The history of the town goes back over 5,500 years to Neolithic times. Neolithic sites and a fort were excavated on Fort Hill. Iron and Bronze Age settlements have also been uncovered. Over the centuries Meregate was a known embarkation site for Europe. Margaret of York, Elector Palantine and William of Orange are recorded as departing from here. Arriving have been Howard with his Armada Fleet after defeating the Spanish, George I from Hanover and William IV at least 4 times.