Leicestershire is a county of gentle landscapes where sheep have grazed for centuries, its topography altered over time by quarrying, mining and fox-hunting. It is criss-crossed by Roman roads, and occupied by picturesque market towns and ancient hilltop settlements as at Burrough and Breedon. There are the ruins of castles and priories, the remnants of the later textile industry, and the evidence of conflicts, from the Norman invasion to the Second World War. The National Forest is now taking root and promising a new prosperity for the former mining communities. Traditional products, including Melton Mowbray pork pies and Stilton cheese blend with cuttingedge industries and the research activities of three major universities. And watching over this developing history are the parish churches and country houses, still an essential aspect of this ancient land.
Stephen Butt is a well known local historian, who presents a weekly local history programme on BBC Radio Leicester. He works in the broadcasting industry as a Senior Broadcast Journalist and holds degrees in Psychology and English Local History. Stephen is also an honorary press officer for the Leicestershire Victoria County History Trust, and the editor of the Leicestershire Archaeological and Historical Society newsletter. He has written many local interest titles for Amberley. He lives in Leicester.