The Vulcan Arms - Sizewell - Suffolk


Leiston is the areas working town. There is reported archaeological evidence of settlement in the area from the Mesolithic, Bronze Age, Saxon, Roman and Medieval periods. The abbey, whose ruins stand just north of the town date back to 1363 when it was transferred from Minsmere, whose chapel ruins is still standing and can be seen from the footpath from Eastbridge to the coast.

Up until the 19th century Leiston was no more than a small hamlet. In 1778 Richard Garrett set up a blacksmith which went on to become the Garrett Engineering Works producing threshing machines, steam rollers, traction engines, ploughs, tractors and railway engines. It was Garretts that really built the town up, employing 300 men by 1850 and dominating the the town with its workshops. It is also claimed that Garretts set up the worlds first ever production line, preceding Henry Ford. Next time you happen to visit a summer festival hosting traction engines you will most likely find one entry with the words "Leiston" and "Garrets" emblazoned upon the front of the machine. The company eventually closed in 1980 and all that now remains is the Longshop Museum, the former traction engine erecting shop, a well worthwhile visit if you happen to be in town. The museum is open from the beginning of April to the end of October, Monday to Saturday 10:00 - 5:00, Sunday 11:00 - 5:00.

Leiston still has a railway line, albeit only for the transportation of the nuclear flasks from Sizewell Power Station. The line was closed to passenger traffic in 1966 as part of the Beeching cuts. The track bed beyond Leiston to Aldeburgh is now a footpath. There have been rumours that the line may well open to passenger traffic in the near future.

Market day is Friday with a small market held in the car park of the Black Horse Pub (now called the Venue).

The Vulcan Arms
Sizewell Gap
Sizewell , Suffolk , IP16 4UD England
Tel: 01728 830748

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