Historic Kingston Upon Thames
Image Credit: theguardian.com/uk
The railway reached Kingston upon Thames in 1838 and two years later in 1840 The Market House was built. By 1906 the trams began running in the town. In 1935 The Guildhall was built and by 1936 the area was made a borough. This historic shopping area is known for its Tudor framed buildings, the oldest dating back to the 1500’s.
The Market Place has been home to a market for hundreds of years, it is thought it has been used as a market since 1170 when the King at the time was Henry II; the earliest record of the market taking place was the beginning of the 13th C. The Market Place was once a venue where there was lots of entertainment, such as criminals been punished in the stocks. One of the oldest stalls in the market is Webster’s Fishmongers, which has been trading in the market since 1866.
History of Kingston Upon Thames
The name originates from ‘Kinges Tun’, meaning Royal estate or farm. Kingston upon Thames is largely associated with royal blood, several Saxon Kings are thought to have been crowned here, and settlements date back to the 800’s, the Old Market Town is embedded with a rich culture.
Kingston upon Thames was the first royal borough, during the 1900’s it was known for its military aircraft centre, which specialized in warfare aircraft, many of which were designed and built here.
Kingston upon Thames was built next to the first crossing on the Thames, and by the 12th C the population had grown substantially and it became a town. The Domesday Book in 1066 cites that Kingston upon Thames had 5 watermills used to make flour; salmon fishing and wool making were also popular in the area.
Modern Day Kingston Upon Thames
Kingston upon Thames is still a beautiful location, although close to the centre it still feels as though you are escaping the city. Today it is known for its café culture, vibrant shopping scene, nightlife and its reputable university. There is a welcoming atmosphere in Kingston and its heritage is still apparent in both its culture and entertainment. There are currently plans for development in the Eden quarter of Kingston.