A community perspective from the 1840s to 1920s contains entries for the community from the Suffolk Directories of White (1844) and Kelly (1929) and William Dutt’s gazeteer of Suffolk (1927; first prepared in the 1890s)


ALDRINGHAM, a small village, 2.5 miles N. by W. of Aldborough, and 5 miles S.E. of Saxmundham, has in its parish 1736 acres of land, and 401 inhabitants, including THORPE, which has 1108 acres, and 142 souls, and is a hamlet and fishing station on the sea coast, 1.5 mile E. of Aldringham, and had a chapel, which was in use after the Reformation, and of which some vestiges still remain. Hamo de Masey, in the 12th of Edward II obtained a charter for a market and fair at Aldringham. The former has long been obsolete, but two small fairs are now held here on October 11th and December 11th. The soil is generally a light sand, and about 250A. form an open common. It belongs mostly to W. A. Shuldham, Esq., and P. J. Thellusson's Trustees, the latter of whom have lately purchased a great part d Aldringham of Mr. Fras. Hayle, of Stone Cottage, a neat house embowered in plantations, nearly a mile E. of the village. The church (St Andrew) was appropriated to Leiston abbey by. Ranulph Glanvile, the founder. It is an ancient structure, and had a tower, which fell to ruin many years ago, but its remains were not cleared away till 1843, when the church was repaired, and a small belfry erected, at the west end. The impropriation and advowson were granted in the 28th of Henry VIII. to the Duke of Suffolk, and are now held by Lord Huntingfield, who now has a yearly modus of £205 in lieu of tithes. The benefice is a perpetual curacy, not in charge, valued at only £59, and now in the incumbency of the Rev, Henry Turner Dowler, M.A. The Baptists have a chapel in the parish.

Aldis Rev Robert, Baptist minister
Bird Edward, farmer
Chard Joshua, fisherman, Thorpe
Chason Charlotte, shopkpr. Thorpe
Cotton James, shopkeeper
Crane James, corn miller
Gildersleeves George, farmer
Gowing Robert, farmer, Thorpe
Hayle Francis, gent. Stone Cottage
Kemp Chas, vict. Parrot & Punch Bowl
Kemp Thomas, blacksmith
Nunn James, farmer, Thorpe
Salter Jno. vict. Cross Keys, Thorpe
Shuldham William Abraham, Esq. Thorpe (and Cransford Lodge)


ALDRINGHAM is a parish and straggling village, 1.5 mile south from Leiston station on the Aldeburgh branch of the London and North Eastern railway, 4.5 south-east from Saxmundham, and about 3.5 north-west from Aldeburgh, in the Eye division of the county, Blything hundred, petty sessional division and union, Halesworth and Saxmundham county court district, rural deanery of Saxmundham, archdeaconry of Suffolk and diocese of St. Edmundsbury and Ipswich. The hamlet of Thorpeness, which joins it on the eastern side, is ecclesiastically united with this parish, the two being described as Aldringham-cum-Thorpe. The church of St. Andrew is an edifice of cut flint in the Early English style, consisting of nave, south porch, vestry and a western belfry containing one bell: the west end has been entirely rebuilt, a vestry added and the church reseated, chiefly at the expense of Lord Huntingfield, and in 1896 new carved oak furniture was presented and the east window filled with stained glass at the expense of Miss Gannon, in memory of her brother, 1894: the stained west window was placed in 1896, in memory of Miss Gannon: there are 150 sittings. The register dates from the year 1538. The living is a vicarage, net. yearly value £350, with residence, in the gift of the Church Patronage Society, and held since 1908 by the Rev. Thomas William Sedgwick M.A. of Cambridge University. There is a Baptist chapel, built in 1812 and seating 400, with a burial ground attached. In this parish are 34 alms-houses, erected (1898-90) and endowed by the late Mrs. Ogilvie. On the left of the road, near the village of Thorpeness, is an inclosure called Chapel Field, in which are still some remains of a chapel long since fallen into decay. Aldringham House is the seat of Lt. Col. Frank Garret C.B.E., T.D.,J.P. Sizewell Hall is the property and residence of G.Stuart Ogilvie esq. B.A., J.P. who is lord of the manor and principal landowner. The soil is light and mixed; subsoil, sand and gravel. The thief crops are wheat, barley, beans, peas and roots. The area of Aldringham with Thorpeness is 1,739 acres of land and inland water and 18 of foreshore; the population in 1921 was 901.

Sexton, Montague Ward.


Adringham (1 m. S. of Leiston) is a straggling village adjoining Leiston. Its church is a small building retaining some of its original Trans. Norm. work. Near the village are the ruins of a Chapel occupying the site of the original Premonstratensian abbey founded by Ralph de Glanvile, and removed to Leiston by Robert de Ufford, Earl of Suffolk, about the middle of the l4th century. The seaside hamlet of Thorpe, in this parish, seems likely to become a popular little holiday resort.