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The remains of its pill boxes can still be seen along the coast, and south through Ilminster and Chard.A number of decoy towns were constructed in Somerset in World War II to protect Bristol and other towns, at night.Adopted as the motto in 1911, the phrase is taken from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle.Somerset was a part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex, and the phrase refers to the wholehearted support the people of Somerset gave to King Alfred in his struggle to save Wessex from Viking invaders.Somerset settlement names are mostly Anglo-Saxon in origin, but some hill names include Brittonic Celtic elements.For example, an Anglo-Saxon charter of 682 refers to Creechborough Hill as "the hill the British call Cructan and the Anglo-Saxons call Crychbeorh".The first known use of Somersæte is in the law code of King Ine who was the Saxon King of Wessex from 688 to 726, making Somerset along with Hampshire, Wiltshire and Dorset one of the oldest extant units of local government in the world.The Old English name is used in the motto of the county, Sumorsǣte ealle, meaning "all the people of Somerset".
Drums of oil were also ignited to simulate the effect of a blazing city or town, with the aim of fooling subsequent waves of bombers into dropping their bombs on the wrong location.
Farming continued to flourish, however, and the Bath and West of England Society for the Encouragement of Agriculture, Arts, Manufactures and Commerce was founded in 1777 to improve farming methods.
Despite this, 20 years later John Billingsley conducted a survey of the county's agriculture in 1795 and found that agricultural methods could still be improved.
Bristol began as a town on the Gloucestershire side of the Avon, however as it grew it extended across the river into Somerset.
In 1373 Edward III proclaimed "that the town of Bristol with its suburbs and precincts shall henceforth be separate from the counties of Gloucester and Somerset ... The present-day northern border of Somerset (adjoining the counties of Bristol and Gloucestershire) runs along the southern bank of the Avon from the Bristol Channel, then follows around the southern edge of the Bristol built-up area, before continuing upstream along the Avon, and then diverges from the river to include Bath and its historic hinterland to the north of the Avon, before meeting Wiltshire at the Three Shire Stones on the Fosse Way at Batheaston.