Ampthill's Timeline

 

All those important dates in Ampthill's History

 

Ampthill Town Centre

 

  • 1219 - Ampthill Market established
  • 1508 - Ampthill Castle becomes the property of Henry VIII
  • 1533 - Henry VIII divorces Katherine of Aragon & she is held in Ampthill Castle
  • 1542 - Henry VII sets up the Honour of Ampthill
  • 1615 - Houghton House built for Mary Herbert, Dowager Countess of Pembroke
  • 1621 - King James I visits Mary Herbert, Dowager Countess of Pembroke at Houghton House
  • 1664 - Richard Nicolls of Ampthill whilst commanding a fleet of Battleships accepts the surrender of New Ansterdam & renames the settlement New York.
  • 1664 - 1668 - Richard Nicolls serves as the first Governor of New York State
  • 1672 - Richard Nicolls is killed while fighting the Dutch at Solebay. A memorial in Ampthill's St Andrew's Church incorporates the cannonball that surposedly killed him.
  • 1678 - John Bunyan publishes 'Pilgrims Progress'. Houghton House is said to have been the model for Bunyan's House Beautiful'. Indeed records show that he did visit the house to make repairs to cooking utensils.
  • 1686 - The present Ampthill House was built for the Dowager Countess of Ailesbury and Elgin by Robert Grumbold
  • 1690 - Ampthill House sold to the first Lord Ashburnham
  • 1738 - Houghton House acquired by the Duke of Bedford  
  • 1770 - Lord Ossory builds a memorial cross to Katherine of Aragon on the site of Ampthill Castle
  • 1852 - Ampthill clock house built 
  • 1785 - Lord Ossory gives Ampthill the gift of a pump with an obelisk of Portland stone designed by the architect Sir William Chambers
  • 1794 - Houghton House de-roofed and stripped of everything of value by order of the Duke of Bedford
  • 1811 - House of Industry built 
  • 1812 - 1816 - Thatched cottages built in Woburn Street
  • 1818 - Ampthill Park House becomes the property of Lady Holland
  • 1822 -  Union Church opened in Dunstable Street
  • 1827 - Alameda avenue of lime trees given to the town by Lord and Lady Holland
  • 1845 - National School opened (closed 1954)
  • 1849 - The Gentleman's Magazine notes that "Thirty years ago (Ampthill) was perhaps reckoned the genteelist town in the county; as I have been told that Potton now a humble place, was before it; but it has not now that distinctive character; many respected and popular inhabitants are no more. "
  • 1849 - Gas Works built
  • 1868 - Ampthill Station opens
  • 1871 - The foundation stone laid on the 7th August of the Primitive Methodist Chapel in Saunders Piece. The land was sold to them by George Pyke Robinson, a surveyor, carpenter and builder, who was developing the street 
  • 1887 -  Mark Rutherford (the pen name of William Hale White) publishes the novel 'The Revolution in Tanner's Lane' "re-naming Ampthill 'Cowfold'           
  • 1902 - The Maharajah of Koihapur and his suite visit Ampthill Park for a picnic. They arrived from London on the 4th August, and detrained at Millbook Station. They were met by Earl Cowper and Lord Alwyno. The band of the Bedfordshire Regiment played for them in Ampthill Park and the inhabitants of the villages of Ampthill, Clophill, Silsoe and Flitwick took part in sports (reported in The Times newspaper)
  • 1904 - Strict Baptist Chapel opens in Oliver Street
  • 1910 - First public telephone installed in the town
  • 1919 - Sir Albert Richardson purchases Avenue House, Church Street. This became his home until his death.
  • 1920 - A cross is set up in Ampthill Park to commemorate those who died in the Great War by the Duke of Bedford
  • 1920 - Electric Kinema opens in Saunders Piece (formerly the Primitive Methodist Chapel)
  • 1921 - Princess Beatrice comes to Ampthill to unveil the The Cenotaph on the Alameda
  • 1934 - Work starts on the building of the Roman Catholic Church (closed 1986)
  • 1937 - Zonita Cinema opened in Bedford Street (closed in 1960)
  • 1939 - Electric Kinema closes on the 1st April
  • 1943 - The Kinema becomes the headquarters of the Army Cadet Force in October and is opened by General Bridgeman
  • 1947 - Ampthill Council purchased Ampthill Park
  • 1950 - Ampthill Library opens on the 26th September in the converted Electric Kinema building (formerly the Primitive Methodist Chapel) in Saunders Piece. The library was opened by Mrs. J. Arnold Whitchurch, a founder member of the Library Sub-Committee
  • 1954 - New Fire Station opened in Oliver Street
  • 1954 - Redborne Upper School opened
  • 1955 - Park House sold to Group Captain Leonard Cheshire VC for use as a Cheshire Home (moved in 1977 to new premises in Woburn Road)
  • 1958 - Police Station opens in Woburn Road
  • 1963 - Magistrates Courts open in Woburn Road
  • 1964 - Sir Albert Richardson dies in Avenue House, 20 Church Street, the house he had lived in from 1919
  • 1967 - Offices of Mid Bedfordshire District Council opened, designed by Sir Albert Richardson
  • 1975 - Wall paintings discovered in the White Hart showing the Prince of Wale's feathers and dated to 1646
  • 1983 - Ampthill bypass opened. The main contractors were the Jackson Group
  • 1994 - Library in Saunders Piece closed and re-opened in the former Board Room of the Workhouse in Flitwick Road
  • 1996 -  Saint Luke's Church, Ampthill, moves into the ex­library building in Saunders Piece
  • 2005 - Budgens Supermarket, Rosewalk (old Zonita Cinema) & Shell Petrol Station demolished for new Supermarket Development
  • 2006 - Waitrose opens
  • 2006 - Mid Beds District Council vacate their offices at the Limes, Dunstable Street and move to new offices at Chicksands. Russell House (next to the Limes) is also vacated by Beds County Council. Offices remain vacant.
  • 2014 - Woburn Forest Center Parcs opens