1 Real Ale pub
Population (2011) of Hartest: 446.
Local licensing authority for Hartest is Babergh.
Hartest is a pretty village with a large green, situated on a tributary of the River Stour. The village was recorded in Domesday as "Herterst", and appears on John Speed's 1610 map as "Hartyste".
The Hartest Brewing Company is a non-commercial club based in the village which commissions various brewers to produce beers for them.
Habitation has been recorded here for over a thousand years. Among the village's many fine buildings is the pub.
The Hartest Stone (see gallery) can be seen on the green. There are a number of stories about how it came to be here, though it seems most likely it's simply a glacial erratic.
This boulder, thought to have been placed on that spot in the early 18th century, has attracted speculation over its origins. One theory is that the boulder was moved by sled from the nearby Somerton Hill to celebrate the Peace of Utrecht and the Duke of Marlborough's victories in the War of the Spanish Succession. Another theory suggests the boulder was moved (for the same reasons) from Somerton Common. A third theory suggests the boulder was found in a clay pit owned by one Mr Carter, who had the stone moved to its current location. Local traditions say that the boulder will turn over at the stroke of midnight and sitting on the boulder at midnight will bring a wife or good fortune.Wikipedia
In 1694 Philippa Munnings of Hartest was tried at Bury for witchcraft. She was acquitted on all charges which included being responsible for two deaths, making cattle lame and turning beer sour.
Gifford's Hall vineyard has its own shop and refreshment rooms. See www.giffordshall.co.uk for more details.
Hartest Hill (on the Shimpling road) is claimed to be the steepest hill in Suffolk. Tony, our roving (or should that be "raving") cyclist, who has ridden up it many times, reckons that though it's one of the steepest, it doesn't match the "hard to keep the front wheel down" steepness of Devonshire Road in Ipswich.