Sudbury: Historians hope to dig up clues to town’s past

St Gregory's Church in Sudbury

St Gregory's Church in Sudbury

Amateur archaeologists plan to unearth some of Sudbury’s medieval past as part of a ‘Dig for History’ project.

The dig, due to take place in October next year, will involve volunteers creating test pits in historic locations across the town. These include The Croft close to St Gregory’s Church, which is where St Edmund is believed to have been crowned.

Local historian Barry Wall described the planned dig as “a golden opportunity to excavate virgin sites”, especially those in the oldest part of the town.

He said: “We know what to expect from our knowledge of the town’s history but we would like to find evidence to back this up.”

He suggests among the most fruitful sites could be gardens close to Ballingdon bridge, East Street, Church Street and Christopher Lane, which was known in medieval times as Wylewerlelane.


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As most test pits are likely to be in gardens, owners being asked to register their interest at a meeting at St Peter’s Church on October 30 at 7.30pm, hosted by Cambridge University archaeologist Dr Carenza Lewis.

The meeting is being sponsored by Sudbury Museum Trust, the Sudbury History Society and the Sudbury Society.

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Museum Trust secretary David Burnett said: “We will need volunteers prepared to help with the dig as well as the offer of sites. We don’t expect to find Saxon treasure but we do hope to find more evidence of the early life of the town.”

In Long Melford last year, 37 pits were excavated.

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