The island has been inhabited by humans since before 6500 BC. Gaelic cultural influence began in the 5th century AD, and the Manx language, a branch of the Gaelic languages, gradually emerged. In 627, Edwin of Northumbria conquered the Isle of Man along with most of Mercia. In the 9th century, the Norse began to settle there. Norse people from Scotland then established the Kingdom of the Isles. The King's title would then carry the suffix, "and the Isles". Magnus III, the King of Norway, was also known as "King of Mann and the Isles" as part of the Hebrides civilization between 1099 and 1103. A Norse-Gaelic culture arose and the island came under Norse control.
In 1266, the island became part of Scotland, as formalised by the Treaty of Perth. After a period of alternating rule by the kings of Scotland and England, the island came under the feudal lordship of the English Crown in 1399. The lordship revested into the British Crown in 1765, but the island never became part of the Kingdom of Great Britain or its successor the United Kingdom, retaining its status as an internally self-governing Crown dependency.
Every year on the island in June, the TT Races takes place on public roads closed for racing, where motorcycling tourists visit to experience legal high speed motorcycle racing.
Links To Peel
Peel first visited the island with Andy Kershaw in June 1991 to see the TT Races and described his experiences of visiting the place and the race on his show broadcast on 14 June 1991 (BFBS). Peel contributed at least one article to the Bike magazine, outlining his experience at the 1992 Isle Of Man TT races in the company of Andy Kershaw, which was reprinted in Olivetti Chronicles. For nearly every year in the early 90's, Peel would visit the island, but in 1996, whilst at the Isle Of Man TT Races with Kershaw, Peel learned that Sheila had suffered a brain haemorrhage and immediately went back to Peel Acres to visit her at hospital. Although Sheila appeared to have made a complete recovery, John was understandably shaken.
Peel discovered a band from the Isle Of Man called Colon, who were a noise rock band, heavily influenced by Sonic Youth and Big Black. The band recorded a session for Peel's show in July 1990, that was broadcast at the end of the month and repeated in October 1990. Peel played tracks from the EP several times, including one memorable night when he opened his show not with his theme tune, but with the statement "I think there's something wrong with your radio, listeners..." followed by the mentalist blast of "Smizzle". Tracks were also played by him on the BBC World Service.
The following Isle Of Man artists recorded sessions for the John Peel show.
- Colon (1 session, 1990)