The UK’s First… Britain’s Oldest Everyday MonumentsNo Comments
Ever wondered where the UK’s first roundabout or oldest pub is located? Well, wonder no more. Here’s a list of some ordinary landmarks that boast the bold title of ‘the UK’s first’. Here are Britain’s oldest everyday monuments. If you know of any other UK firsts that we haven’t mentioned here, get in touch on Twitter and let us know, we’d love to hear about them.
The UK’s First Roundabout – Letchworth Garden City (Circa 1909)
It may not look like anything spectacular at first glance. However, on closer inspection you’ll notice the quiet suburban junction joining the streets of Broadway in Letchworth Garden City is home to something remarkable. Yes, you read it correctly, this is believed to be the UK’s first roundabout. Dating back to around 1909, town architects Barry Parker and Raymond Unwin are credited with introducing the country’s first ‘gyratory traffic flow system’.
The UK’s Oldest Pub – Ye Olde Fighting Cocks, St Albans (793AD)
Okay, so it’s not as easy as you might think to conclusively backdate a pub. Many pubs in the UK claim to be the oldest in Britain. We’re saying with confidence that the UK’s oldest pub is Ye Olde Fighting Cocks in St Albans which dates back to 793 AD. There’s documentation to prove this date and it’s officially recognised by the Guinness Book of World Records. We must say, this is a hotly debated topic. Having said this, if it’s good enough for the Guinness Book of World Records, it’s good enough for us.
The UK’s First Multi-Storey Car Park – 6 Denman Street, London (1901)
The first multi-storey car park in the UK could quite possibly be the first in the world. Sitting at 6 Denman Street in Central London, the site was opened by The City & Suburban Electric Carriage Company. Boasting seven floors, 19,000 square foot and space for over 100 vehicles, the building even had a cutting edge electric elevator to help the vehicles change floors.
The UK’s First Fast Food – Tommyfield Market, Oldham (1860)
The award for first fast food in the UK goes to the nation’s favourite of fish and chips. A blue plaque at Tommyfield Market marks the very start of the fish and chip shop industry in 1860. It’s believed that by 1910 more than 25,000 fish and chip shops were open to the public. Today, this figure is estimated to have dropped to around 10,500.
The UK’s First Shopping Centre – The Royal Exchange, City of London (1571)
Many claim Brent Cross to be the UK’s first shopping centre but this was in fact the first out-of-town shopping centre. The Royal Exchange takes centre stage as the UK’s first shopping centre. Opened by Elizabeth I in 1571, the centre offers a two-storey mall with 100 different kiosks sitting above an open area where dealers bought and sold commodities.
The UK’s Oldest Football Stadium – Bramall Lane, Sheffield United (1855)
Opened in 1855 and home to Sheffield United Football Club since 1889. Bramall Lane stadium is officially named after local business owners the Bramall family. The stadium currently holds the title of oldest in the world currently still in action.
The UK’s First Railway Station – The Mount, Swansea (1807)
The UK (and the world’s) first railway station was originally named The Mount, later becoming Swansea and Mumbles. Sitting on the Oystermouth Railway, the station opened in 1807 but saw trains pulled by horses as opposed to locomotives.
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