The new town of Leamington Spa was established in 1808 but the village of Leamington Priors has existed since medieval times. Both communities took their names from the Leam, the river upon whose banks they grew up. This first full-length history of the town since 1903 traces the evolution of the village, through the spa resort which earnt the right to use the prefix `Royal' after the rare distinction was conferred by Queen Victoria in July 1838, to the thriving modern town of today.
The story of the development of the Spa is a fascinating one and it comprises the centrepiece of this new study. The book examines precisely how the fabric of the town was created and gives due consideration to the major buildings. The people responsible for the transformation of this corner of Warwickshire are introduced to us and the extent of their achievement acknowledged. It was certainly noted at the time by individual residents and visitors such as Charles Dickens, John Ruskin and Nathaniel Hawthorne.