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Rutland Main Page

Historic County of England.

Rutland Famous People
Rutland Genealogical Resources
Historical Rutland
Historic Buildings of Rutland now East Midlands
Rutland Monumental Inscriptions, Cemeteries & Graveyards
People Connected to Rutland

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  • Administrative centre - County Town Oakham
  • County Flower - Clustered Bellflower
  • People from Rutland are called - Raddle men
  • Famous for:
  • Rush Bearing & Rush Strewing (Barrowden): Reeds are gathered in the church meadow on the eve of St Peter’s Day and placed on the church floor (late June, early July)
  • According to tradition, any royalty or peers passing through Oakham must present a horseshoe to the Lord of the Manor of Oakham. The horseshoe has been Rutland's emblem for hundreds of years.
  • Landmarks and Places of Interest
  • Lyddington Bede House
  • Normanton Hall
  • Oakham Castle
  • Rutland Water
  • Tolethorpe Hall
  • Exton Hall - family seat of the family of Sir James Harington and later the Noel family, Earls of Gainsborough for almost four hundred years. See reference at British History online

Rutland is a landlocked, ceremonial county of historic origin in Central England. It is bounded on the west and north by Leicestershire, northeast by Lincolnshire and southeast by Peterborough (a unitary authority ceremonially in Cambridgeshire) and Northamptonshire. It is a rich pastoral land with picturesque valleys dotted with villages rather than towns and quiet country roads with the odd large manor house surround by parklands.

The geology of the area has given its name to the Rutland Formation which was formed from muds and sand carried down by rivers and occurring as bands of different colours, each with many fossil shells at the bottom. At the bottom of the Rutland Formation is a bed of dirty white sandy silt. Under the Rutland Formation is a formation called the Lincolnshire Limestone. The best exposure of this limestone (and also the Rutland Formation) is at the Castle Cement quarry just outside Ketton.

It is dominated by Rutland Water which is a large artificial lake - known previously as "Empingham Reservoir", which is in the middle of the county - which is almost bisected by by as large spit of land giving it a "U" or horse-shoe shape. When it t was constructed in 1971 it was Europe's largest man-made lake; construction was completed in 1975, and filling the lake took a further four years.

The name Rutland means Rota's land, a personal possession of Queen Edith, wife of Edward the Confessor. It was an endowment or dowry for Norman Queens until it became a county. The Saxons, who made it neither a county nor a shire, called it Roteland, or the Red Land, because no less than twenty-four thousand one hundred and seventy-eight acres out of ninety-seven thousand and seventy-three acres of red land. That is why they call Rutland men "Raddle Men" to this day. Rutland is, in fact, the solitary example of an old Mercian division of England which has outlived the West Saxon redistribution of the country into shires.

The name was first recorded in 851 as Dev Fenascir.

Its greatest length north to south is only 18 miles (29.0 km), greatest breadth east to west, 17 miles (27.4 km) and is is smaller in terms of area.

The only towns in Rutland are Oakham, the county town, and Uppingham. At the centre of the county is the large artificial reservoir, Rutland Water, with a similar surface area to Windermere. It is an important nature reserve serving as an overwintering site for wildfowl and a breeding site for ospreys. The town of Stamford is just over the border in a protruding part of Lincolnshire.

Rutland's older cottages are built from limestone or ironstone and many have roofs of Collyweston stone slate or thatch.

The Highest point is at Flitteris: Flitteriss Park (a farm east of Cold Overton Park) at 197 m (646 ft) above sea level. Ranksborough Hill follows at (625 feet) by Menton near the cente of the county. The lowest point is a section of secluded farmland near Belmesthorpe, 17 m (56 feet) above sea level.

Map of Rutland


Rutland - Main Towns:

  • Oakham
  • Uppingham

Other Towns

  • Ayston
  • Barrowden
  • Clipsham
  • Cottesmore
  • Empingham
  • Ketton
  • Market Overton
  • Ryhall
  • Stoke Dry
  • Whissendine

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