Ipswich Group


Ipswich, which claims to be the oldest continuously inhabited town in England, is located on the estuary of the River Orwell, which has always been important in the story of the town. A small harbour, behind what is now the home of Ipswich Town Football Club, was used by the Romans for trade and the Vikings raided the docks area, around 1010.
King John gave the town its Charter in 1200. The town flourished in the Tudor & Elizabethan era, with the Wool Trade, when Christchurch Mansion and other fine buildings were erected creating much of the street pattern around The Butter Market which survives to this day, along with some 650 listed buildings.
The Victorian era brought more prosperity and the building of new wet docks, then the largest in Europe, and the first public museum in the country which opened in 1847 (rebuilt in 1881).
The industrial revolution saw the rise of farm machinery manufacturers, such as Ransomes and Garretts, which hastened the exodus of many former agricultural workers to the town. The population increased six- fold in the 19th century, rising to 66,000 and doubled in the 20th century.


Ipswich has much to offer those researching their 'family trees' and also gives the excuse of having a pleasurable day out.

Our meetings are held at:

The Pioneer Hall 
The Co-Op Education Centre,
11, Fore Street,
Ipswich, Suffolk IP4 1JW.

ALL MEETINGS START at 7:30 p.m., and finish at 9:45 as we have to vacate the building then.

Pedestrian access is through the front door at 11 Fore Street. There is a large car park at the rear of the building - Entry is from Waterworks Street (Enter IP4 1JG in your sat. nav.) Meetings will be held on the 4th Thursday in the month (apart from December 2015 -which is a week earlier on Thursday 17th December.

NOTE: We go on an Outside Visit for our June Meeting, and NO MEETING is held in August

We arrange a varied programme of interesting talks and guided visits which are open to members and visitors alike, especially newcomers, who'll receive a warm welcome.

We also offer tea or coffee and biscuits after the talk and this is included in the £2 entrance (£2.50 for non-members). Sometimes Meeting entry may rise to £3 per head for members, £3.50 for non-members - if the Speaker is coming some distance.

Those with problems with their research find it useful to chat to others at the meeting, about their "brickwalls". Informal help often results from this.

We can provide, for meetings, a laptop computer, with some of the Society's CD's and other resources, as outlined on the Publications page. This facility can be requested at a meeting, for viewing at the following meeting.

Alternatively, feel free to contact us beforehand if you'd like to request a resource or need advice so we're best placed to help you when you come to the meeting.



Ipswich Record Office - The 'must do' place to visit/contact for all your family & local history needs; holding an amazing range of information about the history of Suffolk and its people.

 Ipswich Tourist information Officewho also arrange guided walks with Blue Badge Guides [May-Sept].

Ipswich Museum - has a timeline on events in the Town, plus many treasures.  Also use the same web link to find out about Christchurch Mansion - a Fine Tudor mansion STUFFED with amazing itmes - located in a Grade 1 STAR listed Park, Christchurch Park


Mrs Jenny Rawlinson (Ipswich Branch Secretary)

10, Carlford Court,

112, Parliament Road,

 Ipswich IP4 5EL  

01473 902367

e-mail: jennyrawlinson@hotmail.com
Howard King (Chairman)
01473 274300
or by Email:  howard.king1@outlook.com

Last Modified on 16/03/2017 by K Pulford


Pictures of Ipswich Co-Op Bread Roundsmen 1952

Posted by Howard L King on Sat, 24th Nov 2018

Attached are pictures of Ipswich Co-op Bread Roundsmen 1952 - with a key.... Supplied by The Co-Op Education Centre, Fore Street, where we hold our Meetings.

Roy Trickers Talk

Posted by Howard L King on Sat, 24th Nov 2018

Many Family Historians are already "Church Crawlers". Roy is seriously addicted - and has visited most of the 10,000 or so churches across the United Kingdom , and quite a few in Ireland.

His talk whilst some of it illustrated Suffolk Churches - many showed off the odd and unusual in other counties. His enthusiastic - highly entertaining - talk ensured that none of the audience was able to snooze through.

He reminded us that we should always take the time to really enjoy the treasures of Churches - and that the humblest of churches is worth a look - don't just drive by.

In Suffolk he particularly mentioned the Churches of Stonham Parva, Kersey, Badingham, Bramfield, Dennington, and the Wenhaston "Doom" painting. 

Talk By John Sutton Hidden presences at Ipswich's

Posted by Howard L King on Mon, 12th Nov 2018

John has done extensive work researching the story of Jane Lane, and her possible link with The Ancient House, in Ipswich.

There have been stories over many years that Charles II, on the run from his armies defeat at The Battle of Worcestor, in the English Civil War - hid in the Ancient House - as well as another story that the Ancient House had a Priest Hole - to hide Catholic Priests...

John , in his extensive research put these two stories to rest - In his flight from The Battle of Worcestor Charles never came anywhere near Ipswich - and those that owned the Ancient House at the period when a Catholic Priest may have wanted to hide - were Protestants!

However, John's very detailed talk was fascinating - Yes... Jane Lane was certainly very strongly linked to Charles II, as she and Roger Wentworth accompanied Charles as he fled, in disguise ... and with some adventures helped Charles escape to France from the South Coast of England.

Then Jane Lane's story certainly links far more to Ipswich and the Ancient House - as after more adventures she and companion John Kemp walked to East Anglia, paased through Colchester, and probably stayed at The "Wagon and Horses" Pub, owned by a member of the Lane family  next door to the building we now know as The Ancient House. After staying In Ipswich for a while they ended up in Great Yarmouth.

The Lane Family in Ipswich would have known the Sparrow Family owners of the Ancient House - the Sparrow Family.  John Sutton is convinced the Sparrows owned a couple of Miniatures - one of Charles II - another of Jane Lane....

John is keen to find where the Sparrow Family moved to after it was sold in the 1960's..... to see if they still have this miniature....

Sue Adams talk on Researching House History

Posted by Howard L King on Sun, 21st Oct 2018

At our September Meeting we welcomed Sue Adams, Professional Genealogist and Researcher – to learn all about Researching a House’s History, and steps you can take.

It was fascinating to learn (amongst other things) how many of the slightly obscure terms that are used in property transactions today came about, and how the laws of Property transfer have evolved into a complex topic, with research often involving reading old documents – using yet another skill - palaeography.

Many of the terms used - especially in {Property law go back MANY centuries.

Her description of her talk is:

Property records are an under-used, but potentially very rich, source of information about our ancestors and history of houses. The processes for transfer or inheritance of property produced a range of documents. The type of ownership (tenure) such as freehold or copyhold determines how property was transferred and where records may be found. Learn strategies for finding, interpreting and incorporating property records in your research.


Sue Adams is a professional genealogist based in Norfolk, England, running her own business, Family Folk

Sue completed a Masters degree in Genealogical, Palaeographic and Heraldic Studies from the University of Strathclyde and began working as a professional genealogist in 2012.  

She is a member of the Register of Qualified Genealogists, the Association of Genealogists and Researches in Archives, and the Association of Professional Genealogists.  She undertakes family history research for clients, provides one-to-one research advice, writes a blog, and speaks on a range of family history topics.

Attached to this report is a picture of Sue, after the talk helping our Group Secretary Jenny - sort out some questions that Jenny raised.

Report on August Meeting and September Meeting

Posted by Howard L King on Mon, 17th Sep 2018

On Thursday 23rd August, Ipswich Group, Suffolk Family History Society, had a Special Evening when members revealed  successes they have had with their researches – telling the resulting stories . One thing that has happened is that our busy Secretary has been talking to a family in Australia – all about William Fryer, Irish born, Ipswich based General Practitioner. On the 1911 Census,  he was living at Chestnut House, 11, Fore Street, Ipswich with his wife Belinda, and 6 children – all born in Ipswich. This building is now known as The Co-Op Education Centre – where we meet! This informal meeting was also helped others members who were stuck with their researches… suggesting ways forward.

The coincidence above is the sort of result that the Speaker at our next Meeting, Sue Adams, would be interested in…… when she presents “Researching House and Property History”.  Sue, East Anglian member of Registered Genealogists, has trawled through Record Offices and Archives across the UK, and is ideally placed to speak on this topic, helping you progress your researches on where you, or your ancestors, lived.

Ipswich Group next meets on Thursday 27th September at 7:15 p.m. at The Co-Op Education Centre, 11, Fore Street, Ipswich IP4 1JW. The Car Park is behind, in Waterworks Street, IP4 1JG. Entry is £2 members, £2.50 for non-members.

For more information go to www.suffolkfhs.org.uk (under Groups) or call 01473 274300

Eric Thorndyke - Ipswich's Theatres and Cinemas

Posted by Howard L King on Thu, 9th Aug 2018

Eric started at the beginning of Theate in the area - in the 1500's with groups of travelling actors visiting this rich town - including Shakespeares Company (who visited 10 times), and King James 1st Kings Men.

He deftly weaved his way through the years - mentioning that in Puritan Days all Theatres were banned.....

This was followed by a blossoming of Theatre.

In the yard of the Griffin Inn (in the aea off Debenhams and the yard of what became The Crown and Anchor Pub now W.H. Smith's ws a very popular performance area.

There was even a Circus Arena behind The Mullberry Tree Pub. - which held 1400 people.

Others Theatres came and went over the centuries -including one which what became the Salvation Army Citadel - demolished in 1980 - so is still  a building remembered by some of the audience.

Another still fondly recalled was The 1891 built Lyceum Theatre in Carr Street.... which was especially known for Variety  and Music Hall shows on the Bostock Circuit... it became a Cinema in the 1930's and was demolished in the 1980's.

There was the Repertory Theatre in Tower Street which was The Mechanic Hall for a while - Now The Repertory Pub.

The other recent Theatre of note was The Hippodrome in Nicholas Street, near the docks. ... a lovely Theatre inside - designed by Frank Matcham - who also designed The London Palladium, and The Tower Ballroom in Blackpool Tower.

This Theatre had shows which included Phyllis Dixey, Max Miller,  a young Shirley Bassey and Sandy Powell.

He finished his section on Theatres in Ipswich by mentioning the Fall and Rise again of the The Wolsey Theatre (now The NEW Wolsey Theatre) and it's Studio Theatre in George Street.....

Now it was the turn of the Cinemas in the Town.

The first Cinema in the Town was The Picture House in Tavern Street - which ended up with 1100 seats.... ... soon followed by The Empire.... at the top of Princes Street, and The Empire in Fore Street in the 1920's. The Regent, intended as a Cinema, opened in 1929 - it is now known as the Ipswich Gaumont - Eric said that when you next go - admire the art-deco interior.

He then took us through the many Cinemas in the Town... with all their stories.....

He then talked about the conversion of the Corn Exchange Public Hall., and finished with the story of the Ipswich Film Theatre underneath The Corn Exchange.

This was a fascinating talk - well told - and we were surprised by the amount of Research that Eric has done.... he still intends loking for more information... and is particularly looking for interior views of the buildings any of the buildings.

Ipswich Group visit The Mayors Parlour - June 28th

Posted by Howard L King on Fri, 13th Jul 2018

23 members of Ipswich Group had a very pleasant evening , when we visited the Mayors Parlour in Ipswich Town Hall.

This is the Official pleace for the Town Mayor to welcome Groups, both local, national and foreign, and individuals who have done something special for the Town.

The parlour is full of gifts from some of these visitors - some very splendid, others more humble - but all displayed with their associated stories.

In the access corridor to the parlour is a display of photo's of past Mayors, going back many decades - many of the names familiar to our members.

We were given special access to view the Mayors Robes - and the Mayoral symbols of office - amongst these were a huge silver plated Sword, and a large silver plated Mace - both probably from the Victorian era. It was amusing when Andrew asked our Group Treasurer Marion, and her sister Valerie to parade the items. the Sword is probably taller then they are - and the Mace is not much shorter.

We were also lucky to see, and hold, the Ipswich Town Seal, given to the Town by King Richard 1st - in the year 1200... when Ipswich was permitted to hold its own market - probably on the Cornhill area in front of the current Town Hall. The King allowed the Ipswich to hold markets - he then took half the profits, the Town kept the rest to improve the town. It is the oldest item many of us will ever hold.

We were delighted to meet the Current Mayor, Jane Riley, and her consort Adam. It is obvious that the pleasant couple are delighted to be the Town's representative of the Queen - only outranked by the Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk, Lady Euston....  and  are looking forward to meeting many Town Groups and Individuals over Jane's tenure.... we were one of the early ones, and we all had a fascinating evening.

We sincerely thank the Mayor's team, particularly Christine Christenson, and Andrew Beale for their help in setting up the visit.

Ipswich Group Annual Meeting + Parish Registers Ta

Posted by Howard L King on Tue, 19th Jun 2018

Report on the latest Meeting of Ipswich Group, Suffolk family History Society, on Thursday 24th June.

This was the date of our Annual Meeting – when we reviewed the past year – which has been another good one. If any readers want to see who we have had to talk to us…. Please read my previous reports.

We were delighted to welcome Society Chairman, Douglas Howlett.

Over the year we have had some talks – when we almost ran out of seating….. and most talks were not far off that turnout. Even our Annual meeting attracted well over 40. We have built up a friendly group of members who seem to enjoy what we offer them.

Financially we are in a sound position – our Treasurer Marion has been keeping us on the straight and narrow. Our Secretary Jennie has also been busy, not just working on getting Speakers, but also answering queries from Family History Researchers from Britain and around the Globe. The stories that the queries relate to will come out in due course. The rest of our small team have been supporting the Group well over the year, and we were delighted to welcome a new Committee Member at this Meeting.

After the Official Business, we were delighted to welcome local Researcher, Author, and Speaker Vivienne Aldous, who came along with her husband as a “roadie”, to remind us on the best way to use Parish Registers to research our Family Tree… one aspect of her talk was that when looking at Parish Registers…. Don’t assume that the spelling, or even dates, are correct – always try and double check what you read using other information you may come across… also always look at the end of the Records for late additions out of sequence.

As usual – an interesting and fascinating talk from a friendly and knowledgeable Speaker.


Our new Meeting is an outside visit to The Mayors Parlour, in Ipswich Town Hall, where we will meet near the Waitrose entrance at the side of the Town Hall, at 7:30 pm on Thursday 28th June.

At the time of writing this we have only 2 places left!

To book call Howard on 01473 274300 – leaving a message if necessary.

The Mayors Parlour contains many interesting artefacts, Pictures and Photos – relating to the Role of Ipswich Mayor – in one of the oldest continuously inhabited towns in Britain. We will be given a fascinating tour of this small, usually private, area.

Report on David Allens Talk to Ipswich Group.

Posted by Howard L King on Thu, 3rd May 2018

 On Thursday 26th April 2018 Ipswich Group was please to welcome David Allen, who came from South London to speak at our completely full hall to hear all about “Black Teeth and Dirty Fingernails - The Great Unwashed of Victorian London”

This is a dark subject – but was delivered with panache and dry humour – that was well appreciated by the audience

To precis his talk…..

 When we watch films or TV serials of (say) the life of Queen Victoria, or a tale based on the life of her subjects, or read books by Dickens we do get a rather sanitised view of life for the poor – in the biggest City of the Empire – in a London that was in many respects unrecognisable to the London we know today. We are talking of life without Nelson’s Column ( erected in 1843) and Big Ben (erected 1858) –  this was also the period which saw “The Great Stink” which forced a huge improvement to water supplies and waste disposal systems.

London life was a huge struggle for most, where 1 in 5 children died before reaching 5 years, a tooth access could kill, and life

Expectancy for most was 35 – 40 years.

 The background to the story is the rapid expansion of cites (not just London) – as The Industrial Revolution – which killed the traditional “Cottage Industries” drove people into the urban Centres. – this was further increased by over 1 million people coming from Ireland in the 1850’s to escape the Potato Famine.

 Just finding somewhere to sleep was a real issue – with many thousands sleeping in London Parks, or in Doss Houses, where you could rent a bed by the hour – sleeping in a recently vacated coffin shaped bed amongst others. Some people rented 1/8th

 or 1/16 th    of a room, sleeping amongst strangers.

Health care, was almost non – existent for most. If a women was giving birth, some maternity birthing areas had a doctor or midwife going from mother to mother without any hand washing (the water was probably polluted anyway) and using the same instruments on all of them. No wonder women and children died.

 General Surgeons were rated by how quickly they could perform an amputation – some could do this in 30 seconds… probably just as well as painkillers were often just  a good slug of alcohol….

Families were large – to replace those who died young… as children were out earning a crust from a very young age… as Chimney Sweeps or Crossing Sweepers (roads were covered in a sticky concretion of dust, horse droppings (from 10,000 horses in London – and general rubbish.

 For those richer folk, some tried to restrict their families by using crude Condoms – the first being made by Pirelli.

 David then talked about the Sanitation of London – but most of what went on is beyond  a written description!

 Given all of the above – David’s talk was warmly appreciated – with the audience braking into spontaneous applause at the end.

 He was then approached by several people in the audience and asked for his details to speak elsewhere.

It is worth mentioning that the area of Ipswich where the talk was given was the slum area of Ipswich in Victorian Times –

Frank Grace’s  marvellous book “Rags and Bones” summarises the area at the time. Now out of print – it is well worth tracking down a copy or borrowing a copy from Suffolk Libraries.

Report on Joy Bounds Talk

Posted by Howard L King on Mon, 2nd Apr 2018

Report on Ipswich Group Meeting.

Thursday 22nd March 2018

Joy Bounds presented: “The Fight for Votes for Women in and around Ipswich”

On Thursday 22nd March Ipswich Group members met on the Centenary of some women getting the Vote (up to then none had), to hear Joy Bounds tell the story of the fight for the vote by women in Ipswich and the area.

She started by outlining the various stages of the campaign – led in London by Elizabeth Garrett Anderson who came from the Snape and Aldeborough area, in the campaign which started in 1866 – Elizabeth is perhaps better known in Ipswich area by being the first Women Doctor, and later Aldeborough Mayor.

Early campaigning was in the form of raising petitions, getting bigger and bigger year on year, with Ipswich women forming their own Women’s Suffrage Society.

As these petitions had little effect in Parliament, a campaign of civil disobedience started…..

Constance’s campaign of civil disobedience, refusing paying taxes, saw her jailed in Ipswich Women’s prison for short periods… Joy showed pictures of her release, surrounded by crowds of supporters. 

Names of Ipswich area women known to be involved were Harriett Grimwade, organising from the 1870’s, Hortense Lane who came from Cowslip Farm (?) at Witnesham (now The Fynn Valley Golf Course)…. And Constance Andrews, born in Stowmarket (daughter of an architect), who moved to Norwich Road (opposite what is now the YMCA Hostel) – she was  probably previously a school teacher.  She organised a “Votes For Women Day” in a Hall in Bolton Lane in

Constance’s campaign of civil disobedience, refusing paying taxes, saw her jailed in Ipswich Women’s prison for a short period… Joy showed pictures of her release, surrounded by crowds of supporters. 

 Imprisoned women often refused to eat or drink – so were brutally force fed….. often causing them long term medical problems.

 Many avoided being entered on the 3rd April 1911 Census, “No Vote – No Census”– by being way from their normal abode. Women in the area booked over a room in the Original Ipswich Museum (now Arlington’s Restaurant) – staying there overnight.

Her tale carried on – finishing with the burning of the Bath Hotel at Felixstowe, by Florence Tunks and Hilda Burkett, who had come from the Midlands, to do the deed. She showed a picture of the two ladies outside the Felixstowe Court (where the Felixstowe Town Hall is).

Joy, (and the Society) would like to learn of Suffragettes in YOUR Family…. perhaps areas to investigate are Prison Records and Archive copies of local papers - in the Suffolk Records Office. If ladies of the correct age are missing from the 1911 Census – were they deliberately avoiding being listed?

Joy has produced a lovely book entitled “A Song of their Own” – on this topic - which you may like to look out for…..  people can find out more at her website www.joybounds.co.uk, including contact details.


19/11/2015You may wish you had never started this
Keeping Effective research Records on a Computer is a sticking point for many people researching their Family Trees. This talk examines how to keep good records, looking at ways to overcome research challenges, turning negatives into positives.
Ian Waller
17/12/2015A History of Harrods - The Palace in Knightsbridge
NOTE: DATE is a week earlier than normal..... due to the Christmas Holiday!
Professional Events Organiser Eve worked closely with Harrods for almost a decade, and now gives a unique insight into this World famous Company.
Eve Regeleous
28/01/2016Can I see your Papers?'
All about using Military Documents to help trace your Family story. Bring along any documents or printouts you may have been given or have come across.
Robin Durrell
25/02/2016Giles (The Cartoonist)and his adopted Town - Ipswich
A description of cartoonist Carl Giles, his life, the degree which Ipswich and Suffolk locations form many cartoon settings. Local charities and groups he supported with free cartoons and drawings. How Ipswich celebrates this national figure.
John Field
24/03/2016The History of Maritime Woodbridge
This talk - given by the Custodian of Woodbridge Museum - cover the fascinaiting story of Maritime Woodbridge" - a lovely waterfront to explore - but do you know all it's story?
Dr Bob Merrett
28/04/2016The World of the Heir Hunter - A Lifetime Challenge.
Thursday 28th April: Maurice is coming from Rugby. He looks at what a heir hunter and intestacy is. Maurice outlines how heirs are traced, estates claimed and administered. Entry fee £3 members, £3.50 non members
Maurice Clarke - who founded the Heir Hunters Association (HHA) in 2009 and is a Director of the Federation of Probate and Asset Researchers
26/05/2016“Weavers Higglers and Moze Makers.”
Short Branch AGM New Branch Secretary reqd. THEN - Talk about workers in 18/19 C English towns. Based on a Halstead Parish Overseer 1831 Census, detailing names, addresses, occupations, of labourers & artisans. Entry fee £3 members, £3.50 non members
Michael Holland
16/06/2016Visit to Suffolk Constabulary Museum at Martlesham Heath Suffolk Police HQ - NOW FULL
NOTE CHANGE OF DATE £2 per head when booking. The Museum needs numbers/names in advance. The Police H.Q. is a Secure Site. Your money donated to Police Charity. Bus, Drive – or Car Share – sorted at previous Meetings. 01473 274300 for booking etc
Special Visit to this Museum - rarely seen by the Public at 7:30 p.m.
28/07/2016"Tact and Diplomacy in Family Research"
Researching your Family History can occasionally cause ripples (or worse) in the Family..... Sheila presents an entertaining talk on what could perhaps happen - and how to avoid problems.
Sheila M Wright
22/09/2016"The Railway to Ipswich and Beyond"
A fascinating talk about how the Railway arrived in Ipswich and spread across East Anglia... and the impact it had......
Mervyn Russen
24/09/2016EARLY NOTICE Family History Fair and Society AGM
10:00 to 4:00p.m. FREE ENTRY and hopefully FREE CAR PARKING University Campus Suffolk, Waterfront Building, Neptune Quay, Ipswich Waterfront IP4 1QJ. The Theme: T.B.A... Return to the main Society website to find out more as the Event evolves.
Annual Family History Fair - Bigger and Better than EVER
27/10/2016The History of Advertising
Advertising goes back further than you think! Coming closer to today - you come across adverts in Directories, old Newspapers, and the flood of adverts we are bombarded with today. Your forbears may have placed such adverts or even appear in them!
Stuart Bowell
24/11/2016Cakes, Ales, Partying, Feasting, and Fundraising in Medieval Suffolk.
The title says it all... but does not give full justice to a fascinating and entertaining talk.
Kate Jewell
09/12/2016Special pre-Christmas Talk The Victorian Ghost Hunter - PLEASE NOTE EARLY FRIDAY DATE
Special Talk - DIFFERENT DATE. FRIDAY NIGHT 16th December 2016 @ 7:30 p.m. Normal Venue. Meet a Victorian Ghost Hunter. Look at the tools of his trade. Hear of the Society for Psychical Research founded 1882, Cambridge and Edmund Gurneys strange tale.
Andrew Selwyn
26/01/2017Members Evening - telling us: Family Tales, Family Heirlooms and Black Sheep
If it helps, call Howard 01473 274300 and discuss. Each talk abt 10 min. For a Laptop, we have a Digital projector + a Visualiser , (Overhead projector with a camera); projecting the image. Afterwards discuss Research problems,suggesting solutions.
Mainly Ourselves
23/02/2017Victoria and her Children - The Ultimate Family Tree - by Breda Stringer
Queen Victoria.... whose children married into Royal Famlies across Europe.... Her descendants STILL influence Europe in one way or another! A fascinating Family Story.
Breda Stringer
23/03/2017The De-la-Pole Family - Dukes of Suffolk... the Family Story.
A grim tale telling how Frances researched what really happened to a relative, who survived the Burma Railway... but talked little of his experiences. How she used little known records and archives etc. A part of history we should never forget!
Steven Govier
27/04/2017"Fig Leaves, Farthingales and Fiches" - what your ancestors wore - with a few surprises!
A light-hearted evening of frolics and fun....
Frances Saltmarsh
25/05/2017Sex and War - American G.Is in Suffolk in WW2
Lucy has Researched the effect American G.Is (particularly coloured ones) had in East Anglia, meeting local ladies, fathering children in wartime. The consequences for the parents and the children. Telling fascinating stories, with some happy endings.
Prof. Lucy Bland (Anglia Ruskin University)
22/06/2017Day Trip to The National Archives at Kew - for records not held anywhere else!
Special Coach Day out , - leaving Martlesham Heath Shoppers Car Park 06:30, Tesco Copdock Bus Stop, Capel St Mary A12 slip Road Bus stop. Price £25/person. Book NOW. Call Howard 01473 274300, e-mail howard.king1@outlook.com
Organiser Howard King 01473 274300
27/07/2017A Short History of Shopping - (particularly relating to the Ipswich area).
Looking at the Shopping in the Ipswich area.... Do you remember Ridleys, Martin and Newbys, Footmans, John Colliers...... The list goes on and on. Wallow in nostalgia, in an era before the Internet. Did your family work in or own a shop in the area.
Linda Sexton
NO MEETING IN AUGUST PLEASE NOTE THAT ALL MEETINGS FROM NOW ON WILL START SLIGHTLY EARLIER - at 7:15. We aim to finish and Clear the building by 9:30. This is due to changes in the Security procedures at The Co-Op Education Centre!
28/09/2017The Ipswich War Memorial Project
Team members will explain this extensive Project - researching Ipswich War Memorial Great War deaths. They will also highlight some life stories. If you want to know more about anyone listed - contact 01473 274300 before the Meeting.
Members of The Ipswich War Memorial Team
30/09/2017Suffolk family History Society - Family History Fair
FREE ENTRY 10-00 - 4:00. University of Suffolk, Waterfront,. Ipswich.. Topline Speakers. Free Research area with on-line and personal help breakdown Research Brick Walls. Stands,stalls, displays. More info elsewhere on this website, or call 01473 274300.
Suffolk Family History Society - Annual Family History Fair
26/10/2017An Armchair Walk on "Remarkable Ipswich Women";
Looking in detail at Special Ipswich Women - many on Blue Plaques around the town. You probably know the Plaques - now find out the stories. Be prepared for some surprises.
Ann Day
23/11/2017Duleep Singh - The Story of an Indian Prince in Rural splendour at Elvedon in Suffolk
The fascinating story of an Indian Sikh Prince living in Splendour in a Large Suffolk House. A Story of Pomp and Ceremony... and a tinge of sadness..... How did he fit in with the British aristocracy, and what became of him?
Stephen Govier
14/12/2017Entertaining General History and Family History Quiz - plus your favourite Family Photo.
NOTE Thurs 14th December - An entertaining, light hearted evening of bonhomie, amusement and a mince-pie, with a few prizes.. Be amazed at what you know, learn something you didnt. Bring Favourite labelled Family Photo, which may win a prize.
Mainly Ourselves
25/01/2018A Look at "Ipswich Treasures" - things to notice as you perambulate our fine Town.
There are many hidden jems around Ipswich. John, who is an expert on Ipswich and Suffolk Buildings... will entertain us by telling us more about his favourites. You may never look at Ipswich in the same way again.,
John Field (who recently presented his talk "Cartoonist Carl Giles' Ipswich" to a packed audience.)
22/02/2018Insanity - How Previous generations (particularly the Victorians) dealt with this issue..
Kathy Chater.... Nationally Known Genealogical Researcher and Author, comes from London. She will explain how earlier generations recorded this issue for us to find. She has promised to look at the records for St. Audreys, and St. Clements for examples.
Kathy Chater, Nationally Known Genealogical Researcher and Author, is coming from London.
22/03/2018A Song of their Own - The Fight for Votes for Ipswich Women.
Joy is a well known local Researcher and Author..... who has produced a Book on this Topic..... Perhaps a lady i your Family Tree participated in this Campaign - and chained herself to railings outside County Hall or elsewhere.
Joy Bounds
25/04/2018Charles II, Jane Lane, and the Mystery of The Ancient House
London was a magnet for people from Victorian Suffolk , often thinking they were going to live in a better place. But often lived in cramped, overcrowded, vermin ridden slums, with hunger, crime and filthy water “normal”.
John Sutton
26/04/2018Black Teeth and Dirty Fingernails, the Great Unwashed of Victorian London.
An Entertaining Talk, with the Speaker coming from South London.All about the poorer side of Victorian london - this could be the life experienced by your ancestors who left Suffolk to fine their fortune in London - only to be dissapointed!
David Allen
24/05/2018AGM - Followed by "Looking at and using Parish Registers".
Viviene, Ipswich based Professional Genealogist, (often at The Suffolk Records Offices), tells us more about what Parish Records can reveal - with tips on using them in your researches.
Viviene Aldis
28/06/2018Outside Visit to see The Ipswich Town Hall Mayors Parlour, Ipswich Town Hall
Visit - Mayors Parlour, Ipswich Town Hall. The story of Civic Ipswich over many centuries. See the Civic Regalia, see fascinating pictures and photos, hear the stories. Guided by The Town Sergeant. Numbers restricted. Booking at the March Meeting .
An Outside Visit to The Mayors Parlour - Ipswich Town Hall
26/07/2018Ipswich Cinemas and Theatres
There were far more Theatres and Cinemas in Ipswich than you may think. Come and find out where they were - when they were open - and who was linked to them........ There are some people that will surprisingly recognise or recall.
Eric Thorndyke
23/08/2018A Members Research Evening - with helpful resources and Advice.
A Members Research Evening - with helpful resources and Advice. Why not come along and tell us a short story from your researches. Flagging up your basic problems beforehand may be a good idea!
Mainly yourselves.....
27/09/2018Researching House and Property History at 7:15
Sue, East Anglian based member of the Association of Registered Genealogists, has trawled through records at Records Offices and Archives across the UK. She is ideally placed to pass on tips and hints on the topic. Go further with your researches.
Sue Adams
25/10/2018"Hidden Presences at Ipswich's Ancient House: The King and the Maid", Ipswich at 7:15
A little known story, researched by John Sutton... on Charles II, a lady called Jane Lane, and the iconic Ipswich Building, The Ancient House... Many will think they know all about this iconic Ipswich landmark - but do you really?
John Sutton
22/11/2018The Fun and Fascination of Churches (at 7:15 p.m.)
A fascinatinating, entertaining Evening, with Ipswich's very own Roy Tricker - awarded the MBE in the 2018 New Years Honours Lists ( for his work helping to preserve Suffolk's glorious Churches) - who will give us a whistle-stop tour of his favorites....
Roy Tricker
27/12/2018No Meeting this Month
No meeting this Month - see you at the January meeting.....
No Meeting this Month
24/01/2019"The History of the Suffolk Fire Service"
More details nearer the date. For more information on this talk call 01473 274300 Preferably from October 2018 onwards.
Chris Turland
28/02/2019The Medical contribution to mortality decline in Ipswich from 1851 to 1911
Ever puzzled why the death rate started to fall from 1851 in Ipswich? - Come and find out more... Is it a coincidence that Anne has zeroed in on the Census years 1851 to 1911... perhaps she has dug deep into records we dont look in.
Dr Anne Folan
28/03/2019The Suffolk Bevin Boys (conscripted Coal Miners) in WW2
more details nearer the date.
Barbara McElory
25/04/2019Whats did your Ancestor do in the Great War
Following his talk David, who is a serious collector of Militaria, can advise on any medals, photos or militaria you may have - so bring them along.
David Empson
23/05/2019The Local Co-op - from Ipswich to the East of England - a Growth Story......
This talk will follow our (very brief) AGM
Percy Lomax
27/06/2019A Group day out
Details tbc
Details TBC


For further details on the programme you should contact

Mrs Jenny Rawlinson (Ipswich Branch Secretary)

10, Carlford Court,

112, Parliament Road,

 Ipswich IP4 5EL  

01473 902367

e-mail: jennyrawlinson@hotmail.com
Howard King (Chairman)
01473 274300
or by Email:  howard.king1@outlook.com

Group Contact

Mrs Jenny Rawlinson (Ipswich Branch Secretary)

10, Carlford Court,

112, Parliament Road,

 Ipswich IP4 5EL  

01473 902367

e-mail: jennyrawlinson@hotmail.com
Howard King (Chairman)
01473 274300
or by Email:  howard.king1@outlook.com

Group Projects

The War Memorials of Ipswich Villages

There is a memorial book, compiled in 2003 by Jennifer Jones, in the Parish Church, containing photographs of the graves or memorials of most of the men of the North Samford Benefice (Belstead, Bentley, Burstall, Copdock & Washbrook, Sproughton and Tattingstone) who died in the First World War.

The information in this document was researched by Martin Edwards 2003, with additional information researched by Jean Austin 2006.


The War Memorial stands on a road junction and is in the form of a memorial cross; it was first unveiled on 28th November 1921. The Cross was designed by H Munro Cautley, architect, writer and the greatest connoisseur of East Anglian churches. EE Saunders of Ipswich erected the Cross. 

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.


Celtic Cross War Memorial in the centre of the village;  Roll of Honour in the Church.

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.


Memorial window in the Church;  Roll of Honour in the Village Hall.

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.

Copdock and Washbrook

1914-1918:  War Memorial in Copdock Church;  Roll of Honour, formerly in Washbrook Chapel (current whereabouts not known). 1939-1945: Memorial stone in Copdock Churchyard.

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.


War memorial in the Church;  Roll of Honour in the Vestry.

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.


Memorial plaques in the Church for both First World War and Second World War.

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.


The brass plaque in church.

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.

Ransomes and Rapier War Memorial

Prior to being located in Bourne Park, the memorials were on the wall outside the canteen area (overlooking the bowling green) of the Waterside Works.  The memorial to employees killed in the First World War was unveiled on 8 January 1921 and was initially in the ‘billiard room’.  The company – which had extensive premises off the Wherstead Road, including in ‘Rapier Street’ – was closed down in 1987 (and the site is now largely redeveloped).  The three sided memorial was erected in Bourne Park in 1988 – one side commemorates the employees who died in the First World War, one side those who (including civilian employees) were killed or missing in the Second World War and the third side commemorates Richard Stokes, who was long associated with the company as Chairman and Managing Director.

To see a list of men on the memorials click here.