(Image produced from the Ordnance Survey Get-a-map service. Image reproduced with kind permission of Ordnance Survey and Multi Media Mapping)
Fleetwood is located in North West Lancashire, at the mouth of the River Wyre, on the southern shore of Morecambe Bay, the second largest bay in the United Kingdom. The town was founded in the early 1830s by Sir Peter Hesketh, and designed in part by the Victorian architect, Decimus Burton. The old part of Fleetwood is centred around the Mount, the last in a line of sand hills, with the streets radiating outwards, reminiscent of a spider's web.
The town has experienced many ups and downs throughout its existence, especially devastating has been the grievous loss of most of its fishing fleet following the Icelandic Cod Wars in the 1970s and the cutbacks in fishing quotas during the 1980s and 1990s.
Fleetwood is renown worldwide for its tram system. In 1885 it was the first tramway to be electrified in Great Britain, and until recently, Fleetwood was the only UK town where trams ran along the main street.
Tram Sunday (official site here) is another popular event in July of every year drawing both visitors and participants from all over the UK, featuring trams, buses, coaches, cars, and even tanks. This year Tram Sunday will be held on 17th July 2005
On the theme of transport, Fleetwood once held its own Aviation Week from 18-23 October 1909 - the second of its kind to be held in Britain.
Fleetwood is the location for the Fylde Folk Festival, since the early 1980s. The Festival features many national and international acts, encompassing not only music, but also poetry and the Lancashire dialect.
Fleetwood has been the scene for many TV programs and dramas, including The Man from the Pru (starring Jonathan Pryce), Alan Bleasdale's GBH, the BBC's All Quiet on the Preston Front and Hetty Wainthrop Investigates.
Wilfred Owen, the famous War poet, lived in Fleetwood in 1916, at the age of 23. He stayed at 111, Bold Street, whilst he was in charge of the Gunnery Range in Fleetwood (Fleetwood Golf Club is now there) as a Second Lieutenant in the Manchester Regiment. A display about Wilfred Owen can be found in the main bar of the North Euston Hotel
John Lennon also spent his childhood holidays in Fleetwood, returning here on 25 August 1962 when the Beatles played at the Marine Hall.
Fleetwood is also the only place outside the United States where a Confederate States Navy Officer (Commander Arthur Sinclair) was buried after dying on active service.
On 15 July 1922, the UK's first automatic telephone exchange began service in Fleetwood.
Since the early 1980s Fleetwood has held a CAMRA Beer festival in February.
Jane Couch, the world's most famous boxer comes from Fleetwood.
The Freeport Shopping Centre was established in 1994 on the site of the old docks, with a Marina alongside. It enjoys a multi-million pound turnover, attracting shoppers from all over the North-West.
The Regeneration Partnership was set up to help Fleetwood revive after its decline during the 1970s and 1980s. It has, in conjunction with Wyre Borough Council, been successful in winning much needed funding for the town. Civic life in Fleetwood has also revived with the founding of the Fleetwood and District Credit Union 1998.
Further information on Fleetwood and its borough, Wyre, and the county of Lancashire can be found at: