Photo from Rattlesden

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Population (2011) of Rattlesden: 959.

Local licensing authority for Rattlesden is Mid Suffolk.

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About Rattlesden

The River Rat was once navigable up to this point. Stone for the abbey at Bury was brought up to here by boat from Normandy. Today several thatched cottages and a wooden facsimile of the old whalebone arch (the original rotted away many years ago) are located next to the bridge. Traces of a Roman road with its drainage ditches, can still be seen at Poystreet Green. In 1972 a 12th cenury bronze statuette of St John the Evangelist was uncovered by a local farmer hoeing his sugar beet. It subsequently sold for 36,000 guineas at auction. A coffin with a skeleton was also unearthed here during the 1890s and was believed to have been the remains of Robert Bumpstead who died in debt (1780) and was hastily buried by friends to avoid his body being seized by his creditors.

A 19th century tower mill used to stand near the west end of Top Road. It was mostly demolished after stopping operations in 1935. The remaining tower was used in WWII as a Home Guard observation post.

Rattlesden was recorded in Domesday variously as "Ratesdana", "Ratesdane", "Rachestdena", "Ratlesdena" and "Rastedena". It appears on John Speed's 1610 map as "Ratleſden".

RAF Rattlesden is about 2.5km SW of the village and was operational from Nov 1943 when the 447th Bomb Group flew B17 aircraft from here until April 1945. During their 257 missions they lost 93 aircraft to enemy action and 43 to other accidents. Today one runway is still used by a local gliding club.


Some historical information from English Heritage's National Monuments Record.

Some details from "Suffolk Airfields in WW2" by Graham Smith.

(** historic newspaper information from S