Bury St Edmunds has grown from a small Anglo- Saxon settlement known as Beodricksworth to a modern bustling town, but somehow has managed to retain its much of its Georgian character.

Within the centre of the town is our magnificent Cathedral. The streets adjacent to the Cathedral are laid out in a grid system that was designed by Baldwin (Abbot 1065 -97). It can be claimed that Baldwin was one of the country's very first town planners.



Nathaniel Hodson established the present Abbey Gardens in 1831 and was modelled on the Royal Botanic Gardens in Brussels.

The Gardens are much loved by the residents and the thousands of visitors who regularly visit the town.



Our Group

The Bury St Edmunds Group of the meet on the third Wednesday of each month (except August & December) at 7.30 pm in the


Hyndman Centre
Hospital Road
Bury St Edmunds IP33 3JT .

Get Directions

Members and non-members are welcome to attend our meetings. Entry fee for all is just £2.00. We have a varied programme of interesting talks throughout the year, followed by tea or coffee and biscuits. After the meetings everyone has the opportunity to swap family history stories, or seek help in solving their some of their "brickwalls". Whatever your interests, you will be assured of a friendly welcome at all of our meetings.



Suffolk Regiment Museum - housed in the Keep of Gibraltar Barracks, opened in 1878 contains a wealth of uniforms, medals, badges, silver, equipment, silver, works of art and photographs illustrating the life of the Suffolk Soldier over nearly 300 years

Bury Past & Present Society - view the amazing collection of photographs of Bury St Edmunds taken from the birth of photography to the mid 20th century by Messrs Spanton and Jarman

West Stow Anglo Saxon Village - explore the way our ancestors lived

Moyse's Hall Museum - a beautiful medieval building housing rich and eclectic collections and changing exhibitions

Suffolk Record Office - Bury St Edmunds - The holdings of this branch cover West Suffolk, including records for the boroughs of Bury St Edmunds and Sudbury. Significant collections include the Suffolk Regiment Archive, the records of the Grafton family of Euston Hall and the collection of the Hervey family, Marquesses of Bristol. The branch looks after a typical 19th century 'gentleman's library' which used to belong to the Cullum family, and consists of 4000 volumes on a wide variety of topics.


Kevin Pulford by email:

Last Modified on 30/11/2017 by K Pulford


Change of Programme

Posted by K Pulford on Tue, 18th Jan 2022

Due to the pandemic we have decided to present the talks for January, February and March as zoom talks which will now start at 7.30pm. The first two talks have been changed as follows.

  • 19th January Nick Amor - Keeping the Peace in Medievil Suffolk
  • 16th Febrary Adrian Tindall - The Monpellier of Suffolk: Bury St Edmunds French Connection
  • 16th March Robert Halliday - Suffolk Calendar Customs

To book a place and get a link to the meeting please email Kevin Prior at

We hope to see you there and remember it starts at 7.30pm

Hyndman Centre is renamed Thomas Clarkson Centre

Posted by K Pulford on Sun, 7th Nov 2021

The group has received the following message from Parish of St Mary with St Peter, Bury St Edmunds

We recently learned that the wealth of the Hyndman family, who had no connection with our town or our churches, was derived from their participation in slavery and the trade in enslaved people. We decided that we no longer wished to memorialise the Hyndman name and that we needed to find a better identity - something that fitted with our vision for welcoming all
people and seeing their lives improved. We didn’t have to look far.

Thomas Clarkson lived in Bury St Edmunds, and he was a leading figure in the campaign to abolish the trade in enslaved people. He was a committed Christian whose research and writings supported the work of William Wilberforce and the wider abolition movement. His work was putting Christian faith into action, transforming the lives of many people. It’s a fitting way of
giving a new identity to our precious community buildings and it will give us a brilliant opportunity to tell the story of how Christ changes lives.

Look out soon for new signage and displays which will help tell the story of Thomas Clarkson.

Group Live Event - Lavenham Little Hall

Posted by K Pulford on Mon, 19th Jul 2021

The group has finally come out of its shell and we have arranged a real visit to Levenham Little Hall on Wednesday 21st July starting at 7.30pm. We will be escorted on the tour which will give us an insight to how the hall was used and he personalities who lived there.

Meetings for March, Aril, May and June - CANCELLED

Posted by K Pulford on Wed, 10th Mar 2021

We have had to cancel the meetings for March, April, May and June due to government restrictions.

We have reorganised the March meeting as a Zoom talk at 7.30pm on the same day, 17th March. If you wish to attend please send a request to Kevin Prior via email at to get an invitation and link to the meeting.

We will try to reorganise the other talks as a Zoom talks if possible..

We are due to have a visit to Little Hall, Lavenham in July and we will need to review this nearer the date to see if we can proceed.

I am feeling optimistic that we should be able to start meeting face-to-face in August.

Meeting on 21st October - CANCELLED

Posted by K Pulford on Sun, 6th Sep 2020

The meetings forthe rest of this year have been cancelled due to the pandemic.  We will review the situation at the end of the year to see if we can start in the new year.

We are planning to hold our meeting on the 21st october at the Hyndman Centre at 7.30pm. Geoff Robinson will be giving a talk on "When Buffollo Bill toured Suffolk".

We will be imposing safety procautions in line with the what the Centre has asked us to do.

1. Everyone should wear a face covering whilst in the Centre

2. Only the diabled toilets will be available; the others will be locked.

3. A sanatisation station will be available at the entrace to the centre. We will in addition have a stantisation dispenser and anti-septic whips in the meeting room.

4. We will have the usual £2 entrance fee. Please try to bring the right change with you to avoid us having to handle money more than we have to.

5. We will as usual want you to sign in on entry but now you will need to supply contact information for trace and trace.

This is our attempt to get back to normal - please support us.

AGM Chairman's and Treasure's Report

Posted by K Pulford on Thu, 23rd Apr 2020

It now looks certain that we will be unable to hold our AGM as normal.  In lieu of that I have posted the Chairman's and Treasure's repots in one file here for you to read. We are happy to answer questions about the reports via email but do also plan to give you a chance to ask quastions at the start of the next meeting when things return to normal.


Elmswell History Group

Posted by K Pulford on Mon, 14th Oct 2019

If you think you will not get a history fix, here is an invitation from a sister organisation.

Ancestors At War

Posted by K Pulford on Fri, 3rd May 2019

From Car Park to Cathedral

Posted by K Pulford on Thu, 6th Sep 2018

You may be interested in this local event.

Group Visit to Hawkedon

Posted by K Pulford on Fri, 20th Jul 2018

On Wednesday, 18th July the group was treated to a guided tour of Hawkedon by the villages resident historian Judy Wilson. We were treated to a background to the history of the village and given a guide to the principle houses in the village. It is suituated around a green with the village church in the middle of the green. We all enjoyed a wonderful summer's evening examining the village.


19/01/2022Keeping the peace in medieval Suffolk - Zoom Talk
Nick Amor
16/02/2022The Montpellier of Suffolk: Bury St Edmunds’ French Connections
Adrian Tindall
16/03/2022Suffolk Calendar Customs - Zoom Talk
Robert Halliday
20/04/2022Kentwell Hall
Dave Steward
18/05/2022To be arranged
15/06/2022“To relieve need and distress”: the story of East Anglian almshouses
Sarah Doig
20/07/2022Visit TBD
21/09/2022Dissent, Riot and Rebellion
Terry O'Donoghue
19/10/2022Victorian photographs, identification and dating
Tom Doig
16/11/2022Searching For [insert your ancestor’s name here] – Breaking Down Those Brick Walls
Sue Paul


For further details on the programme you should contact

Kevin Pulford by email:

Group Contact

Kevin Pulford by email:

Group Projects

We don't have projects to show you at the moment but please call back to see what we had achieved.