Long Eaton is a town in the Erewash district of Derbyshire, England, just north of the River Trent about 7 miles (11 km) south-west of Nottingham and some 8.5 miles (13.7 km) south-east of Derby. The population was 37,760 at the 2011 census. Since 1 April 1974, Long Eaton has been part of Erewash borough, after the dissolution of the Long Eaton Urban District Council.
Market Place, Long Eaton
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Long Eaton is referred to as Aitone, in the Domesday Book. Several meanings are associated with the name, for example "farm between streams" or "low-lying land". This farming settlement grew up close to the lowest bridging point of the River Erewash.
The "Great Fire of Long Eaton" ripped through 14 houses and several other buildings in the market place in 1694.
The village remained a constant size until the coming of the Midland Counties Railway in 1839 and the Erewash Valley Line in 1844, which brought links that encouraged growth. Two industries came to employ many people in the growing town: lace-making and railway wagon manufacturing. A large railway yard at Toton Sidings grew up just north of the town.
By 1900 the town had grown to have a population of over 10,000. It had expanded with the construction of many new houses, business premises and factories throughout the Victorian period. In 1921 Long Eaton's boundaries were extended bringing Wilsthorpe and parts of both Sandiacre and Sawley into the town.
A notable building in the town is the Palladian Long Eaton Hall. This was originally a private residence, but is now occupied by the borough council, and is attached to the Long Eaton Town Hall complex, which opened in 1991.
The Parish Church of St Laurence stands to the east of the Market Place. Local tradition dates parts of the church to the 11th century, possibly built under Viking King of Denmark Cnut. Whilst some attribute the oldest parts of the church as having been erected after the Norman Conquest, possibly into the 12th century. It was originally a daughter church of All Saints, Sawley, but gained its independence in the 19th century.
There are several fine examples of industrial architecture in Long Eaton. Most are connected with the town's development as a lace-making centre. By 1907, the town housed almost 1,400 lace machines and the industry employed over 4,000 people (a quarter of the population). One of the largest lace-making mills, Harrington Mill, was built in 1885. It took one and a quarter million bricks to build the 167-metre long factory and it has 224 cast-iron windows down one side. Harrington Mill is a traditional, four-storey, red lace mill, built by a consortium of lace manufacturers. The turrets on the sides of the building house the original staircases.
Above the shops on High Street and the Market Place show large parts of the centre made of Victorian and early twentieth century architecture. The New Central Building is an example of late Victorian architecture.
In general, Long Eaton's main shopping streets have retained more character than those of most towns of its size.
The High Street and Market Place were pedestrianised during the 1990s and in 2010 work to enhance and improve the layout and paving of Long Eaton town centre was completed.
The main road through the town forms part of the A6005 and junction 25 of the M1 motorway is on its north-western border. The area round the traffic island in the town centre is called The Green by locals.
Long Eaton is located in Derbyshire, forming part of the border with Nottinghamshire and very close to Leicestershire. The town is covered by the Nottingham post town and has a Nottingham telephone area code (0115). It is acceptable to use the county of Derbyshire in postal addresses for Long Eaton if the postcode is used.
The Local Government Commission for England (1958–1967) recommended that Long Eaton become part of an enlarged Nottingham City Council. Earlier, the original draft of the Local Government Act 1972 had proposed moving Long Eaton into Nottinghamshire. The Redcliffe-Maud Report proposals of 1969 also recommended the county move, but the incoming Conservative administration rejected the proposal. This issue has rumbled on over many years.
Long Eaton has two state secondary schools, The Long Eaton School and Wilsthorpe Community School, and several primary schools, including Brooklands, St Lawrence, Dovedale, Sawley, Harrington, English Martyrs, Longmoor and Grange. It also contains the public school Trent College, the private Elms School for ages 3–11, and a special needs school: Stanton Vale.
Long Eaton School was split into two separate sites, a Lower for years 7, 8 and 9, and an Upper for years 10, 11 and sixth form. The Lower School building, opened in 1965, was demolished in 2006, when a new school was built next door on the same grounds. Both Upper and Lower are now in one building, which was opened by Gordon Brown as Chancellor of the Exchequer. It has gained specialist status in science, become an eco school with an eco club, and recently gained academy relations. There is now a research-grade telescope built on school grounds, where regular stargazing sessions are open to the public. It has partnership and student-exchange relations with Spanish, French, Italian and Chinese schools abroad. The school was rebuilt in 2006.
In 2005 Wilsthorpe School gained specialist status in business and enterprise. In 2018, the re-built the school. Both Wilsthorpe and Long Eaton schools have an OFSTED rating of "good".
Long Eaton also has a Long Eaton Silver Prize brass band, one of only two still functioning in Erewash. It was formed in 1906 after severing from a local temperance society. At its height it reached the Brass Band Second Section. The original club building in Sailsbury Street closed in early 2015, but the band itself plays on.
In 2006, its centenary year, the band won the Midland Area Regional Championships, its first contest win since 1966. This secured promotion back to the Second Section and an invitation to the National Championships of Great Britain. The band also won this contest, in what were its best contest results since 1927.
Long Eaton Speedway raced at the Long Eaton Stadium on Station Road. The first meeting was held on 18 May 1929. The Long Eaton Invaders became National Speedway Champions in 1984. However, the speedway stadium closed in 1997. Its area now holds a new estate of houses and flats to let and buy, and in part a playing field for Grange Primary School.
Long Eaton United F.C. plays in the Midland Football League, as founder members in 2014. The club was formed in 1956 but records show football prominent in the town for many years before. The Football Club has many junior sides and gained FA Charter Standard Community Club status in 2013. It also has a ladies' team competing in the East Midlands Womens Football League
The main park is West Park which has a café and neighbours West Park Leisure Centre. Long Eaton holds an annual "Chestnut Fair" in November.
In a tradition which started in 1931, the town hosts an annual Carnival each year – currently on the third Saturday in June. The event commences with a parade of floats, decorated vehicles and walkers in fancy dress, which circulates round the town. It continues in the afternoon and evening with a range of entertainment, stalls and a funfair on the Carnival showground on West Park.
- Albert Ball VC (1896–1917), fighter pilot, attended Trent College, Long Eaton, in 1911–1913.
- Garry Birtles (born 1956), professional footballer, joined Nottingham Forest FC from Long Eaton United and won two European Cups.
- Mark Draper (born 1970), professional footballer
- Georgia Groome (born 1992), actress
- Paula Christine Hammond MBE, JP (1944–2017), businesswoman
- Ernest Terah Hooley (1859-1947), business financier, four-times bankrupt, died in reduced circumstances at Long Eaton.
- Geoff Hoon (born 1953), Labour Party politician (Defence Secretary 1999–2006, Leader of House of Commons 2006–2007, Gov't Chief Whip 2008) attended Brooklands School.
- Douglas Houghton, Baron Houghton of Sowerby (1898–1996), Labour politician, last surviving cabinet member born in the 19th century and serving in the First World War
- Saira Khan (born 1970), TV presenter
- Laura Knight (1877–1970), DBE, impressionist painter
- Eric Malpass (1910–1996), novelist
- Lewis McGugan (born 1988), professional footballer
- Dougie Squires OBE (born 1932), choreographer
- John Walters (1939–2001), radio broadcaster and musician
- Dan Wheeldon (born 1989), first-class cricketer
- "Town population 2011". Retrieved 27 March 2016.
- "The Long Eaton & Sawley Archive". Long-eaton.com.
- Bremer, Jürgen (2010). "Long Eaton". Langen im Herzen Europas [Langen in the heart of Europe] (in German, English, French, Spanish, and Turkish). Langen (Hessen): Jürgen Bremer in collaboration with municipal authority of Langen and Langener Stadtinitiative for history and culture. pp. 220–221. ISBN 978-3-00-033328-6.
- Bussey, Linda (1993). Photographers Britain - Derbyshire. Alan Sutton Publishing Ltd. ISBN 0-7509-0157-8.
- "Spirit Of Enterprise Lives On At Mill". This is Derbyshire. 21 October 2008. Archived from the original on 14 September 2012.
- Nottingham & Long Eaton Speedway. Philip Dalling. ISBN 978-0-7524-4163-4
- "Speedway in Derbyshire". Bygonederbyshire.co.uk. 5 September 2012.
- Mark Draper at Sporting Heroes. Retrieved June 2007.
- Georgia Groome Internet Movie Database entry.
- "Death of Mr. E. T. Hooley". The Times. 13 February 1947. p. 2.
- Obituary, The Independent, accessed 1 August 2012.
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