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Northampton (England)

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Northampton is the county town of Northamptonshire and is one of the largest settlements in the UK not classed as a city. It is approximately halfway between the cities of Birmingham and London.

Get in[edit]

There are numerous routes into Northampton:

By plane[edit]

The nearest airports to Northampton are Birmingham Airport,[1] East Midlands Airport[2] and London Luton Aiport[3] in Luton. There are rail and bus links from London, home of Heathrow Airport, Gatwick Airport and Stansted Airports.

By train[edit]

Northampton Castle Station offers frequent links from Birmingham and London every 30 min most times of the day with trains operated by London Midland.[4]

If you book a return ticket, you save a lot compared to the total price of two single tickets.

The railway station is located approximately 15 min walk from the town centre and has frequent buses passing the site. Taxis are also available from outside the station. A small cafe, WH Smiths and basic ameneties are available on site.

By car[edit]

Northampton is well connected by road with many distribution companies being based in and around the town. The M1 motorway passes right through South Northamptonshire, and from here it is about 15 minto the town centre. Junctions 15, 15A, and 16 all serve the town.

By bus[edit]

National Express [5] offer coach services across the country from Victoria street, next to upper mounts car park.

By boat[edit]

A branch of Grand Union Canal passes directly through Northampton. The River Nene also weaves it's way throughout the town with marinas at both Billing Aquadrome and Beckets Park.

Get around[edit]

The most common way of getting around is by car, but on Saturdays expect queues because of the football and rugby games that go on.

Northampton also offers a comprehensive bus service. The two main operators in the town are Stagecoach Northampton [6], and Uno operate services calling at the university. Service tends to be more patchy on Sundays; however, Monday to Saturday the bus is a viable method of transportation around the town.

Stagecoach Northampton also offer a number of regional bus routes to the outlying villages and towns in Northamptonshire making exploring small towns like Bugbrooke possible.

See[edit][add listing]

Northampton has a number of attractions:

Guildhall: A classic neo-gothic styled building built in 1861 by Edward William Godwin. It now houses the Northampton Borough Council offices. The Guildhall is located opposite the Tourist Information office on St Giles Street.

Northampton Museum and Art Gallery: A collection of artifacts from Northamptons past with particular homage to the shoe industry that caused the town to first boom. The museum is open 10:00 - 17:00 on Monday to Saturday and 2:00 - 17:00 on Sunday.

The Express Lifts Tower in St James.

78 Derngate, The only house outside of Scotland to be designed by world-famous architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh. The House has been beautifully restored and is now a museum. Guided tours are available and there is also a small restaurant. Advanced booking is advised. Open 10AM - 5PM February to Christmas.

Abington Park Museum is a free to enter museum featuring artifacts relevant to both the towns history and it's place at the center of the leather industry.

Do[edit][add listing]

Shop along Abington Street, the main pedestrianised shopping area in Northampton. Both the Grosvenor Centre and Peacock Place shopping centres have entrances from this street.

Northampton Market is one of the oldest in the country and operates daily out of Market Square, just off The Drapery and Abington Street.

Watch some sport - Northampton Saints are a top-flight rugby union team, the Cobblers play League Two football, and Northamptonshire play cricket at the County Ground.

Attend a play at Royal & Derngate [7], Northampton's jointly run main theatres.

Each August the town hosts the [8] Northampton Balloon Festival, previously at The Racecourse but in recent years hosted by Billing Aquadrome.

Buy[edit][add listing]

Northampton is famous for its rich shoemaking history. It is being referred to as the having the highest quality shoes in the world. Northampton shoemaking history dates back in 18th century.

  • Wildsmith (Wildsmith), Outlet at 13 Savile Row, +44 (0)1933 741 251, [9]. Wildsmith is a 166 years old English shoes company. It is famous for its quality handmade shoes crafted by Northampton cordwainers. Wildsmith is the original creator of the infamous loafer shoes which was intensively copied by other shoemakers. They take orders online, through phone calls or through their outlet at 13 Savile Row. £380.  edit

Learn[edit]

The University of Northampton [10] offers tertiary level courses in a range of subjects.

For vocational courses and A level courses, Northampton College [11] has a wide range of courses on offer.

Work[edit]

Northampton Job Centre [12] is at 21 Lower Mounts and has listings for casual and permenant positions as well as job advice. It is essential for migrants to the area to visit the job centre to secure National Insurance Cards.

Adecco [13] is at 6 Abington Street. The usual temporary work firms also operate in Northampton.

Eat[edit][add listing]

For its size, Northampton has a good range of restaurants to suit any budget:


  • Behind The Bus Stop Bar and Kitchen, 217, Wellingborough Road, Northampton, NN1 4EF, (01604) 626126, [14]. Behind The Bus Stop is a traditional British styled bar and kitchen serving well known beers, ales, wines and spirits boasting a “Truly British” menu catering for varied tastes. One of the newest Restaurants in Northampton.  edit
  • Brabenecs Restaurant, 187 Wellingborough Road Northampton, Northamptonshire, NN1 4EA, (01604) 634428, [15]. We are a family run, independent restaurant building a good reputation since July 2007 for a quality dining experience. Brabenecs Restaurant is situated in the heart of Northampton’s bustling Wellingborough Road, with many other restaurants, pubs and bars surrounding and just a ten minute walk from the town centre.  edit

Budget[edit]

Academy Coffee Haus [16] offers cheap meals from around £7 a head.

Mid-range[edit]

The Fox and Hounds pub [17] in Harlestone offers good pub fare at a reasonable price of around £18 a head.

Splurge[edit]

The New French Partridge [18] offers fine, French styled cuisine for around £54 a head.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • The Westone Manor Hotel Northampton, Fir Tree Walk, Weston Favell, Northampton Tel +44 1604 410 796, [19]. The hotel was built in 1914 as the home of local shoe manufacturer William Sears. The original fireplace, bay windows and architectural mouldings form a picturesque backdrop for excellent cuisine and carefully selected wines. Located in peaceful gardens, just 10 minutes from the M1 and only a few moments from the centre of Northampton.
  • Park Inn, Silver St, NN1 2TA, +44 1604 739988, [20]. Situated in the town centre, within walking distance of Northhampton's rail and bus station as well as easy access to major business parks and high street shopping.  edit
  • Northampton City Centre, Sol Central, Marefair, NN1 1SR, +44 1604 608900, [21]. Ibis Hotel Northampton is a budget hotel in the centre of Northampton, part of the Sol Central leisure and entertainment complex.  edit

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Caffe D'Italia, 5 Fish Street, Northampton, NN1 2AA. Great little Italian cafe with friendly staff. Lovely Italian-style sandwiches and cakes too.  edit

Clubs and pubs are located all around Northampton town centre and the night life is pretty lively most of the time.

For alternative music, pubs along the Wellingborough Road cater for grunge, punk and rock with local acts performing on Friday nights.

Contact[edit]

Police, fire and ambulance services are all reached from 999 or 112 in an emergency.

Northamptonshire Police's number for non-emergency calls is 101.

Stay safe[edit]

Drunken activity in the town centre on Friday and Saturday nights is common, and intoxication should be avoided to ensure your safety. Stay in well-lit areas and avoid taking short cuts through back streets or alleys.

The atmosphere after football matches can be a little loud and boisterous, so avoid wearing other teams' colours in these instances.

Get out[edit]

Althorp House [22] the resting place of Princess Diana is in Northamptonshire just outside of Northampton.

Stoke Bruerne is also located halfway between Northampton and Milton Keynes on the canal and offers a picturesque escape from Northampton.

Trains also depart at regular intervals from Northampton railway station for every possible destination in the country using either Milton Keynes Railway Station, London Stations or Birmingham New Street as transit points.



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