10 miles from Bedford, lies the town of Potton.
A large part of the town was destroyed by the 'Great Fire of Potton' in 1783, but fortunately the Grade 1 listed parish church of St Mary's, dating from the 13th Century survived the fire and stands on a small hill, a short distance from the town centre.
Known as 'the Shambles', in the centre of the town is Pottons market. It contains brick buildings, to which the middle building hosts a wooden tower and clock. There is a row of booths that are wooden and the wooden shutters are let down as used as counters. As well as the market which was granted in 1094, horse fairs were also held and reported to be some of the largest fairs in the country.
In 1857 the railway era began and the Sandy and Potton railway opened. 1862 saw Potton's railway station open and served lines between Oxford to Cambridge, but unfortunately this closed in 1968.
A steam engine called the Shannon was built for the Potton to Sandy railway. The engine can still be seen and is housed at the Didcot Railway Centre. The original shed that housed the locomotive is still in existence and is currently on private land, behind Biggleswade Road.
'Shannon Express' Potton's Barbershop Harmony Club, named its male chorus after the locomotive.
Around 1784 and until a company called Newland & Nash bought them out in 1922, Potton had its own brewery. Re-established in 1998, Potton brewing company returned and commenced brewing once more, producing quality ales, such as The Village Bike, Turners Prize Fighter and Shambles. Along the way, the brewery has gone on to win many SIBA and CAMRA quality awards