Enfield

/en"feeld'/, n.
1. a borough of Greater London, England. 261,900.
2. a town in N Connecticut. 42,695.

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      town (township), Hartford county, northern Connecticut, U.S., on the Connecticut River at the Massachusetts border. It includes the industrial subdivisions of Thompsonville and Hazardville. The area was settled by a group from Salem, Massachusetts, in 1680 and was named for Enfield, England. A surveyor's error in 1642 placed it in Massachusetts, where in 1683 it became a town. After a long boundary dispute, Enfield was annexed to Connecticut in 1749, but it was not until 1804 that the boundary was finally established. The carpet industry, begun by Orrin Thompson about 1828 at Thompsonville and expanded by a series of mergers, was the economic mainstay until the last mills closed in 1971. The gunpowder industry, developed by Colonel A.G. Hazard (1833), was another early enterprise. Asnuntuck Community College was opened (1972) in Enfield. Area 34 square miles (87 square km). Pop. (1990) 45,532; (2000) 45,212.

 outer borough of London, on its northern perimeter, in the historic county of Middlesex. The eastern part of the borough lies in the valley of the River Lea (Lea, River); the western part is higher and includes the undulating farmland and parkland of Enfield Chase in London's Green Belt. Enfield borough is composed of such areas and historic towns as (from north to south) Botany Bay, Clayhill, Bulls Cross, Hadley Wood, Forty Hill, Enfield Wash, Chase Side, Brimsdown, Enfield, Cockfosters (in part), Ponders End, Bush Hill, Southgate (in part), Winchmore Hill, Lower Edmonton, Palmers Green, New Southgate, Upper Edmonton, and Bowes Park (in part). The borough was formed in 1965 by the amalgamation of the former boroughs of Enfield, Edmonton, and Southgate.

      Enfield and Edmonton, which included Southgate until 1881, were recorded in Domesday Book (AD 1086) and subsequently became royal manors. The town of Enfield was first granted a market in the early 14th century; the market square was created in 1632. The area benefited from the traffic along the old north road and from commerce on the Lea. Faster residential growth in Edmonton and Southgate followed after cheap fares on the suburban railways were introduced for workers in the 1870s.

      St. Andrew's Church, Enfield Town, is mainly a 14th–15th century construction; within it are displayed the brass monument of Joyce Tiptoft (1446) and a memorial to Sir Nicholas Rainton, lord mayor of London in the early 17th century. Edmonton's All Saints Church is a 15th-century structure with traces of Norman work and many old brasses. Another notable edifice is the 16th-century Enfield Grammar School. In Forty Hill stands Forty Hall, a large 17th-century house (now a museum), and in Southgate stands Grovelands (1797), which was designed by architect John Nash (Nash, John) and overlooks a wooded park landscaped by Humphry Repton (Repton, Humphry). The half-timbered, 17th-century Broomfield House in Palmers Green, with its museum and art gallery, was damaged by fire in 1984. Distinguished area residents have included the writers Charles Lamb (Lamb, Charles), Leigh Hunt (Hunt, Leigh), Thomas Hood (Hood, Thomas), and John Keats (Keats, John), who studied and was apprenticed there. The 20th-century poet Stevie Smith (Smith, Stevie) lived in Palmers Green.

      Two main traffic arteries cross the borough and are lined with light manufacturing plants. The earlier developed valley of the (canalized) River Lea has timber yards and associated industries. Enfield also has engineering plants, although the well-known Royal Small Arms Factory that produced the Enfield series of rifles is closed. The borough is well connected to central London by suburban rail lines and the London Underground (subway).

      More than one-tenth of the borough's area is public open space. The New River, an early 17th-century canal, constructed to supply water from Hertfordshire to Clerkenwell, London, remains a scenic element in the district, and landscaping, footpaths, and recreation sites have transformed the Lea valley into a green corridor extending deep into the East End of London. Located throughout the borough are sports and recreation complexes, libraries, and cultural centres. Ethnic minorities, notably South Asians and Afro-Caribbeans, account for about one-fifth of the population. Area 31 square miles (81 square km). Pop. (2001) 273,559.

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Universalium. 2010.

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