"FRAMLINGHAM, a parish, market and post town, in the hundred of Loes, county Suffolk, 7 miles W. of Saxmundham, 14 N.E. of Ipswich, and 87 from London by road, or 90 by rail. It is situated on the river Alde, and is the terminus of a branch line of the Great Eastern railway. A castle of immense strength was built here in early times; some say by Redwald, King of the East Saxons, towards the close of the 6th century, and rebuilt by the famous Hugh Bigod. Edmund the Martyr was besieged in it by the Danes. Queen Mary retired to it on the death of her brother, Edward VI., and here received intelligence of the proclamation of Lady Jane. The Mowbrays long held possession of this demesne, which afterwards passed to the Howard or Norfolk family, and was by them sold to Sir Robert Hitcham, who presented it to Pembroke Hall, Cambridge. The town is ancient, and the principal trade carried on is in corn. It is a polling-place for the eastern division of the county, and petty sessions are held here fortnightly on Friday. It contains a good market-place, corn exchange standing on the site of an ancient cross, bank, savings-bank, and police station.
There are free and subscription libraries, and societies for the promotion of agricultural and domestic science. The living is a rectory* in the diocese of Norwich, of the value with the curacy of Saxted annexed, of £1,201, in the patronage of Pembroke Hall. The church is a handsome structure of flint, with a fine tower nearly 100 feet in height, containing a peal of eight bells. The interior of the roof is elaborately carved, and supported by pillars of an octagonal form. It is dedicated to St. Michael, and contains many tombs, effigies, and monuments of the Howards, Fitzroys, Earl of Surrey, and others. The earliest date of the register is 1560. The charitable endowments consist of Sir Robert Hitcham's almshouses for twelve persons, with free school, Mr. Thomas Mills' almshouses, with free school, and other bequests for the poor, producing upwards of £700 per annum. The Independents, Wesleyans, and Unitarians have chapels, and there are several schools for the instruction of the youth of both sexes. Extensive remains of the ancient castle are still standing; they consist of massive walls, towers nearly 60 feet high, and a gateway carved with numerous heraldic devices. In the neighbourhood are some fine old oak-trees. The Master and Fellows of Pembroke Hall, Cambridge, are the lords of the manors of Framlingham and Saxted. Saturday is market day for grain and general produce. Fairs are held on Whit Monday and Tuesday, and on the 11th October."
Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868), transcribed by Colin Hinson © 2003