Should Huntingdonshire embrace its links with Cromwell?

15:45 30 March 2014

Terry Caxton, with his Cromwell Country hats, outside Cromwell Museum, Huntingdon.

Terry Caxton, with his Cromwell Country hats, outside Cromwell Museum, Huntingdon.


A Huntingdonshire man is calling for the district to be re-branded as Cromwell County in an effort to boost visitors and highlight the area’s connection with the important – and controversial – historical figure.

Terry Caxton, 70, of Wilthorne, Warboys, wants to see the Welcome to Huntingdonshire signs adorned with ‘Cromwell County’ in honour of Oliver Cromwell – similar to the ‘Nelson’s County’ signs in Norfolk and ‘Shakespeare’s County’ in Warwickshire.

Mr Caxton, who last year had a number of Cromwell County mugs and hats made, thinks Huntingdonshire is missing a golden opportunity to bring visitors to the area.

“When I have been to Downham Market, I have seen the Nelson’s County signs which is something we could do in Huntingdonshire with Cromwell,” he said. “I have been in Huntingdonshire all of my life and have learnt a lot about Oliver Cromwell.

“He was a great man and was leader of this country for five years and didn’t want to be king. It’s something to be proud of. I have a lot of admiration for the person as he did what was fair for the people.

“He was born in Huntingdon, schooled in Huntingdon and came through the ranks to be a great leader. He believed in the people. As with Margaret Thatcher, he wasn’t always right but he stood for a fairer country.

“If you called Huntingdonshire Cromwell County, I am sure more people would come to the area. Huntingdonshire is missing a golden opportunity to bring in the visitors as his actions have touched most people in the world, one way or another.

“We don’t need Cambridgeshire to run the show. If the Huntingdonshire community was left in charge, we wouldn’t be worrying about the £20,000 to keep the Cromwell Museum open.”

If Huntingdonshire were to adopt the idea, it would join the ranks of Jane Austen Country in Hampshire, the Historic County Palatine of Lancashire and the Land of Prince Bishops in County Durham.

Huntingdonshire could also pay homage to John Montagu, the fourth Earl of Sandwich, who resided at Hinchingbrooke House and famously invented the sandwich.

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