King Richard I).

Stony Stratford was the location where, in 1290, an Eleanor cross was built in memory of the recently deceased Eleanor of Castile. The cross was destroyed during the English Civil War.

The Rose and Crown Inn at Stony Stratford was reputedly the last place where King Edward V and his younger brother Richard of Shrewsbury, 1st Duke of York were seen alive in public. It was here in 1483 that his uncle Richard, Duke of Gloucester met them to become their legal guardian before taking them to the London to become the "Princes in the Tower".

The town has twice become almost completely consumed by fire, the first time in 1736 and the second in 1742. The only building to escape the second fire was the tower of the chapel of ease1 of St Mary Magdalen.

In the stage coach era, Stony Stratford was a major resting place and exchange point with the east/west route. In the early 1800s, as much as 250 coaches a day stopped here. That traffic came to an abrupt end in 1838 when the London - Birmingham Railway (now the West Coast Main Line) was opened at Wolverton.

The common phrase a cock and bull story originates here. Two pubs in the centre of town, The Cock and The Bull were originally coaching inns on the main London to Chester and North Wales turnpike. Travellers gossip and rumour that was exchanged between the two, was renowned for being far-fetched and fanciful.

Today Stony Stratford is a busy market town on the periphery of Milton Keynes, and is considered by many to be quite picturesque.


Note 1: Stony Stratford has never been an ecclesiastical parish. Watling Street (as the High Street) separates the parishes of Wolverton to the east and Calverton. Consequently, the eastern half of Stony lay in Wolverton parish and the western in Calverton. As Stony grew in size and importance, Wolverton and Calverton built chapels of ease in the town: only the latter survives. Stony Stratford exists as a civil parish with its own Town Council.

Template:River Great Ouseno:Stony Stratford


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