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Banners go up in Belgrave

Published on Friday, August 5, 2016

A 900-YEAR-OLD village that is now an established and bustling part of the city is getting new lamp-post banners to mark its heritage.

Belgrave, well known for its Golden Mile and Diwali celebrations, is commemorating its rural and agricultural past with a series of black-and-white banner pictures to highlight its village roots.

The banners will also feature colour pictures of present-day Belgrave, as part of a city-wide project to celebrate Leicester’s former village areas and help communities to discover the history on their doorstep.

Belgrave, meaning ‘beautiful grove’, is first mentioned in the Domesday survey of 1086 and was a rural and agricultural community until the 18th century.

As Leicester grew, Belgrave was linked to the city by a horse-drawn tram, which first began operating in 1874. One hundred years later, in 1974, Belgrave village was designated as a conservation area – a status which it continues to hold today.

Cllr Adam Clarke, the city council’s heritage champion, said: “There’s no doubt that Belgrave is a special place. From its traditional past, it has grown to become one of the most diverse parts of our city, welcoming worldwide visitors for our Diwali celebrations each autumn.

“Like other former Leicester villages, we want to celebrate Belgrave’s past and contrast it with some of the built and natural heritage we see in the area today. These banners help us to do this, as well as giving the area a sense of identity and encouraging visitors to explore Belgrave.”

Similar banners have already been installed in the historic former villages of Aylestone, Knighton and Evington, with Humberstone village also soon to be celebrated in this way.

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