Somerton Town in Somerset
Somerton was the ancient capital of Wessex and is situated on the River Cary some 9 miles northwest of Yeovil. Somerton was briefly, around the start of the 14th century, the county town of Somerset and has held a weekly market since the Middle Ages. The main square with its market cross is today an attractive location for visitors. The town currently has a population of just under 5,000. The history of Somerton dates back to the Anglo-Saxon era, when it was an important political and commercial centre. A local legend has it that Ine, a Wessex king, was originally a farmer in Somerton. After the Norman conquest of England the importance of the town declined despite being the former county town of Somerset in the late thirteenth century and early fourteenth century. Despite losing county town status, Somerton then became a market town in the Middle Ages, whose economy was supported by transport systems using the River Parrett, and later rail transport via the Great Western Railway, and by light industries including glove making and gypsum mining.
The nearest source of local information is available from Somerton Tourist Information Point.