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Ipswich History Podcast

Ipswich History Podcast

By Caleb Howgego
A podcast that explores the history of Ipswich.
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Episode 6 - Ipswich and the Hanseatic League
In this episode I speak to Pat Grimwade from the Ipswich Maritime Trust about her new publication about Ipswich's little-known connections to the Hanseatic League. The Hanseatic League was a confederation of merchant gilds that once dominated much of the Late Medieval Period European trade, connecting ports from Germany, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, the Baltic as well as a few in Britain, including Ipswich. At its peak the Hanseatic League even put together a military force that won a war against Denmark. Pat tells us about how Ipswich came to become a Hanseatic port, what kind of things were traded to and from Ipswich during that period, and what physical evidence remains of the town’s Hanseatic connections today. Interviewee Pat Grimwade Podcast Artwork Kelly Wadsworth Music Caleb Howgego For more local history visit
July 20, 2020
Episode 5 - Early Prehistoric Ipswich
This episode features a conversation with Hannah Cutler from the Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service about early prehistoric Ipswich. Hannah talks about what the area that would one day become Ipswich was like during the Palaeolithic (Old Stone Age) and Mesolithic (Middle Stone Age). Hannah also tells us about the work she is currently doing to update the Historic Environment Record for this area, which involves improving the information held online that members of the public can explore for themselves by visiting We also hear about some historic local excavations of early prehistoric finds, including by Nina Layard, a pioneering early female archaeologist and antiquarian. Interviewee Hannah Cutler Podcast Artwork Kelly Wadsworth Music Caleb Howgego For more local history visit
July 13, 2020
Episode 4 - The Rights of the River
In this episode I speak to Andy Parker about how the River Orwell came to be gifted to Ipswich by King Henry VIII in 1519 and why it is that Ipswich appears to be the only town in the country to own a river. Andy volunteers for the Ipswich Maritime Trust, which seeks to protect and promote the astonishing maritime history and heritage of the River Orwell and Ipswich. Andy wrote an article for the Ipswich Star explaining how Ipswich came to be gifted the River Orwell that you can read by following this link: I also speak to my Dad, David Howgego, about how he came to be a Freeman of Ipswich and what additional rights (if any) Freeman are actually entitled to today. Interviewees Andy Parker David Howgego Podcast Artwork Kelly Wadsworth Podcast Music Caleb Howgego For more local history visit
July 06, 2020
Episode 3 - Smugglers Pond
This mini episode of the podcasts looks at the history of Chestnut Pond, located on the eastern outskirts of Ipswich in Rushmere St. Andrew, and its past connections to smuggling. It also retells another local story about how a place called Cat House once played a part in smuggling on the River Orwell. You can view some photographs of Chestnut Pond in a blog post for this episode as well as a map of its location by visiting You can read some notes about the history of Smugglers Pond/Chestnut Pond on the Rushmere St. Andrew Parish Council website: Podcast Artwork Kelly Wadsworth @kellys_art_space on Instagram Music Caleb Howgego For more local history visit
June 29, 2020
Episode 2 - 17th Century Ipswich and the East Anglian Witch-Hunts
In the year 1645 the biggest witch-hunt in English history got underway and East Anglia was at its grim centre. Hundreds of people were hanged in East Anglia during the following few years after being put on trial for alleged crimes of witchcraft. However, one woman named Mary Lackland who lived in Ipswich was sentenced to the especially extreme sentence of being burned for her purported crimes. In this episode of the podcast I speak to David Jones about his book The Ipswich Witch, Mary Lackland and the Suffolk Witch Hunts. We talk about what life would have been like for people living in 17th century Ipswich, David's ideas about what may have led to Mary Lackland's trial and execution, methods used by witch-finders to test for the innocence or guilt of the accused, and what might have been behind the emergence of witch-trials at such an extreme level during the 1640s. Interviewee David Jones Podcast Artwork Kelly Wadsworth Music Caleb Howgego Here's a link to David Jones' book The Ipswich Witch, Mary Lackland and the Suffolk Witch Hunts For more local history visit
November 05, 2019
Episode 1 - Basil Brown
This first episode of the Ipswich History Podcast explores the life and work of Basil Brown, who is best known for his excavation of the Sutton Hoo ship burial in the summer of 1939. But, as we will discover, there was much more of interest to the man than that. Interviewees Gilbert Burroughes Jude Plouviez Philip Wise Podcast artwork Kelly Wadsworth Podcast script and music Caleb Howgego Sources Durrant, Chris, Basil Brown, Astronomer, Archaeologist, Enigma, (n.p., 2004) Marzinzik, Sonja, The Sutton Hoo Helmet, (The British Museum Press, 2007) Plunkett, Steven J., Oxford Dictionary of National Biography For more local history visit
November 01, 2019