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Wheathampstead

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Wheathampstead is a village and civil parish in the City and District of St Albans, in Hertfordshire, England. It is north of St Albans and in the Hitchin and Harpenden parliamentary constituency.The population of the ward of Wheathampstead at the time of the 2001 census was recorded as 6,058. This includes several hamlets in the parish.HistorySettlements in this area were made about 50 BC by Belgic invaders. They moved up the rivers Thames and Lea from what is now Belgium. Evidence for them was found in Devil's Dyke, at the eastern side of Wheathampstead. The Devil's Dyke earthworks are part of the remains of an ancient settlement of the Catuvellauni and thought to have been the tribe's original capital. The capital was moved to Verlamion (which after the Roman conquest the Romans would rename Verulamium, which in turn would become modern St Albans) in about 20 BC. The Devil's Dyke is reputedly where Julius Caesar defeated Cassivellaunus in 54 BC, although this claim is disputed. Some historians suggest that the dyke was part of the same defensive rampart as nearby Beech Bottom Dyke, which, if correct, would make the area one of the largest and most important British Iron Age settlements.
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