There is a characteristically interesting and inspiring post at John Fitzgerald's Deep Britain and Ireland blog; which describes how Anglo Saxon England kept building towards a religious and cultural Golden Ages, only to have them cut-off before attaining the fullness of flowering. His hope is that that fullness may be yet-to-come - our never-quite-achieved Golden Age lying in the future, as a possibility.
"From the mid-seventh-century to the mid-ninth century power shifted progressively southwards from Northumbria to Mercia to Wessex."
There's your problem in a nutshell. Ever since, England has been ruled (or reigned over) by a dynasty based in or close to the Thames Valley.
@d - Indeed. I was conceived in the North East where most of my ancestors originate, raised in the South West, and returned to the North East. Interestingly there is a NE/SW versus NW/SE division in England which describes the Royalist versus Roundhead side of the civil war and (broadly) the voting patterns for Brexit four centuries later.
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