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  • Writer's pictureGavin Human

A stroll through Somersham #FocusFriday

Updated: Oct 27, 2023

Somersham is a historically significant village about 4 miles north of St. Ives. It is quite possible that people have lived in this area for 200,000 years and the manor has attracted Royal interest for centuries. Today, it provides residence to a population of just under 4000 so let's take a look at what they can enjoy.

(There is a map at the bottom of this page along with links to local services such as schools.)

Somersham Manor no longer exists, but there are numerous accounts of its "illustrious" owners from the past. Edward the Confessor gave the manor to the Abbey of Ely and it stayed in their possession until Elizabeth I and the Crown took ownership in the early 17th Century. Its lease and ownership was then much debated and argued and bargained for over several centuries with a Tudor Palace being erected in its place. Today, St John the Baptist church still stands, having been built around the same time that much of Ely Cathedral was built.

A more recent history to be celebrated is that of the Somersham Town Band - the only adult brass band in Huntingdonshire. First set up in 1919 by Mr William Henry Gotobed senior, the band quickly raised funds and grew to have 23 members by the end of its first year and began playing concerts (sometimes as long as 8 hours!) to raise funds. The band is still growing strong today and they now have a training band for new and young musicians. Their website is cracking source of information and you can read more by clicking here. (Image taken from their website.)


For pubs and restaurants you have the Rose and Crown and The Windmill . To go with a changing selection of ales The Rose and Crown provides regular entertainment with live events such as music and stand up, and brings popular visiting food options like wood fired pizza from "Pizza-my-Heart". Congrats to the team at the pub who placed in the Top 6 recently for Best Community Pub. Over at The Windmill, they offer a tantalising range of dishes to enjoy in their stylish surroundings. I haven't eaten there myself, but the word of mouth reviews I hear are strong!


As well as Somersham Town Football Club - go the Westenders! - there is also the Millennium Sports Facility in Somersham for football. cricket and even the drone club. The village also supports a range of organisations and social clubs from coffee mornings, to Yoga, to well-being groups. You could also take a stroll to the Paradigm Lake or Meadowlands Park.

For some peaceful time in nature, the Somersham Nature Reserve offers numerous walks and different sights of landscape and wildlife. Take a trek along the old railway line, or through the woods, or around the lake and see if you can spot any grass snakes or common lizards, or look out for the range of butterflies and maybe a kingfisher or heron on the lake. There is a great guide to the walks provided by the Cambridgeshire Walks blog which you can read by clicking here. The picture is from their blog.


A great place to stop off after your walk is the Parkhall Garden Centre, an independently run family business. Whilst you can find all the usual garden centre fare there, you also get expert advice and a wider range of unusual plants, shrubs, and trees that you might not find anywhere else. After having a stroll around, you can take a load off and have some tea and cake at Hollie's Tea Room onsite.


If you or someone you know is thinking of moving home and would like some assistance selling your current home, or finding your next one, don't hesitate to get in touch via my contact page.


Distances approximate from centre of the village.

Transport.

It is about a 15min drive to St Ives, and a 30min drive to Ely. Manea station is about 30mins drive away with trains from there taking approx 45mins to Cambridge.


Schools.

There is a primary school in the village:

The nearest secondary schools are:

Medical.

The nearest GP is 1.5 miles away:

The nearest dental surgery is 1.5 miles away:


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