Denbigh, Milton Keynes

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Denbigh is a district in Milton Keynes, ceremonial Buckinghamshire, England, to the north of Fenny Stratford and on the eastern side of the West Coast Main Line and Bletchley proper. It is in the civil parish of Bletchley and Fenny Stratford and is generally regarded as part of Bletchley. The A5 forms its eastern and northern boundary; parts of Bletcham Way and Saxon St form its southern boundary. The overall district has five sub districts, divided by Watling St/Denbigh Rd, the 'uptick' of Bletcham Way and Grafton Street, and Saxon Street northbound. The district names are planning designations that have persisted without ever being changed to the style "North Denbigh" etc. as is the norm elsewhere in Britain.

These lands to the east of Watling Street were originally in the manor of Simpson.[1]

Denbigh North[edit]

Main article: stadium mk
The East Stand of the 30,000 seater Stadium mk

This district, next to the junction of the A5 with the A421, includes the 22,000 all-seater stadium:mk for Milton Keynes Dons F.C. as well as an hotel and retail outlets.

The football stadium opened in July 2007 and was ready for the start of the 2007/08 season. An indoor basketball arena for the then Milton Keynes Lions basketball team was planned as part of the stadium complex but as of mid-2014 has yet to materialise.

The major retailers are Asda Walmart and IKEA superstores, with smaller shops in the MK1 Retail Park. The superstores were open for business by the end of 2005. The Asda Walmart is the largest store operated by Walmart in Europe at 110,000 square feet (10,000 m2)[citation needed]. Marks and Spencers, BHS, Topman, Topshop, H&M, New Look, Next and River Island opened sites in the MK1 Shopping Park. The latter was developed adjacent to Stadium:mk by InterMK and The Crown Estate.[2] InterMK is owened by Pete Winkelman, chairman of the MK Dons.[2]

The development continues in 2014, with the creation of MK1 Leisure Park which is planned to have an Odeon IMAX Cinema, Nandos, Bella Italia, TGI Fridays, Prezzo and Frankie and Benny's.[3]

The Hotel is a DoubleTree by Hilton Worldwide, part of the stadium complex.

The development is on the former site of 'Denbigh Sports Ground' and 'Denbigh North Leisure', an entertainment complex which was home to the Sanctuary Music Arena.

Denbigh East[edit]

Denbigh East is an employment area, best known as the home of Marshall Amplification. It is on the east side of Watling Street.

Denbigh West[edit]

Denbigh West is another employment area.

Mount Farm[edit]

This district is an industrial/employment area. The Milton Keynes central sorting office is here, with the post-code MK1 1AA. Most internet mapping sites assume that this means that it is the centre of Milton Keynes and mark it according. It is actually about three miles south of Central Milton Keynes (which has the MK9 postcode).

Granby[edit]

This is a small area, just north of the stadium. It is mainly industrial, but includes a mosque and a small, isolated, council housing block (that is planned for demolition in the expansion plans for Milton Keynes).

The district takes its name from the original 'Marquis of Granby" inn nearby, as described next.

Denbigh Hall[edit]

The modern industrial district called Denbigh Hall is in West Bletchley rather than in Denbigh, but is mentioned here because its history gives rise to the name Denbigh. A local heritage map shows that it lies on the site of 'Denbigh Farm'[4]

The original Denbigh Hall was an inn on Watling Street, dating from 1710.[4] Family recollections say that it had previously been known as 'the Marquis of Granby' but that it had changed its name in the 18th century when the sixth Earl of Denbigh stopped there overnight and was made so comfortable that he declared it his half-way house to London.[5][6] The inn no longer exists; its site is shown on the 1840 Ordnance Survey as just north of the bridge 158 where the West Coast Main Line crosses Watling Street.[7] Interestingly, same map shows a large private house, 'Denbigh Hall', to the south-east of the inn – its site is approximately at the junction of Whaddon Way with Melrose Avenue.

Network Rail continues to use this name (Denbigh Hall) for its marshalling yards north of Bletchley railway station, near the site of the inn. The West Coast Main Line bridge (number 158) over Watling Street near here bears a plaque that explains the first phase of the London and Birmingham Railway line terminated here, at Denbigh Hall station. At this point, passengers transferred to stage coaches for onward transfer by road to Birmingham.[8]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Historic towns project: Bletchley and Fenny Stratford – English Heritage 2009
  2. ^ a b Milton Keynes £25m complex to be funded by Crown Estate
  3. ^ Crook, Charles. "MK1 Leisure Park development secures Crown funding". Citiblog MK. 
  4. ^ a b "Milton Keynes Heritage" (map) - English Partnerships 2004
  5. ^ The North American review (1821) Forty-five miles from London on the Watling Street road, where it is spanned by the bridge carrying the main line of the London, Midland and Scottish Railway to the North, is a solitary little inn bearing the name of Denbigh Hall. How different are modern conditions from those prevailing when my old great-great-grandfather, the sixth Earl of Denbigh, who died in 1800, used to rumble slowly and uncomfortably along this road to London in his ponderous coach ! One day a wheel came off in the mud near this inn, then known as the "Marquis of Granby ", and, putting up there for the night, he was made so comfortable that he forthwith appointed it his half-way house to London, and the name was changed to its present one. (Archive.ORG)
  6. ^ 'The Holyhead Road; the mail-coach road to Dublin' Harper, Charles G 1902
    THE STORY OF "DENBIGH HALL" 171
    Another contemporary says : " The building called ' Denbigh Hall,' respecting which the reader may have formed the same conception as ourselves, and imagined it to be the august mansion of some illustrious grandee, is nothing but a miserable hostelry of the lowest order, a paltry public-house, or 'Tom and Jerry shop,' as we heard an indignant fellow-traveller contemptuously style it, which has taken the liberty of assuming this magnificent appellation." Tradition described how this house, once called the " Marquis of Granby," had been resorted to by the Earl of Denbigh on one occasion when his carriage had broken down, and that he stayed the night under its roof, and was so grateful for the attentions of the host that he left some property to that fortunate man, who thereupon changed the name of his sign to the "Denbigh Hall." This, at any rate, was the story told when the London and Birmingham Railway was first opened. There were those who looked upon it as a myth invented for the amusement of travellers, and perhaps those sceptics were right, but let others who are not unwilling to believe the story, hug the apt reflection that so unusual a sign must have had an unusual origin ; and, so much being granted, let them go a little further and accept the legend as it is told. The little inn still stands by the wayside. (Archive.ORG)
  7. ^ http://www.british-history.ac.uk/mapsheet.aspx?compid=55108&sheetid=928&zm=1&x=285&y=217&ox=1220&oy=1735 Ordnance Survey 1:10,560 - Epoch 1 > England - Buckinghamshire > 015] "British History Online" - BritishHistory.ac.uk
  8. ^ 'A SHORT HISTORY OF THE L & N. -W. RAILWAY AT RUGBY', Rugby Advertiser, 26 December 1908,
    9 April 1838
    The line from London to Denbigh Hall was opened to the public. -(Denbigh Hall is a little hamlet about two miles north of Bletchley station, and was no doubt selected for a temporary terminus as the Holyhead coach Road crossed the line at this spot.) Immense crowds of people assembled along the newly opened portion of the line to see the first train pass. The line between Birmingham and rugby was opened on the same day. Owing to the delay in finishing Kilsby tunnel and Roade cutting, the line between Rugby and Denbigh Hall is not completed: and the Company have therefore arranged with Messrs Horne and Chaplin, the coach proprietors, to convey passengers by road over the intervening 36 or 37 miles between the two places.

Coordinates: 52°00′24″N 0°44′08″W / 52.0066°N 0.7355°W / 52.0066; -0.7355