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Masham is a small market town and civil parish in the Harrogate district of North Yorkshire, England. It had a population of 1,235 at the 2001 census, falling to 1,205 at the 2011 census. Situated in Wensleydale on the western bank of the River Ure, the name derives from the Anglo-Saxon "Mæssa's Ham", the homestead belonging to Mæssa. The Romans had a presence here, but the first permanent settlers were the Angles. Around 900 AD the Vikings invaded the region, burning and laying waste to the church and causing great suffering in Masham. They also introduced sheep farming, something for which the town is well known today.
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