Hadleigh is a charming market town in the heart of the rolling Suffolk countryside. The Gables occupies a superb position on the High Street, within easy walking distance of local shops, restaurants, pubs and tea rooms. Rich in history and full of character, Hadleigh was once a Viking Royal Town and is the reputed burial place of Danish King Guthrum. In the 15th and 16th centuries, it prospered through its cloth and wool trade, with timber and plasterwork buildings lining the high street. St. Mary’s Church with its tall lead spire is bordered by a magnificent 15th century Guildhall and red-brick Deanery Tower.
Today the high street has a wide range of independently owned shops and many beautiful listed buildings. The annual Hadleigh Show is a great way to experience a slice of Suffolk country life, with everything on offer from country clothing to arts and crafts.
Superbly placed for exploring Suffolk and Essex, Hadleigh is surrounded by many attractive villages and towns, such as Lavenham and Kersey, both regarded as fine examples of Medieval settlements, famous for their unique timber framed houses. Just a few miles up the road, you will find yourself in the heart of Constable Country where John Constable grew up and painted his most famous artworks including The Haywain.
Within easy reach are the larger towns of Ipswich (10 miles) and Colchester (15 miles), Britain’s oldest recorded town with its Roman walls and Norman castle. Explore the estuaries of the Orwell, Stour and Colne where you will find breathtaking scenery and fantastic walks. There are 18-hole golf courses at Hintlesham, Stoke by Nayland and Stowmarket. Access to London is easy via mainline train stations in Ipswich, Manningtree and Colchester.
What to do
Hadleigh is situated in the heart of some of the most beautiful rural scenery in East Anglia and perfectly placed to visit many historic towns and villages in Suffolk and Essex. This is Stuart’s list of must-see places when you stay with us!
Lavenham A medieval town, steeped in history. Take a stroll around this lovely village that made its fortune from the 16th Century wool trade.
Bury St Edmunds Market days on a Wednesday and Saturday are a delight. Don’t miss the Cathedral and Abbey Gardens. You can also do a tour of the famous Green King brewery where you can sample a range of beers.
Ipswich The fashionable harbour, with its many bars and restaurants, makes for a great night out!
East Bergholt Don’t miss this one – home to Flatford Mill and the childhood home of John Constable. Breathtaking views over Dedham Vale, where Constable painted his most famous artworks. Walk from Flatford along the river to Dedham, hire a rowing boat and have a picnic!
Colchester Britain’s oldest recorded town is steeped in history, from the Roman invasion, to the Norman Conquest and the Civil War. Don’t miss the castle and the castle gardens. If you are interested in contemporary art, check out the award-winning Firstsite Art Gallery.
Colchester Zoo One of Europe’s finest zoos with over 260 rare species.
Jimmy’s Farm The lovely Jimmy Doherty’s farm is not far away. There’s a shop, restaurant, nature trail, butterfly farm and rare breeds enclosures. If you’re lucky, you might even see Jimmy!
Alton Water This impressive reservoir is host to wildlife and sailors alike. If you are feeling energetic, why not hire a bike and cycle around it (watch out for the step hills)!
Ickworth House A National Trust treasure just outside Bury St Edmunds.
Aldeburgh Home to the Aldeburgh Festival and well worth a visit if you are out this way.
Snape Maltings Spend an afternoon browsing the shops and galleries in this fantastic converted maltings.
Old Felixstowe Unspoilt, its shabby charm is enchanting. Walk along the beach and watch the kite surfers launch themselves into the air! There’s also a fabulous fresh fish stall, a great little café and a pub.
Kersey Quintessentially Suffolk! Higgledy piggaldy cottages line the much painted and photographed village street and ford. Kersey Mill The beautifully restored mill is home to a range of cafés, galleries and local businesses, including arts and crafts shops.
Frinton on Sea Frinton’s super sandy beach is always a delight…
Pakenham Water Mill A team of local volunteers make this historic water mill a great place to visit.
Chappel Railway Museum For those “train spotters” amongst you! It’s a real delight and, again, testament to the hard work of local volunteers. Go back in time to discover the Britain’s railway heritage.
Hadleigh Cookery School Improve your culinary skills at The Cooking Experience, Hadleigh’s very own cookery school. We have teamed up with The Cooking Experience to offer a great package deal. Contact us for more details.
If you have a recommendation, let us know and we’ll add it to our list!