The Hadleigh SocietyJan 1999
Newsletter Index Up Jan 1999 Apr 1999 Jun 1999 Aug 1999 Oct 1999 Dec 1999


Newsletter  January 1999

Inside this Issue

bulletJuly 1987
bulletJuly 1992 Hadleigh Society AGM
bulletIpswich Society Award
bulletHistory Day Schools
bulletNext Meeting
bulletThe Hadleigh Society Millennium Project
bulletHadleigh’s Charities through the ages
bulletPlanning Matters
bulletHappy New Year
bulletDate for your diary
bullet1999 Programme
bulletHadleigh Society Information on the Web


The Ipswich and Norwich Co-operative Society has made a planning application for extensions and alterations to their Hadleigh Store.

Ever since the subject was first raised your executive committee has felt that Hadleigh can not support two supermarkets and that the present Co-op site is the ideal position in the centre of the High Street. We are delighted to see these plans to extend the store and with the exception of some minor details the Hadleigh Society will be giving this development its whole-hearted support.

The proposal is to enlarge the store from a sales area of 706 sq metres to 1,120 sq metres, which will enable them to extend the product range by some 50%. To facilitate this the Co-op plans to move it’s dairy distribution centre to another location, re-site the public toilets to the other side of Magdalen Road, extend the store out to Magdalen Road and use the present toilet site for disabled parking.

The lane between the Co-op and Avis will be partially covered, with improved surfacing and lighting, and will remain open to the public for access to the supermarket and the High Street during the supermarket opening hours. (This is not a public right of way and is always closed at night.) The main shop entrance sited in that lane. The entrance from the High Street will be retained. The new rear part of the store will enhance the visual appearance of that area of Magdalen Road being similar in design to that end of Partridges, and the new entrance will improve public access from the Magdalen Road car park.

These changes will also help with Babergh’s proposals for widening the pavement in the area of the High Street between the Market Place and Queen Street and their intentions to put in a crossing somewhere in the area between Church Street and Queen Street. Following Babergh’s consultation with their ‘Wish list’ it is understood that they will soon be presenting some suggestions for consultation with Hadleigh residents on changing this area.

For visitors arriving in Hadleigh and using the car park these changes will improve the appearance of this part of the conservation area, and a new toilet block will be an asset to the town.

The Society believes that this large extension on the present site is much to be preferred to Tesco’s proposed supermarket development by the riverside as it will provide shoppers with an increased range of products whilst not damaging the shops which already co-exist with the Co-op. It will also keep the centre of shopping focussed in the middle of the High Street.

For these reasons The Hadleigh Society will encourage and support this application, whilst continuing to oppose the development of a second supermarket by the riverside.

Jan Byrne
Vice Chair

Editor's note: The store extension was opened in September 2004.


In view of the intention of Tesco to submit a plan for a supermarket you might like to reflect that the issue has arisen twice before. The following snippets are from Hadleigh Society Newsletters of the time. If you want to see the full Newsletters they are on our Web pages, for which the Internet address is at the end of this newsletter.

July 1987


An application has been made for the erection of a building for use as a supermarket and construction of associated car parking for 107 vehicles on the site of the former Butchers shop and Freezer Centre at 109 High Street Hadleigh which would be demolished to permit a new access road for shoppers vehicles and delivery lorries etc.

July 1992 Hadleigh Society AGM

Environment Group Chairman Michael Greenwood gave a brief outline of the views to be expressed to the District Council on their proposed Alteration No.1 to the Local Plan. This was later debated and the motion put that "This Society is emphatically opposed to the proposed Super Market development project and its associated Car Parking scheme" which was carried.


John Denny removing old roofAs owners of one of the listed buildings in the town we try to follow the best advice when the time comes to carry out repairs. However, it is not always easy to determine what advice is the ‘best’. Such a situation arose recently when our roof needed renewal. The peg-tiles and battens were fixed direct to the rafters with no felting, yet all the proposals from the roofing trade assumed that the new work would use felt. There was no sign that the roof had suffered for lack of felt but the modern practice was claimed to offer additional protection, especially while doing the work.

We searched for a source of reliable advice and found that the Technical Secretary of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings offers advice by telephone. It turned out to be very heavily used and it was the third day of repeated dialling before getting through, but the resultant points are worth passing on. Consider these:

bulletIs there a membrane at present?
bulletAre there any problems with water entry or ventilation?
bulletIf it works well there’s no need to change.
bulletAdding felt may involve changes to detail such as counter-battening and venting tiles.
bulletTraditional felt is dense & impermeable but newer products claim to be better at dispersing the moisture on top and the condensation on the underside.

After further discussion with our contractor, and with Babergh’s Building Conservation Officer we opted for Tyvek, one of the new breathable felts.

For details contact Graham Panton

If you have any comments to add on this topic, or would like to make your own contribution to this theme, we would be pleased to hear from you - Ed.


Nick Catford (of Swanley, Kent) is compiling a report on the Royal Observer Corps in Suffolk for the Defence of Britain Project that is being coordinated by the Council for British Archaeology.

As part of the project he asked us to confirm location details of the old underground R.O.C. post, which had been situated midway along the west side of Frog Hall Lane, now developed and covered with shrubbery.

The post externally consisted of a square access shaft standing about two feet above ground level, with a lid and a smaller ventilation shaft about ten feet to one side (as shown in the diagram):

This post was apparently opened in August 1961 having been re-sited from its post—war aircraft observation position a little further to the south-west. It was closed in 1991, as most members will recall. The purpose of the structure, we are told, was for the monitoring of nuclear fall-out in the event of a nuclear attack! (We have supplied the information requested but would be interested to know of any photographs that may be available. Ed.)


Probably half the people visiting the Hadleigh Society Web-site are overseas, and certainly these are the ones who send us e-mails. Here’s the most recent émigré to make contact:

Hello to my old community members. I am visiting my friend and we had decided to search the net for my old home town. I am very pleased to have been able to see the three pictures from your newsletter, and sniggered like a school girl as I looked. My maiden name is Boon, and I remember John Bloomfield very well ...especially ringing the church bells*. Thank you for making my day.

Yours truly,

Sylvia Ward

*John claims that must have been his brother.

981130comp.jpg (26046 bytes)SITES AROUND THE TOWN

As you can see in this picture, there’s been a lot of activity lately down the Benton end of town. In the foreground is the old "Kings Arms" which is undergoing careful renovation. Up the street and stretching behind it is Carders Close, a new Housing Association development. The site had been vacant for many years as industrial planning proposals were considered unsuitable, particularly because of the traffic implications. Top right is the new housing development of Dunton Grove, off Clopton Gardens.


As part of its Awards Scheme, The Ipswich Society has given a High Commendation to a multiplex cinema building with landscaping, in the Cardinal Park area.


Thursday 28th January Who was Shake-speare? Solving the world’s great mystery. Lecture by the Earl of Burford, followed by cheese and wine reception. Grand Hall, Hadleigh Town Hall, 8pm. Tickets £5 at the door.

History Day Schools

At The Guildhall, Hadleigh. Fee £17 (£13 concessionary). Lunch £2.50.
Contact University of Essex Centre for Continuing Education (01206) 872519.

8th May
Anglo-Saxon Attitudes: Death and Burial in Pagan Suffolk.
Pat Brown MA.
2nd October
The Chartered Boroughs of Suffolk: From Their Origins to 1835.
Frank Grace MA.


Next Meeting

Come to Hadleigh Old Town Hall at 8pm on Tuesday 2nd February when Sue Andrews will talk about "Illicit Sex in 17th Century Hadleigh". Please display our enclosed poster if you can.

The Hadleigh Society Millennium Project

The Society’s committee looked at various projects to celebrate the millennium and decided that a useful project both now and as a future record would be to produce a photographic record of the town at the end of the 20th Century.

The Society project will be undertaken in three phases: -

bulletPhase one. To produce a photographic record of all the listed properties in the town and at the same time to write to the occupiers of the properties with a copy of the wording of the ‘listing’ asking them to confirm that, to their knowledge, the ‘listing’ information is accurate.
bulletPhase two. To produce a photographic record of all of the properties within the conservation area.
bulletPhase three. To produce, as a photographic record, a general view of all the developments within the town boundary.

Initially the images and text will be recorded on CD-ROM. A copy will be offered to the Town Archives and also to Babergh District Council. If we can get sponsorship we will then produce a printed version.

This is a major project which will take a few years to complete so don’t expect to see it on January 1st 2000. We hope to complete phase one and produce the first version of the CD-ROM for the end of 2000, with over a thousand photographs taken, collated and scripted.

John Bloomfield, Graham Panton, Jan and Joe Byrne have met three times as a sub committee to start planning the project. Sample photographs have been taken and the current schedule of listed buildings is being put on to the computer.

Contact Jan Byrne, 01473 822192

Hadleigh’s Charities through the ages

One of the enduring activities of the Hadleigh Society ever since its foundation has been the History Group. The members generally work together on a specific project and then report the results at one of our public meetings. Over the past two years they have been studying the history of Hadleigh’s charities and on the 24th November the members of the group presented what they had gathered.

The earliest charities were founded about 500 years ago when Hadleigh was at its wealthiest, ranking 24th in the country in its output, ahead of Lavenham. Dr William Pykenham, who built the Deanery Tower and accumulated several prestigious appointments in the church, established the Grand Feoffment charity before his death in 1497. It has owned a collection of properties in the town, and for several miles around. Although over the years some have been sold it still has many, including the Chapel and Almshouses in George Street. The present houses date from the 19th century, replacing the original houses shown here. George Street was originally Hell Street and we heard of a few other lost place-names, such as Pudding Row, Portman Place and Soddington Street.

The wealth of this charity, and others like Ann Beaumont (of 1701) was augmented over the centuries by many other bequests. Over time there was a general decline, here and elsewhere, in the quality of administration until the Charity Commission was established in the 19th century. Much of the present documentary evidence comes from its reports, and also from a 19th century court case through which non-conformist townspeople broke the monopoly that the Church of England had previously enjoyed.

The Market Feoffment derived its income from the town’s market. In earlier centuries its purpose was ill defined and could only be deduced from what it actually did. As well as provision for the poor and elderly, education was a recurring theme.

A continuing tradition has been to benefit the feoffees annually through the "Audit Dinner". These would be held in one of the town’s inns and the records indicate a good meal was had by all.

We were told of the 18 pubs trading in earlier times, and that perhaps is the basis for many another story. We heard particularly of the Black Swan at the top of Benton Street, which was owned by the Grand Feoffment from 1653 until it was auctioned in 1897. The building that still stands dates from 1838, having been rebuilt by Wilkinson, the builder of Queen Street. As a final¾ the cast of the History Group brought that auction to life for us, raising the bidding beyond the £1800 reserve to £2900, a huge sum for that time.

We look forward to whatever their next project might be. Joe Byrne, master of the evening’s ceremony and chairman of the History Group, would be very pleased to hear from anyone wishing to join the new work in the New Year.

Planning Matters

Meet us at the Town Council offices if you want to look at the latest planning proposals. We will be there at 12 noon on the first Wednesday of each month.

Contact Jan Byrne, 01473 822192


Nominations are invited from any member of the Hadleigh Society for an award to be made in recognition of 'Outstanding improvements to, or conservation of, Hadleigh's buildings or environment'

In deciding to make an award the Society's Executive Committee and any expert they may wish to consult, will be considering how sympathetic the work is with its surroundings and how well it integrates with them. They will expect all work to display a high quality of workmanship and to be an example of good practice.

Nominations should include details of the improvement made or of work carried out and should be sent to reach the Hon. Secretary, The Hadleigh Society c/o 16 Highlands Road, Hadleigh, Suffolk, IP7 5HU, by 1st March 1999.

Happy New Year

Best wishes to you all, and particularly to Ben Allen who is currently in Ipswich Hospital and anyone else starting the year below par.

Date for your diary

Hadleigh Show, Saturday 15th May.

1999 Programme

Illicit Sex in 17th Century Hadleigh,
Sue Andrews
2 Feb
Will - making in Mediaeval Hadleigh,
Peter Northeast
18 Mar
The Paupers of Hadleigh,
Clive Paine
27 Apr
Annual General Meeting Thurs
24 Jun
Putting a House to Bed (Winter Precautions)

Monica Place

17 Aug
Pictures from the Hadleigh Archives Thu
14 Oct

Venue: Hadleigh Old Town Hall, 8pm.

Free to members, £2 for non-members.

Hadleigh Society Information on the Web

At our Web address (Files Group, below) you can find this and many past newsletters, with photos in their original colours, an extensive list of past events going back over ten years, and their posters. Hadleigh Library now provides free access to the Internet, bookable in hourly sessions. Printouts cost 5p per page.


Chairman and Environmental matters John Bloomfield 01473 822063
Planning Jan Byrne 01473 822192
History Group Joe Byrne 01473 822192
Files Group and Associate Newsletter Editor


Graham Panton


01473 828676

01473 828460

Membership Ben Allen

Rosemary Schade

01473 827691

01473 824009

Secretary and Newsletter Editor Jim Betteridge 01473 823991

Published by

The Hadleigh SocietyAll views expressed are those of the contributors and are not necessarily those of the Hadleigh Society