Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Long Melford Suffolk


5.45 pm 5.6 miles in 45 minutes 18 seconds

Week to date mileage 5.6

Month to date mileage 20

Average weekly rate 31.3

Average Monthly rate 136

Weather - dry cold and sunny

I parked the car at Long Melford at the Hare pub which is opposite the entrance to Kentwell Hall and ran through the village which must be about 2 miles long from the High Street end down to Rodbridge Corner. The village is a mecca for antique enthusiasts and pub crawlers. You could visit about a dozen pubs if you cared to do so.

The village is full of medieval houses and halls - Kentwell Hall and Long Melford Hall being very prominent at the top end. As I ran down the hill along the wide expanse of the village green you have to say this is a wonderful village but its popularity does mean an awful lot of cars. Throughout the village cars are parked at all angles in order to visit the designer stores and often very up market antique stores, many of which you wouldn't venture in to unless you have plenty of money.

There are some lovely almshouses and houses which have weathered with time and now slope at all sorts of strange angles. This is definitiely a place to visit if you are in Suffolk and want a wander. Much of the success of Long Melford can be traced to its wollen cloth production. Up to the 14th Century individual dyers and weavers were able to work for themselves and built up substantial businesses. By the 16th century half the population of Long melford was engaged in cloth production and were exporting all over the world and as far as Russia.

I ran up to the Holy Trinity Church and then into the grounds of Kentwell Hall, Here there is a long line of Elm Trees which are covered in what looks like mistletoe bushes in substantial quantities.

I read somewhere that a rolled up horsemans purse was once called a Long Melford but I am not sure why unless of course they were made here?


  1. On my recent history of medieval Suffolk course, we had to laugh as we read a report of complaints at the drunks and revellers on the village green in Long Melford, in about the 1300s I think. The comment was made that nothing ever changes, as I think there are plenty of complaints about similar activities still going on there!!!

    Also found out that the 1300s was the period when surnames came into use and these were based on trade. So the woollen cloth producing areas nearby were full of people called Dyer, Weaver, Fuller etc.

  2. Ruby

    There are so many pubs in Long Melford High Street that anyone completing this as a pub crawl deserves an award and a party on the green.

    Not sure what a fuller does?


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