This obviously made it a key target) Thirty-nine people were killed and 138 injured, 47 seriously.
The bombs on this night were dropped mainly in the town centre, Springfield and Moulsham.The GHQ Line part of the British hardened field defences of World War II runs directly through Chelmsford with many pillboxes still in existence to the north and south of the city.In 1199, following the commissioning of a bridge over the River Can by Maurice, Bishop of London, William of Sainte-Mère-Eglise was granted a Royal Charter for Chelmsford to hold a market, marking the origin of the modern town.An under-cover market, operating Tuesday to Saturday, is still an important part of the city centre over 800 years later.The town was given the name of Caesaromagus' (the market place of Caesar), although the reason for it being given the great honour of bearing the Imperial prefix is now unclear – possibly as a failed 'planned town' provincial capital to replace Londinium or Camulodunum.
The remains of a mansio, a combination post office, civic centre and hotel, lie beneath the streets of modern Moulsham, and the ruins of an octagonal temple are located beneath the Odeon roundabout.
Its position on the Londinium – Camulodonum Roman road (the modern A12) ensured the early prosperity of Chelmsford.
Before 1199, there were settlements nearby from ancient times.
The city's name is derived from Ceolmaer's ford which was close to the site of the present High Street stone bridge.
In the Domesday Book of 1086, the town was called Celmeresfort and by 1189 it had changed to Chelmsford.
The king probably lodged at his nearby manor house at Writtle. Their formidable task in Chelmsford was to draft, engross, date, seal and despatch by messengers riding to the farthest corners of the realm, the daily batches of commissions, mandates, letters, orders and proclamations issued by the government not only to speed the process of pacification of the kingdom, but to conduct much ordinary day-to-day business of the Crown and Government." Richard II famously revoked the charters which he had made in concession to the peasants on 2 July 1381, while in Chelmsford.