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The ground is all wett and marshy but there are severall little Channells runs into it which by boats people go up to this place; when you enter the mouth of the Mer it looks formidable and its often very dangerous by reason of sudden winds that will rise like Hurricanes...." The town is still accessible by water, connected to the river Nene by King's Dyke which forms part of the Nene-Ouse Navigation link.
Moorings can be found at Ashline Lock alongside the Manor Leisure Centre's cricket and football pitches.
The population falling within the Union at the 1831 census had been 20,934 — with its parishes ranging in size from Washingley (population 31) to Peterborough St John the Baptist (5,511).
The average annual poor-rate expenditure for the period 1833-5 had been £9,720 or 9s.3d. A new Peterborough Union workhouse was erected in 1836 to the north side of Thorpe Road in Peterborough.
Despite the proximity of Peterborough, Whittlesey is in the Diocese of Ely.
Until it was drained in 1851, nearby Whittlesey Mere was a substantial lake surrounded by marsh.
A parliamentary Report of 1777 recorded Peterborough City and Hamlets as having a workhouse with accommodation for up to 110 inmates.
The two parishes of St Mary's and St Andrew's were combined for administrative purposes by the Whittlesey Improvement Act of 1849.Whittlesea railway station, using the town name's older spelling, is on the Ely to Peterborough Line (historically the Great Eastern Line), with direct trains to Cambridge, Birmingham, Liverpool, Leicester, Stansted Airport, Ely, Ipswich and Peterborough. Excavations of nearby Flag Fen indicate thriving local settlements as far back as 1000 BC.At Must Farm quarry, a Bronze Age settlement is described as 'Britain's Pompeii' due to its relatively good condition.The union operated children's cottage homes at Alderman's Drive and at Midland Road, Peterborough. In 1924, Aldermans' drive housed up to 10 children, with Miss M. Midland Road could accommodate 22 children who were in the care Miss A. The entrance block contained the porter's lodge, board-room, offices etc.with the dining hall and kitchens at the centre rear.The site location and layout are shown on the 1888 OS map below. Later additions included a Master's house in 1913 at the south-east of the entrance block, new infirmary in about 1920 (later known as St John's Hospital) to the east of the workhouse, and a nurses' home in 1932-2 to the east of the Master's house. Six acres of land and the former workhouse were acquired in March 1972 by the Secretary of State for Health on behalf of the Regional Health Authority, who then demolished the older buildings.On the cleared site a purpose-built geriatric hospital (Fenland House) was built 1976-80 as an annexe to Peterborough District Hospital.At Must Farm at least five homes of 3,000 years in age have been found along with Britain's most complete prehistoric wooden wheel, dating back to the late Bronze Age.In more recent times Whittlesey was linked to Peterborough in the west and March in the east by the Roman Fen Causeway, probably built in the 1st century AD, and Roman artefacts have been recovered at nearby Eldernell.