urban75 blog

Photos of Saxmundham town centre, buildings and architecture, East Suffolk

Finishing off my rather obsessive collection of photos from my short trip to Leiston via Saxmundham station to see Dulwich Hamlet play, here’s a selection of images taken around Saxmundham.

Seeing as the railway line from Leiston to Saxmundham hasn’t taken a fare paying passenger in nearly half a century, I elected to walk the 5 miles or so back to the station.

There’s no direct footpaths, so I had to walk along the B1119 road, a route that proved rather hazardous thanks to idiot drivers hurtling through the twisty bends at ridiculous speeds.

Despite being careful to follow the Highway Code, I was still subjected to endless beeping horns by testosterone troubled fools who seemed to take umbrage that a pedestrian might DARE to walk along THEIR road.

Thanks to being extra-extra careful – and sometimes almost jumping into bushes to avoid some incoming high-speed buffoon – I managed to get to my destination safely, but it’s not a walking route I’d recommend to anyone.

Passing a pond about a third of the way along the route.

Saxmundham Road takes a sharp left turn, right by this level crossing guarding the old line to Aldeburgh.

Looking along the tracks to Sizewell.

Old crossing keeper’s house.

Farmhouse across a field of wheat.

With the road getting increasingly dangerous, I elected to stomp across this field as a short cut. It proved hard work with boggy soil and sharp wheat stalks to contend with.

Entering Saxmundham, a small town with a population of some 2,700 souls [2001 census].

The town’s name allegedly derives from the Saxon “Seizmond’s Home,” with the earliest record of Saxmundham being in the Domesday Book of 1086 which mentions three churches. The town has had a market charter since at least 1272.

Old Post Office.

The neo-classical facade of the Market Hall, which is rather curiously wedged between the Bell Hotel and the adjoining shops on the west side of the High Street.

Built as a Corn Exchange in 1846 and renovated in the 1930s, the hall was given to the town by the Long family who rather immodestly stuck their own coat of arms above the door.

The impressive Bell Hotel. The present building dates from 1842, although there has been an inn on this site for centuries.

The ‘Old’ Bank House, which had the honour of being Saxmundham’s first bank.

It was built in the early 19th century by the Norfolk quaker family, Gurneys.

Derelict building on the High Street.

Market Place.

The site of the former Angel Inn, which dates back to the 16th century.

Corner of High Street and Market Place.

Looking down the High Street.

Old brickwork.

Cannon Institute.

Saxmundham United Reformed Church in Rendham Road, founded in 1850 as a Congregational Church.

Saxmundham social club. The Flow will be thrilling the crowds on the 20th September.

The sign at the opposite end of town.

More: A Short History of Saxmundham – Historic buildings

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