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The Grade II listed Old Court House, built in 1865, is in the town centre on Louth Road.

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Horncastle Canal, based upon the River Bain, was constructed from 1792 and opened in 1802.[28] In 2004 it was suggested[29] that the Horncastle Canal (originally opened in 1802) be renovated with the help of private capital, and promoted as a route for pleasure craft, as has successfully been achieved in other areas. A local kickstart programme raised ₤ for the project.[30]

Flooding also occurred in 2012.[35] A £15 million, 30-year-old proposed flood defence scheme was seen as unlikely to have prevented the 2012 flood, but new means of flood defences are being discussed.[36] An anti-flood pump was installed in 2013.[37]

Although fortified, Horncastle was not on any important Roman roads, which suggests that the River Bain was the principal route of access.

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The great annual horse fair was probably first held in the 13th century. The fair used to last for a week or more every August. In the 19th century it was likely the largest event of its kind in the United Kingdom. The slogan, "Horncastle for horses," was an indication of the town's standing in this trade. George Borrow set some scenes of his semi-autobiographical books, Lavengro and The Romany Rye, at the annual horse fair. The last horse fair was held in 1948.[11]

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Since the late 20th century, the population has increased to 6,815 in 2011, its highest ever. Historically, the civil parish suffered a decline in population from the mid-19th to mid-20th century, as urbanisation and changes in agriculture attracted people to cities where more work was available.

Horncastle is a market town in Lincolnshire, England, 17 miles (27 km) east of the county town of Lincoln. Horncastle had a population of 6,815 at the 2011 Census.[1]

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To find out more, please contact the Horncastle Tourist Information Centre by email or phone 01507 601111

The St Lawrence School is a special needs school with a Lincolnshire-wide intake, and, with St Bernard’s School, Louth, comprises the Lincolnshire Wolds Federation.[22][23]

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Horncastle News provides news, events and sport features from the Horncastle area. For the best up to date information relating to Horncastle and the surrounding areas visit us at Horncastle News regularly or bookmark this page.

In 1894 the Stanhope Memorial, designed by E. Lingen Barker, was erected in the centre of the Market Place in memory of Edward Stanhope (MP). Built of limestone, red sandstone and pink and grey streaked marble, it is a Grade II listed structure.[12]

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Lincolnshire Integrated Voluntary Emergency Service is based at the Boston Road Industrial Estate. The Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust is based in Banovallum House. Mortons of Horncastle is a major national magazine publisher of classic motorcycles, aviation and road transport heritage titles; it is situated at the south of the town on the industrial estate off the A153 (Boston Road).

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Roman Horncastle has become known as Banovallum (i.e. "Wall on the River Bain") – this name has been adopted by several local businesses and by the town's secondary modern school. But, the Roman name for the settlement is not definitely known:[2] Banovallum was suggested in the 19th century through an interpretation of the Ravenna Cosmography, a 7th century list of Roman towns and road-stations. [3] Banovallum may have been Caistor.

The Banovallum School[20] is a non-selective community school serving Horncastle and the surrounding villages; it is a science specialist school on a joint basis with Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School. The most recent Ofsted inspection was in 2010 and judged the school to be overall Grade 2 (good).[21] The school recently added a building with facilities for cookery, woodwork, metalwork, art and music.[citation needed]

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Horncastle Primary School is situated at Bowl Alley Lane.[17]

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The town is susceptible to flooding,[32] notably in 1920 and 1960 – and with three floods occurring between 1981 and 1984.

On 7 October 1960 Horncastle entered the UK Weather Records with a 'Highest 180-min total' rainfall of 178 mm. As of March 2013[update] it still holds the record.[32][38] The water levels are said to have risen 8 feet (2.4 m) as a consequence.[34]

The A158 through Horncastle becomes busy during the summer holidays, as holidaymakers travel between Horncastle and Skegness. To alleviate pressure on the town centre caused by this traffic, a relief road, Jubilee Way, was constructed in the 1970s. Minor roads run from Horncastle to Bardney, Boston (via Revesby), Fulletby and Woodhall Spa.

Horncastle sits at the crossroads of two of Lincolnshire's major roads: the A158 runs west-east, joining the county town of Lincoln with the resort of Skegness on the Lincolnshire coast; the A153 joins Louth in the north with Sleaford and Grantham in the south. These two roads meet at the 'Bull Ring' in the centre of Horncastle.

Horncastle was granted its market charter by the Crown in the 13th century. It was long known for its great August horse fair, an internationally-famous annual trading event which continued to be held until the mid-20th century. It ended after the Second World War, when horses were generally no longer used for agriculture. The town is now known as a centre for the antiques trade.[9][10]