Tag Archives: Suffolk

Pin Mill Suffolk in Pictures

Pin Mill in Suffolk is a hamlet on the south bank of the tidal River Orwell, located on the outskirts of the village of Chelmondiston on the Shotley peninsula, south Suffolk. It lies within the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is a designated Conservation Area. Pin Mill is now generally known for the historic Butt & Oyster public house and for sailing.

The origins of the ‘Pin’ in Pin Mill are uncertain, but may be derived from IMG_0497‘pynd’ (meaning pen or pond), the production of round wooden pins for ships, or attributed to a mill owner by the name of Pynne.

Pin Mill was once a busy landing point for ship-borne cargo, a centre for the repair of Thames sailing barges and home to many small industries such as sail making, a maltings (now a workshop) and a brickyard. The east coast has a long history of smuggling, in which Pin Mill and the Butt and Oyster pub allegedly played key parts.

During World War II Pin Mill was home to Royal Navy Motor Launches and to a degaussing vessel created from a herring drifter. Pin Mill and Woolverstone were home ports to many Landing Craft Tanks used in the invasion of Normandy in 1944.

Approximately 25 houseboats are occupied year round along the foreshore to the east of the Butt and Oyster pub, an alternative lifestyle which lends a bohemian charm to the settlement. Since 2004 Babergh has been working with the houseboat owners, Chelmondiston Parish Council and other groups to grant planning permission for the houseboats and remove wrecked boats. There have also been recent improvements in the sailing infrastructure, and responsibility for the Hard at Pin Mill has been handed over to a new ‘community interest’ company.

Pin Mill SuffolkPin Mill has often been the subject of painting and photography, and is a popular yacht and dinghy sailing destination. During WWII many yachts were placed for storage west of the hamlet in what were then called ‘the saltings,’ awaiting the cessation of hostilities. The moorings in the river were home to the Royal Harwich One Design Class boats for many years in the 1940s.

A feature film about sailing, “Ha’penny Breeze,” was filmed here in 1950, featuring the Welsh actress Gwyneth Vaughan. There is a boatyard, and the Pin Mill Sailing Club has hosted an annual Barge Match since 1962.

The Grindle is a small stream that flows alongside Pin Mill Common down to the Pin Mill Hard on the foreshore. It is used by dinghies to ferry sailors ashore.

The Butt and Oyster is a traditional 17th century public house that serves real ale.  It is a listed building with bay windows in the bar and restaurant that offer panoramic views of the Orwell estuary.

Pin Mill lies along the Stour and Orwell walk. There many signposted walks in the immediate area, including through the Cliff Plantation forest owned by the National Trust. Pin Mill can be reached at the end of a lane half a mile from the centre of Chelmondiston, which is serviced by the B1456 Ipswich-Shotley road. There is a public car park near the foreshore, and also limited customer parking in the Butt and Oyster pub.

Courtesy of Wikipedia

Pin Mill Suffolk Gallery…




Posted in 2015, General, Suffolk | Also tagged , Leave a comment

Southwold In March

Southwold Suffolk – Another East Anglian Gem

Everybody has heard of Southwold. It maybe due to Adnams Brewery, the Lighthouse or the pier but either way, we know it.

And yet, the population is a mere 800 people.

I have done discos with more people than that! But this is no sweaty late night jig, it is another fine example of East Anglian life.

SouthwoldFor a town – or village – to have less than a thousand residents yet still sport the array of delights that Southwold offers is remarkable. Aside from the above mentioned treats, there is a cinema, a narrow gauge railway, a museum – and did I mention the brewery? Like much of Suffolk it appears in the Doomsday Book as a fishing port. Today it focuses on the tourist trade – and beer.

It may appear to have more than it’s fair share of commons. This is due to the fire that ravaged the town in 1659 – parts of the town were never rebuilt affording it some wonderful greenery. The striking lighthouse is still operational. For a mere 150watt bulb is has a range of 28 miles – and can be toured by appointment.

The pier is wonderful. A charming reminder of 19th century England retained in its 1900 design. Having suffered German attack and North Sea gales the current size is 620ft. Upon this loveliness you can fish, drink cream teas and get married. A wonderful plaque of thanks exists on the North side of the pier with many a travelling name engraved for posterity.

…And I could stare at the Waterclock for hours.

A brief glimpse of early spring sunshine and Southwold is the place to be…



Posted in 2014, General, Lanscape, Photography, Southwold, Suffolk | Also tagged Leave a comment

Euston Rural Pastimes Country Show, Suffolk – 2013

Euston Rural Pastimes Country Show – A look at life then.. and now.

We are off to the west of Suffolk – The Euston Rural Pastimes Country Show, between Bury St Edmunds and Thetford.

Euston Rural Pastimes Event

I was immediately struck by the queues to get in – this was obviously a well attended and popular event. Once again the weather wasn’t particularly favourable with low cloud and a slight breeze in the air but this didn’t deter the thousands who arrived.

Steam engines, vintage cars & motorcycles, ring displays from many including the excellent ‘The Devil’s Horseman’ cossacks and even an appearance from Pike, Frazer and Cpt Mainwairing from the nearby Dad’s Army museum!

A refreshingly community based event which manages to avoid the heavy commercialism of bigger shows, the day was a joy to witness.

This is the heart of rural life. This it what it was, is – and will continue to be for many years to come.

From the website:

Euston Rural Pastimes Country Show has now been held every June for 20 years. It began as a fundraising show for our local Blackbourne Churches and St Nicholas’ Hospice Care with the kind permission of our President The Duke of Grafton, who allowed the event to be held in the magnificent setting of Euston Park.

Together with John Farrow (the farm manager at that time) and Tim Fogden we set up a volunteer committee, which has continued to run this successful one day Show.  We have raised over £370,000 for our causes over the years.

The programme has been broadly similar each year, but with increasing entries the demand for space has required more parking and display areas. A new entrance between the stationary engines and stalls, leads past the traction engines to the new Grafton Ring specifically for tractors.

The main Norfolk Ring has a constant programme of events, displays, demonstrations and parades.It is surrounded by band music, a busy tea tent and further  stalls. Leading past the Craft Tent, the Suffolk Ring is home to a large display of Heavy Horses. Nearby is the start of the hugely popular Farm Rides.  It has also been associated with a magnificent display of flowers in Euston Church. There are several catering outlets, but the most popular are the excellent lunches served in the Hall kitchen.

We will very much keep to the same format and hope we will continue to attract the numbers, which filled the car park completely last year.

Here is our record of Euston Rural Pastimes Country Show 2013




Posted in 2013, Bury St Edmunds, Euston, General, Photography, Rural, Suffolk, Thetford | Also tagged , , , , , 1 Comment

Rattlesden Duck Race 2013

Morris Dancing, village cricket, bring & buy –  

Nothing says English village life like a duck race.


Pride of the duck racing calendar in Suffolk is the annual Rattlesden duck race. From Wiki;

Rattlesden is located around four miles west of Stowmarket. Its large and ancient church, St. Nicholas, dates from the 13th century and incorporates many additions and changes from over the centuries. In 1975, the historic core of the village was named a “Conservation Area” by the District Council under the guidelines of English Heritage.

The village and the surrounding area, like much of East Anglia, was a hotbed of Puritan sentiment during much of the 16th and 17th centuries. In 1634, a local wheelwright, Richard Kimball led a relatively large company from Rattlesden to the Massachusetts Bay Colony as part of the wave of migration that occurred during the Great Migration.

During World War II, Rattlesden was the site of a U.S. Army Air Force heavy bomber base known as RAF Rattlesden. The site is now used by the Rattlesden Gliding Club.

In 2005 the population of Rattlesden was 900.The parish also contains the hamlets of Poystreet Green and Hightown Green.

The Duck Race is part of the village fete – a yearly fundraiser for the village primary school. It is very refreshing to see buoyant rural life like this – The village folk coming together in difficult times to support their facilities and show that  a wonderful way of life is still to be had in the English countryside.

As for the winner – who knows. The prize, who cares. Fun was had, money was raised – and spare a thought for the Duck Patrol Race Engineer. I bet the F1 boys are never knee deep in ditch water…


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