Flitwick

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Flitwick
SS Peter and Paul, Flitwick - geograph.org.uk - 345256.jpg
Church of St Peter and St Paul
Flitwick is located in Bedfordshire
Flitwick
Flitwick
Location within Bedfordshire
Population12,700 [1]
12,998 (2011 Census)[2]
OS grid referenceTL033350
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Region
CountryEngland
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townBEDFORD
Postcode districtMK45
Dialling code01525
PoliceBedfordshire
FireBedfordshire and Luton
AmbulanceEast of England
UK Parliament
List of places
UK
England
Bedfordshire
52°00′14″N 0°29′48″W / 52.00384°N 0.49656°W / 52.00384; -0.49656Coordinates: 52°00′14″N 0°29′48″W / 52.00384°N 0.49656°W / 52.00384; -0.49656

Flitwick (/ˈflɪtɪk/), is a town and civil parish in Bedfordshire, England. It is mentioned[3] in the Domesday Book as "a hamlet on the River Flitt". The spelling Flytwyk appears in 1381.[4]

The nearby River Flit runs through Flitwick Moor, a nature reserve and a Site of Special Scientific Interest.[5]

Location[edit]

It is broadly equidistant between Bedford 10 mi (16 km) and Luton 10 mi (16 km). It shares many services with the neighbouring town of Ampthill, which lies just to the north. The boundary between the two towns is a watercourse called the Running Waters, which is now the route of the A507.

Nearby settlements[edit]

Ampthill, Maulden, Clophill, Flitton, Greenfield, Steppingley, Pulloxhill, Westoning, Harlington, Barton le Clay, Tingrith, Eversholt, Millbrook

Shopping[edit]

Flitwick has seen a large expansion in its population in recent years, but its retail facilities have not kept up with this growth. The local council has drawn up plans to redevelop the town centre to improve its retail offering [1]. At present, it has a Tesco, a Barclays bank, a Co-op, which provides a secondary food source to the community and many smaller shops and estate agents, many in close proximity to the railway station. There is an open-air market every Friday selling local produce, which is set up on the car park of the village hall. The open-air market has a variety of stalls such as fishmongers, baker, haberdashery, and fruit and vegetables.

Flitwick market currently experiencing new stalls, including butcher and Thai food.

Leisure[edit]

The Blackbirds public house

There is a sports centre with a 25-metre swimming pool with kids pool attached. The leisure centre also has a gym, squash courts with leagues and gymnasium. A new leisure centre was built for opening in early March 2015. The existing leisure site is earmarked by Central Beds Council for downsizing and over 55 assisted living accommodation.

Flitwick Town Council own and operate from The Rufus Centre on the outskirts of the town on Steppingley Road. The Centre is also a busy conference and special event venue with office space to lease.

Flitwick has four public houses; the Crown, the Swan, the Bumble Bee and the Blackbirds. The Blackbirds is a 17th-century building with a large beer garden and children's play area. The pub formerly known as the Wheatsheaf re-opened as an Indian restaurant called the Indian Lodge. A membership-operated social club, The Flitwick Club, is situated on The High Street, opposite the Drivestyle yard.

Center Parcs Woburn Forest opened in July 2014 on the outskirts of Flitwick at Warren Wood.

Haunted Wood During the Covid-19 a haunted wood was created in Flitwick woods. After the first one was stolen, a 3 day event called Spookfest where installed over period of 4 weeks, provided entertainment for all the family on there daily walk.

Transport[edit]

Flitwick Railway Station in 1991

Road[edit]

Flitwick is 5 miles (8 km) from junction 12 of the M1 motorway.

Bus[edit]

The main bus services are as follows:

42 (Grant Palmer) provides an hourly daytime service Mondays to Saturdays providing a connection to: Westoning, Harlington, Toddington, Ampthill, Houghton Conquest, and Bedford. Mondays to Saturdays – no Sunday service.

42 (Stagecoach) provides an hourly daytime service Mondays to Saturdays to Ampthill, Kempston and Bedford. Mondays to Saturdays – no Sunday service.

44 (Grant Palmer) Bedford via A6 to Bedford, Wilstead, Flitwick, Silsoe (Monday - Friday Only)

200 (Grant Palmer) provides a two hourly service to Ampthill, Shefford, Clifton and Biggleswade. Mondays to Fridays only.

34 (Grant Palmer) Milton Keynes

Rail[edit]

Flitwick has a station on the Thameslink line (First Capital Connect took over the franchise on 1 April 2006, taken over again on 14 September 2014 by Govia Thameslink Railway). Trains go north to Bedford and south to Luton, St Albans, London, Gatwick Airport, Three Bridges, East Grinstead and Brighton making it a popular place to live for commuters.

Schools[edit]

Flitwick has three lower schools (Kingsmoor, Templefield and Flitwick Lower School), a middle school (Woodland Middle School Academy). The old Flitwick School has been refurbished from its earlier state of neglect, and now serves as a further community centre, youth club and toddler group. Redborne Upper School is approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) away from Flitwick Railway Station, just on the Ampthill side of the Running Waters.[6]

Sport[edit]

It has four football teams: Flitwick Town, who play in the Bedfordshire County League Premier Division, Flitwick Ladies, who play in the Bedfordshire & Hertfordshire Women's First Division, Flitwick Eagles, and Dinamo Flitwick. It is also home to Flitwick Cricket Club (The Otters) which has over 50 adult playing members and 160 Colts.

Landmarks[edit]

Flitwick Manor

Flitwick is famous for its Flitwick Manor House, currently used as a hotel and restaurant.

There is also physical evidence of a Norman fortification, Flitwick Castle, locally known as "The Mount".

The mediaeval Church of St Peter & St Paul is the parish church, located in the town.

Notable people[edit]

  • Brian Stein, former Luton Town professional footballer, lives in Flitwick.[citation needed]
  • Adam Croft, an international best-selling writer of crime fiction.
  • Michael Crowther, prominent American wildlife conservationist and founder of the Indianapolis Prize, grew up in Flitwick, living there from age 4 until age 17. He attended Flitwick Primary School and Bedford Modern School.
  • Jesse Billington, zoologist and travel writer. Billington grew up in Flitwick and attended Bedford School from the ages of 6-18 before going to the University of Reading to read zoology, followed by a Covid-19 interrupted Master's degree in Biological Photography and Imaging at the University of Nottingham. Since then he has gone on to become a published travel writer,[7] and a food journalist.[8] On top of this he also dabbles in automotive writing, and F1 punditry.[9] His latest project is surveying the River Flit for an upcoming book.
  • Kendal Drive Clive Local celebrity. Known for creating spooky fun in and around the town. Still lives in Flitwick and often seen out and about.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Neighbourhood Statistics – Flitwick (CP) Parish". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 4 February 2008.
  2. ^ "Civil Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 8 November 2016.
  3. ^ See Bedfordshire Virtual Library's Flitwick Timeline Archived 23 November 2008 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ National Archives; Plea Rolls of the Court of Common Pleas; CP 40/483; Year 1381, 4th term; http://aalt.law.uh.edu/AALT6/R2/CP40no483/483_0207.htm; second entry, home of Richard Hake, the defendant
  5. ^ Its name is not ancient but a back-formation from Flitton. Ekwall, E. (1940) The Concise Dictionary of England Place-names; 2nd ed. Oxford:Clarendon Press; p. 174.
  6. ^ http://www.ampthill.info/page12.htm
  7. ^ "Amazon.com: An Englishman Abroad; Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands".
  8. ^ "Jesse Billington's Profile". FoodTribe. Retrieved 20 November 2019.
  9. ^ "Jesse Billington's Profile". DriveTribe. Retrieved 28 May 2020.

External links[edit]