Gallery: Andy Abbott’s black and white proof that Bury St Edmunds has changed very little in the past 30 years

Evergreen - the timeless market on the Cornhill and Buttermarket

Evergreen - the timeless market on the Cornhill and Buttermarket - Credit: Archant

Some time ago I pieced together a panoramic view of Bury St Edmunds with images taken some 30 years ago looking over the Focus Cinema (formally Odeon) site before and after it was demolished to make way for the Cornhill Walk Shopping Centre in 1982, writes photographer Andy Abbott.

I have now found some more iconic black and white images taken during the 1980s and it is extraordinary how the delightful core of the historic town has changed so little.

The pictures feature the Focus Cinema before demolition with the adjoining Eastern Counties Omnibus Company bus station that is now McDonalds.

The picture of the Traverse shows how crucial and important it is that the Cupola House is being rebuilt after that devastating fire.

The rest of the pictures appear timeless with arguably the smallest public house, The Nutshell, as it is today.


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The iconic bi-weekly market in the Buttermarket and Cornhill is never changing and always popular and a crucial magnet for shoppers visiting the town.

I suppose the main difference is the demise of the Suffolk Hotel, now Waterstones and Edinburgh Wool Mill shops.

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I remember well, and many in the town will also, having a pint in the Suffolk and round the corner at Everards Hotel.

There has been nothing like it in the town centre for many years and I for one have many happy memories meeting friends and colleagues in those establishments.

Do you have any old photos of west Suffolk? Email us and share them with our readers

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