Significant people and events in June in Suffolk History

Two Suffolk Sisters

How many people are aware that two Suffolk sisters, both born in June, made a significant impact on women’s lives?
Recently, the first ever statue of a woman was installed in London’s Parliament Square. That woman was Millicent Fawcett, born in Aldeburgh to a Leiston Entrepreneur, Newson Garrett, in June 1847. She was famous for her work to promote Women’s Suffrage and a president of the Suffragist Movement for 50 years. She was also one of the founders of Newnham College, Cambridge.
Millicent’s elder sister Elizabeth Garret Anderson was born in June 1836 and she, too, was a pioneer on behalf of women. Not without considerable struggle and in the face of some determined male opposition Elizabeth was the first woman to openly qualify in Britain as a physician and surgeon, the first female dean of a British medical school, the first female Doctor of Medicine in France and the first ever female mayor of Aldeburgh.

Our Most Famous Artist

Our third famous June birth is the landscape painter John Constable, who was born in East Bergholt in June 1776. He was the son of the son of Golding Constable, who owned mills at Flatford and Dedham and also ran a barge transport business. Many of John Constable’s landscapes feature the beautiful countryside around his home, the Stour Valley and Dedham Vale and among the best known of his many works is The Hay Wain, completed in 1821.

Flatford Mill John Constable

Flatford Mill John Constable

Did You Know?

Joseph Conrad, the Polish author of Heart of Darkness, about the Congo during its period as a Belgian colony, arrived in Lowestoft in June 1878 on the British steamer, the Mavis, knowing just six words of English.
The author George Orwell was actually born Eric Arthur Blair in India in 1903. He went to school in Southwold and returned to live there for a number of years from 1929. He named himself George Orwell after the River Orwell.
Another famous author, Hammond Innes lived in Kersey with his wife Dorothy in his later years and died there on the 10th June 1998. A prolific writer of adventures and thrillers, four of his early works were made into films. They were The Lonely Skier, The White South, Campbell’s kingdom and The Wreck of the Mary Deare.

Happy 10th Anniversary HomeStore

anniversary celebration

We can’t quite believe that we have reached this wonderful milestone. 10 years!

A lot has happened in that time both in business terms and for the HomeStore team personally, but we are very thankful that both of us (John, the Branch Manager and myself, Sarah) are still here 10 years on – the original team!
So, we thought that we would look back on some of the more memorable moments from this decade, in a 10th Anniversary review.

This Month In Suffolk – Gainsborough and Eno

Suffolk sons

Two Famous Suffolk Sons

This month we’re spotlighting two famous Suffolk sons, one historic and one modern and both born during the time covered by our enewsletter.

Thomas Gainsborough

Thomas Gainsborough the artist and landscape painter was born in Sudbury in May 1754, the youngest son of a cloth merchant.
At the age of 13 he was apprenticed to a London silversmith, and was taught by Hubert-François Gravelot, a French book-illustrator.

Although his real first love was landscape painting, Gainsborough quickly turned to portraits for their popularity and the financial stability they offered. His works, painted in dark colours with economical brush strokes, were of contemporary celebrities as well as local merchants and townspeople. He gained widespread acclaim and emerged as one of the leading portrait artists of the century. Among his most notable works are his portraits entitle “The Blue Boy” 1779 and Mr and Mrs Andrews 1750

He returned to Suffolk after his marriage to Margaret Burr in 1746 and in 1752 established a studio in Ipswich, after which he and the family settled in Bath in 1759.

The National Portrait Gallery in London is hosting an exhibition of over 50 of Gainsborough’s works entitled “Gainsborough’s Family Album” running from 22 November 2018 – 3 February 2019.

Brian Eno

Music composer and writer

Music composer and writer

Brian Eno was born in May 1948 in Suffolk and studied painting and experimental music at the art school at Ipswich Civic College in the mid-1960s and then at Winchester School of Art. His full name is Brian, Peter George Eno which he later altered to Brian Peter George St John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno.

He is an English musician, composer, record producer, singer, writer, and visual artist and he joined glam rock group Roxy Music as synthesiser player in 1971. After recording two albums with the band, he departed in 1973 to record a number of solo albums, coining the term “ambient music” to describe his work. He has collaborated with many artists including David Bowie, U2, Grace Jones, Coldplay and Damon Albarn.

This Month In Suffolk – Thomas Wolsey

Thomas Wolsey

Thomas Wolsey was educated in Ipswich and then studied at Magdalen College, Oxford. He was ordained around 1498 and became chaplain to the archbishop of Canterbury and later chaplain to Henry VII.
He was known as an efficient administrator and was often sent on diplomatic missions but his real rise in influence came in the reign of Henry VIII, when he was created archbishop of York and a year later the pope made him a cardinal. Soon afterwards the king appointed him lord chancellor.
For the next 14 or so years, he was given the responsibility for more and more state business, eventually gaining almost complete control over England’s foreign policy.
He amassed great wealth which he invested in building both his London home, York Place in Whitehall, and at Hampton Court, 20 miles south west of London. He also founded Cardinal College at Oxford (later King’s College, and now Christ Church). Whilst in Ipswich at St Peters Church stands “Wolsey’s Gate”. It is Grade I listed and a Scheduled Ancient Monument.

Not surprisingly increasing arrogance contributed to his lack of popularity, but his downfall came when he failed to arrange the annulment of Henry VIII’s first marriage to Catherine of Aragon, whose nephew, the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, dominated the pope at the time.
Wolsey was accused of treason and arrested near York in 1530 and died in November of that year on his way to London to face trial.

Testimonials – What’s the Importance for a Business?

What is a testimonial?

The dictionary definition is –

1. A written declaration certifying to a person’s character, conduct, or qualifications, or to the value, excellence, etc., of a thing; a letter or written statement of recommendation.
2. Something given or done as an expression of esteem, admiration, or gratitude.

So for a business, such as ours, a testimonial would be written by a customer,

Christmas 2017 Appeal 2 – Laptops for Africa

Laptop Africa

Conservation & Community Project

Kesgrave High School Sixth Form has a proud record of encouraging their students to “look beyond” their academic studies and provides annual opportunities for teams to participate in wildlife conservation and community based projects in countries such as South Africa and Zambia.
During a previous visit to South Africa in 2016 they were able to take 15 unwanted laptops with them to donate to schools, communities and aspiring entrepreneurs to help with IT training, business start-ups and simple tasks that we take for granted, such as writing a letter. These laptops were out of date by our standards, running old operating systems and open source software – most of them didn’t even have working batteries. But to developing communities they are much prized administration and learning tools, helping local people to improve their own lives or those of others.

Old Laptops Needed

Kesgrave High School Sixth Form will be visiting South Africa once again in July 2018 and would very much like to repeat this initiative and we have offered to help, if we can.
Do you – or anyone else in your family or workplace – have an old laptop that is no longer required?
Will you or anyone else in your family be getting a new or replacement laptop for Christmas?
If so, Kesgrave High School will gladly take it off your hands and make sure it gets to someone who can

Kesgrave High School Sixth Form Zambia 2017


Zambia is a large country at the heart of Africa and the only place in the world where 4 countries meet. With huge open plains, and barren rolling hills separated by a network of rivers, the wildlife is abundant, scenery is stunning and it offers any visitor an amazing African experience…
But a typical African adventure is not what we do at Kesgrave High School.

Christmas 2017 Appeal 1 – Stamps


Stamp Appeal

We at HomeStore have been collecting postage stamps for the charity “Hearing Dogs for Deaf People” for quite a while now (!) and every time we have a letter at work or I have a letter or card at home I cut the stamp off and add it to an envelope I have sitting on my desk. Now given that so many businesses frank their mail it has taken about two years for us to collect almost an A4 envelope full and so, now on behalf of HomeStore, I am putting out the appeal to anyone who’d like to help, by saving stamps from letters and cards and parcels, over the Christmas period and then let me know so that I can send you a pre-paid and addressed envelope to get your contributions back to us.

Please help us really “stuff that envelope” – Thank you.