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Aylesbury

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Founded in Saxon times and the county town since the reign of Henry VIII, Aylesbury today has little to show of its ancient past. The most picturesque part of the town is in the mostly Georgian area around the church, which includes the splendidly refurbished County Museum and Art Gallery, and the new Roald Dahl Children's Gallery.

The main shopping centres are in Friars Square, Hale Leys and the High Street. Dominating the centre of the town is the 12-storey tower of the County Council offices, built in the 1960s and admired by some for its imaginative use of concrete.

The town centre is the Market Square, with its County Hall of 1740 and, hidden behind shops, the magnificent frontage of the King's Head Hotel. Dating from about 1450, its windows include stained-glass commemorating the marriage of Henry VI to Margaret of Anjou in 1445, who are said to have stayed there on their honeymoon.

The Market Square also contains statues of Benjamin Disraeli and John Hampden. Near to the church is Prebendal House, once the home of the radical John Wilkes, MP for Aylesbury from 1757-1760.

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