Home to one of our beloved stores, Bury St Edmunds is a beautiful town complete with an abundance of history and surrounding English countryside. As lockdown restrictions ease and our favourite cafes and restaurants are once again open for business, we sum up the perfect day to spend there.
One of the town’s main attractions is of course its cathedral (the only one in Suffolk!) and abbey which celebrates its 1000th anniversary this year! To celebrate the 1,000-year anniversary of the founding of the Abbey of St Edmund in Bury St Edmunds, local companies, schools and community groups are being challenged to raise ‘£1,000 for 1000’ for good causes - a campaign launched by the Abbey 1000 Group, which is made up of organisations in the town, alongside the Abbey of St Edmund Heritage Partnership.
WHAT TO DO
Take a stroll around the gorgeous Abbey Gardens - the perfect spot to enjoy a bit of peace and quiet whilst watching the world go by. Internationally renowned for its colourful and attractive displays and the heritage of its backdrop make the gardens a very special place to visit and visitors come from all over the world to see it - even royalty!
The Theatre Royal
Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds is a vibrant 200-year-old theatre which shows all types of productions. First built in 1819, it was restored to its Regency design in 2007 and as a Grade 1 listed building is the only theatre in the National Trust portfolio and the last working Regency playhouse in the country. Although they are currently closed, support them in donating towards their re-opening via their website - theatreroyal.org/support-us/patrons/
Support independents and enjoy a cosy evening at the Abbeygate cinema. The food there is also amazing for both lunch and dinner, or grab a few of their pastries and settle in for a film.
Ickworth, National Trust
Located just outside of Bury St Edmunds, Ickworth park and gardens are reopened after lockdown on an appointment only basis. Enjoy long walks around the National Trust’s neoclassical building set in an abundance of beautiful parkland.
WHERE TO EAT
Bury St Edmunds is home to lots of wonderful independent cafes knocking up delicious homemade cakes, snacks and lunches. A few of our favourites for a quick reboot are Guats Up, No 5 (where they do pop up evenings with top local chefs) and Lottie’s for a sweet treat!
For a special lunch or evening meal (and cocktail!) The Northgate is a great choice - plus it has a fab beer garden which is perfect for the summer. Their dishes are created with sustainably sourced regional produce and they always keep minimising food waste at the core of what they do. The striking Victorian townhouse also has bedrooms if you fancy treating yourself to a nights stay or two!
Bury St Edmunds is also home to award-winning modern French restaurant, Maison Bleue, which is renowned for its fish dishes. They serve fresh seasonal food which is sourced as locally as possible, and responsibly too.
Barely a five minute walk from Butter Market (which is held every Wednesday and Saturday) you’ll find Pea Porridge. Having recently reopened to the public, it’s one of our all time favourite spots for a meal out in town with a cosy, homely, laid back ambiance. We recommend their lobster - it’s amazing!
Last but by no means least, we need to mention the award winning 1921 for a uniquely refreshing dining experience! Enjoy a selection of canapes in the lounge before moving to enjoy your main in the dining room, which has been decked out with local artwork and rehomed books. Their courses are reflective of the surrounding farmland and local produce.
In need of further persuasion? Check out the official website here.