Main Births etc
Flag of Cambridgeshire Coat of arms of Cambridgeshire County Council
Flag Coat of arms
Motto: "CORDE UNO SAPIENTES SIMUS" ("With one heart let us be men and women of understanding")
Cambridgeshire within England
Cambridgeshire shown within England
Coordinates: 52°20′N 0°0′W / 52.333, 0Coordinates: 52°20′N 0°0′W / 52.333, 0
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Constituent country England
Region East
Established 1 April 1974
Established by Local Government Act 1972
Preceded by Cambridgeshire and Isle of Ely
Huntingdon and Peterborough
Origin Ancient
Ceremonial county
Lord Lieutenant Hugh Duberly
High Sheriff Aubrey James Francis Buxton
Area 3,389 km2 (1,309 sq mi)
 – Ranked 15th of 48
Population (2006 est.) 806,700
 – Ranked 28th of 48
Density 238 /km2 (620 /sq mi)
Ethnicity 94.6% White
2.6% S.Asian
Non-metropolitan county
County council Cambridgeshire County Council
Executive Conservative
Admin HQ Cambridge
Area 3,046 km2 (1,200 sq mi)
 – Ranked 15th of 27
Population 589,600
 – Ranked 20th of 27
Density 193 /km2 (500 /sq mi)
ISO 3166-2 GB-CAM
ONS code 12
GSS code E10000003
Unitary authorities
Councils Peterborough City Council
Cambridgeshire Ceremonial Numbered.png
Districts of Cambridgeshire
Unitary County council area
  1. City of Cambridge
  2. South Cambridgeshire
  3. Huntingdonshire
  4. Fenland
  5. East Cambridgeshire
  6. City of Peterborough
Members of Parliament List of MPs
Police Cambridgeshire Constabulary
Time zone GMT (UTC0)
– Summer (DST) BST (UTC+1)

Cambridgeshire ( /ˈkmbrɪʃər/ or /ˈkmbrɪʃɪər/; also known, archaically, as the County of Cambridge; abbreviated Cambs.) is a county in England, bordering Lincolnshire to the north, Norfolk to the north-east, Suffolk to the east, Essex and Hertfordshire to the south, and Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire to the west. The city of Cambridge is the county town. Modern Cambridgeshire was formed on 1 April 1974 as an amalgamation of the counties of Cambridgeshire and Isle of Ely and Huntingdon and Peterborough, which had been created on 1 April 1965 from the historic counties of Cambridgeshire, Huntingdonshire, the Isle of Ely and the Soke of Peterborough. It contains most of the region known as Silicon Fen. Cambridgeshire is twinned with Kreis Viersen in Germany.


Cambridgeshire is noted as the site of Flag Fen in Fengate, one of the earliest-known Neolithic permanent settlements in the United Kingdom, compared in importance to Balbridie in Aberdeen, Scotland. A great quantity of archaeological finds from the Stone Age, the Bronze Age and the Iron Age were made in East Cambridgeshire. Most items were found in Isleham.

Cambridgeshire was recorded in the Domesday Book as "Grantbridgeshire" (or rather Grentebrigescire) (related to the river Granta).

Covering a large part of East Anglia, Cambridgeshire today is the result of several local government unifications. In 1888 when county councils were introduced, separate councils were set up, following the traditional division of Cambridgeshire, for

  • the area in the south around Cambridge, and
  • the liberty of the Isle of Ely.

In 1965, these two administrative counties were merged to form Cambridgeshire and the Isle of Ely.[1] Under the Local Government Act 1972 this merged with the county to the west, Huntingdon and Peterborough. (The latter had been organised in 1965 by the merger of Huntingdonshire with the Soke of Peterborough – previously a part of Northamptonshire which had its own county council). The resulting county was called simply Cambridgeshire.[2]

Since 1998, the City of Peterborough has been a separately administered area, as a unitary authority. It is associated with Cambridgeshire for ceremonial purposes such as Lieutenancy, and functions such as policing and the fire service.[3]

In 2002, the conservation charity Plantlife unofficially designated Cambridgeshire's county flower as the Pasqueflower.

The Cambridgeshire Regiment (or Fen Tigers), the county-based army unit, fought in the Boer War of South Africa, the First World War and Second World War.

Due to the county's flat terrain and proximity to the continent, during the Second World War the military built many airfields here for RAF Bomber Command, RAF Fighter Command, and the allied USAAF. In recognition of this collaboration, the Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial is located in Madingley. It is the only WWII burial ground in England for American servicemen who died during that event.

Most English counties have nicknames for their people, such as a "Tyke" from Yorkshire and a "Yellowbelly" from Lincolnshire. The traditional nicknames for people from Cambridgeshire are "Cambridgeshire Camel" or "Cambridgeshire Crane", referring to the wildfowl that were once abundant in the fens. The term "Fenners" was often applied to those who come from the flat country to the north of Cambridge. Since the late 20th century, this term is considered to be derogatory and has been discouraged in use.

Original historical documents relating to Cambridgeshire are held by Cambridgeshire Archives and Local Studies.


See also Geology of Cambridgeshire

Large areas of the county are extremely low-lying and Holme Fen is notable for being the UK's lowest physical point at 2.75 m (9 ft) below sea level. The highest point is in the village of Great Chishill at 146 m (480 ft) above sea level. Other prominent hills are Little Trees Hill and Wandlebury Hill in the Gog Magog Downs, Rivey Hill above Linton, Rowley's Hill and the Madingley Hills.


Cambridgeshire contains seven Parliamentary constituencies:

Constituency Member of Parliament
Cambridge   Julian Huppert
Huntingdon   Jonathan Djanogly
North East Cambridgeshire   Stephen Barclay
North West Cambridgeshire   Shailesh Vara
Peterborough   Stewart Jackson
South Cambridgeshire   Andrew Lansley
South East Cambridgeshire   James Paice


This is a chart of trend of regional gross value added of Cambridgeshire at current basic prices published (pp. 240–253) by Office for National Statistics with figures in millions of English Pounds Sterling.

Year Regional Gross Value Added[4] Agriculture[5] Industry[6] Services[7]
1995 5,896 228 1,646 4,022
2000 7,996 166 2,029 5,801
2003 10,154 207 2,195 7,752

AWG plc is based in Huntingdon. The RAF has several stations in the Huntingdon and St Ives area. RAF Waterbeach, 6 miles north of Cambridge, is a former RAF airfield, now used as an army barracks. RAF Alconbury, 3 miles north of Huntingdon, is being reorganised after a period of obsolescence following the departure of the USAF, to be the focus of RAF/USAFE intelligence operations, with activities at Upwood and Molesworth being transferred there. Most of Cambridgeshire is agricultural. Close to Cambridge is the so-called Silicon Fen area of high-technology (electronics, computing and biotechnology) companies. ARM Limited is based in Cherry Hinton.


Primary and secondary[]

Cambridgeshire has a completely comprehensive education system with 12 independent schools and over 240 state schools, not including sixth form colleges.

Some of the secondary schools act as Village Colleges, institutions unique to Cambridgeshire. For example Bottisham Village College.


Cambridgeshire is home to a number of institutes of higher education:

  • The University of Cambridge - second-oldest university in the English-speaking world, and regarded as one of the most prestigious academic institutions in the world
  • Anglia Ruskin University - has a campus located in Cambridge and a base at Fulbourn
  • The Open University - has a regional centre located in Cambridge
  • The University Centre Peterborough - operated by Anglia Ruskin University and Peterborough Regional College, located in Peterborough
  • The College of West Anglia has a campus at Milton, on the northern outskirts of Cambridge

In addition, Cambridge Regional College and Huntingdonshire Regional College both offer a limited range of higher education courses in conjunction with partner universities.



Map of the Cambridgeshire area (1904)

These are the settlements in Cambridgeshire with a town charter, city status or a population over 5,000; for a complete list of settlements see list of places in Cambridgeshire.

The town of Newmarket is surrounded on three sides by Cambridgeshire, being connected by a narrow strip of land to the rest of Suffolk.

Cambridgeshire has seen 32,869 dwellings created from 2002-2013 [8] and there are a further 35,360 planned new dwellings between now and 2023.[9]


Cambridgeshire has a maritime temperate climate which is broadly similar to the rest of the United Kingdom, though it is drier than the UK average due to its low altitude and easterly location, the prevailing southwesterly winds having already deposited moisture on higher ground further west. Average winter temperatures are cooler than the English average, due to Cambridgeshire's inland location and relative nearness to continental Europe, which results in the moderating maritime influence being less strong. Snowfall is slightly more common than in western areas, due to the relative winter coolness and easterly winds bringing occasional snow from the North Sea. In summer temperatures are average or slightly above, due to less cloud cover. It reaches 25°C on around 10 days each year, and is comparable to parts of Kent and East Anglia. Template:Cambridge weatherbox



Association Football (the biggest sport in the world) was invented in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire on what is now known as Parker's Piece in the middle of town. This is the earliest version of Association Football that has ever existed and the rules still exist today. Folklore dictates that there are 11 men on each team because when the game was invented, there were eleven trees on either side of Parker's Piece. In commemoration of the creation of Football; a statue is to be raised in the middle of the park where the game was invented. Despite this however, the "home" of football is said to be Wembley, London for two reasons. 1) It is in the capital city of England and 2) It is where England's national team play.

Cambridgeshire is the birthplace of bandy, now an IOC accepted sport.[10] According to documents from 1813 Bury Fen Bandy Club was undefeated for 100 years. A member of the club, Charles Tebbutt, wrote down the first official rules in 1882. Tebbutt was instrumental in spreading the sport to many countries.[11] Bandy Federation of England is based in Cambridgeshire.[1]

Contemporary Art[]

Cambridge is home to the Kettle's Yard gallery and the artist run Aid and Abet project Space. Nine miles west of Cambridge next to the village of Bourn is Wysing Arts Centre.[12]

Places of interest[]

AP Icon.PNG Abbey/Priory/Cathedral
Accessible open space Accessible open space
Themepark uk icon.JPG Amusement/Theme Park
CL icon.PNG Castle
Country Park Country Park
EH icon.png English Heritage
FC icon.png Forestry Commission
Heritage railway Heritage railway
Historic house Historic House
Museum (free)
Museums (free/not free)
National Trust National Trust
Zoo icon.JPG Zoo
  • Anglesey Abbey National TrustAP Icon.svg
  • Brampton Wood
  • Buckden Towers Historic house
  • Cambridge American Cemetery and Memorial
  • Cambridge University Museum of Zoology
  • Castor Hanglands NNR
  • Denny Abbey AP Icon.svg
  • Devil's Dyke
  • Down Field Windmill
  • Duxford Chapel English Heritage
  • Duxford Airfield
  • Elton Hall Historic house
  • Ely Cathedral AP Icon.svg
  • Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge
  • Flag Fen
  • Fowlmere RSPB reserve
  • Gamsey Wood Nature Reserve
  • Gog Magog Downs
  • Grafham Water Nature Reserve
  • Great Gransden Post Mill
  • Hereward Way
  • Hinchingbrooke House Historic house
  • Houghton Mill National Trust
  • Icknield Way
  • Imperial War Museum Duxford Museum paid admission
  • Kettle's Yard
  • Kimbolton Castle Historic house
  • Kings College, Cambridge
  • Lattersey Nature Reserve
  • Lode Watermill National Trust
  • Nene Park Country Park
  • Nene Valley Railway Heritage railway
  • Nene Way
  • New Bedford River
  • Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum
  • Old Bedford River
  • Ouse Valley Way
  • Ouse Washes
  • Parker's Piece, Cambridge, birthplace of modern football
  • Paxton Pits Nature Reserve
  • Peckover House & Garden National Trust
  • Peterborough Cathedral AP Icon.svg
  • Prickwillow Drainage Engine Museum Museum paid admission
  • Ramsey Abbey National Trust
  • River Cam
  • River Great Ouse
  • Round Church, Cambridge
  • RSPB Nene Washes
  • RSPB Ouse Washes
  • Stretham Old Engine Museum paid admission
  • Three Shires Bridleway
  • University of Cambridge Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
  • Wandlebury Country Park Country Park
  • Wicken Fen National Trust
  • Wimpole Hall National Trust
  • Wisbech and March Bramley Line Heritage railway
  • WWT Welney
  • Wysing Arts Centre

Famous people from Cambridgeshire[]

As well as those born in the county there are many notable people from, or associated with, Cambridgeshire who moved there, particularly due to the presence of Cambridge University.

Cambridgeshire lays claim to Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell, Prime Minister John Major, businessmen Henry Royce and Peter Boizot, social reformers Octavia Hill and Thomas Clarkson, and economist John Maynard Keynes. Scientists include Brian J. Ford and Stephen Hawking, and Nobel laureate Harold Kroto. Literary figures who hail from Cambridgeshire include John Clare, Samuel Pepys, Lucy M. Boston, Jeffrey Archer, Douglas Adams, and Olaudah Equiano.

In entertainment, cartoonist Ronald Searle, comedian Rory McGrath, television presenter Sarah Cawood, and radio sports presenter Adrian Durham are all from Cambridgeshire. Paul Nicholas, Richard Attenborough, Jeremy Irvine and Warwick Davis are all associated with film, while musicians include Andrew Eldritch, lead singer of The Sisters of Mercy; Andy Bell, lead singer for Erasure; David Gilmour, Roger Waters, Bob Klose and Roger Keith "Syd" Barrett of Pink Floyd; Don Airey, keyboardist in the rock band Deep Purple; trombonist Don Lusher; Keith Palmer, of dance music band The Prodigy; singer Aston Merrygold of JLS; the members of Britain's Got Talent Popera band The Arrangement and Matt Bellamy. Athletes Joe Bugner, Sir Jack Hobbs, Louis Smith and Marty Scurll are also from the county. Richard Garriott, and Hereward the Wake are all from Cambridgeshire.

See also[]

  • List of Lord Lieutenants of Cambridgeshire
  • List of High sheriffs of Cambridgeshire
  • Custos Rotulorum of Cambridgeshire - Keepers of the Rolls for Cambridgeshire
  • Cambridgeshire (UK Parliament constituency) - Historical list of MPs for Cambridgeshire constituency
  • Cambridgeshire Archives and Local Studies
  • Cambridgeshire local elections


  1. ^ The Cambridgeshire and Isle of Ely Order 1964 (SI 1964/366), see Local Government Commission for England (1958 - 1967), Report and Proposals for the East Midlands General Review Area (Report No.3), 31 July 1961 and Report and Proposals for the Lincolnshire and East Anglia General Review Area (Report No.9), 7 May 1965
  2. ^ The English Non-metropolitan Districts (Definition) Order 1972 (SI 1972/2039) Part 5: County of Cambridgeshire
  3. ^ The Cambridgeshire (City of Peterborough) (Structural, Boundary and Electoral Changes) Order 1996 (SI 1996/1878), see Local Government Commission for England (1992), Final Recommendations for the Future Local Government of Cambridgeshire, October 1994 and Final Recommendations on the Future Local Government of Basildon & Thurrock, Blackburn & Blackpool, Broxtowe, Gedling & Rushcliffe, Dartford & Gravesham, Gillingham & Rochester upon Medway, Exeter, Gloucester, Halton & Warrington, Huntingdonshire & Peterborough, Northampton, Norwich, Spelthorne and the Wrekin, December 1995
  4. ^ Components may not sum to totals due to rounding
  5. ^ includes hunting and forestry
  6. ^ includes energy and construction
  7. ^ includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured
  8. ^ Housing Development in Cambridgeshire 2013
  9. ^ Dwelling Commitments in Cambridgeshire
  10. ^ "Federation of International Bandy-Olympic". 12 August 2004. Retrieved 25 September 2010. 
  11. ^ "Cambridgeshire - History - A handy Bandy guide". BBC. 21 February 2006. Retrieved 25 September 2010. 
  12. ^ "cultunet". 3 December 2012. Retrieved 3 February 2013. 

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