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About Bury St Edmunds

Bury St Edmunds

 

 is a market town in the county of Suffolk, England, and formerly the county town of West Suffolk. It is the main town in the borough of St Edmundsbury and known for the ruined abbey near the town centre. Bury is the seat of the Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, with the episcopal see at St Edmundsbury Cathedral.

The town, originally called Beodericsworth, is known for brewing and malting (with the large Greene King brewery) and for a British Sugar processing factory, where Silver Spoon sugar, one of Britain's biggest brands, is produced. Many large and small businesses are located in Bury, which traditionally has given Bury an affluent economy with low unemployment, with the town being the main cultural and retail centre for West Suffolk. Tourism is also a major part of the economy, plus local government..It is in the Bury St Edmunds parliamentary constituency and is represented in Parliament by David Ruffley.

 

 

Bury St Edmunds

 
Bury St Edmunds - The Guildhall.jpg
The Guildhall

 

 

History

 

Bury St Edmunds (BeodericsworthBedrichesworthSt Edmund's Bury), supposed by some to have been the Villa Faustina of the Romans, was one of the royal towns of the Saxons.. Sigebert, king of the East Angles, founded a monastery here about 633, which in 903 became the burial place of King Edmund, who was slain by the Danes in 869, and owed most of its early celebrity to the reputed miracles performed at the shrine of the martyr king. The town grew around Bury St Edmunds Abbey, a site of pilgrimage. By 925 the fame of St Edmund had spread far and wide, and the name of the town was changed to St Edmund's Bury.

In 942 or 945 King Edmund had granted to the abbot and convent jurisdiction over the whole town, free from all secular services, and Canute in 1020 freed it from episcopal control. Edward the Confessor made the abbot lord of the franchise. Sweyn, in 1020, having destroyed the older monastery and ejected the secular priests, built a Benedictine abbey on St Edmund's Bury.. Count Alan Rufus is said to have been interred at Bury St Edmunds Abbey in 1093. In the 12th and 13th centuries the head of the de Hastings family, who held the Lordship of the Manor of Ashill in Norfolk, was hereditary Steward of this abbey.

 

 

 

Thomas Warren's map of Bury St Edmunds, 1776

 

 

 

Modern history

 

A permanent military presence was established in the town with the completion of Gibraltar Barracks in 1878.. During the Second World War, the USAAF used RAF Station Rougham airfield outside the town..On 3 March 1974 a Turkish Airlines DC10 jet Flight 981 crashed near Paris killing all 346 people on board. Among the victims were 17 members of Bury St Edmunds Rugby Football Club, returning from France..

The town council was formed in 2003. The election on 3 May 2007 was won by the "Abolish Bury Town Council" party. The party lost its majority following a by-election in June 2007 and, to date, the Town Council is still in existence. In March 2008 a further by-election put Conservatives in control but in the council election of May 2011 the lack of Conservative and other parties' candidates let in a Labour majority before the election was even held. By 2013 a number of by-elections put Conservatives in control again.

 

 

Town

 

Barwell's Butcher Shop, Bury St Edmunds, c. 1900

 

Near the gardens stands Britain's first internally illuminated street sign, the Pillar of Salt which was built in 1935. The sign is at the terminus of the A1101Great Britain's lowest road..There is a network of tunnels which are evidence of chalk-workings, though there is no evidence of extensive tunnels under the town centre. Some buildings have inter-communicating cellars. Due to their unsafe nature the chalk-workings are not open to the public, although viewing has been granted to individuals. Some have caused subsidence within living memory, for instance at Jacqueline Close.

 

 

Religion



 

St Edmundsbury Cathedral from the east

 

Bury St Edmunds has a Gothic Revival cathedral and a large parish church, and used to have an abbey. Its Unitarian meeting house has existed since the early 18th century as a non-conformist chapel..

 

Abbey

 

In the centre of Bury St Edmunds lie the remains of an abbey, surrounded by the Abbey Gardens, a park. The abbey is a shrine toSaint Edmund, the Saxon King of the East Angles. The abbey was sacked by the townspeople in the 14th century, and then largely destroyed during the 16th century with the Dissolution of the Monasteries, but Bury remained prosperous throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, falling into relative decline with the Industrial Revolution.

 

 

Culture

 

British Sugar is visible at the backdrop from the platform of Bury Saint Edmunds railway station.



 

The Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds was built by National Gallery architect William Wilkins in 1819. It is the sole surviving Regency Theatre in the country . The theatre, owned by the Greene King brewery, is leased to the National Trust for a nominal charge, and underwent restoration between 2005 and 2007. It presents a full programme of performances and is also open for public tours.

Moyse's Hall Museum is one of the oldest (c. 1180) domestic buildings in East Anglia open to the public. It has collections of fine art, for example Mary Beale, costume, e.g. Charles Frederick Worthhorology, local and social history, including Witchcraft. It holds an original death mask of William Corder who was hanged for the infamous 1827 Red Barn Murder.

Smiths Row, a contemporary art gallery, is located in The Market Cross, restored by Robert Adam in the late 1700s. The Gallery was established in 1972 and today hosts a programme of changing contemporary art and craft exhibitions and events by British and international artists. Artists featured in the Gallery have included Cornelia ParkerDavid BatchelorAnri Sala and Mark Fairnington.

The town holds a festival in May. This including concerts, plays, dance, and lecturers culminating in fireworks. Bury St Edmunds is home to England's oldest Scout group, 1st Bury St Edmunds (Mayors Own).

 

 

 

SOURCE : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bury_St_Edmunds


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