Saturday, 7 August 2010


I went to Princes Risborough a few days ago. It's a small town in the Chilterns named for its association with the Black Prince (1330-1376). He owned the Manor here; the remains of some buildings are now buried beneath a car park near the parish church. The two shopping streets
are almost all individual shops in a mix of original small buildings and new builds in a similar style. The photo was taken in December about 30 years ago - you can see the Christmas trees already in the holders on the walls. There are just two small branches of national supermarkets at each end of the town.

There's a small brick Market House with open arches on the ground floor; the upper storey was rebuilt in 1824. The overhang is slated as is the roof. A small Country Market is held here

every Thursday (except in the winter) and it was formerly known as the WI market. It sells jams, marmalades and chutneys, plants, homegrown fruit and veg and all kinds of home-made goodies. Various knitted items and hand made cards are also sold.

In the centre of one side of the ground floor is the Parish War Memorial. A large plaque says the market house was restored and a new clock erected in memory of the 64 men of the parish who died in World War 1.

The smaller World War 2 plaque below has 17 names and a further plaque lies horizontally below but was covered by 7 wooden crosses from Armistice Day and I couldn't count how many names were there. On the left hand side, under Lest We Forget, there is a brass plaque in memory of a soldier who was killed in Afghanistan in 2009. At the other end of the town, outside the library is a brick built memorial to a US bomber pilot who died in November 1943 after steering his crippled bomber away from the town.

Two people of note with a connection to Princes Risborough are Sir Peter Lely who served as Painter to both Charles I and Charles II (painting buxom ladies) and managed to serve Oliver Cromwell, too; Amy Johnson, the first female pilot to fly solo from Britain to Australia in 1930, reputedly lived in the town for a while. She drowned in 1941 in mysterious circumstances while ferrying aircraft.

A pleasant place to visit.

1 comment:

Kath said...

Hi Silve, this was a nice post, as you know I work in Risborough (not for much longer) and it was interesting to read some history.