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Abbot's Hall, Stowmarket Stowmarket is a market town situated mainly to the south of the A14 road approximately midway between Bury St. Edmunds and Ipswich in the county of Suffolk. It has a population of about 19,000 people. Stowmarket lies on the River Gipping, which flows to Ipswich where it joins the River Orwell.

Until the end of the 18th Century the town was mainly a centre for the marketing of the agricultural produce of the surrounding village. The only other large industry was the weaving of Worsted cloth.

St Peter & St Mary, Stowmarket The River Gipping was made navigable between Stowmarket and Ipswich in 1793. This event marked the start of a period of prosperity and some industry was introduced to the town. In the 19th century it was a centre of malting. An ironworks was founded by James Woods around 1810 and also about this time the Prentice family started several enterprises in the town, the foremost being an artificial fertilizer factory and the manufacturer of the explosive guncotton.

On Friday 11th August 1871 there was an explosion at Prentice's guncotton factory which killed and injured many workers including two members of the Prentice family.


Secretary: Lesley Anne Hawthorne
Tel: 01449 612567

or by Email


The Stowmarket group of the Suffolk Family History Society meets in The Old Library, Red Gables, Ipswich Road, Stowmarket. Red Gables is alongside Lockington Road close to the roundabout with Hollingsworth Road. The entrance is opposite Duke Street. There is a free car park. Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of every month. Everyone is welcome.

Meetings start at 7.30pm. Admission 1 for SFHS members, 2 for visitors. Tea/Coffee included.


August 11th NO MEETING

September 8th NO MEETING

October 13th 19th Century Census Returns
Pat Walker


Stowmarket Online - A website implemented by the Town Council. Contains information to interest visitors and locals.

Museum of East Anglian Life - Stowmarket's principal tourist attraction, occupies an area of 75 acres and has a lot to interest all visitors. The recently refurbished Abbot's Hall is now open to visitors.

Stowmarket Mailing List - A Rootsweb mailing list for anyone with a genealogical or historical interest in the town of Stowmarket, Suffolk, England, and its adjacent parishes; also a forum for reminiscences of the area from anyone with memories to share.

St Peter and St Mary Church - This site is part of the the large Suffolk Churches site. There are also pages on the Catholic Church of Our Lady and many other churches in the area.