Leicester has an array of guided walks to choose from and it’s no surprise when you realise just how much there is to learn about the area and its colourful heritage. Each of Leicester’s suburbs where at one point or another Aylestone, Belgrave, Elvington, Humberstone and knighton were all villages in their own right, each with their own little piece of history to delve into alongside the rich heritage of the County itself.
It is thought that after their invasion of Britain in 43AD, the Romans made it to Leicestershire around 47AD and finally their firs fort in 48AD. The once Celtic settlement flourished from the trade and the facilities that the Romans provided, a great example of which are the public baths that were built near the Jewry Wall museum. Outside of Leicester’s Roman walls, suburbs began to emerge which were a sign of Leicester’s increasing prosperity. The rise of Roman Leicester however, was not to last, when the Roman Civilization began to break down and the last of the Romans left Britain, areas like Leicester began to crumble.
Leicester continued to go through many ups and downs throughout the age of the Saxons and the Middle Ages and you will find many important buildings and pieces of heritage still from those times. But it is the history of Leicester and King Richard III that features most highly in the area. The King Richard III Visitor Centre is wholly dedicated to this period in the areas history in fact. Leicester lies not only geographically in the heart of Britain but it also holds a sacred place is the countries historical heart.
The King was born but 30 miles from Leicester in 1452, in 1943 after the unexpected death of Edward IV, Richard was named Lord Protector of Edward V. Conspiracies of Edward V’s legitimacy and that he has no claim to the throne are upheld and on 6th July 1483, Richard is crowned. The Kings two Prince nephews are never to be seen again. His rule was of a mere 2 years in 1483 -1845. During this rule he led his men to battle in Bosworth, it was here that King Richard became the last King of England to die in battle which brought an end to the Plantagenet dynasty and the Wars of the Roses, leading to Henry Tudor being crowned King Henry VII. It was here in Leicester that King Richards’s body was returned and laid to rest.
The Kings claim to the throne was controversial, there were murderous stories surrounding his reputation and he had extremely bad press in English Literature, including the works of William Shakespeare himself. These factors, among many others, have made Richard III a fascinating historical figure. His history also leads way to looking at the social changes of the time, these care more clearly seen in the work of Horace Walpole and Francis Bacon where they seek to further analysis the kings reign and look at the good work that was carried out alongside the drastic legal and social changes that the country was going through at the time.
In the 20th Century the area was boosted by many educational, industrial and science based facilities that make Leicester one of the most interesting areas of Britain. The three Universities excel in their fields and they bring with them excellent collaborations with the Counties visitor attractions (such as the botanic gardens and space museums) as well as fantastic business and networking opportunities for those who choose the lie their hat in the area.
We aim to ensure that these facilities are used to the fullest and that the areas gusto in expansion and learning never ceases, so that Leicester continues to be a gem in the East Midlands Crown.