Westward Ho!

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Did you know that Westward Ho! in Devon is the only town in Britain named after a novel? It is also the only place-name in the country (and one of only two in the world) that uses an exclamation mark. Charles Kingsley , best known now for The Water Babies, published Westward Ho! in 1855, its initial setting the neighbouring community of Bideford in Devon. The novel’s success was harnessed by developers, with Kingsley’s approval: they first built a hotel named after the novel, then villas, the settlement logically taking the hotel's (thus the novel's) name.

Did you know that the oldest golf course in England still in its original setting is that of the Royal North Devon Golf Club near Westward Ho!? It was built on common land in 1864, the layout designed by Old Tom Morris. The oldest English club is actually Blackheath, which can trace its roots back to James I who is said to have brought the game south of the border.

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On this day:
Canterbury Monks Observe Massive Meteor Event - 1178, Battle of Sevenoaks - 1450, 1st British Life Insurance Policy - 1583, Battle of Chalgrove Field - 1643, Johnson Contracts to Produce His Dictionary - 1746, Battle of Waterloo - 1815, Redcoats Drop Breeches - 1823, Staines Air Disaster - 1972, Battle of Orgreave - 1984
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