Kingston upon Hull
Learn more about Kingston upon Hull
|City of Kingston upon Hull|
|Status:||Unitary, City (1897)|
|Region:||Yorkshire and the Humber|
|Ceremonial County:||East Riding of Yorkshire|
|Admin. HQ:||Kingston upon Hull|
- Total (2005 est.)
3,486 / km²
Hull City Council
|Leadership:||Leader & Cabinet|
|Executive:||Liberal Democrats (council NOC)|
|MPs:||Alan Johnson, Diana Johnson, John Prescott|
Kingston upon Hull, more usually referred to simply as Hull, is a city and unitary authority in the East Riding of Yorkshire. It is located near the east coast of Northern England, in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the north bank of the Humber estuary and on both sides of the River Hull, which flows into the Humber.
The original settlement of Wyke, or Wyke-Upon-Hull, was established in 1291 by the then Archbishop of York, John Wyke by force of arms. He annexed the existing town of Myton, a town on the north bank of the River Humber that derived its income from fishing & as a port, in the area now known as Corporation Pier, & the half square mile area of marsh land to its north. 
The locals resented this and resolutely refused to call their town Wyke, instead using Hull, the name of the river which runs into the Humber there. The name & title of the city did not officially become "the City & County of Kingston upon Hull" until 1897.  The port was used by the abbey for distribution of its wool. The location became strategically important to the English in conflict with the Scottish in the late 13th century. Edward I selected the site for its ideal proximity to his kingdom's adversary. Kingston-Upon-Hull was an advantageous port from which to launch his campaigns, sufficiently deep within the boundaries of England to afford security. The associated royal charter, dated April 1, 1299 remains preserved in Hull's Guildhall Archives.
The charter of 1440, constituted Kingston upon Hull a corporate town and granted that instead of a Mayor and Bailiffs there should be a Mayor, Sheriff and twelve Aldermen who should be Justices of the Peace within the town and county.
Hull was a major port during the Later Middle Ages and its merchants traded widely to ports in Northern Germany, the Baltics and the Low Countries. Wool, cloth and hides were exported, and timber, wine, furs and dyestuffs imported. Leading merchant, Sir William de la Pole, helped establish a family prominent in government. Bishop John Alcock, founder of Jesus College and patron of the grammar school in Hull, hailed from another Hull mercantile family.
Between the 13th and 16th century, Hull was the second port of England (after London), and a sophisticated metropolitan international city.
Hull maritime history is thought to have been a key factor in the transmission of syphilis: the earliest evidence of syphilis in medieval Europe is at the site of an Augustinian Friary (destroyed 1539) in Hull.
This friary provided medical care including palliative care and burial rites for "wretched souls". Carbon-dated skeletons from the Friary display bone lesions typical of tertiary venereal syphilis. This casts doubt on the New World origin theory of syphilis.
Examination of the friary site revealed bone lesions on two/thirds of the skeletons examined, including those closest to the altar, a position reserved for richer and most generous patrons of the order. This suggests that the privileged of Hull had had syphilis for a long time. <ref>Syphilis, History Focal, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref>
Carbon dated skeletons of monks who lived in the friary showed bone lesions typical of venereal syphilis. The find in Hull disputes the assertion that syphilis came from the New World through contact of Christopher Columbus's crew with American natives. <ref>Secrets of the Dead Interview, The Syphilis Enigma, PBS, retrieved 9 November 2006</ref>
Hull grew in prosperity and importance during the 16th and early 17th centuries. This is reflected in the construction of a number of fine, distinctively decorated brick buildings of which Wilberforce House (now a museum dedicated to the life of William Wilberforce) is a rare survival.
In 1642 Hull's governor Sir John Hotham declared for the Parliamentarian cause and later refused Charles I entry into the City and access to its large arsenal. He was declared a traitor and despite a parliamentarian pardon was later executed. (He was actually executed by the parliamentarians, not the royalists, when he tried to change sides.) This series of events was to precipitate the English Civil War since Charles I felt obliged to respond to the 'insult' by besieging the City, an event that played a critical role in triggering open conflict between the Parliamentarian and Royalist causes. For some of the Civil War, and for some of the Interregnum, Robert Overton was governor of Hull.
Hull developed as a British trade port with mainland Europe, Whaling until the mid 19th Century and deep sea fishing until the Anglo-Icelandic Cod War 1975-1976, which resolution led to a major decline in Hull's economic fortune. At one stage it was the "third port" in England, due largely to the success of the Wilson Line of Hull shipping firm, the largest privately owned shipping concern at that time. The significance of this successful firm in Hull is seen by statues in the city centre to the brothers that ran it, it was only when it was sold to John Ellerman in 1915 that it declined and was in correlation with the decline of Hull as a port to rival London and Liverpool. It remains a major port dealing mostly with bulk commodities and commercial road traffic by RORO ferry to Rotterdam and Zeebrugge on mainland Europe. The city remains a UK centre of food processing.
Because of its docks, its industry, and proximity to continental Europe the city sustained particularly significant damage in bombing raids during the Second World War and much of the city centre was devastated. In fact, Hull was the most severely bombed of any city outside London during WWII. Of a population of approximately 320,000 at the beginning of World War II, approximately 192,000 were made homeless as a result of bomb destruction or damage. It is reported that 90% of all the buildings in Hull were damaged or destroyed. The most severe of the bombing occurred during 1941. Little was known about this destruction by the rest of the country at the time since most of the radio and newspaper reports did not reveal Hull by name but referred to it as a "North-East" town.  Most of the centre was rebuilt in the years following the war, but it is only recently that the last of the "temporary" car parks that occupied the spaces of destroyed buildings have been redeveloped.
Kingston upon Hull is near the east coast of the United Kingdom, on the northern bank of the Humber estuary. The city centre is close to the Humber, making the city roughly semi-circular in shape. The city is surrounded by the rural East Riding of Yorkshire, making it quite isolated from many of the large cities of the United Kingdom, when compared to the large conurbations of West Yorkshire for example.
Much of Hull lies at or below sea level. The Hull Tidal Surge Barrier is at the point where the River Hull joins the Humber Estuary and is lowered at times when unusually high tides are expected. It is used between 8 and 12 times per year and protects approximately 10,000 people from flooding. <ref>Hull Tidal Surge Barrier - Facts and Figures, Environment Agency website, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref> Due to its low level, Hull is expected to be at increasing levels of risk from flooding due to global warming.<ref>Yorkshire's grim future: Fires, floods and drought, Yorkshire Post Today, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref>
Hull's administrative status has changed several times. It was a county borough within the East Riding of Yorkshire from 1889 and in 1974 it became a non-metropolitan district of Humberside. When that county was abolished in 1996 it was made a unitary authority.
The governing body of the city is now Hull City Council. The council was designated as the UK's worst performing authority in both 2004 and 2005<ref>Council is worst in the country, BBC News Online, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref>.
Hull is twinned with:
- Image:Flag of Sierra Leone.svg Freetown, Sierra Leone
- Image:Flag of Japan (bordered).svg Niigata, Japan
- Image:Flag of the United States.svg Raleigh, North Carolina, USA
- Image:Flag of Iceland.svg Reykjavík, Iceland
- Image:Flag of the Netherlands.svg Rotterdam, Netherlands
- Image:Flag of Poland (bordered).svg Szczecin, Poland
There are two large shopping centres in Hull - the Prospect Centre and Princes Quay Shopping Centre, the latter of which is built on stilts in the former Princes Dock. There is also the indoor Trinity Market featuring around fifty stalls. On completion, the new St. Stephens development will also become home to several large stores.
This is a chart of trend of regional gross value added of Kingston-upon-Hull at current basic prices published (pp.240-253) by Office for National Statistics with figures in millions of British Pounds Sterling.
|Year||Regional Gross Value Added1||Agriculture2||Industry3||Services4|
1 Components may not sum to totals due to rounding
2 includes hunting and forestry
3 includes energy and construction
4 includes financial intermediation services indirectly measured
According to the 2001 UK census, Hull had a population of 253,400, a decline of 5.3% since the 1991 UK census. The population figure has subsequently been re-estimated to 249,100 as of July 2005.<ref>Quinary age groups and sex for local authorities in the United Kingdom; estimated resident population; Mid-2005 Population Estimates, National Statistics Online, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref>
Kingston upon Hull is home to the University of Hull, which was founded in 1927. There are 16,000 students in attendance<ref>Facts and Figures, University of Hull webpage, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref>. Associated with the University is the Hull York Medical School (HYMS), which took its first intake of students in 2003 as a part of the British Government's attempts to train more doctors.
The University of Lincoln grew out of the University of Humberside, a former polytechnic which was based in Hull. Through the 1990s, the focus of the institution moved to nearby Lincoln, where the administrative headquarters and management moved in 2001. Since then the main campus has been sold to the University of Hull and now contains their Business School and the Hull York Medical School. The University of Lincoln retains a small campus in Hull city centre.
Hull has had low examination success rates for many years and was often found near the bottom of Government league tables. This, however, is a problem found that many large inner-city Local Education Authorities have. In 2006, Hull’s secondary schools’ examination succession rate rocketed by 75% from 28.9% of pupils achieving 5 or more GCSEs with grades of C or higher in 2004 to more than 50%, bringing Hull close to the national average. This was partly due to a major restructuring of Hull's secondary education system, which involved several closures and mergers, and the construction of an entirely new school.
Hull is in the Diocese of York and has a Suffragan Bishop. The city reputedly has the lowest church attendance in the United Kingdom.<ref>Empty pews full agendas, Sojourners Magazine, Nov/Dec 2001 by Martin Wroe, retrieved 9 November.</ref>
Unlike many other ancient English cities, Hull has no cathedral. It does, however, contain Holy Trinity Church, which is one of the largest parish church in England when floor area is the measurement for comparison. Other churches, such as St. Nicholas' in Great Yarmouth are larger when other measurements are taken. The church dates back to about 1300<ref>About Holy Trinity, Holy Trinity website, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref> and contains some of the finest medieval brick-work in the country, particularly in the transepts.
 Transport and infrastructure
The main route into and out of Hull by road is the M62 motorway, which is one of the main east-west routes in northern England. It provides a link to the cities of Liverpool, Manchester and Leeds as well as the rest of the country via the UK motorway network. The motorway itself ends some distance from the city; the rest of the way is along the A63. This is because the motorway is intended to serve the wider East Yorkshire area, rather than the city of Hull specifically. The east-west route forms a small part of the European road route E20.
Transport within the city is provided by two main bus operators: Stagecoach in Hull and East Yorkshire Motor Services. A smaller operator, Alpha Bus and Coach, provides one of the two Park and Ride services in the city, whilst East Yorkshire Motor Services provide the other. Generally, routes within the city are operated by Stagecoach and those which leave the city are operated by EYMS.
The new St Stephens development will integrate Hull's bus and railway stations into one structure. The combination is expected to see 24,000 people passing through each day<ref>Transport, St. Stephens, Hull, St. Stephens website, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref>. The development will also include shopping and leisure facilities along with car parking space. It is currently under construction and is expected to be completed in 2007 at a cost of £160 million.
P&O Ferries provide daily overnight ferry services from King George Dock in Hull to Zeebrugge and Rotterdam. Services to Rotterdam are worked by ferries Pride of Rotterdam and Pride of Hull, the largest ferries operating in the United Kingdom.
The nearest airport is in Lincolnshire, Humberside Airport, which mostly provides charter flights and also has four KLM scheduled flights to Amsterdam each day. Doncaster/Sheffield airport is within one hour's drive of the city and provides low cost flights to many European destinations.
Hull has the most 20 miles per hour zones in the UK, in an attempt to increase safety in its residential areas.
Hull is close to the Humber Bridge, which provides road links to destinations south of the Humber. The bridge was constructed between 1972 and 1981 and at the time was the longest single-span suspension bridge in the world. It is now fourth in the list<ref>Longest bridges - Suspension Bridges, Pub Quiz Help, retrieved 9 November 2006. Note: lists some incomplete bridges.</ref>. Prior to construction of the bridge those wishing to cross the Humber could either take a ferry or travel inland as far as Goole.
 Telephone system
Hull is the only city in the UK with its own independent telephone network company, Kingston Communications. Its distinctive cream telephone boxes can be seen across the city. The company was formed in 1902 as a municipal department by the City Council and is a fine example of municipal enterprise. It remains the only locally-operated telephone company in the UK, although it is now part-privatised, with the City Council retaining a 44.9 per cent interest. The proceeds from the sale of shares were used to fund the city's sports venue, the KC Stadium, amongst other things.
Kingston Communications were one of the first telecoms operators in Europe to offer ADSL to business users, and the first in the world to run an interactive television service using ADSL. As such, Hull has a modern telephone infrastructure. Indeed as early as the 1950s, Hull had a very advanced communication system including 'piped' TV and radio which was installed as default into every new council house (of which there were many). Kingston Communications has significant market power in both the dial-up and ADSL broadband internet market in Hull and the adjoining built up areas.
 Crime and policing
Policing in Kingston upon Hull is undertaken by Humberside Police. In October 2006 the force was named (jointly with Northamptonshire Police) as the worst performing police force in the United Kingdom, based on data released from the Home Office<ref>Humberside 'worst police force', BBC News Online, retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref>.
 Museums and Art
Hull has an extensive museum and visitor quarter which includes Wilberforce House, Hull and East Riding Museum, the Ferens Art Gallery, the Maritime Museum, Streetlife and Transport Museum, the Spurn Lightship, the Arctic Corsair and the Deep.
 Classical music
Hull is home to Hull Sinfonietta, the only large professional chamber ensemble in the Humber region, and Hull Philharmonic Orchestra, one of the most accomplished amateur orchestras in the country. Also resident in the city is one of the UK's oldest independent youth orchestras - Hull Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, established in 1952.
Hull seems to be particularly attractive to poets - the Australian author Peter Porter has described it as "the most poetic city in the United Kingdom".
Philip Larkin, arguably the greatest English poet of the mid-20th century, wrote extensively in his poems about Hull. Among poems which contain descriptions of the area are "The Whitsun Weddings", "The Building" (about the Hull Royal Infirmary) and "Here". He also christened the city as "Coventry-by-the-Sea", as he saw many parallels between the two industrial cities.
The city has two main theatres. The larger is Hull New Theatre, which opened in 1939. It features musicals, opera, ballet, drama, children's shows and pantomime. The Hull Truck Theatre is a smaller independent theatre established in 1971. It regularly features plays, notably those written by John Godber.
Hull has a lively nightlife, attracting people from outlying areas as well as inhabitants of the city. Hull has the concentration of pubs and bars expected of any large city in contemporary Britain. The larger nightclubs include Waterfront, Heaven and Hell, Pozition, the Welly, Spiders and, until recently, LA's.
 Popular music
In the 1960s, Hull band Rats were spotted by David Bowie. They changed their name to 'The Spiders From Mars' and became a globally known sensation. Mick Ronson (guitar) was the best known of the band members and he later went on to record with Lou Reed and Bob Dylan. There is a Mick Ronson Memorial Stage in Queens Gardens in Hull.
Current bands from Hull include The Favours and The Paddingtons, who have been signed by former Oasis mentor Alan McGee and have had two singles enter the UK's Top 30. The Adelphi is now one of the most popular venues in the city having hosted many bands, The Stone Roses, Oasis, Travis, and many local bands. Other local music venues remain popular. The Springhead was voted music pub of the year in a national competition and offers live music 7 nights a week. Resident band The Aces were voted top live act by The Times newspaper in August 2005.
Hull had a thriving local punk and ska music scene from the late 1970s and into the 80s. Venues such as the Wellington Club (locally known as the "Welly") often hosted live music. Many bands released locally successful records which received airplay on Radio 1.
Meanwhile, in the world of Jazz and Avant-Garde music, the maverick composer Basil Kirchin (1925-2005) lived and died in Hull.
The city has two rugby league teams. Hull FC are in the Super League who, along with Hull City AFC, play at the Kingston Communications Stadium. Hull Kingston Rovers have been recently promoted to the Super League and play at Craven Park.
New to the City is the Hull Hornets American Football Club, who, as of 5 November 2006, have acquired full member status of the British American Football League and are now eligible to apply for competition in the 2007 regular season.
Hull's daily newspaper is the Hull Daily Mail. The BBC has its new Yorkshire and Lincolnshire regional headquarters at Queen's Gardens, from which the regional news programme Look North is broadcast. Radio services come from BBC Radio Humberside, Viking FM, Magic 1161, the University of Hull's Jam 1575 and Kingstown Radio, the hospital-based radio station, which all broadcast to the city.
The local accent is quite distinctive and noticeably different from the rest of the East Riding; however it is still categorised amongst Yorkshire accents. The most notable feature of the accent is the strong "goat fronting" <ref>A Spectrographic Analysis Of Vowel Fronting In Bradford English, Dominic Watt And Jennifer Tillotson, (Microsoft Word Document), retrieved 9 November 2006.</ref> a word like goat, which is [gəʊt] in standard English and [goːt] across most of Yorkshire, becomes [gɵːt] ("geurt") in and around Hull. Another feature is dropping the H from the start of words, for example Hull is more often pronounced 'Ull in the city. The rhythm of the accent is more like that of North Lincolnshire than that of the rural East Riding, which is due to the large-scale settlement of Lincolnshire peasants in the city during its industrial growth.
An amusing postcard is produced mocking the Hull accent. It lists a number of words and phrases as they are spoken in the city and a 'translation' to the Queen's English. For example, someone in Hull telling you that they had received a fern curl would be communicating the fact that someone had recently telephoned them.
Traditionally a solidly industrial city, many residents are very proud of the city and its traditions. Equally so, many give it credit for its down to earth, working class attitude and friendly atmosphere. Having a certain population of students from all over the country as well as from overseas, the students often enjoy a friendly atmosphere and warm hospitality from the locals. The University of Hull boasts a reputation of being the friendliest university in United Kingdom. Nationally, Hull has always been seen as something of an oddity, being a large city that is isolated in a very rural part of Yorkshire. The rest of the East Riding has always looked upon Hull as a very different entity, and government decisions have taken this into account with things such as post codes, telephone networks and other regional groupings.
Hull's national reputation is also reflected by the positive striving of the Council to improve the city's welfare. However, the city has had poor performance in terms of most socioeconomic indicators in comparison with the rest of the UK. Hull City Council was designated as the UK's worst performing authority in both 2004 and 2005, which the Council are trying to improve with its new 160 million St Stephens project.
As with many cities across the country, areas of Hull are undergoing regeneration. These include the St Stephens and Quay West projects. Quay West (being built on brownfield land) will provide an expansion of the existing Princes Quay shopping centre, incorporating new public spaces, new cafes and restaurants, and leisure facilities.
St. Stephens is being built on the site of the old bus station and is a 52,000 sq m scheme, anchored by a 24 hour superstore, providing shop units, residential areas, as well as a new 'transport interchange'. This will include a new bus station and renovated train station and is said to be the first system in England which integrates Railway, Bus station, leisure and shopping facilities under the same roof. This project is aimed to be completed by the end of 2006. Stores being built include Tesco, H&M and Next.
 People associated with Kingston upon Hull
- Most of the notable people associated with the city can be found in the People from Hull, University of Hull alumni, and People associated with the University of Hull categories.
Other people associated with the city include:
- John Godber, a British playwright, has been Artistic Director of the Hull Truck Theatre Company since 1984.
- JK and Joel, presenters on BBC Radio 1, began their partnership on local radio station Viking FM.
- Jon Culshaw, the impressionist and comedian, also began his career as a DJ on Hull station Viking FM.
- John Alderton, an actor, grew up in Hull and attended Kingston High School.
- Andrew Lincoln, the actor, spent some time growing up in Hull.
- Clive Sullivan, a renowned rugby player, played for both of Hull's rugby teams. The main road into the city from the Humber Bridge is named after him.
 See also
 External links
- WikiTravel Guide
- Hull City Council
- Thisisull.com - Unofficial Local Information
- Hull Business Directory
- Hull Daily Mail
- Holy Trinity church
- Hull Philharmonic Youth Orchestra
- Princes Quay shopping centre
- Quay West Project
- St Stephens Project
- The University of Hull
- Hull nightlife
- Photograph of every public house in the city.
- Gallery of children's paintings on 20 mph signs.
- Hull Fish Trail.
- St. Martin's Scouts Troop (West Hull)
- Hull York Medical School
- Tenfoot City- Hull street magazine
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