Suffolk's Connections to Royalty

Written by Caron Peirson
Saturday 19th May 2018
Welcome to our first blog post about the county of Suffolk, where Arcape is based.
 
With the imminent royal wedding of Prince Harry and Rachel Meghan Markle on the 19th of May of 2018, we thought why not start by exploring Suffolk's connections to royalty!
 
Union Jack
 
Did you know that the Suffolk town of Bury St Edmunds takes its name from Edmund the Martyr, King of East Anglia?  He ruled in the 9th century, and is believed to have been killed by Viking archers after refusing to denounce Christianity.
 
Edmunds the Martyr
 
Horse racing is known as the "sport of kings".  King Charles II was the driving force in developing Newmarket, and horse racing was born in Newmarket over 350 years ago.  The town is now affectionately known as "the home of horseracing" in the industry.

 

Newmarket Racecourse 

 

We may not have any royal households in Suffolk, but we do have a royal burial site at Sutton Hoo, near Woodbridge, where kings and great warriors were laid to rest.  Mound One was discovered in 1939, after the landowner, Mrs Edith Pretty, asked archaeologist Basil Brown to investigate the large mounds on her land.

 

Mound One is believed to be the burial site of 7th century King of East Anglia, Rædwald of East Anglia.  The priceless Anglo-Saxon treasure from the site is available to view at the British Museum after it was donated by the landowner.

 

The treasure was buried in a ship that would have been dragged up from the River Deben.  This burial ship has long disappeared, but The Woodbridge Riverside Trust is fundraising with the view to building a replica.

 

The Sutton Hoo Helmet at The British Museum in London

 

Harry isn't the first British royal to marry an American divorcee.  In the 1930's, Wallis Simpson, who was the mistress of King Edward VIII and caused the abdication crisis, married the King and became the Duchess of Windsor.

 

What you may not know is that Mrs Simpson's second divorce took place at Ipswich Assizes in the County Hall.  During the time of the divorce she stayed at Beach House in Felixstowe to comply with the residence requirement.  Beach House is no longer there, but there is  plaque on the site.

 

Wallis Simpson plaque in Felixstowe

 

Did you know that Prince Harry trained at Wattisham in Suffolk to become an Apache pilot?  At the forthcoming wedding, personnel from 3 Regiment Army Air Corps 662 Squadron, with whom he served, will line the wedding route to Windsor along with other military units.

  

In common with many other counties the number of pubs in Suffolk is in decline, but of those remaining many still keep their royal name.  The most popular royal name here in Suffolk is The Crown, closely followed by The Kings Head and The Queens Arms.

 

A pint at the Kings Head

 

One of the most unusual pub names is the Redwald's Ale House, a micropub in Rendlesham "...where King Redwald and his warriors gathered to drink ale,...".

 

So, why not gather to drink ale and raise a glass to the royal couple! 

 

If you have enjoyed our blog post and wish to know more about what is happening in Suffolk, pop over to Twitter and Facebook and follow our All About Suffolk's social media accounts.  We like to promote our local area. 

Written by Caron Peirson

Caron is director at Arcape. Her expertise in social media marketing, and her excellent local business knowledge, translate into social media results for her clients. Caron is a keen photographer, and on her spare time enjoys art, travelling and the countryside.

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