Sunday, 19 July 2009

Lands End: Place in Bernard Cornwell's Saxon Series

Land's End (Cornish name: Penn an Wlas) is a headland on the Penwith peninsula, located near Penzance in Cornwall, England, United Kingdom.

Fishermen cottages at Penwith
It is the most westerly tip of the southern mainland (for Great Britain as a whole it is Corrachadh Mòr, Ardnamurchan, Scotland which is 22 miles (35 km) further west). It is often thought to be the most southerly point in the British mainland, but that honour in fact falls to Lizard Point, a few miles to the south-east.

Most Southerly Point, Lizard Point

Visible from Land's End is the Longships Lighthouse. The Longships, a few miles out, is a serpentine and quartz island. Offshore, midway between Land's End and the Isles of Scilly, is the supposed location of the mythical lost land of Lyonesse, referred to in Arthurian literature.

Lands End Looking North

The name has a particular resonance because it is so often used in outlining the length of Britain when races, walks and charitable events take place between Land's End and the Scottish village John o' Groats (the most north-easterly settlement in mainland Britain, 838 miles (1,349 km) distant by road). The phrase Land's End to John o' Groats is used both as a literal journey and as a metaphor for great or all-encompassing distance, similar to the American phrase coast to coast.

In 1769 The Antiquarian, William Borlase wrote that:
"Of this time we are to understand what Edward I. says (Sheringham. p. 129.) that Britain, Wales, and Cornwall, were the portion of Belinus, elder son of Dunwallo, and that that part of the Island, afterwards called England, was divided in three shares, viz. Britain, which reached from the Tweed, Westward, as far as the river Ex; Wales inclosed by the rivers Severn, and Dee; and Cornwall from the river Ex to the Land's-End".

In 1987 Peter de Savary purchased Land’s End. He had two new buildings erected and much of the present theme park development was instigated by him.
The first and Last house, Lands End Cornwall
He sold both Land's End and John o' Groats for an undisclosed sum to businessman Graham Ferguson Lacey in 1991.
The current owners purchased Land’s End in 1996 and formed a company named Heritage Attractions Limited.

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