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Coordinates: Landwade is a parish in Cambridgeshire, England, four miles north of Newmarket. One of the smallest parishes in the county, it is only 1 kilometre from north to south and at most 500m from east to west.
The village is crossed by New River (formerly known as Monk's Lode), a small river that flows through Wicken Fen and reaches the River Cam at Upware. The village's name probably derives in part from gewaed an Old English word meaning "ford".
The area around Landwade was occupied in Roman times, and a villa was situated just to the south of the modern parish.
Although it has existed since early medieval times, the parish of Landwade has always been comparatively small. By the late 13th century it consisted of around 300 acres of farmland and around 1400 acres of fen, but boundary changes between 1881 and 1954 reduced it to its present size of only 127 acres. The civil parish was amalgamated with Fordham, Cambridgeshire in 1954, though it is now part of the parish of Exning in Suffolk.
Parishes of its size were often absorbed in the Middle Ages, but Landwade survived thanks to the rebuilding of the church by Walter Cotton (d. after 1434), Lord of the manor, in the 15th century to serve as a burial place for his family. The Manor of Landwade had passed to Sir Thomas Cotton, Knt., of Cotton Hall, Cambs., by virtue of his marriage to Alice, daughter and heiress of John Hastings, Lord of the Manor of Landwade in the 14th century. Landwade Hall, a large house that was partially destroyed by bombs during the Second World War, was the ancestral home of the Cotton family until they moved to Madingley in the 18th century.
Landwade is historically part of Cambridgeshire and has only been part of Suffolk since 1994.
Neighbouring Exning and the northern part of Newmarket were historically a detached island of Suffolk in east Cambridgeshire, and when the detached parts of counties were slowly removed in the 19th century, Exning was allowed to remain in Suffolk by transferring the narrow parish of Newmarket All Saints from Cambridgeshire to Suffolk in 1895 forming a bridge only a few tens of metres wide to attach it to the rest of Suffolk.
In 1974 when the English counties were again adjusted, it was proposed that Newmarket and Exning be moved into Cambridgeshire, but this was voted down by residents in a referendum.
In 1994, further adjustments to the Suffolk-Cambridgeshire border were made and although only small parcels of land were transferred some houses changed county: two people moved from Suffolk to Cambridgeshire, and ten from Cambridgeshire to Suffolk. All of the houses affected were in the estate of Landwade Hall, and Landwade's church was among the buildings transferred to Suffolk.
The church of St Nicholas is privately owned and falls in the grounds of Landwade Hall. Built in the mid 15th century by Walter Cotton, the church contains fine memorials to members of the Cotton family.
- "A History of the County of Cambridge and the Isle of Ely". Victoria County History.
- Clay, John W., F.S.A., editor, The Visitation of Cambridge, 1575 & 1619 by Henry St.George, Richmond Herald, London, 1897, p.21.
- "Landwade". Suffolk Churches.
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