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Aldeburgh, Suffolk

Historical Description

Aldborough or Aldeburgh, a municipal borough, a parish, and a bathing-place in Suffolk. The town stands at the terminus of a branch of the G.E.R., 7 miles SE of Saxmundham, and 94½ NE of London. It occupies a pleasant site in Slaughden Valley, on the river Aide, between Aldborough Bay and Aldborough Mere, overlooked by a steep hill, which commands a fine prospect The beach adjacent to it consists of fine firm sand, slopes gradually to the sea, and is well suited for bathing. A shoal in the vicinity, 2 miles long, called Aldborough Knape, causes strong breakers in easterly winds. The sea has made great encroachments on the shore within the last two centuries. The town is yearly gaining favour as a watering-place, and though containing many old houses, chiefly inhabited by fishermen, has also handsome new ones and villas for the accommodation of fashionable visitors. It has also one of the finest golf links in England. The parish church, on the summit of the hill, is Perpendicular English, has a tower with an octagonal turret, contains six brasses and a Tudor pulpit, and presents a good landmark to mariners. There are Baptist and Congregational chapels, and a public library. The town hall is a half-timbered edifice, restored in 1853. The Moot Hall was erected about the commencement of the 16th century. The town was made a borough by Elizabeth, and it sent two members to Parliament till 1832. The old corporation was abolished in 1882, and a new charter was granted in 1885. The borough is now governed by a mayor, 4 aldermen, and 12 councillors, who also act as the Urban Sanitary Authority. The corporation has a revenue of £600 yearly, derived from land, and no rate is levied for borough or sanitary purposes. There are a post, money order, and telegraph office (R.S.O.), a coastguard station, a lifeboat, and a small harbour for vessels engaged in fishing and the coasting trade. An extensive fishing trade is carried on, and there is a large brewery. Crabbe, the poet, was a native. The title of Viscount Aldborough was borne by an ancestor of the Wentworth family, who are lords of the manor. The parish comprises 1608 acres of land and 210 of foreshore and water; population of the civil parish, 2159; of the ecclesiastical parish, 2300. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Norwich; net yearly value, £286 with residence. Aldeburgh Lodge, Adair House, North Lodge, and the Great Casino are country residences.

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5


The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountySuffolk 
Ecclesiastical parishAldborough St. Peter and St. Paul 
Poor Law unionPlomesgate 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Aldeburgh from the following:

Land and Property

The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Suffolk is available to browse.


Online maps of Aldeburgh are available from a number of sites:

Newspapers and Periodicals

The British Newspaper Archive have fully searchable digitised copies of the following Suffolk papers online:

DistrictSuffolk Coastal
Postal districtIP15
Post TownAldeburgh