Near to St. Mary’s are the churches of St. Alkmund and St. Julian, the former indebted for its foundation to the piety of Ethelfleda, daughter of Alfred; the latter, also of Saxon origin, to Henry IV., who in 1410, attached it to his new foundation of Battlefield College, raised in memory “of the bloody rout that gave to Harry’s brow a wreath—to Hotspur’s heart a grave.”
The old collegiate church of St. Chad, founded, it is supposed, soon after the subjugation of the country by Offa, and transformed, as tradition alleges, out of one of the palaces of the Kings of Powis, is now a ruin. The modern one, dedicated to the same saint, of whom there is an ancient carved figure in the vestry, is now the fashionable church of the town.
The Abbey Church of St. Peter and St. Paul, built upon the site of a Saxon one of wood, with the abbey ruins and the famous old stone pulpit of the refectory, should also be visited.
In the centre of the Market Square still stands the old Market House, erected in 1595 by the corporation. It has a statue of Richard, Duke of York, father of Edward IV., in an embattled niche in front, and a surcoat, with armorial bearings, moved from the tower of the old Welsh Bridge; also the arms of the town, sculptured in relief.
In the immediate neighbourhood of these relics of antiquity is the recently-erected statue to the great Lord Clive, the Townhall, the Working Man’s Hall, the Music Hall, the public news-room, and a group of other handsome buildings. A passage near the Music Hall leads to the Museum of the Shropshire and North Wales Natural History and Antiquarian Society, which no visitor with time on his hands should neglect to visit. In addition to objects of natural history, it contains others of interest obtained from Wroxeter, and is open daily from ten to four to visitors upon payment of twopence. Portions of the town walls, erected in the reign of Henry III., with one of the ancient towers, are still standing, and form a pleasant walk. But the grand promenade is the Quarry Avenue, which, with Kingsland on the opposite side, is the common property of the inhabitants. The former is a sloping piece of meadow land, intersected by limes, whose intertwining branches make a fretted archway of living green, whilst the latter is the spot where the trade pageant, called Shrewsbury Show, is held. In addition to objects of interest which we have enumerated, our readers will find materials for observation and study for themselves; as a further aid to which, we would commend them to “Sandford’s Guide to Shrewsbury.”
GEOLOGY OF THE DISTRICT.