19 February 2010

Where, What & Wem

In 1643, during the English Civil War, 40 Roundheads successfully defended the town of Wem from as many as 5,000 Cavaliers, not the last time that a small number of parliamentarians screwed a much greater quantity of the populace. Wem was severely damaged by fire in 1677, and doesn't look like it's ever quite recovered. Its faded feel is pleasant though, and there are plenty of architectural details to observe, given the wide range of building materials used - principally red sandstone, brick and timber. Wem is definitely a town that rewards those who habitually look above often ugly modern shop fronts. It's a shame that more Victorian display windows, such as the round cornered one in the high street here, aren't preserved in our towns.


Wem was home to the essayist William Hazlitt but is probably most famous for its annual Sweet Pea Show, which celebrates the town's connection with Lathyrus odoratus through Henry Eckford, who in the nineteenth century developed over an hundred hybrids of the plant.


abijsmith said...

Is this the one that you and Andy spotted?

YMGW said...

No, that was on the A49 when on the way up to Crewe.