Beccles

Details of our previous walks for 2018

November 2018 - Norwich
It was a cold rainy day for our trip to Norwich led by Alva. From the Forum we walked the short distance to the County and Eastern Museum and shop. The building is a former Victorian roller skating rink and now houses a collection of South Asian decorative arts. The Group was given a guided tour around some of the exhibits together with some history of the building and how the collection was set up. There was then time to browse the numerous items for sale. From here we made our way along Giles Street, stopping to look at some of the older buildings. It had been planned to visit the Plantation garden near to the cathedral but the weather was against us and we delayed our visit until next summer. Our final stop was the Cathedral of St John the Baptist for a much needed hot drink in the cafe before looking around the cathedral. Thank you Alva for introducing us to the delights of Country and Eastern and leading the walk to the cathedral.

October 2018 - Wymondham
Ivan Crane was our guide for the walk around Wymondham. We started at the Market Cross, now a tourist information centre, and made our way around the town, stopping to admire the town sign which depicts two different images on each side. Ivan talked about the former resident Robert Kett who led the rebellion of peasants in the 16C in protest at the enclosure of common land. Wymondham Abbey is a spectacular backdrop to the town with its twin towers and the interior is elaborately decorated, well worth a visit. The oldest Inn in the town is the Green Dragon, a pretty timbered building with many features inside. We finally arrived at our refreshment stop, adjacent to the car park for a well earned cuppa. Many thanks to Ivan for another interesting visit.

September 2018 - Geldeston Lock
We started our walk at The Wherry Inn in Geldeston. Our guide for this walk was Bernard Watson, a member of the River Waveney Trust who is leading a project to restore the lock basin. Bernard gave us an overview of the history of the area and the river before we walked along to the lock. Here Bernard pointed out the site of an old mill alongside the original course of the river. At the lock he showed us the grooves in the brickwork where the lock gates were located and the new brickwork that has been completed as part of the restoration project. The relaid bricks are a mixture of original and reclaimed bricks. After escaping from the wind into the pub for coffee, the Group explored the surrounding area, taking in the information boards with some old photos including of the pub and previous inhabitants and people swimming in the river. We walked back to the Wherry for lunch where Bernard showed us some more photos. Thank you Bernard for an enlightening walk and talk.

August 2018 - YOXFORD
St Peter’s Church was the starting point for our tour of Yoxford. Our guide, Barry Darch, pointed out the hatchments displayed on the walls (a large diamond shaped tablet bearing the coat of arms of someone who has died, in their honour). Barry led us along the High Street past the site of the Three Tuns pub adjacent to the Griffin and to the outskirts of the village. En route we admired many of the attractive buildings including Milestone House and Cottons Yard. We left the road to follow a path across the river Yox and to the boundary of Cockfield Hall. A magnificent Grade 1 listed private house dating from the 16C. On returning to the road we walked down to the Old Bank building near the A12 before returning to The Gin & Tonic cafe for refreshments in their garden. Many thanks to Barry for sharing the history of this lovely village.

July 2018 - BURGH ST PETER
It was another very warm day for our walk along Carlton Marshes to the river. Here we took the foot ferry across the river to the River Waveney Centre at Burgh St Peter. A short walk took us to St Mary’s Church to admire the very unusual tower, possibly influenced by the Ziggerat temples of Mesopotamia. Inside the church Jeremy Woolsey had kindly displayed some photos of the church and sites of archeological interest. Ivan Crane talked about the Boycott Rectors (mostly called William) and how the word ‘boycott ‘ became part of the English language. After teas and coffees at the Waveney Inn, the Group retraced their steps back to the car park. Thank you to Ivan and Jeremy for their contributions at the church.

June 2018 - LODDON
We started our walk at the war memorial in front of Holy Trinity Church. Our guide David Crease led us around the village following the guidebook written by his wife. He painted a picture of how the area in front of the church would have looked in earlier times as a market place and not the car park it is today. Our walk took us past the Ancient House and down to Rodwell House returning to Farthing Green and the town sign. David pointed out the different shops including a former butchers and the tailor’s shop which is now a chinese take away! We passed the old Methodist Chapel, now used for community events. The ornate Town Hall built in 1870, is home nowadays to the bowls club and a couple of small businesses. We finished our walk at the Staithe and the rivet Chet where several boatyards provide services to boats on the Broads. The Spoon Cake cafe was our refreshment stop and after lunch several group members returned to look around the Church. Our thanks go to David Crease for guiding us around Loddon.

MAY 2018 - WHITLINGHAM COUNTRY PARK
The Group enjoyed a guided walk around the Park.

APRIL 2018 - HUNTINGFIELD
We met on the village green which still has the village pump as well as the war memorial. Peter Westmacott was our walk guide and took us through the village towards Huntingfield Hall and the Queen’s Oak, where Queen ElizabethI is alleged to have shot a deer. Peter talked about the Baron of Huntingfield and his links with the Magna Carta. We continued our walk along a lovely footpath to St Mary’s Church where we were met by David Berry. David entertained us with his enthusiastic and interactive stories about the Reverend Hollands and his wife Mildred. Mildred hand painted the magnificent ceiling over a 7 year period in 19C - well worth a visit. Many thanks to Peter and David for giving up their time to share their knowledge with us.

MARCH 2018 - SOUTHWOLD
We started our tour on Southwold Pier dodging the cold northerly wind. The Pier was originally built in 1900 for the disembarkation of holiday passengers from the London steamship. Andrew Holland showed us the clock and quirky amusements designed and built by Tim Hunkin and we looked at the numerous memorial plaques that line the pier railings. With the wind behind us we walked along the prom to the Sailors Reading room. Still used by its members today, it was set up in 1864 as a refuge for sailors to help keep them out of the pubs! We continued past the Adnams brewery towards the church and around the top of the town to the Electric Picture Palace. Built in 2002 and extended in 2012, it has two screens and runs film sessions. The original cinema was close by but demolished to make way for new buildings. We finished our walk along Gun Hill past the cannons and then back to the prom for our return walk to the pier for teas and coffees. Thank you to Andrew and Joan Holland for this very different view of Southwold.

FEBRUARY 2018 - RINGSFIELD CHURCH AND HALL
Our morning started with steady rain, however this did not dampen the spirits of our hardy group. Peter Langford showed us the memorial of Caroline Murat, great niece of Napoleon Bonaparte, which is situated outside the Church. Caroline was married to John Lewis Garden of Redisham Hall. Peter Westmacott pointed out the plaque on the south wall and the brass tombstone in the Graveyard. The old crinkle crackle wall has recently been revealed following removal of shrubbery and there are plans to renovate the wall along with other improvements to facilities at the Church. The interior of the church has been updated over the years with the removal of the old box pews and gallery.

The walk to the Hall was along a muddy footpath. Simon Paylor and Peter Langford met us and Peter talked about how he and his wife set up the Hall in the 70’s. Simon showed us around the grounds before we returned To the Hall for a well earned hot drink and slice of cake. Fortified by refreshments the Group retraced it’s steps along the footpath to collect their cars at the Church. Our grateful thanks go to Peter Langford, Peter Westmacott and Simon Paylor for giving up their time and sharing their knowledge.

JANUARY 2018 - NORWICH AND THE BRIDEWELL MUSEUM
Our first stop was the Bridewell Museum where we spent just over an hour looking at the exhibits showing life in Norwich over the centuries. The museum is well worth a visit and many of the Group said they would return another time.

We then made our way through the lanes of Norwich towards the cathedral where Alva talked about the two entrance gates built in the 14th and 15th centuries. From here we crossed the road to look at the Crooked House and then on to Elm Hill and refreshments at the Briton Arms. Thanks go to Alva for her Historic research and for leading this walk.