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Days Gone By – Looking back at Bishop’s Hill and Fore Hamlet

PUBLISHED: 07:00 07 August 2018

A trolley bus passing the Gardeners Ams public House, Fore Hamlet in January 1963. In 1879 the Britannia, a beer house, at the corner of Plough Street and Fore Hamlet was demolished and a new building named the New Gardeners Arms was built. The former Gardeners Arms, on the opposite side of the road, was demolished at the same time. That building was replaced in the late 1930s with the present building, which is featured here    Picture:  Alan Valentine

A trolley bus passing the Gardeners Ams public House, Fore Hamlet in January 1963. In 1879 the Britannia, a beer house, at the corner of Plough Street and Fore Hamlet was demolished and a new building named the New Gardeners Arms was built. The former Gardeners Arms, on the opposite side of the road, was demolished at the same time. That building was replaced in the late 1930s with the present building, which is featured here Picture: Alan Valentine

Dave Kindred

Bishop’s Hill and Fore Hamlet, Ipswich, is a busy route to and from the east side of town.

Demolition work had taken place in Fore Hamlet, Ipswich, to widen the then very narrow road when this photograph was taken around 1945/46. The trolley bus was painted in wartime grey. The tower of Holy Trinity Church is in the background    Picture: David KindredDemolition work had taken place in Fore Hamlet, Ipswich, to widen the then very narrow road when this photograph was taken around 1945/46. The trolley bus was painted in wartime grey. The tower of Holy Trinity Church is in the background Picture: David Kindred

The former gets its name from centuries ago, when the Bishop of Norwich had a residence in what is now Holywells Park.

John Wakeling’s bakers shop at the corner of Albion Street and Fore Street, in the 1930s   Picture: David Kindred John Wakeling’s bakers shop at the corner of Albion Street and Fore Street, in the 1930s Picture: David Kindred

He lived there when his duties brought him to Suffolk.

A crowd gathered after this Ipswich trolley bus overturned on Bishops Hill, June 8, 1955, after skidding on the wet road during a summer downpour   Picture: David Kindred A crowd gathered after this Ipswich trolley bus overturned on Bishops Hill, June 8, 1955, after skidding on the wet road during a summer downpour Picture: David Kindred

The building was where the children’s play area is now.

Cyclists heading for Bishops Hill from Fore Hamlet in the late 1940s. Albion Street is off to the left and Cavendish Street to the right   Cyclists heading for Bishops Hill from Fore Hamlet in the late 1940s. Albion Street is off to the left and Cavendish Street to the right

It overlooked open countryside from around the 13th Century to the time of Henry VIII, when the church was deprived of it. The moat to the building is still there, surrounding the play area.

Buildings in Fore Hamlet, Ipswich, close to the Duke Street junction, in the mid 1930s   Picture by Guy Maynard, courtesy Colchester and Ipswich Museum Service
Buildings in Fore Hamlet, Ipswich, close to the Duke Street junction, in the mid 1930s Picture by Guy Maynard, courtesy Colchester and Ipswich Museum Service

In Victorian times the area saw hundreds of tiny houses and streets built around Bishop’s Hill, as former agricultural workers from out of town moved to find work at Ipswich engineering companies like Ransomes Sims and Jefferies, who occupied the site from the dock to Back Hamlet.

Fore Hamlet, Ipswich, looking towards Bishops Hill in 1934, with Cavendish Street off to the left and Albion Street to the right. The Cobbold public house, next to the post on the right, was the Myrtle, which closed in 1936   Picture: David KindredFore Hamlet, Ipswich, looking towards Bishops Hill in 1934, with Cavendish Street off to the left and Albion Street to the right. The Cobbold public house, next to the post on the right, was the Myrtle, which closed in 1936 Picture: David Kindred

In today’s Days Gone By I have looked at changes to the area of Bishop’s Hill and Fore Hamlet, where today thousands of vehicles pass through every hour.

Bishops Hill, Ipswich, from near the junction with Myrtle Road (right), in the early years of the last century, as a horse drawn cart, loaded with coal and a group of cyclists start to climb the hill. The electric trams ran from 1903 to 1926  Picture: David Kindred

Bishops Hill, Ipswich, from near the junction with Myrtle Road (right), in the early years of the last century, as a horse drawn cart, loaded with coal and a group of cyclists start to climb the hill. The electric trams ran from 1903 to 1926 Picture: David Kindred

Do any of the photographs featured bring memories for you?

A lady standing in the front garden of her home on Bishops Hill, Ipswich, June 26, 1930. This was the day the Prince of Wales flew from Northolt to open the town’s new airport on Nacton Road. The Prince’s tour of the town included a visit to the works of Ransomes Sims and Jefferies, which occupied a large site around the Fore Hamlet and dock area. The “Long Live the Prince” sign in the background was on a shop at the corner of Myrtle Road   Picture: David Kindred 
A lady standing in the front garden of her home on Bishops Hill, Ipswich, June 26, 1930. This was the day the Prince of Wales flew from Northolt to open the town’s new airport on Nacton Road. The Prince’s tour of the town included a visit to the works of Ransomes Sims and Jefferies, which occupied a large site around the Fore Hamlet and dock area. The “Long Live the Prince” sign in the background was on a shop at the corner of Myrtle Road Picture: David Kindred

To submit a letter, write to David Kindred, Days Gone By, Ipswich Star/EADT, Portman House, 120 Princes Street, Ipswich, IP1 1RS or e-mail us.

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