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Mayor offers historical perspective at Littleport pub/restaurant relaunch

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The Mayor of Ely, Cllr Richard Morgan, did his homework to offer a historic – and warm – welcome at the reopening of an east Cambridgeshire pub/restaurant.

The Mayor of Ely, Cllr Richard Morgan provided the new owners of the Swan on the River with a delightful historical insight into Littleport, often dubbed England’s largest village.

Cllr Morgan was invited to the pre-launch of the newly refurbished Swan on the River at Littleport last night (Wednesday).

The Swan on the River achieved its 15 minutes of fame in 2021 when it was home for the finish line of the University Boat race and from where presentations took place. It attracted a worldwide audience of millions.

The Mayor of Ely, Cllr Richard Morgan provided the new owners of the Swan on the River with a delightful historical insight into Littleport, often dubbed England’s largest village.

But at its re-opening, and rather than a few words of welcome to the new owners, Cllr Morgan provided the new owners with a delightful historical insight into Littleport, often dubbed England’s largest village.

Here is what he said:

“Ladies and gentlemen, fellow ‘gastronauts’ and imbibers, welcome to the re-opening of The Swan on The River, Littleport.

“I am very grateful to Hannah Vivekananthan, for inviting me here to this pre-launch evening.

The Mayor of Ely, Cllr Richard Morgan provided the new owners of the Swan on the River with a delightful historical insight into Littleport, often dubbed England’s largest village.

“Littleport is home to an impressive network of streams developed to control flooding in the lowland areas of north-east Cambridgeshire – 6 miles northeast of Ely and 6 miles southeast of Welney.

“With an Old English name of Litelport, the village was worth 17,000 eels a year to the Abbots of Ely in 1086.

The Mayor of Ely, Cllr Richard Morgan provided the new owners of the Swan on the River with a delightful historical insight into Littleport, often dubbed England’s largest village.

“The legendary founder of Littleport was King Canute. A fisherman gave the king shelter one night, after drunken monks had denied him hospitality. After punishing the monks, he made his host the mayor of a newly founded village.

“The Littleport Riots of 1816 broke out after war veterans from the Battle of Waterloo returned home, only to find they could get no work and grain prices had gone up. They took to the streets and smashed shops and buildings until troops were brought in.

The Mayor of Ely, Cllr Richard Morgan provided the new owners of the Swan on the River with a delightful historical insight into Littleport, often dubbed England’s largest village.

“Fortunately, we live in more tranquil times although we still have many problems still to solve.

“Here at the Swan on the River I am confident that the new landlords will be more like the fishermen of old who gave Canute drink, food, and shelter, rather than those drunken monks of Ely who denied him hospitality.

The Mayor of Ely, Cllr Richard Morgan provided the new owners of the Swan on the River with a delightful historical insight into Littleport, often dubbed England’s largest village.

“As Mayor of Ely I can vouch that the monks have long gone and that peace and prosperity may once again be had along our great waterfront of the River Great Ouse with the re-opening of The Swan on The River, Littleport.”

NOTE: Photos courtesy of City of Ely Council and Swan on the River Facebook 

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