The original plan of this volume was framed during the editorship of Mr. L. F.
Salzman, F.S.A., and much of the material that it contains was commissioned by
him. The topographical articles, however, incorporate the following features
for which he is not responsible. Under each parish there is a history of each
Nonconformist place of worship and each primary school. In addition the inclosure of the common fields, where effected by statute, is described. While it is
hoped that these features, which in recent years have not formed part of the
topographical articles in the History, will henceforth be permanent, their form
is at present confessedly experimental. Owing to difficulties, which are unlikely
to recur, it has not been possible in this volume to bring the history of charities
down to the date of publication. A somewhat fuller account than usual has,
however, been given of their origins.
Thanks are due to Mr. G. M. G. Woodgate, F.S.A., and the late E. J.
Rudsdale for much assistance, particularly with the history of Wisbech. The
Very Revd. S. J. A. Evans, F.S.A., Dean of Gloucester and formerly Archdeacon of Wisbech, kindly granted access to his own notes. The help given by
the Clerk, Chief Education Officer, and Chief Planning Officer of the Isle of
Ely County Council, the Ministry of Housing and Local Government, Post
Office Headquarters, the Public Relations Officer of the Eastern Region, British
Railways, and the incumbents of several parishes is also gratefully acknowledged.
The sources of the photographic illustrations appear in most cases on the
plates themselves and thanks are returned to all those who gave permission for
their reproduction. The blocks of the two plates facing page 90 and the lower
plate facing page 91, which originally appeared in The Mediaeval Fenland and
The Draining of the Fens by Professor H. C. Darby, were kindly lent by the
Cambridge University Press, who also allowed the plan of Ely Cathedral and
Priory on page 78 to be copied. Messrs. Faber & Faber supplied the block of
Wisbech Market Place facing page 262. The reconstruction of the Ely pulpitum on page 67 appears by kind permission of the Society of Antiquaries of
London. The 19th-century photographs of Wisbech, Elm, and Leverington,
and the print of Wisbech facing page 243 are the property of Wisbech Museum,
and are reproduced through the courtesy of the Curator, Mr. G. R. Stanton.
Finally, the Editor is under many obligations to the Director and Staff of the
National Buildings Record for allowing the use of photographic prints from
their collection and for other assistance.