Most of the Great Blakenham village centre is grouped around the B1113 Stowmarket road and Gipping Road (leading to nearby Claydon). The main business of the parish is rubbish; not only is there a major scrap recycling yard alongside the railway crossing, but there are large landfill sites and more recently a state-of-the-art energy from waste plant has been constructed.
Great Blakenham was recorded in Domesday as "Blacham" or "Blacheham". John Speed's 1610 map shows the village as "Blakenham mag".
The village is close to the River Gipping (which forms its eastern boundary), where there are large flooded gravel extraction pits. There's also a large opencast chalk pit.
An alien priory cell for Benedictine monks was founded between Great Blakenham and Nettlestead in about 1092. It seems to have been dissolved by 1230. It was granted to Eton College in 1460.
Up until the early years of the 21st century, the local skyline was dominated by the tall chimney of a large cement works (which often led to much of the area being covered in a thin layer of cement dust)…
Some historical information from English Heritage's National Monuments Record.