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city and district (1991 pop. 166,675), county seat of Lancashire, N England, on the Ribble River. Preston has an active port and is a center of cotton and rayon manufacturing. Some mills have closed, but work has been created in the areas of engineering, as well as aircraft, motor vehicle, industrial machinery, and electrical appliance production. A guild-merchant festival has been held in Preston every 20 years for more than four centuries. One of the oldest administrative regions in England, Preston has sent representatives to Parliament since the 13th cent. It was the scene of a victory by Oliver CromwellCromwell, Oliver
, 1599–1658, lord protector of England. Parliamentary General

The son of a gentry family, he entered Cambridge in 1616 but probably left the next year.
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 in 1648 and of the surrender of the Jacobites after the rising of 1715. The Gothic town hall was completed in 1867 from designs by George Gilbert ScottScott, Sir George Gilbert,
1811–78, English architect. Prominent in the Gothic revival, he designed many public structures. He also directed a vast amount of Gothic restoration work, beginning with renovations of Ely Cathedral (1847) and including Westminster Abbey (where
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. The Harris Museum and Art Gallery is a notable attraction. The city is the birthplace of Richard ArkwrightArkwright, Sir Richard,
1732–92, English inventor. His construction of a machine for spinning, the water frame, patented in 1769, was an early step in the Industrial Revolution.
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 and Francis ThompsonThompson, Francis,
1859–1907, English poet. His poetry, usually on religious subjects, is noted for its brilliant imagery and sonorous language. He was educated for the Roman Catholic priesthood at Ushaw College but in 1877 entered Owens College, Manchester, to study
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a city in Great Britain, in the county of Lancashire, northwestern England. Port in the estuary of the Ribble River, near the point where it flows into the Irish Sea. Population, 97,400 (1971). Important railroad junction. Preston is one of the major centers of the Lancashire textile industrial region, producing cotton, wool, and synthetic fabrics. Industries include airplane and locomotive construction, electrical engineering, leather footwear, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals. Nearby, at Leyland, automobiles are manufacturered.

In the Preston area on Aug. 17, 1648, during the period of the second civil war in the English Bourgeois Revolution of the 17th century, a decisive battle took place between General O. Cromwell’s revolutionary army and the Anglo-Scottish royalists headed by the Duke of Hamilton and M. Langdale. Despite the numerical superiority of the enemy (more than 20,000 men against 9,000), Cromwell took advantage of the lack of coordination between the royalist detachments and used combined infantry-cavalry tactics to rout first Langdale’s English royalists and then Hamilton’s Scottish forces. During his pursuit of the royalist troops, which began on August 19, Cromwell completed the rout of their infantry. The outcome of the battle was the decisive factor in the revolutionary army’s total victory in the second civil war.


a city in NW England, administrative centre of Lancashire, on the River Ribble: developed as a weaving centre (17th--18th centuries); university (1992). Pop.: 184 836 (2001)
References in periodicals archive ?
ENGLAND cricket hero Andrew Flintoff has been awarded the freedom of his home city of Preston.
SNARED JDRUMMER Cheat Clarkson And they filmed the 63-year-old KILTY SECRET J At court, and in band in full Highland regalia, marching with his drum for half an hour with his pals from the City of Preston Pipe Band.
ELLESMERE PORT Eels beat City of Preston 3-0, Richie Williams being the Eels' MVP despite playing with a sprained ankle, but then lost
ASHES hero Andrew "Freddie" Flintoff will be honoured today by his home city of Preston.
City of Preston provided a much tougher test with the game going to a deciding set.
Birmingham's collaboration of French, South African, Polish, Indian and English players has earned a perfect winning record from their first four National League matches so far but they take to the road for the first time this season and travel to Preston's Myerscough College, where they will play City of Preston and Chester & Ellesmere Port Eels.
Why not visit the city of Preston, which is one of the newest cities in England?
He has since been seen in Nottingham and his home city of Preston, where he is thought to have approached two schoolgirls for sex.
The Birmingham side returned from their first away trip of the season with maximum points after wins over City of Preston and Chester & Ellesmere Port Eels to move two points clear of Middlesbrough Mavericks.
Cricket star ANDREW FLINTOFF has asked that all proceeds from the sell-out events to mark him being made a Freeman of his home city of Preston, Lancs be given to Derian House childrens' hospice.