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Littlehampton

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Littlehampton is a town in the county of West Sussex on the south coast of England. It stands at the mouth of the River Arun. The local administrative authority is Arun District Council. Nearby communities include the towns of Arundel, Bognor Regis and Worthing and the villages of Lyminster and Angmering.

Littlehampton contains the grave of Katherine Parnell, better known as "Kitty O'Shea". The RNLI station was opened in 1967, having been funded by an appeal by the television programme Blue Peter. This was the first Blue Peter lifeboat.

Contents

Population

According to the 2001 census there were 50,408 Persons Resident.

Economic activity

The headquarters of the The Body Shop are located in Littlehampton.

Government

Littlehampton lies within the constituency of Bognor Regis and Littlehampton, the MP for which is Nick Gibb (Conservative).

Culture

The town paper is the Littlehampton Gazette[1] (http://www.littlehamptongazette.co.uk/).

An important annual event is the Bonfire Society parade.


History

The town began as the Anglo-Saxon village of Hampton, in the kingdom of Sussex. The name Little Hampton was given to it in the fourteenth century by sailors in order to differentiate it from the larger Southampton.

The forces of Empress Maud landed at Littlehampton when she began the civil war with King Stephen.

The manor was given by Henry V to Syon Abbey in Middlesex in whose hands it remained until the dissolution of the monasteries in the 1530s. The port was a royal dockyard of Henry VIII. The manor passed through various hands until it became part of the estate of Arundel Castle in 1610. The Duke of Norfolk continued to own much of Littlehampton until the 1930's.

In the seventeenth century Littlehampton had a population of only 100-150 people though it did have a ferry, smithy and alehouse. However from this time the community started to grow reaching 584 people by 1801. Littlehampton Redoubt was built to guard the town in the 1750's. Littlehampton used to be a resort of artists and writers, attracted by its peaceful atmosphere compared to larger towns such as Brighton. In particular Shelley and Coleridge spent a lot of time there, as well as Byron who often swam in the river.

In the 1820's Littlehampton overtook Arundel, the oldest port on the Arun as the river's main harbour. Littlehampton officially became a town in 1853, under the Littlehampton Board of Health. The motto "Progress" was chosen.

The arrival of the railway in 1863 changed the character of the town making the harbour more important and beginning the holiday trade. A cross-channel ferry was run from the port from the opening of the railway until 1882 when it was lost to Newhaven. The villages of Wick and Toddington became part of the town in 1901. By 1911 the population was 8351. In the 1930's the town was receiving 250,000 holidaymakers and day trippers every year. By 1945 the population was over 12,000, and 25,000 by 1996. The additional population was housed in the large Wickbourne and Beaumont estates, which meant the town reached all the way to Rustington.


Related Links: Charles Pelham

External links


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