Stowmarket’s River Valley of Memories

An exciting new heritage and arts project is about to be launched in Stowmarket, offering residents the opportunity to become involved in discovering the stories of the Rattlesden River Valley and its impact on Stowmarket’s history.

Tinklers Meadow separates Stowmarket from Onehouse and is part of the designated Special Landscape Area known as the ‘Rattlesden River Valley’.  The Stowmarket section of the river valley runs from Tinklers Meadow, eastwards through three County Wildlife Sites connecting farmland, woodland and water meadows. Then on through the Museum of East Anglia Life, to the allotments at Combs Ford before reaching the river Gipping.

This project aims to discover the hidden stories of this beautiful river valley, which played such a large part in the development of Stowmarket. It is a place with a history of hop grounds, oisier beds, stock field and so much more, all interlinked in the growing economies of the town.

The Suffolk Record Office will support participants to delve into our collections and uncover unique stories about the people, places and events of the river valley and town, hidden gems in the archives.

We hope the project will then share these stories with the wider community and groups that do not ordinary engage with archives and local history. The ‘sharing’ could take the form of producing a new booklet, creating digital resources, or putting on a talk or lecture. We would also like to encourage sharing stories through artwork, drama, music, storytelling or any other creative form.

We are currently gaining local support in both the researching and sharing elements. If you would like to participate or volunteer in either a research or sharing capacity, please contact us at