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Guildford, a large town in Southern England is located on the A3 trunk road with a population of around 137,000 according to 2011 census. It is located 27 miles southwest of central London and it forms the Greater London Area’s southwestern tip. The town has been the seat of Borough of Guildford with 146,100 inhabitants recorded in 2015. According to the recent historical survey, Guildford came into existence as a result of a gap where River Wey was crossed over by the Harrow Way in the North Downs.
English Royal Mint was established in 978 AD and remained in the town until part way through the reign of William. The economy of the town boomed after being connected to a network of waterways on the building of the Wey Navigation and Basingstoke Canal. Guildford Cathedral and the University of Surrey were built in the 20th century. Guildford is considered as a robust commercial town and home to major businesses include Allianz and Sanofi, Lionhead Studios, Philips Electronics, Ericsson, Hello Games and Colgate-Palmolive. A number of leading companies including satellite manufacturers, medical and specialist gas providers are based in the Surrey Research Park.
The history of the city traced its roots back to the Anglo-Saxon period. Some Bronze Age remaining including Roman villa has been found in the western Park Barn neighborhood of the town. After the abandonment of Roman period in Britain, Anglo-Saxon settlers developed the settlement as a small town. The population of the settlement grew as an ancient trackway Harrow Way crosses the Wey River by a ford. Although there are no clear pieces of evidence, it is assumed that Guildford Castle depicts the architectural style of Norman period. The layout of the castle was designed to overawe the conquered population. The status of the castle was then changed to the royal hunting lodge and granted to Francis Carter in 1611.
The remaining chamber of Guildford Synagogue was found in the High street in 1995. It is likely to be the Western Europe’s oldest remaining synagogue, but this remains a matter of controversy. The other notable building of the town includes Guildhall, which was built in the 14th century and still stands today. The Council chamber was also added in the existing structure and front façade of the building was decorated by the projecting clock. The Borough Council constructed 18 communal air raid shelters provided first aid and sanitation services during the Second World War.
The two pubs of the town were the prime target of Irish Republican Army and they planted a bomb resulted in the death of a civilian and four off-duty soldiers. Some suspects of this case also known as Guildford Four were found guilty in 1975 and sentenced to long prison sentences. Later on, they were released after a long legal battle and denied their involvement in the bombing. The town entered into the new phase of development in the 21st century and considered as one of the most expensive places in real estate sector in the UK outside London and ranked 9th in the Britain in 2006 for the best place to live in. The town is also ranked 27th for its pleasing and safe shopping destination in the United Kingdom.
Guildford follows three-tier education system and there are several primary, junior and secondary schools in the town include Holy Trinity, Boxgrove Primary school, Guildford County school and Christ’s college. There are some independent schools in the town that include Royal Grammar School, Lanesborough School, Tormead School and Rydes Hill Preparatory School. For higher education, the University of Surrey and the University of Law has their campuses in the town, while other colleges include Academy of Contemporary Music and Guildford College of Further and Higher Education.
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