Few areas in England can match the beauty and history of Bury St - DOC by historyman


									A Profile of Bury St Edmunds
Bury St Edmunds is a very pretty, historic town in Suffolk, in the heart of the East of England, the UK’s fastest growing region. The town has retained its historic character – with fine medieval and Georgian buildings and a thriving market, yet has excellent independent and high street shops, restaurants and cafes. The town is named after Edmund, King of the East Angles, who was killed by invading Danes in 869AD. His shrine stood for centuries in the medieval Abbey and became a site of pilgrimage; the town initially grew around Bury St Edmunds Abbey. By the 14th century, the town had a flourishing clothmaking industry. Many splendid medieval buildings survive, but most are hidden behind elegant 17th and 18th century facades. These fine buildings are a testimony to its prosperity in the 18th century. Bury has a good range of leisure facilities: there is the town centre and multiplex cinema, sports and health clubs, the recently restored and thriving Theatre Royal, the Fat Cat Comedy Club and dance groups. The town also hosts an annual Arts Festival, high quality classical and contemporary music, performing and visual arts. This is run by the Borough Council and the Gallery works in partnership with them. The key tourist attractions in the town are the Art Gallery, Moyses Hall museum, the Abbey Gardens and the Cathedral. This has a new tower, which was completed in July 2005 making it the only recently completed cathedral in the UK. At one time, this part of Suffolk boasted more pubs than churches. The number has dwindled over the years, but there is still a wealth of pubs including The Nutshell, reputed to be the smallest pub in Britain. There are also excellent restaurants, bistros, cafes and hotels offering modern British and international dishes. The town is at its busiest on Wednesdays and Saturdays when people flock to the Buttermarket and Cornhill to visit one of the best markets in the East of England. Bury St Edmunds’ position in the centre of the Eastern Region means that it has good rail and road connections. The A14 allows easy access to Ipswich, Cambridge, the M11 straight in to North London, the Midlands and Stansted airport. There is a direct train service to London and the upmarket seaside towns of Aldeburgh and Southwold (including Snape Maltings) are just over an hour away. The high standard of living in Suffolk, beautiful landscape and close proximity to London has drawn many people to live and work in the County. This includes numerous people who work in the cultural sector. The area has a rich cultural history, stemming from Constable and Gainsborough in the 18th century through to today. A survey by market research firm MORI showed that 83% of us are satisfied, or very satisfied, with St Edmundsbury as an area to live. Only 2% were dissatisfied. More than half the people who live in Bury St Edmunds say that they like exploring Suffolk's historic towns and villages, nearly three quarters enjoy walking, while 38% take to their bikes. Over half like going to the cinema and the theatre. Nearly half have taken part in some musical activity, been to a rock concert or enjoyed clubbing, while 28% actively take part in sports According to the survey St Edmundsbury is a good place to live - nearly half of us have lived here for ten years or more and 93% of us feel that it is a safe place to live.

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