Cultural Associations

Oliver Cromwell is the most famous inhabitant of the area, and his statue is in the market place at St.Ives.

Samuel Pepys attended the same school as Cromwell – the Grammar School in Huntingdon. Pepys’s house, as it is still known, is on the edge of the meadows at Brampton.

Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown, the 18thC landscape architect, owned the Manor of Fenstanton. His fine memorial is in Fenstanton church.

The river has a continuing heritage, now recreational; the Angling Societies have long-standing trophies and records for coarse fishing; the rival Rowing clubs of St Ives and Huntingdon date to the mid 19thC; Hemingfords Regatta, begun in 1901, is the oldest village rowing and punting regatta in the country.

Bluntisham enjoys fame as one of the centres of Fen Skating where the frozen flooded meadows provide natural ‘rinks’. The rules of ’Bandy’, a form of ice hockey, were first published here by the Tebbutt family in 1882.
Lucy Boston immortalised the Manor at Hemingford Grey with her Green Knowe series of children’s books.

Folklore and agricultural traditions are evident with the Plough Monday celebrations with Molly dancing at Fenstanton. Morris dancing groups herald May Day, and many villages hold a summer Feast Week either before or after harvest.