Worcester (/ˈwʊstər/ ( listen) WUUS-tər) is a city in
Worcestershire, England, 31 miles (50 km) southwest of Birmingham
and 27 miles (43 km) north of Gloucester. The population is
approximately 100,000. The
River Severn flanks the western side of the
city centre, which is overlooked by the 12th century Worcester
Battle of Worcester
Battle of Worcester was the final battle of the English Civil War,
where Oliver Cromwell's
New Model Army
New Model Army defeated King Charles I's
Worcester is known as the home of Royal Worcester
Porcelain, composer Edward Elgar, Lea & Perrins, makers of
Worcestershire sauce, University of Worcester, and
Worcester Journal, claimed to be the world's oldest
3.2 Green belt
4 Demography and religion
5.1 Glove industry
5.3 Retail trade
8 Former Fuel Storage Depot
9.1 High schools
9.2 Independent schools
11.1 Festivals and shows
11.2 Arts and cinema
11.3.2 Radio Stations
12 Twinning and planned twinning
13 Notable people
14 See also
16 Further reading
17 External links
The trade route which ran past Worcester, later forming part of the
Ryknild Street dates to
Neolithic times. The position commanded
a ford over the
River Severn (the river was tidal past
to public works projects in the 1840s) and was fortified by the
Britons around 400 BC. It would have been on the northern border
Dobunni and probably subject to the larger communities of the
Malvern hillforts. The Roman settlement at the site passes
unmentioned by Ptolemy's Geography, the
Antonine Itinerary and the
Register of Dignitaries but would have grown up on the road opened
Glevum (Gloucester) and Viroconium (Wroxeter) in the
AD 40s and 50s. It may have been the "Vertis" mentioned in the
7th century Ravenna Cosmography. Using charcoal from the Forest of
Dean, the Romans operated pottery kilns and ironworks at the site
and may have built a small fort.
In the 3rd century, Roman
Worcester occupied a larger area than the
subsequent medieval city, but silting of the
Diglis Basin caused the
abandonment of Sidbury. Industrial production ceased and the
settlement contracted to a defended position along the lines of the
old British fort at the river terrace's southern end. This
settlement is generally identified with the Cair Guiragon listed
among the 28 cities of Britain by the History of the Britons
attributed to Nennius. This is not a British name but an
adaption of its
Old English name
Weorgoran ceaster, "fort of the
Weorgoran (the "people of the winding river") were
Hwicce and probably
West Saxons who entered the area
some time after the 577 Battle of Dyrham. In 680, their fort at
Worcester was chosen—in preference to both the much larger
Gloucester and the royal court at Winchcombe—to be the seat of a new
bishopric, suggesting there was already a well-established and
powerful Christian community when the site fell into English hands.
The oldest known church was St Helen's, which was certainly British;
the Saxon cathedral was dedicated to St Peter.
The town was almost destroyed in 1041 after a rebellion against the
punitive taxation of Harthacanute. During this time, the townsfolk
moved to (and at times were besieged at) the nearby Bevere Island, 2
miles upriver. The following century, the town (then better defended)
was attacked several times (in 1139, 1150 and 1151) during the
Anarchy, i.e. civil war between King Stephen and Empress Matilda,
daughter of Henry I. This is the background to the well-researched
historical novel The Virgin in the Ice, part of Ellis Peters' The
Cadfael Chronicles series, which begins with the words:
"It was early in November of 1139 that the tide of civil war, lately
so sluggish and inactive, rose suddenly to wash over the city of
Worcester, wash away half of its lifestock, property and women and
send all those of its inhabitants who could get away in time scurrying
for their lives northwards away from the marauders". (These are
mentioned as having arrived from Gloucester, leaving a long lasting
legacy of bitterness between the two cities.)
By late medieval times the population had grown to around 10,000 as
the manufacture of cloth started to become a large local industry. The
town was designated a county corporate, giving it autonomy from local
Worcester was the site of the
Battle of Worcester
Battle of Worcester (3 September 1651),
when Charles II attempted to forcefully regain the crown, in the
fields a little to the west and south of the city, near the village of
Powick. However, Charles II was defeated and returned to his
headquarters in what is now known as King Charles house in the
Cornmarket, before fleeing in disguise to
Boscobel House in Shropshire
from where he eventually escaped to France.
Worcester had supported
the Parliamentary cause before the outbreak of war in 1642 but spent
most of the war under Royalist occupation. After the war it cleverly
used its location as the site of the final battles of the First Civil
War (1646) and Third Civil War (1651) to try to mount an appeal for
compensation from the new King Charles II. As part of this and not
based upon any historical fact, it invented the epithet "Fidelis
Civitas" (The Faithful City) and this motto has since been
incorporated into the city's coat of arms.
In 1670, the
River Severn burst its banks and the subsequent flood was
the worst ever seen by Worcester. A brass plate can be found on a wall
on the path to the cathedral by the path along the river showing how
high this flood went and other flood heights of more recent times are
also shown in stone bricks. The closest flood height to what is known
as the Flood of 1670 was when the Severn flooded in the torrential
rains of July 2007.
Royal Worcester Porcelain Company factory was founded by Dr John
Wall in 1751, although it no longer produces goods with production
ceasing in 2009. A handful of decorators are still employed at the
factory and the Museum on the site is still open to the public.
During the late 18th and early 19th centuries,
Worcester was a major
centre for glove making, employing nearly half the glovers in England
at its peak (over 30,000 people). In 1815 the
Birmingham Canal opened, allowing
Worcester goods to be transported to
a larger conurbation.
British Medical Association
British Medical Association (BMA) was founded in the Board Room of
Worcester Royal Infirmary building in Castle Street in
1832. While part of the Royal Infirmary has now been demolished to
make way for the University of Worcester's new city campus, the
original Georgian building has been preserved. One of the old
wards opened as a medical museum, the Infirmary, in 2012.
Worcester hosted the
Worcestershire Exhibition, inspired by
the Great Exhibition in London. There were sections for exhibits of
fine arts (over 600 paintings), historical manuscripts and industrial
items. The profit was £1,867.9s.6d. The number of visitors is
recorded as 222,807. Some of the profit from the exhibition was used
to build the Victoria Institute in Foregate Street, Worcester. This
was opened on 1 October 1896 and originally housed the city art
gallery and museum; now located on Foregate Street. Further
information about the exhibition can be found at the museum.
During the Second World War, the city was chosen to be the seat of an
evacuated government in case of mass German invasion. The War Cabinet,
Winston Churchill and some 16.000 state workers, would have
Hindlip Hall (now part of the complex forming the
Headquarters of West Mercia Police), 3 miles (4.8 km) north of
Worcester and Parliament would have temporarily seated in
Stratford-upon-Avon. The former RAF station
RAF Worcester was located
east of Northwick.
In the 1950s and 1960s large areas of the medieval centre of Worcester
were demolished and rebuilt as a result of decisions by town planners.
This was condemned by many such as
Nikolaus Pevsner who described it
as a "totally incomprehensible... act of self-mutilation". There
is still a significant area of medieval
Worcester remaining, examples
of which can be seen along City Walls Road, Friar Street and New
Street, but it is a small fraction of what was present before the
The current city boundaries date from 1974, when the Local Government
Act 1972 transferred the parishes of
Warndon and St. Peter the Great
County into the city.
Worcester in 1806
Tudor buildings in Friar Street
Tudor building with jettied upper storey in New Street
Worcester Shrub Hill railway station
Worcester Shrub Hill railway station with a
London Midland train.
Worcester local elections
Worcester local elections and Evolution of Worcestershire
The Conservatives had a majority on the council from 2003 to 2007,
when they lost a by-election to Labour meaning the council had no
overall control. The Conservatives remained with the most seats
overall with 17 out of 35 seats after the 2008 election.
Worcester has one member of Parliament, Robin Walker of the
Conservative Party, who represents the
Worcester constituency as of
the May 2010 general election.
The County of Worcestershire's local government arrangement is formed
of a non-metropolitan county council (
Worcestershire County Council)
and six non-metropolitan district councils, with
Council being the district council for most of Worcester, with a small
area of the St. Peters suburb actually falling within the neighbouring
Wychavon District council. The
Worcester City Council
Worcester City Council area includes
two parish councils, these being
Warndon Parish Council and St Peter
the Great Parish Council.
Worcester Guildhall, the seat of local government, dates from 1721; it
replaced an earlier hall on the same site. The
Grade I listed
Grade I listed Queen
Anne style building is described by Pevsner as 'a splendid town hall,
as splendid as any of C18 England'.
Notable suburbs in
Worcester include Barbourne, Blackpole, Cherry
Orchard, Claines, Diglis, Northwick, Red Hill, Ronkswood, St Peter the
Great (also simply known as St Peters), Tolladine,
Warndon and Warndon
Villages (which was once the largest housing development in the
Country when the area was being constructed in the late 1980s/very
early 1990s). Most of
Worcester is on the eastern side of the River
Severn; Henwick, Lower Wick, St. John's and
Dines Green are on the
Worcester enjoys a temperate climate with warm summers and mild
winters generally. However, the city can experience more extreme
weather and flooding is often a problem. During the winters of
2009-10 and 2010-11 the city experienced prolonged periods of
sub-freezing temperatures and heavy snowfalls. In December 2010 the
temperature dropped to −19.5 °C (−3.1 °F) in nearby
River Severn and the River Teme partially froze over
Worcester during this cold snap. In contrast,
36.6 °C (97.9 °F) on 2 August 1990.
Between 1990 and 2003, weather data for the area was collected at
Barbourne, Worcester. After the closure of this weather station, the
nearest one is located at Pershore.
Climate data for Worcester
Record high °C (°F)
Average high °C (°F)
Average low °C (°F)
Record low °C (°F)
Average rainfall mm (inches)
Source #1: 
Source #2: Barbourne and Pershore extremes (nearest stations)
Worcester viewed from
Further information: West Midlands Green Belt
Worcester is within a green belt region that extends into the wider
surrounding counties, and is in place to reduce urban sprawl between
the cities and towns in the nearby West Midlands conurbations centred
Birmingham and Coventry, discouraging further convergence,
protect the identity of outlying communities, encourage brownfield
reuse, and preserve nearby countryside. This is achieved by
restricting inappropriate development within the designated areas, and
imposing stricter conditions on permitted building.
Within the city boundary, there is a small extent of green belt north
Birmingham canal, and north of the Perdiswell
and Northwick suburbs. This is part of a larger, isolated tract south
of the main green belt that extends into the adjacent Wychavon
district, minimising urban sprawl between
Fernhill Heath and Droitwich
Spa, and maintaining their separation. The green belt was first drawn
Worcestershire County Council in 1975, and the size in the
borough in 2017 amounted to some 240 hectares (2.4 km2;
0.93 sq mi).
Demography and religion
The 2001 census recorded Worcester's population at 93,353. About
96.5% of Worcester's population was white; of which 94.2% were White
British, greater than the national average. The largest
religious group are Christians, who made up 77% of the city's
population. People who reported having no religion or who did not
state their religion made up 21% of the city's population. Other
religions totaled less than 2% of the population. Ethnic minorities
include people of Bangladeshi, Chinese, Indian, Pakistani, Italian and
Polish origin, with the largest single minority group being British
Pakistanis, numbering around 1,200, approximately 1.3% of Worcester's
Old St Martin's Church (Church of England)
This has led to
Worcester containing a small but diverse range of
religious groups; as well as the commanding Anglican Worcester
Cathedral, there are also Catholic,
United Reformed Church
United Reformed Church  and
Baptist churches, a large centre for the Church of Jesus Christ of
Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), an
Islamic mosque and a number of
smaller interest groups regarding Eastern Religions such as Buddhism
and the International Society for Krishna Consciousness.
Worcester is the seat of a Church of
England bishop. His or her
official signature is his or her Christian name followed by Wigorn.
(an abbreviation for the Latin Wigorniensis, meaning 'of
Worcester'), which is also occasionally used as an abbreviation
for the name of the county.
The Archdeacon of Worcester, inducted in November 2014, was Rector of
St. Barnabas with Christ Church in
Worcester for eight years.
The city of Worcester, located on the
River Severn and with transport
Birmingham and other parts of the Midlands through the vast
canal network, became an important centre for many light industries.
The late-Victorian period saw the growth of ironfounders, like Heenan
& Froude, Hardy & Padmore and McKenzie & Holland.
Worcester City Art Gallery & Museum
One of the flourishing industries of
Worcester was glove making.
Worcester's gloving industry peaked between 1790 and 1820 when about
30,000 were employed by 150 companies. At this time nearly half of the
glove manufacturers of Britain were located in Worcestershire.
In the 19th century the industry declined because import taxes on
foreign competitors, mainly from France, were greatly reduced. By the
middle of the 20th century, only a few
Worcester gloving companies
survived since gloves became less fashionable and free trade allowed
in cheaper imports from the Far East. Nevertheless, at least three
large glove manufacturing companies survived until the late 20th
century: Dent Allcroft, Fownes and Milore. Queen Elizabeth II's
coronation gloves were designed by Emil Rich and manufactured in the
Worcester-based Milore factory.
Lea & Perrins advertisement (1900)
The inter-war years saw the rapid growth of engineering, producing
machine tools James Archdale, H.W. Ward, castings for the motor
Worcester Windshields and Casements, mining machinery Mining
Engineering Company (MECO) which later became part of Joy Mining
Machinery and open-top cans Williamsons, though G H Williamson and
Sons had become part of the Metal Box Co in 1930. Later the company
became Carnaud Metal Box PLC.
Worcester Porcelain operated in
Worcester until 2009, when the factory
closed down due to the recession. However, the site of Worcester
Porcelain still houses the Museum of
Royal Worcester which is open
daily to visitors.
One of Worcester's most famous products, Lea & Perrins
Worcestershire sauce is made and bottled at the Midland Road factory
in Worcester, which has been the home of Lea & Perrins since 16
October 1897. Mr Lea and Mr Perrins originally met in a chemist's shop
on the site of the now Debenham's store in the Crowngate Shopping
The surprising foundry heritage of the city is represented by
Morganite Crucible at Norton which produces graphitic shaped
products and cements for use in the modern industry.
Worcester is the home of what is claimed to be the oldest newspaper in
the world, Berrow's
Worcester Journal, which traces its descent from a
news-sheet that started publication in 1690. The city is also a major
retail centre with several covered shopping centres that has most
major chains represented as well as a host of independent shops and
restaurants, particularly in Friar Street and New Street.
The city is home to the European manufacturing plant of Yamazaki Mazak
Corporation, a global Japanese machine tool builder, which was
established in 1980.
The Kays mail order business was founded in
Worcester in the 1880s and
operated from numerous premises in the city until 2007. It was then
bought out by Reality, owner of the Grattan catalogue. Kays' former
warehouse building was demolished in 2008 and now is residential
Worcester's main shopping centre is the High Street, home to the
stores of a number of major retail chains. Part of the High Street was
modernised in 2005 amid much controversy and further modernised in
2015, with current redevelopment of Cathedral Plaza and Lychgate
Shopping Centre. Many of the issues focused on the felling of old
trees, the duration of the works (caused by the weather and an
archaeological find) and the removal of flagstones outside the city's
18th century Guildhall .
The other main thoroughfares are the Shambles and Broad Street, while
the Cross (and its immediate surrounding area) is the city's financial
centre and location of the majority of Worcester's main bank branches.
There are three main covered shopping centres in the city centre,
these being CrownGate Shopping Centre, Cathedral Plaza and Reindeer
Court. There is also an unenclosed shopping area located immediately
east of the city centre called St. Martin's Quarter. There are three
retail parks, the Elgar and Blackpole retail parks, which are located
in the inner suburb of Blackpole and the Shrub Hill Retail Park
neighbouring St. Martin's Quarter.
Worcester Cathedral at night.
The most famous landmark in
Worcester is its imposing Anglican
Cathedral. The current building; known as
Worcester Priory before the
English Reformation, is officially named the Cathedral Church of
Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary. Construction begun in 1084 while
its crypt dates from the 10th century. The chapter house is the only
circular one in the country while the cathedral also has the
distinction of having the tomb of King John.
Near to the cathedral is the spire of St. Andrew's Church, also known
as Glover's Needle; the rest of the church was demolished in 1949.
The parish church of St. Helen, located on the north side of the High
Street, is mainly medieval with a west tower rebuilt in 1813. The east
end, refenestration and porch o was completed by
Frederick Preedy in
1857-63. There was further restoration, by Aston Webb, in 1879-80. It
is a Grade II* listed building.
Limited parts of Worcester's city wall still remain in situ.
The Hive, situated on the northern side of the
River Severn at the
former cattle market site, is Worcester's joint public and university
library and archive centre, heralded as "the first of its kind in
Europe". It is a prominent landmark feature on the
With seven towers and a golden rooftop, the Hive has gained
recognition winning two international awards for building
design and sustainability.
There are three main parks in Worcester, Cripplegate Park, Gheluvelt
Park and Fort Royal Park, the last being on one of the battles sites
of the English Civil War. In addition, there is a large open area
known as Pitchcroft to the north of the city centre on the east bank
of the River Severn, which, apart from those days when it is being
used for horse racing, is a public space.
Gheluvelt Park was opened as a memorial to commemorate the
Worcestershire Regiment's 2nd Battalion after their part in the Battle
of Gheluvelt, during the First World War.
Statue of Edward Elgar.
The statue of Sir Edward Elgar, commissioned from Kenneth Potts and
unveiled in 1981, stands at the end of
Worcester High Street facing
the cathedral, only yards from the original location of his father's
music shop, which was demolished in the 1960s. Elgar's birthplace
is a short way from Worcester, in the village of Broadheath.
There are also two large woodlands in the city, Perry Wood, at twelve
hectares and Nunnery Wood, covering twenty-one hectares. Perry Wood is
often said to be the place where
Oliver Cromwell met and made a pact
with the devil. Nunnery Wood is an integral part of the adjacent
Worcester Woods Country Park, itself next door to County
Hall on the east side of the city.
Worcester Shrub Hill railway station.
M5 Motorway runs north-south immediately to the east of the City
and is accessed by Junction 6 (
Worcester North) and Junction 7
Worcester South). This makes the city easily accessible by car to
most parts of the country, including London which is only 118 miles
(190 km) using the A44 via the
Cotswolds and M40. A faster
journey to London is possible via the M5, M42 and M40 for an increased
distance of 134 miles (216 km).
Several A roads pass through the city. The
A449 road runs south-west
to Malvern and north to Kidderminster. The A44 runs south-east to
Evesham and west to
Aberystwyth and crosses Worcester
Bridge. The A38 trunk road runs south to
Bromsgrove and Birmingham. The A4103
goes west-south-west to Hereford. The
A422 heads east to Alcester,
branching from the A44 a mile east of the M5. The city is encompassed
by a partial ring road (A4440) which is formed, rather inconsistently,
by single and dual carriageways. The
A4440 road provides a second road
bridge across the Severn (Carrington Bridge) just west of the
A4440-A38 junction. Carrington Bridge links the A38 from Worcester
Gloucester with the A449 linking
Worcester with Malvern.
Worcester locomotive depot 14 April 1959
Worcester has two stations,
Worcester Foregate Street and Worcester
Worcester Foregate Street is located in the city centre, on Foregate
Street. The line towards Malvern and Hereford, which is the Cotswold
Line, crosses Foregate Street on an arched cast-iron bridge which was
remodelled by the
Great Western Railway
Great Western Railway in 1908 with decorative
cast-iron exterior serving no structural purpose. Between Foregate
Street and the St. John's area of the city, heading towards Malvern
and Hereford, the line is elevated and travels along the Worcester
viaduct which crosses over the River Severn.
Worcester Shrub Hill is located around one mile from the city centre
on Shrub Hill Road. The station is part of a loop line off the
Gloucester railway, which forms part of today's
Worcester Shrub Hill station, on Shrub Hill Road, was
Worcester Engine Works. The polychrome brick building was erected
about 1864 and was probably designed by Thomas Dickson. The venture
was not a success and only 84 locomotives were built and the works
closed in 1871. The chairman of the
Worcester Engine Works was
Alexander Clunes Sheriff.
Both stations frequently serve
Droitwich Spa, then
either lines being firstly via
Kidderminster and Stourbridge into
Birmingham Snow Hill and
Birmingham Moor Street then onwards usually
to Dorridge or Whitlocks End or secondly via
Bromsgrove and University
Birmingham New Street these services are run by West Midlands
Trains. From both stations train run to Pershore,
Evesham and onto the
Oxford and London 
The main operator of bus services in and around the city is First
Midland Red. A few other smaller operators provide services in
Worcester, including; Astons, DRM and LMS Travel. The terminus and
interchange for many bus services in
Worcester is Crowngate Bus
Station located in the city centre.
The city formerly had two park and ride sites, one located off the A38
in Perdiswell (opened in 2001) and the other at
Sixways Stadium next
to the M5 (opened 2009).
Worcestershire County Council voted to close
both of them in 2014 as part of a cost-saving package of cutbacks to
The park and ride service at
Sixways Stadium has since been
reinstated, with LMS Travel operating the W3 route to Worcestershire
Royal Hospital. The route does not service Worcester's city centre bus
Worcestershire bus route 144
Worcester's nearest major airport is
Birmingham Airport which is
accessible by road and rail.
Gloucestershire Airport is approximately
25 miles away and provides General Aviation connections and scheduled
Citywing to Jersey, the
Isle of Man
Isle of Man and Belfast.
Former Fuel Storage Depot
A fuel storage depot was constructed in 1941/2 by Shell Mex & BP
(later operated by Texaco) for the government on the eastern bank of
the River Severn, about one mile south of Worcester. There were six
4,000 ton semi-buried tanks for the storage of white oils. It had no
rail or road loading facilities but distribution could be carried out
by barge through the
Diglis basin and the depot could receive fuel
either by barge or the GPSS pipeline network. It was at one time used
as a civil reserve storing gas oil and then stored aviation kerosene
for USAFE. In the early 1990s it was closed down and was sold for
housing in the 2000s. 
Worcester is home to the University of Worcester, which was awarded
university status in 2005 by HM Privy Council. From 1997 to 2005 it
was known as University College
Worcester (UCW) and prior to 1997 it
was known as
Worcester College of Higher Education. From 2005 to 2010
it was the fastest growing university in the UK, more than doubling
its student population. The university is also home to the independent
Worcester Students Union
Worcester Students Union institution. The city is also home to two
Worcester Sixth Form College
Worcester Sixth Form College and Heart of Worcestershire
The high schools located in the city are Bishop Perowne CofE College,
Blessed Edward Oldcorne Catholic College, Christopher Whitehead
Language College, Tudor Grange Academy Worcester, Nunnery Wood High
New College Worcester
New College Worcester which caters for blind and partially
sighted pupils from the ages of 11 to 18.
Worcester is also the seat of three independent schools. The Royal
Grammar School, founded in 1291 and
Alice Ottley School merged in
2007. The King's School was re-founded in 1541 under King Henry VIII.
St Mary's School, a girls' Catholic school, was the only remaining
single-sex independent school, but closed in July 2014. Other
independent schools include the Independent Christian school, the
River School in
Fernhill Heath and
New College Worcester
New College Worcester for the blind
and partially sighted.
Entrance to the
Worcester King George's Field.
Worcester Warriors, an
Rugby Union team who play at
Worcestershire County Cricket Club whose home ground is New Road.
National League North
National League North football club
Worcester City (The team currently
plays at The Victoria Ground in Bromsgrove)
Worcester Hockey Club has teams entered in the West Hockey
Worcester St Johns Cycling Club
Worcester Wolves, a professional basketball team in the British
Basketball League who play at the
Worcester Racecourse is on an open area known as "Pitchcroft" on the
east bank of the River Severn.
Worcester has King George's Field in memorial to King George V.
Worcester Rowing Club which is situated near the city centre on the
University of Worcester
University of Worcester Rowing Club which shares accommodation with
Worcester Rowing Club.
Worcester Athletics Club who meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays at Nunnery
Wood Sports Centre
Black Pear Joggers, an inclusive running club based at Perdiswell
Worcester University Climbing and Mountaineering Club
Worcester Dominies and Guild Cricket Club
Festivals and shows
Every three years
Worcester becomes home to the Three Choirs Festival,
which dates from the 18th century and is credited with being the
oldest music festival in the British Isles. The location of the
festival rotates each year between the Cathedral Cities of the Three
Hereford and Worcester. Famous for its
championing of English music, especially that of Elgar, Vaughan
Williams and Gustav Holst,
Worcester was host of the festival in July
Worcester Festival was established in 2003 by Chris Jaeger MBE.
Held in August, the festival consists of a variety of music, theatre,
cinema and workshops, as well as the already established Beer
Festival, which runs as an event within the
Worcester Festival ends with a spectacular free firework display on
the banks of the
River Severn on the Monday of the August bank
holiday. The Artistic Director of the
Worcester Festival is now actor,
director and writer, Ben Humphrey.
For one weekend the city plays host to the
Worcester Music Festival.
Now in its 8th year (2015) the festival comprises a weekend of
original music performed by predominantly local bands and musicians.
All performances are free and take place throughout the city centre:
in bars, clubs, community buildings, churches and the central library.
In 2010 the festival comprised 230 different acts. The 2015 festival
will take place between 18 and 20 September.
Founded in 2012, the
Film Festival, is all about placing
Worcestershire on the film-making map and encouraging local people to
get involved in making film. The first festival took place at the Hive
and including screenings, workshops and talks.
The Victorian-themed Christmas Fayre is a major source of tourism
Elton John came to the
Ground, New Road on Saturday 9 June 2006. Status Quo came to Sixways
Worcester Warriors) on Saturday 28 July 2007.
Worcester Beer, Cider and Perry Festival takes place for
three days each August  and is held on Pitchcroft Race Course.
This festival is the largest beer festival within the West Midlands
and within the top 10 in the
United Kingdom with attendances being
around 14,000 people.
2015 will see the first
Worcester Canal Festival, held at Lansdowne
Park from the 12 to 14 June, to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the
Arts and cinema
Famous 18th century actress
Sarah Siddons made her acting début here
at the Theatre Royal in Angel Street. Her sister, the novelist Ann
Julia Kemble Hatton, otherwise known as Ann of Swansea, was born in
the city. Matilda Alice Powles, better known as Vesta Tilley, a
leading male impersonator and music hall artiste was born in
Worcester the Swan Theatre stages a mixture of
professional touring and local amateur productions. It is also home to
Worcester Repertory Company. Past Artistic Directors of the
Worcester Repertory Company (and by default the Swan Theatre) have
included John Doyle and David Wood OBE. The company's (and theatre's)
current Artistic Director is Chris Jaeger MBE.
A number of 'stars' started their careers in the
Company and the Swan Theatre. Imelda Staunton, Sean Pertwee, Celia
Imrie, Rufus Norris,
Kevin Whately and
Bonnie Langford were all actors
with the Rep at the start of their careers. Directors too have made a
name for themselves with
Phyllida Lloyd starting her directorial
career as an Associate Director under John Doyle, a position that is
now filled by Ben Humphrey.
The Countess of Huntingdon's Hall is a historic church now used as
venue for an eclectic range of musical and comedy performances,.
Recent acts have included Van Morrison, Eddie Izzard, Jack Dee, Omid
Djalili and Jason Manford.
The Marrs Bar is a venue for gigs and stand-up comedy. Worcester
has two multi-screen cinemas; a Vue Cinema complex located on Friar
Street and an Odeon Cinema on Foregate Street – both of which were
3D-equipped by March 2010.
In the northern suburb of Northwick is the
Art Deco Northwick Cinema.
Built in 1938 it contains one of the only two remaining interiors in
Britain designed by John Alexander (the original perspective drawings
are still held by RIBA). It was a bingo hall from 1966 to 1982 and
then empty until 1991; it was then run as a music venue until 1996 and
was empty again until autumn 2006 when it became an antiques and
lifestyle centre, owned by Grey's Interiors, who were previously
located in the Tything.
Worcester was home to electronic music producer and collaborator Mike
Paradinas and his record label Planet Mu, until the label moved to
London in 2007.
Worcester Journal, claimed to be the world's oldest newspaper
Hereford & Worcester
Twinning and planned twinning
Worcester is twinned with the German city of Kleve, the Parisian
Le Vésinet and its larger American namesake Worcester,
In February 2009
Worcester City Council's Twinning Association began
deliberating an application to twin
Worcester with the Palestinian
city of Gaza. Councillor Alan Amos introduced the application, which
was passed at its first stage by a majority of 35-6. The proposal
was later rejected by the Executive Committee of the City of Worcester
Twinning Association for lack of funding due to its present commitment
to existing twinning projects.
See also: Category:People from Worcester
In birth order:
Hannah Snell (1723–1792), famous for impersonating a man and
enlisting in the Royal Marines, was born and brought up in Worcester.
Elizabeth Blower (c. 1757/63 – post-1816), novelist, poet and
actress, was born and raised in Worcester.
Ann Hatton (1764–1838), writer of the Kemble family, was born in
James White (1775–1820), founder of first advertising agency in 1800
in London, was born in Worcester.
John Mathew Gutch (1776–1861), journalist, lived with his second
wife at Barbourne, a suburb north of Worcester, from 1823 until his
Jabez Allies (1787–1856) a
Worcestershire folklorist and antiquarian
lived at Lower Wick, now part of Worcester.
Sir Charles Hastings
Sir Charles Hastings (1794–1866), British Medical Association
founder, lived in
Worcester for most of his life.
Revd Thomas Davis, a hymn-writer born in
Worcester in 1804, was an
ancestor of the Duchess of Cambridge.
Philip Henry Gosse, naturalist, was born in
Worcester in 1810.
Mrs. Henry Wood (1814–1887), writer, was born in Worcester.
Alexander Clunes Sheriff (1816–1878), City Alderman, businessman and
Liberal MP, grew up in Worcester.
Edward Leader Williams
Edward Leader Williams (1828–1910), designer of the
Canal, was born and brought up at
Diglis House in Worcester, with his
brother, landscape artist
Benjamin Williams Leader
Benjamin Williams Leader (1831–1923).
Thomas Brock (1847–1922), sculptor, best known for the London
Victoria Memorial, was born in
Worcester in 1847.
Hospital is in a road named after him.
Vesta Tilley (1864–1952), music hall performer who adopted this
stage name aged 11, was born in Worcester. She became a noted male
Edward Elgar was born in 1857 in Broadheath, just outside
Worcester, and he lived in the city from the age of two. His father
ran a music shop in High Street; a statue of Elgar stands near the
original site. His early musical career was based around the city, and
his first major work was commissioned for the Three Choirs Festival
William Morris, Lord Nuffield (1877–1963), founder of Morris Motors
Limited and philanthropist, spent the first three years in Worcester.
Geoffrey Studdert Kennedy
Geoffrey Studdert Kennedy (1883–1929, "Woodbine Willy"), poet and
author, was Vicar of St Paul's Church. As an army chaplain in the
First World War
First World War he would hand out Woodbine cigarettes to men in the
Ernest Payne (1884–1961) was born in
Worcester and rode for St Johns
Cycling Club, winning a gold medal in team pursuit at the 1908 Summer
Olympics in London.
Sheila Scott (1922–1988), aviator, was born in Worcester.
Louise Johnson (1940–2012), biochemist and protein crystallographer,
was born in Worcester.
Timothy Garden, Baron Garden (1944–2007), Air Marshal and Liberal
Democrat politician, was born in Worcester.
Dave Mason (born 1946), musician, singer, songwriter and guitarist,
was born in Worcester.
Lee Cornes (born 1951), comedian and actor known for roles in
Blackadder, The Young Ones and Bottom, was born in Worcester.[citation
David McGreavy (born 1951, the "Monster of Worcester"), lived and
committed child murders in Worcester.
Stephen Dorrell (born 1952), English Conservative politician and
government member, was born in Worcester.
Karl Hyde (born 1957), English musician, frontman of trance group
Underworld was born in Worcester.
Donncha O'Callaghan (born 1979), Irish
Rugby Union player. Joined
Worcester Warriors 2015 from
Munster Rugby Irish and British and Irish
Kit Harington (born 1986), actor, lived in
Worcester attended Chantry
High School and
Worcester Sixth Form College. He plays Jon Snow in
Game of Thrones.
List of Bishops of Worcester
Worcester City Art Gallery & Museum
Jewish Community of Worcester
^ The Elgar Trail. ELGAR. Retrieved on 2 August 2013.
^ City of Worcester. "The First Settlers".
Worcester City Council
^ City of Worcester. "Vertis—The Roman Industrial Town, 1st–4th
Worcester City Council
Worcester City Council (Worcester), 2005.
^ Roman Britain. "Vertis".
^ a b City of Worcester. "The Late Roman and Post-Roman Settlement,
4th Century A.D.–A.D. 680".
Worcester City Council
Worcester City Council (Worcester),
Theodor Mommsen (ed.). Historia Brittonum, VI.
Composed after AD 830. (in Latin) Hosted at Latin Wikisource.
^ Ford, David Nash. "The 28 Cities of Britain" at Britannia. 2000.
^ Newman, John Henry & al. Lives of the English Saints: St.
German, Bishop of Auxerre, Ch. X: "Britain in 429, A. D.",
p. 92. James Toovey (London), 1844.
^ "Civic Heralrdy of
England and Wales – Severn Valley and the
Marches". civicheraldry.co.uk. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
^ Atkin, Malcolm (1998). Cromwell's Crowning Mercy: The Battle of
Worcester 1651. Barnsley: Pen and Sword. pp. 158–9.
Worcester glove-making". BBC. Retrieved 18 January 2011.
^ "BMA – Our history". British Medical Association. Retrieved 8
^ "University demolition work starts". BBC News. 3 January 2008.
Retrieved 26 January 2010.
^ University of Worcester, The Infirmary
^ "History of
Worcester Royal Infirmary to Be Brought Back to Life".
University of Worcester. 5 November 2009. Retrieved 8 January
^ The Buildings of
England – Worcester, Penguin, 1968
^ Lauren Rogers (21 September 2007). "Beaten Tory Keeps A Low
^ "Election 2008
Worcester council". BBC News Online. 19 April 2008.
Retrieved 8 January 2010.
^ "Michael Foster: Electoral history and profile". The Guardian.
London. Retrieved 8 January 2010.
^ Guildhall –
Worcestershire – England. British
Listed Buildings. Retrieved on 2 August 2013.
^ "Extreme weather in
Herefordshire and Worcestershire". BBC. 20
September 2010. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
^ Hill, Amelia (20 December 2010). "Chill record:
Pershore encounters drop to -19C". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 14
^ a b http://en.tutiempo.net/climate/united-kingdom.html
^ "Averages for Worcester". msn.
^ "SWJCS GREEN BELT REVIEW July 2010" (PDF).
^ "Green belt statistics - GOV.UK". www.gov.uk.
^ "Census 2001 – Profiles – Worcester". Statistics.gov.uk. 13
February 2003. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved
27 September 2010.
Worcester Town Profile" (PDF).
^ "National Statistics Online – Population Size". Statistics.gov.uk.
8 January 2004. Archived from the original on 29 July 2010. Retrieved
27 September 2010.
^ a b "Census 2001 – Profiles – Worcester". Statistics.gov.uk. 13
February 2003. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved
27 September 2010.
United Reformed Church
United Reformed Church official website
^ "The 'Hare Krishna' movement". BBC
Hereford & Worcester. 12 July
2006. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
^ Chambers Dictionary, 12th edition.
^ "Spirit of Enterprise Exhibition – Glove Making". Worcester
Museums and Galleries.
^ Michael Grundy (21 June 2010). "This week in 1980".
Retrieved 8 January 2013.
Worcester Porcelain Museum".
Worcester Porcelain Museum. Retrieved
27 September 2010.
^ Morganite Crucible Archived 1 August 2015 at the Wayback Machine.
^ "Mazak History". Yamazaki Mazak Corporation. Retrieved 29 March
^ "Kays Heritage Group". Kays Heritage Group. 19 May 2012. Retrieved 8
^ "At least £500000 to be pumped into sprucing up
Worcester News. December 2014. Retrieved 4 June 2017.
^ Jones, Kath (2006). Keep right on to the end of the road. Cambridge:
Vanguard. p. 68. ISBN 9781843862857.
^ "Church of St Helen, Worcester, Worcestershire". British Listed
^ "National Sustainability Award". June 2012.
^ "CIBSE Building Performance Awards". 2013.
^ "Worcester's Gheluvelt Park given listed status". 2015.
^ "no 10, the Elgar Brothers' music shop. Its location is commemorated
in a plaque on a shop front unveiled in 2003" (PDF). The Elgar Route
– A walk around Elgar's Worcester. Visitworcestershire.org.
^ Fraser, Antonia (1973). Cromwell Our Chief of Men. p. 387.
^ Richard Morriss The Archaeology of Railways, 1999 Tempus Publishing,
^ Richard Morriss The Archaeology of Railways, 1999 Tempus Publishing,
Stroud. Plate 93 p147
^ "Travelling to Worcestershire". Visit Worcestershire. Herefordshire
Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce. 2017. Retrieved 4 June
^ County council leadership votes through park and ride axe, Worcester
News, 10 June 2014.
Worcester Park and Ride".
Worcestershire County Council.
^ Tim Whittle: Fuelling the Wars - PLUTO and the Secret Pipeline
Network 1936 to 2015 published 2017 p223. ISBN 9780992855468
Worcester Hockey Club". worcesterhockey.co.uk. Retrieved 17 October
Three Choirs Festival
Three Choirs Festival – Programme & Tickets". Retrieved 18
Worcester Festival". Retrieved 18 July 2014.
^ 'New talent to shine'
Worcester Standard. 1 November 2012. Retrieved
16 September 2013.
^ "Worcester's Victorian Christmas Fayre".
Worcester News. 28 November
2012. Retrieved 18 July 2014.
Worcester Beer, Cider and Perry Festival".
Cider and Perry Festival. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
^ James Connell (15 August 2011). "Cheers! Beer festival is the
biggest and best yet".
Worcester News. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
^ "Ann Julia Kemble Hatton (1764-1848)". Literary Heritage West
Midlands. Retrieved 8 January 2013.
^ Maitland, Sarah (1986). Vesta Tilley. London, UK: Virago Press.
p. 14. ISBN 0-86068-795-3.
^ a b "About Us
Worcester Live. Retrieved 8 January
^ "Marr's Bar". Marr's Bar. 30 August 2012. Retrieved 8 January
^ "Royal Institute of British Architects". Royal Institute of British
Architects. Retrieved 7 January 2013.
^ "Planet MU Records Limited". Companies House. Retrieved 4 June
^ Lauren Rogers (31 January 2008). "City to fight US twin 'snub'".
^ Richard Vernalls (26 February 2009). "
Worcester could be twinned
with Gaza City".
Worcester News. Retrieved 27 February 2009.
^ James Connell (10 March 2009). "Gaza twinning the decision is in".
Worcester News. Retrieved 9 July 2009.
^ ODNB entry retrieved 21 February 2016
John Britton; et al. (1814), "City of Worcester", Worcestershire,
England and Wales, 15, London: J. Harris
"Worcester", Black's Picturesque Tourist and Road-book of
Wales (3rd ed.), Edinburgh: Adam and Charles Black, 1853
"Worcester", Great Britain (4th ed.), Leipsic: Karl Baedeker, 1897,
Atkin, Malcolm (1998). Cromwell's Crowning Mercy: The Battle of
Worcester 1651. Barnsley: Pen and Sword.
Baker, Nigel; Holt, Richard (1996). "The City of
Worcester in the
Tenth Century". In Brooks, Nicholas; Cubitt, Catherine. St. Oswald of
Worcester : Life and Influence. London, UK:
Press. ISBN 9780567340313.
Media related to
Worcester at Wikimedia Commons
Wikisource has the text of a 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article
Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Worcester.
Worcester City Council
History of the City of Worcester
Worcester at Curlie (based on DMOZ)
Districts of the West Midlands Region
Telford and Wrekin
Nuneaton and Bedworth
Cities of the United Kingdom
Brighton and Hove
Kingston upon Hull
Newcastle upon Tyne