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CAMBRIDGESHIRE

greater part, but here and there hardened into the condition known as “Carstone,” which has been used as an inferior building-stone. This formation is thickest in the south-west; it extends from the border by Gamlingay, Cuxton and Cottenham, and appears again in outliers at Upware, Ely and Haddenham. The Gault forms a strip of flat ground, 4 to 6 m. wide, running roughly parallel with the course of the river Cam, from Guilden Morden through Cambridge to Soham; it is a stiff blue clay 200 ft. thick in the south-west, but is thinner eastward. At the bottom of the chalk is the Chalk Marl, 10 to 20 ft. thick, with a glauconitic and phosphatic nodule-bearing layer at its base, known as the Cambridge Greensand. This bed has been largely worked for the nodules and for cement; it contains many fossils derived from the Gault below. Several outliers of Chalk Marl lie upon the Gault west of the Cam. The Chalk comprises all the main divisions of the formation, including the Totternhoe stone, Melbourn rock and Chalk rock. Much glacial boulder clay covers all the higher ground of the county; it is a stiff brownish clay with many chalk fragments of travelled rocks. Near Ely there is a remarkable mass of chalk, evidently transported by ice, resting on and surrounded by boulder clay. Plateau gravel caps some of the chalk hills, and old river gravels occur at lower levels with the bones of mammoth, rhinoceros and other extinct mammals. The low-lying Fen beds are marly silt with abundant peat beds and buried forests; at the bottom is a gravel layer of marine origin.

Industries.—The climate is as a whole healthy, the fens being so carefully drained that diseases to which dwellers in marshy districts are commonly liable are practically eliminated. The land is very fertile, and although some decrease is generally apparent in the acreage under grain crops, Cambridgeshire is one of the principal grain-producing counties in England. Nearly nine-tenths of the total area is under cultivation, and an unusually small proportion is under permanent pasture. Wheat is the chief grain crop, but large quantities of barley and oats are also grown. Among green crops potatoes occupy a large and increasing area. Dairy-farming is especially practised in the south-west, where the district of the Cam valley has long been known as the Dairies; and much butter and cheese are sent to the London markets. Sheep are pastured extensively on the higher ground, but the number of these and of cattle for the county as a whole is not large. Beans occupy a considerable acreage, and fruit-growing and market-gardening are important in many parts. There is no large manufacturing industry common to the county in general; among minor trades brewing is carried on at several places, and brick-making and lime-burning may also be mentioned.

Communications.—The principal railway serving the county is the Great Eastern, of which system numerous branch lines centre chiefly upon Cambridge, Ely and March. Cambridge is also served by branches of the Great Northern line from Hitchin, of the London & North-Western from Bletchley and Bedford, and of the Midland from Kettering. A trunk line connecting the eastern counties with the north and north-west of England runs northward from March under the joint working of the Great Northern and Great Eastern companies. The artificial waterways provide the county with an extensive system of inland navigation; and a considerable proportion of the industrial population is employed on these. In this connexion the building of boats and barges is carried on at several towns.

Population and Administration.—The area of the ancient county is 549,723 acres, with a population in 1891 of 188,961, and in 1901 of 190,682. The ancient county includes the two administrative counties of Cambridge in the south and the Isle of Ely in the north. The liberty of the Isle of Ely was formerly of the independent nature of a county palatine, but ceased to be so under acts of 1836 and 1837. Its area is 238,048 acres, and that of the administrative county of Cambridge 315,171 acres. Cambridgeshire contains seventeen hundreds. The municipal boroughs are Cambridge, the county town (pop. 38,379), in the administrative county of Cambridge, and Wisbech (9381) in the Isle of Ely. The other urban districts are—in the administrative county of Cambridge, Chesterton (9591), and in the Isle of Ely, Chatteris (4711), Ely (7713), March (7565) and Whittlesey (3909). Among other considerable towns Soham (4230) and Littleport (4181), both in the neighbourhood of Ely, may be mentioned. The town of Newmarket, which, although wholly within the administrative county of West Suffolk, is mainly in the ancient county of Cambridgeshire, is famous for its race-meetings. The county is in the south-eastern circuit, and assizes are held at Cambridge. Each administrative county has a court of quarter sessions, and the two are divided into ten petty sessional divisions. The borough of Cambridge has a separate court of quarter sessions, and this borough and Wisbech have separate commissions of the peace. The university of Cambridge exercises disciplinary jurisdiction over its members. There are 168 entire civil parishes in the two administrative counties. Cambridgeshire is almost wholly in the diocese of Ely and the archdeaconries of Ely and Sudbury, but small portions are within the dioceses of St Albans and Norwich. There are 194 ecclesiastical parishes or districts wholly or in part within the county. The parliamentary divisions are three, namely, Northern or Wisbech, Western or Chesterton, and Eastern or Newmarket, each returning one member. The county also contains the parliamentary borough of Cambridge, returning one member; and the university of Cambridge returns two members.

History.—The earliest English settlements in what is now Cambridgeshire were made about the 6th century by bands of Engles, who pushed their way up the Ouse and the Cam, and established themselves in the fen-district, where they became known as the Gyrwas, the districts corresponding to the modern counties of Huntingdonshire and Cambridgeshire being distinguished as the lands of the North Gyrwas and the South Gyrwas respectively. At this period the fen-district stretched southward as far as Cambridge, and the essential unity which it preserved is illustrated later by its inclusion under one sheriff, chosen in successive years from Cambridgeshire proper, the Isle of Ely and Huntingdonshire. In 656 numerous lands in the neighbourhood of Wisbech were included in the endowment of the abbey of Peterborough, and in the same century religious houses were established at Ely and Thorney, both of which, however, were destroyed during the Danish invasions of the 9th century. After the treaty of Wedmore the district became part of the Danelaw. On the expulsion of the Danes by Edward in the 10th century it was included in East Anglia, but in the 11th century was again overrun by the Danes, who in the course of their devastations burnt Cambridge. The first mention of the shire in the Saxon Chronicle records the valiant resistance which it opposed to the invaders in 1010 when the rest of East Anglia had taken ignominious flight. The shire-system of East Anglia was in all probability not definitely settled before the Conquest, but during the Danish occupation of the 9th century the district possessed a certain military and political organization round Cambridge, its chief town, whence probably originated the constitution and demarcation of the later shire. At the time of the Domesday Survey the county was divided as now, except that the Isle of Ely, which then formed two hundreds having their meeting-place at Witchford, is now divided into the four hundreds of Ely, Wisbech, North Witchford and South Witchford, while Cambridge formed a hundred by itself. The hundred of Flendish was then known as Flamingdike. Cambridgeshire was formerly included in the diocese of Lincoln, until, on the erection of Ely to a bishop’s see in 1109, almost the whole county was placed in that diocese. In 1291 the whole county, with the exception of parishes in the deanery of Fordham and diocese of Norwich, constituted the archdeaconry of Ely, comprising the deaneries of Ely, Wisbech, Chesterton, Cambridge, Shingay, Bourn, Barton and Camps. The Isle of Ely formerly constituted an independent franchise in which the bishops exercised quasi-palatinate rights, and offences were held to be committed against the bishop’s peace. These privileges were considerably abridged in the reign of Henry VIII., but the Isle still had separate civil officers, appointed by the bishop, chief