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PROGBAMME We*resday 8th December 2010 at 7.30pm. Mr. Spencer The River Gipping ard the River Gipping Trust. Spencer is the Treasurer of the recently-formed River Gipping Trust, who aim to retum the river to public view, acce$s and use.


Wednesday 12th Jaruary n11 at 7.30pm Mr. Alick Switched On - Electdcity in the East of Engiland. The history of electricity generation in the county, described by a former Eastem Bectricity lecturer.


Wedresday 9th February 2011 at 7.30pm. Mr. Patrick Gurteens of Havefiill. Havefiilllocd historian Patriok has recently invest(7ailedthe history of one of the town's largest industdal concetns, D.Gurteen & Sons, clothing manufacturers who remain in business in the town.



Wednesday 9tr March 2011 at7.30pm. - -Stowmarkefs Pubs. l.leil has recently gone into pnnt on he sublect. ln addltion to looking at tre public ho.rses of Stowmarket, Neilwill share with us details of fi€ sources used durirg his res€arch€s. Wednesday 1sth Aprit2011 st 7.30pm. Mr. Garth Mclean. AllSteamed Up. Oarth has a lifetime's irrterest in sleam railway locomotives and has photographed tte surviving examples on Britain's preserved lines. Wednesday 14th $epternber 2011. Mrs. Mary The Herring Fishery. researches have largely been into the Norrolk Hening Fishery based on Great liary's Yarmou{h, but revertheless much is valid on cxlr si& of the border,'ivhere l-orrresloft shared in tle boom y€ars of the industry prior to the First World War. Vene: All meetings are held at he Castle HillCommunity Centre, Highfield Road, lpswic*r.


THE NEVII$LETTER The Newsletter is produced four times a year by Suffolk lndustrial Archaeology Society. Contributkms from members are welcomed. chairman: s. worsley, 24 Abbotsbury close, lpswich, lP2 gsD. (01473 40s116). Secretary: Position currently vacant, Treasurer Position cunently vacant. Website: We do not presently have u.rr own website, but we do have a presence on tre River Gipping Trusfs site ( and also on the Association lor lndustriaj Archaeology she {

RECENT PLANNI NG APPLICATIONS Baberdt Dstict Ccrncil B/10/00690/LBC/GC Bt10t00572tFHAlGC 8t10100741/FUUGD B/10/00817/LBC/MC B/10/01034/FHAJJD B/10/01 14g/LBC/MC


Borodt C,orrcil

tPt10t00522lFUL tP/10/00571/FUL Mid

Conversion of attached former blacksmith's forge to form additional accommodation at Cockfield Forge Cottage, Great Green. Demolition of former slaughter house at Cuckoo Hill, Bures St Mary, and erection of 10 dwellings. lnstallation of hydro power generation system in former wheelrace of Flatford Mill, Flatford. Repairs and renovations at Sproughton Mill, Lower Street, Sproughton. lnternal alterations at Flatford Mill, Flatford.

Change of use from Printing Works to 2 shops with flats above at 3 Friars Street. Continued use of The Factory, Star Lane, as a car park.

Srfblk Dstict Cclrtcil


Application for extension of time for the implementation of the 'Snoasis' skicentre at Mason's Ouarry, Great Blakenham.

Sufidk Cestal Dstict Cqrtcil ct10t1807 c/10/1808

cnal2016 ct10t2414

Change of use of common room and office to residential unit at The Mill, Mussidan Place, Woodbridge. Demolition of existing Drill Hall, New Road, Framlingham, and erection of new dwelling. Alterations to extend roof to cover the valley at The Old Maltings, Chapel Lane, Wickham Market.

ABSTRACTS Journals received recently from other organisations include the following. lf anything catches your eye, let the Chairman know and he will arrange for photocopies of the article to be made. Suffrclk Revieu ltlew Series Sf, Afimn Z)10. A Little History of Wickhambrook, by John Seal. Suffolk's Travelling Fair People, by Sally Festing. Two Kessingland Stalwarts of the Fishing lndustry, by Neville Skinner. The Devereux Family, Viscounts Hereford, by Vic Harrup.

The l-ocal Histodan, Vdume40, Number& A{ust2010. The Carriers of Lancasler 1824 - 1912, by James Bowen. 'And the Laxey River Runs Down to the Sea': The Farming Landscape of Lonan and the Laxey Valley, by Patricia Newton. Zion's People:Who were the English Nonconformists?, Part 2, Occupations, by Clive D. Field. How Walter Henry Owen Avoided the Bailiffs: A Lincolnshire Farmer Between the Wars, by Joanna Loxton.

lrdstid ndneOog:y l.lews, No 154, A.firmn 2010. Upper Normandy, by Richard Hartree. More News of the AIA Restoration Grants, by Mark Sissons.

SS ROBIN RETURNS TO THE THAMES September 17th saw the departure from Lowestoft of the SS 'Robin', bqrtlg for Tilbury which witlUe her temporary home whilst a permanent berth in London is found. The'Robin'is the oldest surviving steim coaster in thd world - a type of vessel vital to the British economy in Victorian times and immortalised by John Masefield in'Cargoes'as the'Dirty British coaster with her salt-caked smokestack' (its a long time since I could recite this parrot fashion during my schooldays). A representative of a type of ves_sel used_ from the 1840s to 1940s, she was Oriitt at Bow Creek by ihe Thames lronworks and Shipbuilding and EngineeringCompany in 1890. (West Ham Fb started as the Thames lronworks works team;they are'The Hammers' due to the use of shipwrights'hammers as the team badge). After use from the UK by two owners, she was soid to Spanish owners in 1900, becoming the'Maria'. \n1972 she-was discoveed by the Maritime'Trust, who purchased her in 1974 and placed !gr.on show in the abortive maritime museum in the St Katherine's Dock in London. From 1991 to 2008 she was moored at West lndia Quay, during which time ownership passed to her present owners, David and Nishani Kampfner's SS Robin Trust. Redevelopment of West lndia Ouay proved to be the vessel's salvation, as the site is to become the Canary Wharf station of Crossrail, the new trans-London railway link. Crossrail have loaned money which has permitted structural restoration at a cost of tl.Smillion at Lowestoft, this work being carried out between 2008 and 2010. Lowestoft-based shipwirghts were able to provide the same craft skills which were used when she was built - whilst the decline of shipbuilding in the large ports has been virtually complete, the slower decline in ports such as Lowestoft and Hartlepool means that the survival of these skills has allowed these places to become known for their ship restorations. The 'Robin' is to become a museum of seafaring. To preserve her from salt water, the vessel will be exhibited aboard a pontoon, which has been built in Poland and which arrived in Lowestoft on 7th June this year. The'Robin'was craned aboard the pontoon on 28th June, this being covered by local tv news programmes. Her departure from Suffolk waters signifies the end of our county's connection with the vessel, but marks the start of a new chapter which will end when a permanent location for the museum is found in East London.

STOUR LIGHTER TO BE RESTORED The Stour Lighter'John Constable'was lifted from her home near Great Cornard in June and transported to Brightlingsea where a two-year, S100,m0 restoration will retum her to her former glory. Attempts to preserve her in the past failed and the vessel began to deteriorate through lack of attention. As a result she was returned to the silt of the river Stour - submerging the vessel is better for its continued well-being as opposed to suffering the action of the atmosphere. Now, however, money to allow her to be symapthetically restored has been found. The vessel has been named for the artist who lived by the Stour and often included Lighters - the localvariety of barge used on the river - in his paintings. ln the 1980s she was to be found moored alongside the Quay Theatre in Sudbury. Perhaps she will return there following her restoration.

FROM THE AGM Subscription levels were raised at the recent Annual General Meeting, following the deficit incurred over the past year. The new rates will be found in the tear-off portion in this Newsletter. One way of keeping costs down (both printing costs and postage costs, both of which rise on an annual basis), is to issue an electronic version of the Newsletter. Experiments have already been carried out in this direction with the Newsletter you are presently reading, several members indicating at the AGM that they would be happy to receive their Newsletters this way. Should you like your Newsletter delivered to your pc, please email your address to John Furlong, fihfurtong@btinteme who will add you to the list.


Mirutes of he AGM heH m 10tr l{rcvember ZJ1O d.Gasde Hill Commuity CenUe, lFwicft Present: S. Worsley (Chairman), & 10 members.

1. 2.

The meeting opened for business at 19.35.

Apdo*>s for Absence J.Furlong, S.Shaw.

3. 4.

Mirutes of Previos MeetirU The minutes had been published in the November Newsletter. They were unanimously accepted as a true record, this being proposed by R.Malster and seconded by J.Jones. Mdters fuising There were no matters arising.


Accqfis Copies of the lncome and Expenditure Account had been circulated. The Society continued to run at a deficit, but reserves remained adequate. lncreased meetingc costs due to concentration on the lpswich venue had been anticipated. lt was proposed to increase subscription levels from the existing g8 (CO student rate, $10 family rate) to S10, with S8 student rate, S15 family rate. This was proposed by R.Fearn, seconded by J.Jones, and accepted unanimously. The accounts were accepted unanimously, following the proposal of T.Gibbs and

seconded by R.Malster. John Jones agreed to continue as lndependent Examiner of Accounts.

6. 7.

Election of the Gornmifree Steve Worsley, Tim Gibbs and Bob Malster had agreed to continue in their present roles. It proving impossible to elect either a Secretary or a Treasurer, it was proposed by J. Jones and seconded by R.Fearn that they be re-elected for a further term.

AryoterBusiress A vote of thanks to the committee for the effort put in to keep the society in being was proposed by John Jones and seconded by Rick Fearn. Rising costs suggested that email issue of the Newsletter should be considered. It was thought that the society had the technology to mafte this possible, and a number of members present were happy to receive their Newsl{tters this way. lt was suggested that John Furlong's email address should be made knornin via the Newsletter, so those wishing to be emailed could contact him. It was thought that 2011 was the 30th anniversary of the society's formation - some form of event should be held which could gain valuable publicity. Whilst donations from guests at our meetings are happily accepted, it was suggested that a bowl could be placed on the table as a physical reminder that a retiring collection exists. It was suggested that an SIAS website be set up - costs are evidently not as high as thought. David Nuttall and Colin Redmonds agreed to discuss this.

8. He of l,lext MeetirB Actual date to be advised. A Wednesday in November 2010 at'19.30.


There being no further business, the meeting closed



Income Subscriptions Donations

Ilank deposit interest

Erpend itu re ln

sula nce

Alll liations Stationerr and Newslctter Meetin-ss - roorr hire & retl'eshments speakers' expenses Postagc

Bank charges

Surplus/(Deficit) for the vear

BALANCE SHEET at 30th SEPTEMBER 2010 Current


Cash at

bank - current account deposit account

Cash in hand

36.65 97



Debtors and prepayments Less: Creditors

Net Assets

Accumulated fund Balance blought lbnvard

Surplus/(deticit) fbr the year Extraordinary income - sale of books Balance carlied tblward

-- \ I




') lndâ‚Źriendent Eraminer's Report I have independently'exanrined the accounts olthe Society 1br the real ended 3Oth September.?010. lvly responsibilities are to: ldenti fi .ui'hether or not proper accounting reco|ds hai e been kept Check that the accounts above agree uith the accounting recor.ds. Look ibr possible significant errols in the accounts. Check that the accounts have been properll' prepared No matte-I5 have arisen durin-e the course of nry exa:nination rilrere I hare to give an adver5s rgpa'1.

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BRECKLAND'S FORGOTTEN INDUSTRY At this month's CPRE Nor{olk Awards, the Breckland Society will be given an award for their research into the Warrens of Breckland, where rabbits were raised for their meat and fur on an industrial scale. The industry once dominated the area, where_the.sandy soil,.marginalfor ... lgii.,iitrre, wis ideal toi ine'tormation of rabbit burrowi. The Society Pegan its research with t6i;;,m;iltsing a*areneJs of the significance of warrens on the landscape and social and ectnomic histori of the area, which c6ntains a higher concentration of medieval warrens than any other area of the country. With a t12,100 grant from English Heirage, thgSociety apbointed Ann Mason to heid the project and manage the research of over40 volunteers' Arin nas been interested in tfre sudjeit since 2000, when, as a member of the Friends of Thetford Forest Park, she helped riise funds for the restoration of of a medieval warrener's lodge in Mildenhall Woods, similar to, but less well-known, than the example in Thetford Warren. Rabbits were introduced into this country by the Romans, but it was the Normans who came up with the idea of 'farming'them in mariagbO warrens. The first farms were on islands, with sites on Lundy, the Scilliei, and the lsle of-Wight in the 1Ah century. Tl-," ealiest record of a warren in Brebkhnd dates from 1252, and relates to the sale of rabbits from Brandon Warren. Research has identified 26 warrens in Breckland, from Beachamwell in the north to Culford in the south. Warrens could be several miles wide and were protected by turf banks to prevent escapes. ln the middle ages, the meat would be used at the table of the lord of the manor whilsi the fur was used to trim luxury garments. By the 18th century, the annual cull on Tany warrens was in the order of 20,0@ ireatures, with the meat sent to London, the_Cambridgq . Colleges, and local markets. The fur was processed locally, in two factories in Brandon, which emfldyed more than 500 between them in'the early 20th century, and shott-lived factories in fneitto:rd and Swaffham in the 1930s. lt was then ient to Luton for that town's hat industry, and also exported. The industry employed 8000 in the early 20th century,but decline set in and the last processing factory, that of S&P Lingwood in Brandon, closed in 1973'

The reasons for decline are many; rernoval of rabbits' protected status by the Ground Game Act, 1880, meant it became legaito hunt the animal, and cheap imports began to anive from Europe. The arrival of myxomatosis in the 1950s reduced the rabbit population and affected the quality of the meat ani skins. A decline in the wearing of hats reduced demand for skins, whilst, post-war, rabbit meat was associated in the popular mind with austerity. Due to the final demise of the industry being within living memory, the researchers from the Breckland Society were able to interview s-rviving workers from the processing factories and warrens. Whilst the project has officially terminated, material will continue to be added to the Breckland Society's website ( and the search is on tor funding to allow a book on the topic to be published.

GREAT STORM SURVIVOR TURNS AGAIN ln 1987, Geoffrey Wheeler and his wife Enid acquired the tower mill at Bardwell in a working condition, the aim being to run the millduring retirement. Within weeks, the plan had changed as the mill stood in the direct line of the Great Storm of October 15-6th. The hurricane removed the sails and fantail from the mill and the iron windshaft was broken, beyond repair. The mill had been built in 1829 or 1830 and in 1925 the sails were removed but milling continued for a few years by oil engine. lt was restored between 1979 and 1985, when grinding by windpower was resumed. ln the aftermath of the storm, the Wheeler's, aided by the Friends of Bardwell Windmill, raised funds for the restoration of the mill. On 1Zth August new sails, constructed by Jonathan Wheeler, son of Geoffrey, who had passed away in 1995, were craned into position, on what would have been Geoffrey Wheeler's 81st bitthday. They were put into motion the following day (Friday the 1fth!).

NINE DECADES OF COUNCIL HOUSES ln 1920, two years after the end of the 'War to End all Wars' and fitting well with the prevailing climate which demanded'Homes fit for Heroes', lpswich Corporation handed over the keys to the first council house tenants. The proud occupants of Allenby Road, a loop off the Hadleigh Road opposite the current entrance to Sainsbury's, paid 151 per week in rent for their spacious, by the standards of the time, dwellings. The provision of council houses in the town resulted from a debate in the council, initiated by Mr. R.J. Jackson, on December 18th 1912. As a result, 99 acres of land between Felixstowe and Nacton Roads was acquired for the purpose. The council were attempting to relieve a shortage of accommodation in the ever-growing town, and to provide new dwellings to re-house those whose properties were demolished under slum clearance schemes. During the 1930s, the Ministry of Health endorsed the clearance of no fewer than 2,307 slum dwellings in the town. 1,640 council houses had been built by 1929, the number today being over 8,000. The Rushmere and Whitehouse estates were developed following the Second World War, and building the Chantry estate commenced in 1951. Slum clearances continued into the 1950s and 1960s, the Bramford Road clearances of the latter decade resulting in the Cumberland Towers development, the town's only example of the then omnipresent tower block, a form of housing largely absent from lpswich. Between 1973 and 1975 the Cambridge Drive/Birkfield Drive area to the south of the Chantry estate formed the last major council development in the town, at a cost of t1.3million. Since the seventies, the development of social housing has largely been left to the Housing Associations, with lpswich Borough Homes improving its service to its tenants rather than build new homes. The Housing Act of 1980 had given tenants of more than three years standing the right to btry at a discount, which resulted in a drop in the council's housing stock and also could be seen as a disincentive to invest in building new dwellings. Despite its being the largest town in the county, lpswich cannot claim to have been first to provide housing for its inhabitants - that honour goes to Thingoe Sanitary Authority, who had built eight houses (semi-detached) as early as 1893. They can still be found on the nofih side of Stowmarket Road in lxworth. Their construction followed the passage of the Housing of the Working Classes Act of 1890.

SUFFOLK INDUSTRIAL ARCHAEOLOGY SOCI ETY Subscriptions for the year commencing October 1st 2010 are now being accepted. Unfortunately increased overheads have resulted in the need to raise (for the first time for a number of years) subscription levels. The following were approved at the recent AGM of the Society: Full Membership t10.00. Student Membership t8.00. (aged 25 or under and undergoing fulltime education). FamilyMembership t15.00. (includes husband, wife, and any children up to age 18). Please return the tear-off portion over, together with the appropriate remittance (cheques to be payable to'Suffolk lndustrial ArchaeologySociety') to the Chairman: Mr. S. Worsley, 24 Abbotsbury Close,

lpswich, Suffolk, IP2 gSD. 7

WINE MERCHANT'S THREE CENTURIES One of lpswich's oldest businesses, wine merchants Bardwell & Jones, have severed their connections with the county and moved their operation to London. Originally part of the Cobbold brewing business, the firm has been in various ownerships since the Tolly Cobbold company was sold in 1977. lts latest owners, llford-based Coe Vintners have decided to concentrate operations on one site, and the lpswich premises on Fore Street have closed down. Thomas Cobbold set up his brewery in lpswich in1746, having earlier operated from Harwich. Wines and spirits were imported into lpswich from the earliest days of the business, Cobbolds owning its own vessels which, in the nineteenth century brought claret and cognoc from France and rum from the West lndies. ln 1957 the Cobbold business merged with Tollemache Breweries, and between them, the two companies owned five wine businesses. Until 1970, the five were managed separately, but were than unified under the name of Bardwell & Jones. At this period, the wine business represented 45a/o of Tolly Cobbold's total sales. The Tolly business passed to the Ellerman Shipping Group in1977, to the Barclay Brothers in 1983, and to Brent Walker in 1986. With the banlruptcy of Brent Walker in 1994, Managing Director Richard Cobbold, of the tenth generation of the founder's family, acquired the business from the administrators. Bardwell & Jones themselves entered administration last year, when Richard Cobbold approached John Coe of Coe Vintners and engineered the take over. Sadly, the result is the loss to the town of one of its longest established firms and one with connections to one of the best-known.

SUFFOLK MEMORIAL TO BRITISH GENIUS A stone column was unveiled in Somerleyton in June as a permanent memorialto locallybased Sir Christopher Cockerell, inventor of the hovercraft. Cockerell moved to the village in 1951 and set up in the Ripplecraft boatyard where he designed and built the first such vehicle in the world. The parish council and the hovercraft coiumn committee gained approval in 2004 to build the memorial near the village green alongside the 81074 St Olaves to Lowestoft road, and work commenced in 2008.


to renew my membership of the S.|.A.S. for 20'10 - 2011 and enclose

in payment.


Name Phone email Date.

Please return this slip with the appropriate remittance to the chairman: Mr. S. Worsley, 24 Abbotsbury Close. lpswich. Suffolk, IP2 gSD.



SIAS Newsletter No 111  
SIAS Newsletter No 111  

Nwsletter No. 111 of the Suffolk Industrial Archeology Society