Bridgwater is a market town in Somerset with a population of approximately 36,000.
It is situated, on the edge of the Somerset Levels, in a level and well-wooded country, having to the north the Mendip range and on the west the Quantock hills. The town lies along both sides of the River Parrett, 10 miles (16 km) from its mouth, here crossed by an iron bridge. The town is located between two junctions of the M5 motorway, the southern most of which houses a motorway service station. Bridgwater railway station is on the main railway line between Bristol and Taunton.
Bridgwater is mentioned both in the Domesday Book and in earlier Anglo-Saxon Chronicle dating from around 800, owing its origin as a trade centre to its position at the mouth of the chief river in Somerset.
In a legend of Alfred the Great, he burnt some cakes while hiding in the marshes of Athelney near Bridgwater, after the Danish invasion in 875, while in 878 the major engagement of the Battle of Cynwit may have been nearby at Cannington.
Bridgwater became the first town in Britain to petition the government to ban slavery in 1785.
In 1896, the trade unionists of Bridgwater's brick and tile industry were involved a number of strikes. The Salisbury government sent troops to the town to clear the barricades by force. This was the first use of the Riot Act in the UK in an industrial dispute, and not the UK miner's strikes of the 1980s as is commonly stated.Information & text gathered from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved June 23rd, 2011, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bridgwater