Taunton  Somerset


In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Taunton like this:

Taunton, parl. and mun. bor., Somerset, on river Tone, 44½ miles SW. of Bristol and 163 W. of London by rail, 1249 ac., pop. 16,614; P.O., T.O., 3 Banks, 5 newspapers. Market-days, Wednesday and Saturday. Taunton, long celebrated for its woollen, and afterwards for its silk mfrs., is now mainly an agricultural town. ...

Among its numerous public buildings are the churches of St Mary Magdalen and St James, built in the reign of Henry VII., and the Wesleyan and Independent colleges. The Shire Hall is a fine new edifice. The castle, now fitted up as a museum, was occupied by Blake during the Civil War; by Monmouth, who here assumed the title of king; and by Judge Jeffreys, who here held his bloody assize. Taunton is a very ancient place, and was a favourite residence of the West Saxon kings. It returns 1 member to Parliament; it returned 2 members from the time of Edward I. until 1885.

Taunton through time

Click here for graphs and data of how Taunton Deane has changed over two centuries. For statistics for historical units named after Taunton go to Units and Statistics.

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Taunton, in Taunton Deane and Somerset | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 22nd April 2024

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