Planet Ipswich : A bridge between the Ipswiches of the world

Ips Misc - Miscellaneous References to Ipswich from Around the World

Order of contents on this page: (Click on the links below)


The Ipswich Song Book                                                                                   Ipswich Volunteers Funeral March - S. Ball

Ipswich Début – Concert piece by Attila Jurth

Which Switch is the Switch, Miss, for Ipswich?                                          From Auschwitz to Ipswich - Song by Jarvis Cocker

Long Drive Through Ipswich - Song by Steve Towson                              Ipswich - Song by Georgi Kay

Ipswich - Song by Finnish Rock Band Absoluuttinen Nollapiste       More Songs & Music with "Ipswich" in the Title

Ipswich - Indie Band from Christchurch, New Zealand                         Ipswich - Rock Band from California, USA

Ipswich Down – Rock Band from New Jersey, USA                                    Ipswich Musicians’ Union Big Band

Ipswich Model Band                                                                                       Ipswich City Vice-Regal Band 1890-1972

Other Ipswich Bands                                                                                      Ipswich Method Ringing Compositions (Bellringing)  

Hotels & Hostelries:

Ipswich Inn, Colorado, USA                                                                            The Ipswich Inn, Ipswich, Massachusetts, USA

Ipswich View Homestead Bed & Breakfast, Western Australia            Ipswich in the Names of Public Houses, Bars & Inns etc. 


Ipswitch Inc.                                                                                                       Ipswich Networks Ltd (IPswiTch Group)

Candis Tyson Ipswitch, Inc. (formerly Tyson & Ipswitch), California, USA                 Ipswich Bay Company, Texas, USA


William Johnson - "Ipswichus"                                                                     Descendant: Chronicles of the Ipswich Witch - A Novel by Miranda Bachman

Ipswich in The Fourth Protocol -  A Novel by Frederick Forsyth           Scott Was Here - Book by Elaine Ipswitch

Ipswich as a Surname in Three Little Girls Dressed in Blue - A Trilogy of Novels by Marcia Lynn McClure 

The Postmaster of Ipswich. William Stevenson Fitch Antiquary and Thief  - Janet Ing Freeman

Gippovicensis as part of a literary title                                                       Ipswitch, Pennsylvania, in Pie - A Children’s Book by Sarah Weeks

Tilly Ipswitch in Tilly Witch - A Children’s Book by Don Freeman       The Good Green Witch from Ipswitch by Garnett Tremain Bond

The Ipswich Witch by David L Jones                                                               Last Voyage from Ipswich – A Novel by Peter Foster     

The Artisan of Ipswich by Robert Tarule                                                      The House on Ipswich Marsh by William Sargent

Names & Titles:      

Ipswitch & Ipswich as Surnames                                                                    Viscount Ipswich

TV & Film:

East of Ipswich - TV drama by Michael Palin                                             Ipswich Man - BBC Documentary  

The Ipswich Cuckoos - Film                                                                             The ‘Sons of Ipswich’ in the film The Covenant

“Lord Clive Montdrako of Ipswich” and references to Ipswich in an episode of Bewitched

"Ichabod Ipswich" – Character in Goober and the Ghost Chasers          Fictional town of Ipswich, Oregon, USA in the film Summer of '84

Food & Drink:


Ipswich Almond Pudding & Ipswich Lemon Pie                                          Ipswich Super Blue Pork Sausages                   

Ipswich Clams                                                                                                      Almost Ipswich - Food with Names Similar to Ipswich


Beers Named ‘Ipswich’                                                                                        Ipswich Soda Pop

Old Ipswich Rum


Monopoly - Ipswich Edition                                                                              Scrabble Ipswich

Ipswich Fives Darts Board (aka Wide Fives Dart Board)


Ipswich & Double Ipswich - Sailcloth                                                             The Ipswich Window

“Ipswich” Range of Agricultural Machinery                                                Ipswich - Glass Pattern by A.H. Heisey & Company  

Ipswich - China Pattern by J & G Meakin Ltd                                              Ipswich Pine - Wood Stain

Ipswich Fog - Evangeline Ghastly Doll                                                          Ipswich Shoewear Brand Names

Ipswich Screw Removal System (formerly Ipswich Nail Extractor Kit)  Ipswich Eye Shadow

The Gippeswyk Engine                                                                                       The Gyppeswyk Fountain Pen     

Ipswich (Motorcycle)                                                                                           Ipswitch – Trademark

Ipswich Cottage – A Model Train Building                                                  Ipswich Weekender & Ipswich Day Pack

adidas Ipswich Watch

Flora - Introductory Note                                                                                  Ipswich Daisy (Olearia nernstii    

Ipswich Wonga Wonga Vine (Pandorea floribunda)                      Ipswich Pink, Ipswich Crimson & Ipswich Mulberry – Varieties of Dianthus plumarius

Gem of Ipswich & Pride of Ipswich – Varieties of Fuchsia                        Ipswich Beauty – A Variety of both Dalhia & Gaillardia

Ipswich Gem – A Variety of both Rosa & Kniphofia                                   Ipswich Town – Variety of Pelargonium

Ipswich Gold, Pride of Ipswich & Little Ipswich - Neoregelia Hybrids   Ipswich Centenary – Variety of Hibiscus

Ipswich – Variety of Hemerocallis                                                                  Ipswich – Variety of Dahlia


City of Ipswich  - F-111C Tactical Strike Aircraft                                         City of Ipswich – Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet Aircraft                                                   

Almost Ipswich - Places with Names Similar to Ipswich:

The Ipewik River, Alaska, USA                                                                        The Ipewik Formation, Alaska, USA                    

Gipsvika, Svalbard, Norway   

Odds & Ends:

I Put Some Water In Charlie's Hat                                                                   Ipswich x 5 

Gyppeswick Historic House, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada            Ipswich Soil 

Ipswich Time                                                                                                          Ipswich House, Rangiora, New Zealand (Hunnibell Building)

Ipswich Touch Test                                                                                         

Ipswich Street in a Californian Ghost Town                  

**Please note, the sections on Ficus ipswichii & Ficus ipswichiana, Laciniaria ipswichiana, Notelaea ipsviciensis, & Polypodiisporites ipsviciensis & Thymospora ipsviciensis have now been moved to the Ipswich as a Scientific Name page**

The Ipswich Song Book

This came to light in August 1864 at a meeting of the British Archaeological Association held in Ipswich, Suffolk.  Thomas Wright FSA (Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries) gave a presentation entitled “The Song Book of an Ipswich Minstrel”.  

Apparently a manuscript of songs and carols collected during the reign of King Henry VI (1422-1461) was found among the municipal records of the Borough of Ipswich during a “clearing-out session”.  Unaware of its historical merit, the manuscript was to be destroyed, but a Mr. Fitch (presumably an employee of the borough) took it home.  He later offered it to Thomas Wright who, being an antiquarian, immediately recognised its value, but declined to purchase it since he knew Mr. Fitch could gain far more than he could afford in an open auction.

It was soon realised that it was a stock-in-trade of a professional minstrel of the 15th century who would have carried it on his person when singing at festivals or private entertainments.  A manuscript collection of songs so early is extremely rare and the only other collection was held at the British Museum as part of the Sloane Collection.  A few of the Sloane pieces were also in the ‘Ipswich Song Book’, but the latter had by far the larger number of songs, most of which were unique, and also complete copies of songs already partly known.  The manuscript was originally purchased for a private collection, but it is now also owned by the nation and is in The British Library along with the Sloane Collection.  

Although a great proportion of its content consists of carols and religious songs, the ‘Ipswich Song Book’ shows how minstrels catered for the public taste in that it is rich in drinking songs, and a number of satirical songs against the female of the human species.

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Ipswich Volunteers Funeral March - S. Ball

In 1808 The Ipswich Volunteers, Slow & Quick Marches, with Funeral March for a Military Band was published by Broderick & Wilkinson (London).  The composer was S. Ball, the bandmaster of the Ipswich Volunteers (see The Loyal Ipswich Volunteer Corps on the Ipswich, England page).  The Funeral March was specifically written for the Ipswich Volunteers, whereas the other pieces were regular marching tunes.

S. Ball lived in Ipswich, Suffolk, and is known from about 1797.  In 1808 he was also the organist of St Lawrence Church in Ipswich.  He is reported as performing his songs at Ranelagh Gardens in Norwich.  In 1840 he ran a music publishing company known as “Ball & Sons” in Ipswich.

(See also East Suffolk Quadrilles - S. Ball on the Misc. Page of

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Ipswich Début – Concert piece by Attila Jurth

Ipswich Début is a flexible concert piece for beginner string ensembles from piano trio to string orchestra with obligate piano.  The piano part should be played by a teacher or advanced student.  It has a duration of four minutes.

Attila Jurth was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1945 and wrote his first composition in 1956.  From 1961 to 1962 he attended the Academy of Music in Budapest, studying piano and theory.  Jurth moved to Russia in 1963 where he gave piano recitals and won the first prize in composition in the City of Leningrad Music Competition.  He continued to study composition and economics in Russia and Hungary before moving to Austria in 1969 to continue further studies at the University of Vienna in translating/interpreting, political science, international law and economics.  In 1975, Jurth married Réka Kocsárdi, an Hungarian-born Australian language teacher and interpreter.  In 1982 his young family moved to Australia.  Following his arrival in Brisbane, he increasingly turned his attention to various aspects of music and became a member of the Music Teachers’ Association of Queensland.  The Jurth family settled down in Ipswich, Queensland.

In response to the musical development of his four children, Jurth specialised in writing arrangements and original compositions for ‘uneven string ensembles’, where the cello has the most advanced part while one of the violins is assigned the least demanding role.  In 1985 he composed a piece for his children called First for Kinga and Levente.  This was renamed Ipswich Début after the good reception it received at its first performance.

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Which Switch is the Switch, Miss, for Ipswich?

Which Switch is the Switch, Miss, for Ipswich? is a song from the play Rosy Rapture. Written by Worton David, J Barnett & Herman Darewski  & sung by Billy Murray, with orchestra conducted by Walter B Rogers, this tongue twister of a song tells of a man’s frustration with a telephone operator who keeps getting his request to be put through to Ipswich wrong; putting him through to Northwich by mistake!!  (see lyrics, below) It was released in December 1915 as an ‘Edison Diamond Disc’. MP3 downloads & ringtones of the song are available from several websites.

Rosy Rapture, the Pride of the Beauty Chorus, was a play written by J M Barrie & is described as a ‘burlesque in seven scenes’. A silent film of the play came out in 1914, starring Gaby Deslys in the title role, supported by Biddy de Burgh & John East, with minor parts for G K Chesterton & George Bernard Shaw. The stage show opened in London’s Duke of York Theatre on 22nd March 1915, again with French actress Gaby Deslys playing the lead, alongside Jack Norworth.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Gaby Deslys


Which Switch is the Switch, Miss, for Ipswich?

Hello?....Hello?......HEL-LO?    Aah, she won’t answer me

I’ve just had a row with a telephone girl,
A telephone girl, my brain’s in a whirl
I asked her for Ipswich, but she lost her head
And somehow she switched me on Northwich instead
She got so mixed up with the switches, it’s true
That I got annoyed and I cried ‘tell me do...’

        Which switch is the switch, Miss, for Ipswich?
        It’s the Ipswich switch which I require
        Which switch switches Ipswich with this switch?
        You switched my switch on the wrong wire
        You’ve switched me on Northwich...... not Ipswich
        So now to prevent further hitch
        If you’ll tell me which switch is Northwich and which switch is Ipswich,
        I’ll know which switch is which

I begged the young lady to please put me through
I cried ‘switch me do, on Ipswich two two’
I waited an hour, then the
sweet little thing
Came back from her lunch and exclaimed ‘did you ring?’
Then just as I fancied at last I was through
She cried ‘have you finished?’  I said ‘what the..? er..who?’

(Repeat Chorus)

I got through at last and I thought all was well
Rang up my hotel, but more trouble fell
I said ‘can you fix me a table for two?’
A voice said ‘(huh) we can Sir, but this (huh) is the zoo!’
I murmured a prayer then I fainted away
And when I came round I was trying to say...

(Repeat Chorus)

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From Auschwitz to Ipswich - Song by Jarvis Cocker

From Auschwitz to Ipswich is a song written & performed by Pulp frontman Jarvis Cocker. It appears on his first solo album Jarvis, released in November 2006 on Rough Trade Records. When asked about the song, Cocker replied that he had come up with the phrase Auschwitz to Ipswich after hearing of someone whose relative had been kept in a prisoner of war camp near Ipswich during the Second World War. He admitted that the title was slightly inappropriate & went on to comment that the piece was muscially quite pretty actually; its a pity I had to spoil it by writing such dark lyrics

From Auschwitz to Ipswich

They want our way of life
Well, they can take mine any time they like
Cos God knows - I know I aint living right:
Im wrong
Oh, I know I'm so wrong

So like the Roman Empire fell away
Let me tell you; we are going the same way
Ah, behold the Decline and Fall
All hold hands with our backs to the wall

Its the end:
Why dont you admit it?
Its the same from Auschwitz to Ipswich
Evil comes
I know from not where
But if you take a look inside yourself -
maybe youll find some in there

Not one single soul was saved
I was ordering an Indian takeaway
I was spared whilst others went to an early grave

Oh, got stoned
Yeah, went out and got stoned

Well if your ancestors could see you standing there
They would gaze in wonder at your Frigidaire
They had to fight just to survive
So can't you do something with your life?

Its the end:
Why dont you admit it?
Its the same from Auschwitz to Ipswich
Evil comes
I know from not where
But if you take a look inside yourself -
maybe you'll find some in there

Here it comes, why dont you embrace it?
You lack the guts needed to face it
Say goodbye to the way youve been living
You never realised you were on the wrong side
And nobodys going to win

They want our way of life
Well, they can take mine any time they like

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Long Drive Through Ipswich - Song by Steve Towson

Long Drive Through Ipswich is a song by Brisbane based singer/songwriter/guitarist Steve Towson. Towson’s music is often categorised as folk-punk. The song first appeared on The Venom In My Veins, an EP Towson made with his band The Conscripts in 2005; subsequently also appearing on the band’s 2006 album Shah Mat.  Another version appears on Towson’s untitled solo album dating from 2009.

Cause its a long drive through Ipswich
Long drive through town
Long drive through Ipswich as the sun is setting down
On me
I can see the look of anguish
Written across your face
As I lay down your weary hand
I can see youve reached the end of your race

For the poison it lies within your blood
The poisons in your belly
I can hear the banshee as she howls
Moving through the corridor

For all of your life you vested your trust
In the hands of those driven by lust
For convenience
Financial reward
Until at last you severed the cord

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Ipswich - Song by Georgi Kay

Born in 1993 in Ascot, England, Georgina Kingsley, better known as Georgi Kay, is a singer/songwriter who grew up in Perth, Western Australia, where she began playing lead guitar for the rock group, The Vains, at the age of fourteen.  She was based in Australia until 2018, but has now moved to Los Angeles.  She released her debut EP, Strange Things in March 2010, & followed this with her first album Backwardsforwards in May 2011. Kay’s first appearance on a major international label was with the single In My Mind, released in January 2012.

In April 2013, Kay released the double A side single Ipswich/In My Mind on limited edition 7” vinyl. The song Ipswich is inspired by the Salem Witch Trials (see The Salem Witch Trials - the Ipswich Connection on the Ipswich, Massachusetts page), together with Kay’s love of horror films and the supernatural.


Drag me down to the water
And hold me down until I’m full
Until I struggle no longer
Until I’ve drowned in my sinful will

Bound my hands to the stake
And set fire to the ground below
Watch my skin bubble and burn
Beneath the rising smoke

And you may kill me now
And you may hurt me so
But I will haunt you til the end is nigh
And you may hunt me down
And you may turn me cold
But I will haunt you til the day you die
The day you die

Chase me down through the fields
You got your hooves and I got my bare heels
Chop off my head to show the world
That I am no ordinary girl

And you may kill me now
And you may hurt me so
But I will haunt you til the end is nigh
And you may hunt me down
And you may turn me cold
But I will haunt you til the day you die
The day you die

Hunting for witches
Hunting for witches
Hunting for witches
Hunting down those bitches

And you may kill me now
And you may hurt me so
But I will haunt you til the end is nigh
And you may hunt me down
And you may turn me cold
But I will haunt you til the day you die
The day you die
The day you die
The day you die
The day you die

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Ipswich – Song by Finnish Rock Band Absoluuttinen Nollapiste

On their sixth album, Nimi muutettu (see cover, right), which was released in 2002, the Finnish progressive rock band Absoluuttinen Nollapiste recorded a song entitled Ipswich.  Written by band members Tommi Liimatta (vocals) & Aki Lääkkölä (guitars & keyboards), the group’s line up on this album is completed by Aake Otsala on bass guitar & drummer Tomi Krutsin.

Absoluuttinen Nollapiste (which translates as Absolute Zero), were formed in June 1991 in the city of Rovaniemi, approximately 3 miles (5 km) south of the Arctic Circle. The band underwent a few changes of personnel early in its existence, although the core line up as on the Nimi muutettu album has remained relatively constant since 1992. The band’s first album was Neulainen Jerkunen (1994), & they have since released many singles & albums, mainly for the Finnish market.

For anybody that’s interested, below are the lyrics; firstly in Finnish, then with an English (?) translation. All the bands other songs have titles in Finnish, so why the name “Ipswich” has been used remains unclear.  Even with the English version, Im still not sure what the song is about. I think something may have been lost in translation!!


Jos oletetaan tilanne, kuvitellaan niitty ja niitylle
Niin monta jänistä, ettei niiden määrää käsitä,
Ja laukauksen hetkenä ei jokainen jäniksistä mahdu
Juoksemaan eri suuntaan

Kun sen kaikki näkevät,
Konttaan maantietä nisunpala suussa.
Kun sen kaikki näkevät,
Annan lampaalle tekohengitystä
Ipswichissä kuvittelemallasi niityllä.

Jos kuvitellaan rinne, siihen polku,
Jota laskeudut ja samaa polkua laskeutuu
Joku tuntematon, ei samaa polkua laskeutuva
Tuntematon sinua seuraa, ei tule paha
Mielessään, se olen minä.

Kun sen kaikki näkevät,
Konttaan maantietä nisunpala suussa.
Kun sen kaikki näkevät,
Annan lampaalle tekohengitystä
Ipswichissä kuvittelemallasi niityllä.

Annoin lampaalle tekohengitystä Ipswichissä.
Annoin lampaalle tekohengitystä Ipswichissä.



Assuming the situation, imagine a meadow and meadow
So many hares, that they understand the amount,
And he thinks a moment, not every rabbits fit
Run in a different direction

When its all to see,
Crawl to the road nisunpala mouth.
When its all to see,
I'll give artificial respiration with lamb
Ipswich imagine a meadow.

If one assumes a slope, the path
And the land on which the same path descends
Someone unknown, is not the same path descending
Unknown on you, not bad
In his mind, it's me.

When its all to see,
Crawl to the road nisunpala mouth.
When its all to see,
I'll give artificial respiration with lamb
Ipswich imagine a meadow.

I gave the sheep artificial respiration Ipswich.
I gave the sheep artificial respiration Ipswich.

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More Songs & Music with "Ipswich" in the Title

Listed in this section are as many songs & pieces of music with “Ipswich” in the title that I have been able to find. There are undoubtedly others out there that have been missed. If anyone knows of any not included below, please email details to

See also:  Which Switch is the Switch, Miss, for Ipswich?

                      From Auschwitz to Ipswich - Song by Jarvis Cocker

                      Long Drive Through Ipswich - Song by Steve Towson

                      Ipswich - Song by Georgi Kay

                      Ipswich - Song by Finnish Rock Band Absoluuttinen Nollapiste


The Ipswich Prisoners - Paul Buck: Released in 2012, The Ipswich Prisoners is one of five songs on Paul Buck’s The Ipswich Prisoners EP (the other songs being Jet Black Sunset/Purple Slurpee/The Fountain/Great Elation). Buck sings & plays all the instruments on the EP, which falls into the electronic/synth pop genre.

Buck is from Branford, Connecticut, which presumably means that the Ipswich in question is Ipswich, Massachusetts.

Exactly who the ‘Ipswich Prisoners’ refers to is uncertain and the lyrics do not make this clear.  However, it seems likely that it relates to 10 women from Ipswich who were accused of witchcraft in 1692.  They were known as “the Ipswich prisoners”.  The conditions in prison were so bad and most of them had been there for over six months and were in a poor state.  They wrote a petition to the Governor, Council & General Assembly of Massachusetts requesting bail so that they would be alive to stand trial the next Spring.  This petition still survives (an image can be seen on the Internet).  (Refer also to the Ipswich - Song by Georgi Kay, above).



Ipswich Dozen - Dead ‘Til Friday: Formed in 2007, Dead ‘Til Friday are a metal / hardcore band from the Newcastle/Kilkeel area of County Down, Northern Ireland. Having released their first EP Through the Motions in 2008, they brought out the follow-up Ipswich Dozen E.P in March 2010. As well as the title track, the EP also features two other songs: Shes the Ideas Mans Daughter & Silence is Golden.

Who or what the ‘Ipswich Dozen’ refers to is not clear at present.



Ipswich is a Good English Place - The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns: Ipswich is a Good English Place is a strange, wacky 1 minute 17 seconds rap song by someone calling himself The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns. The song is taken from the 2012 album English England, British Britain, Uk, Great Song!, which features more than 90 short tracks, each of which ‘pays tribute’ to an English town or city. Titles include: An Attempt to Celebrate Darlington in Song; A Mildly Enjoyable Song About Coventry & Farnborough Deserves Its Own Song, so Here We Go!.

Ipswich is a Good English Place namechecks the Ancient House, the Willis Building & Neptune Marina, amongst other local landmarks.

The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns has released a number of albums in similar vein, all consisting, as his name suggests, of short, rather strange songs about towns & cities in Great Britain, Canada, Australia & various US states. These include These Songs Are About Canada Places; New York State Nice Places Ny Song Yes! & Texas City & Town Song Fun, Tx.

Ipswich, Queensland - The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns: Another offering from the above mentioned The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns, is the two minutes fourteen seconds long Ipswich, Queensland. Taken from the January 2014 album These Australia Places Deserve These Nice Songs.

According to the lyrics of the song, Ipswich, Queensland has “got a lot of cool stuff in it”, & is a “fabulous community”. In fact “everything good in the world comes from Ipswich”.  Riverlink Shopping Centre gets a mention (“you can go & shop in there”), as does Ipswich Railway Station.

And just for the sake of completeness, I suppose we should mention Poop Song for Ipswich, Massachusetts by The Odd Man Who Sings About Poop, Puke and Pee, taken from his 2017 City Poop Songs album.  With song titles such as Poop Song for San Francisco and Buenos Aires Poop Song plus forty six other titles in similar vein, all of which (mercifully) are no more than around a minute or so in length, you’ve probably guessed that there’s a theme running through this album. Best avoided.

In real life, The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns and The Odd Man Who Sings About Poop, Puke and Pee are one and the same. This is Matt Farley, a Massachusetts-based comedy musician.  In 2008, Farley started writing songs about every topic imaginable and he has carved out a strange (and successful) career in recent years, releasing hundreds of novelty albums and songs on Spotify and iTunes.  He is said to have written 18,300 songs.  Most of them are released under various band names, some of which can be found on the Internet site Matt Farley Discography at Discogs. 

Honeymoon in Ipswich - Andrew Green: The instrumental track Honeymoon in Ipswich is featured on jazz guitarist Andrew Green’s 2008 album Narrow Margin. Based in New York, Green is the author of several books including Jazz Guitar Structures & Jazz Guitar Technique. Honeymoon in Ipswich was composed by Green & runs for nearly nine minutes. The reason for the name is unclear, unless Green did actually spend his honeymoon in one of the Ipswiches of the world (Massachusetts, maybe?).

Ipswich - Grannykart: Ipswich, by Grannykart clocks in at just 1 minute 17 seconds long. It is basically a weird & wacky version of Which Switch is the Switch, Miss, for Ipswich, which samples the opening “Hello?......HEL-LO?” from the 1915 Billy Murray recording (see above). The song features on the electronic/experimental album Grannykart’s Own Thing, which was released in 2010. The leading figure in the Studio City, Los Angeles based Grannykart is Jody Beth Rosen, with occasional help from Andre LaFosse.

Into Ipswich - Nick Wyard: Into Ipswich features on Nick Wyard’s 2011 album An Acquired Taste. Wyard is originally from Chelmsford, England but is now resident in Toronto, Canada. The album was put together over many years, beginning in the early 2000s, & the songs include references to several places in the Essex/Suffolk region of England. Wyards diverse influences range from medieval, renaissance & baroque music, through Andrew Lloyd Webber & the Beatles, to progressive rock acts such as Genesis, Jethro Tull & Pink Floyd. At just under four minutes long, the instrumental track Into Ipswich has a medieval feel to it.

Where’s the Sea In Ipswich - Exit 13: Where’s the Sea in Ipswich is a track from the 2009 re-issue of the album Celia’s Last Wednesday Plus Singles by Exit 13. Formed in Ipswich, Suffolk, in 1980, the band Exit 13 were at first known as Emergency Exit, but had to change their name the same year as a Scottish punk band had already acquired that title. Their music is best described as psychedelic folk. Their first single Fields of Joy was released in 1985, with the debut album Celia’s Last Wednesday first appearing in 1989. The band has released singles & albums sporadically over the years, & were still in existence up until at least December 2018. The band’s line-up has undergone many changes over the years, revolving around the ever-present guitarist, vocalist & main songwriter Steve Mann, who was born at Hollesley, near Ipswich.  It should also be noted that Exit 13 was also the name of an American group from Pennsylvania, active from 1989 to 1997.

Where’s the Sea in Ipswich is a folky song about sailing, although Ipswich doesn’t actually feature in the lyrics.

All the Fish in Ipswich - Underwater Airport: The 2011 digital only album The Sea Sides by Underwater Airport includes the short experimental instrumental track All the Fish in Ipswich.

According to the Boston, Massachusetts based band’s website: “Underwater Airport is an improvising and recording multimedia ensemble combining music and projected visuals for the purpose of creating spontaneous portals into alternate space-time dimensions” Their music is described as “ambient  folk jazz for the sonically adventurous

The name of the group was adopted to reflect both the underwater and the aerial realms which are strange, beautiful, and somewhat dangerous places, inhabited by curious and fantastic creatures, affording extraordinary visions.  Underwater Airport represents a kind of mythical alternative universe and that is a pretty good description of what it feels like to play and listen to this music.

When founded in 2008 the line up comprised:

Peter Spellman - Drums, Percussion, Guitar & Keyboard
Russell Lane – Drums & Percussion (retired in 2015)
Jim Whisenant - Bass, Stick, Percussion & Laptop
Lynda Stephens – Saxes & Electronic Wind Instrument
Marc Lisle - Electronic Wind Instrument,  Percussion, Video Projection & Laptop
Ed Blomquist - Guitar, Bass, Synthesisers

Down to Ipswich Mass. - Robby Roadsteamer: The acoustic guitar accompanied song Goin Down to Ipswich Mass. by Robbie Roadsteamer is from the 2008 album New England Weathered Friends.  As the title suggests, this song is about Ipswich, Massachusetts, with Crane Beach getting a mention in the lyrics.

Musician,comedian & performance artist Roadsteamer (AKA Louis Robert Potylo) hails from Boston, Massachusetts. His other albums include Postcards From the Den Of Failure & The Heart of a Rhino.

Ipswich - Ben Walker:  The four minutes seven seconds long jazz/folk song Ipswich features on Ben Walker’s 2013 album Gorgeous. London born Walker lived in Suffolk during the 1980s, before heading across the Atlantic. He studied jazz in New Jersey in 1992, then moved to Toronto, Canada. He later returned to London, where he gained a first class degree in Performance Arts from Middlesex University. He is now based in the north of England. His first CD Bahaudin was released in 2001. The album Gorgeous is a reworking of 12 of his early compositions. In the past, Walker has worked with members of such bands as Lindisfarne, 10cc, New Model Army & Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra. The song Ipswich includes the line “down the Norwich Road, take the A14 to Stow” & suggests “getting up & getting down to Ipswich town”.

Ipswich - Faspitch: Featuring Trick Berganos (guitars), Trevor Bicknell  (bass), Henry Allen (vocals), O.J. Anonas (drums) and  Russell Manaloto  (guitars and vocals), Faspitch are a five piece alternative metal/post-hardcore band from Cebu City in the Philippines, formed in 2000. The song Ipswich appears on the band’s self titled second album, released in August 2014. The lyrics, written by vocalist Henry Allen, give no clue as to why this song is called Ipswich.  Why a band from the Philippines should use the name remains a mystery at present.

Fish and Chip Bitch from Ipswich - Escape From Toytown: Fish and Chip Bitch from Ipswich is a country-influenced song by Brisbane based punk band Escape From Toytown. The song title refers to Pauline Hanson, co-founder and leader of One Nation, a far right Australian political party, who, before entering politics, owned a fish and chip shop in Ipswich, Queensland.

The original version of the song appeared on a cassette called Junk Food and More Toys. A re-recorded version then appeared on Behind The Banana Curtain, a various artists compilation album from 1996 which was released by Brisbane independent community radio station 4ZZZ.  The song went on to win the station’s Hot 100 poll for that year.

The song has since been released on the band’s Pockets of Resistance “home made” compilation CD, first issued in 2003. A compilation of the same name, also featuring Fish and Chip Bitch from Ipswich, was released in April  2016.

Escape From Toytown were formed in 1995, and initially comprised Cal Crilly on guitar, vocals and keyboards, Chris Bell on guitar and Doug Mohr on drums.  After several personnel changes, and various independent releases (including the 1999 album Escapegoat on Oracle Records), they seem to have disbanded in the early 2000s. 

Ipswich - Po!: Po! Were an indie band from Rutland in England, who formed in 1987 and whose last recordings date from 1998. The line up changed several times over the years, with Ruth Miller (vocals and guitar) being the hub around which the band revolved. The track Ipswich first appeared on their final album Horse Blanket Weather which dates from 1998. It also features on a 2017 compilation album called Saturday Boots & Sundae Spoons, released on Rutland Records.  Other albums by Po! include Little Stones (1989), Ducks And Drakes (1993) and Not Marked On The Ordnance Map (1996).

Ipswich - Paul Zarv: The atmospheric instrumental track Ipswich features on the 2016 electronic/dance album HPL by Paul Zarv.  Not much more is known about this artist, but the fact that another of the tracks on this album is called Dunwich Rites, suggests a possible Suffolk connection.

Ipswich Stand Up - Brotherhood (feat. Gman, Lewis, Rye Shabby & Relly Crise): Taken from their 2017 studio debut album Flvd, this rap song, with explicit lyrics, is by Brotherhood. Formed in their hometown of Ipswich, Suffolk in 2006, Brotherhood consists of two brothers Blaze (Jerome), the eldest, and Menace (Byron Ingham). On Ipswich Stand Up they are joined by featured guests Gman, Lewis, Rye Shabby & Relly Crise.

Girl From Ipswich (Anema) - Paul Rippengal and Peter Bennie: Taken from their 2016 debut album Into the Clown’s Barrel, the title of this improvised instrumental is a play on The Girl from Ipanema, the Brazilian bossa nova jazz song that was an international hit for Astrud Gilberto and Stan Getz in 1964.

The album, which features these British musicians Paul on guitars and Peter on bass and electronics, is described as “A collection of tracks inspired by a free improvisation on acoustic guitar and electronics”. At just over six minutes long Girl From Ipswich (Anema) is a laid back, percussion dominated, atmospheric  piece.

Girl From Ipswich - Sacha Collisson, Owen Parker, Dominic Marsh: This track is taken from the 2015 various artists album Comedy, released on the SATV label (which stands for Seriously Addictive Tunes and Vibes). Girl From Ipswich is basically a jazz tinged instrumental with wordless vocals, which weighs in at just two minutes eighteen seconds.

Ipswich - Matt Booth & Palindromes: This jazz instrumental can be found on the quartets eponymous 2018 album, available on Breakfast For Dinner Records.  The band consists of the New Orleans jazz musicians Matt Booth on bass, Brad Walker on saxophones, Chris Alford on guitar and Doug Garrison on drums. The seven minutes eighteen seconds long piece Ipswich, written by Booth, is the first track on the album, which was recorded in New Orleans in 2016.

Why the name Ipswich was chosen for this piece is not known.  Matt Booth & Palindromes has been performing in New Orleans since 2016, and this album, which represents a small portion of the group’s repertoire, explores a variety of moods and textures, from the meditative to the wildly bombastic, with an emphasis on deep listening and collective play.

(Tr)Ipswich - Muckaniks: This track features on a hip-hop compilation album called Brapp Beat Tape, Vol. 3 (Continuous DJ Mix), released in April 2018. The track is listed as being by Muckaniks, whose real name is Ryan Gallant, a Hip Hop producer/musician from Ipswich, England. His Production credits include:Brotherhood (see Ipswich Stand Up, above), Rye Shabby, Verb T, Lunar C, Scorcher, Kid Bookie, Richard Osborne, Torch, and Piers James amongst others.

Ipswich - DJ Ushuaia: Ipswich is taken from the album Rooster House Techno Edm Electro Music. As the album title suggests, this instrumental track is in the house/techno genre. The album, released in December 2018, consists of 30 tracks by various DJs, each one named after a British town, city or area, including Ayr, Cardiff, Grimsby, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Merseyside and East Coast. As well as Ipswich, two other tracks boast names of Suffolk towns: Felixstowe and Lowestoft.  The name Ushuaia is taken from the Ushuaïa Ibiza Beach Hotel, where, according to theushuaiaexperience blog, the world’s best DJs perform.

Ipswich - Anjimile:  The track Ipswich features on the 2018 album Colors by Anjimile.  Anjimile is a self-styled “queer and trans songmaker/lover boy with a heart of gold based in Boston, MA.” His music is described as “spiritual and melodic indie-pop characterized by a smooth, highly expressive croon backed by guitar and synthesizer”.

Ipswich Lanes - Le Matos: Le Matos are a Montreal based duo comprising Jean-Nicolas Leupi and Jean-Philippe Bernie. Formed in 2007, their music is synthesiser/electronic orientated. Ipswich Lanes is a 1 minute 27 seconds long instrumental piece taken from the soundtrack album to the film Summer of ’84, for which the band provide all the music.

The movie Summer of ’84, which was released in 2018, is a Canadian horror/mystery film set in the fictional town of Ipswich in Cape May, Oregon, USA. See Fictional town of Ipswich, Oregon, USA in the film Summer of ’84 in the TV & Film section for more details.

Girl from Ipswich - Beds and Beats: Described as the Ultimate Lift Musak Track, Girl from Ipswich is a jazz-tinged instrumental piece clocking in at two minutes and composed by Dave Bethell. It appears on the 2019 album Lounge and Kitschen (sic), published by Beds and Beats Ltd, a London based music library service, specialising in production music and promos for radio and television. Beds and Beats Ltd was founded by Dave Bethell in 2008 and was bought by the Berlin-based BMG in 2015.  Dave Bethell is an accomplished producer and voice over artist originally based in the UK.  Dave moved to Los Angeles in 2015 to promote BMG’s activities in the American market and in 2018 he joined TM Productions as its Creative & Business Development Director.  In 2020 he became a co-owner of this company in a management buy-out from its parent company.

Girls of Ipswich Town - Sedbuskers: Taken their debut 2016 album The Lady in the Lake, Girls of Ipswich Town is a song about the murders of five women in Ipswich in 2006 (see The Ipswich Murders 2006 on the Ipswich, England page). English folk band Sedbuskers are singer/songwriter duo Ian and Sue Bembridge, who are also members of the ceilidh and barn dance Bullenbush Band.  Ian and Sue had long accompanied other folk groups. They set out on their own in 2007.  Most of their work is self-penned and based on true stories from which they hope to provide entertainment and also a message from the story. (This same topic has also been covered by the folk group The Simon Hopper Band - see The Ballad of the Suffolk Five on the Suffolk Misc. page on page).

Ipswich, MA. - Grant Wallace Band: Released in December 2017, Ipswich, MA is a 3 minutes 42 seconds track taken from the album By This Time Tomorrow by the Grant Wallace Band. Originating in Chicago, Illinois in 2011, the Grant Wallace Band are actually the trio of composers/performers Ben Hjertmann (voice/pedal steel guitar), Chris Fisher-Lochhead (viola/banjo), and Luke Gullickson (piano/guitar), whose influences include modern jazz and old-time folk.

Seeing drawings made by the grandfather of a fellow-composer, the group decided to name itself after him.  Grant Wallace (1867-1954) was an eccentric Californian artist who practised interstellar communication in an isolated cabin, and drew structural diagrams of the universe based on professed telepathic communications with beings from other star systems.  This suggested a
fresh, diaphanous sound that the Grant Wallace Band was creating from a mélange of indie rock, experimental jazz, folk and bluegrass.  We have no idea why the name Ipswich, MA was chosen.

Petrichor: An Open Letter, Ipswich River - Ethan Lally: Ethan Lally is a singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist from Gloucester, Massachusetts. Petrichor: An Open Letter, Ipswich River is a six minute song taken from his 2016 self-produced album People, Places, Things.

(In case you were wondering, the definition of the word petrichor is: a pleasant smell that frequently accompanies the first rain after a long period of warm, dry weather)

18:18 to Ipswich - Matt Cade: 18:18 to Ipswich is a song on the 2018 album Childhood by Matt Cade. According to Matt, “ ‘Childhood’ is a collection of songs and memories from growing up.” The spoken-word-over-music track recreates a train journey from London Liverpool Street station to Ipswich, using both real and fake rail announcements. 

Ipswich - Sherman and Field: This duo from Ipswich, Queensland describe themselves as explorers of soundscapes, and use effects-drenched guitar, found/environmental sound, objects, devices, and acoustic/electronic beats to create their music. At nearly eight minutes long, the short film soundtrack Ipswich was released in August 2018 and is, in the band’s own words “improvised guitar and electronic drums accompaniment to a video filmed via mobile phone.” and was recorded as “a visual and sound representation of Brisbane and Limestone Streets in Ipswich Queensland - the heart of our town, submitted in a skateboard deck art exhibition as part of the 2018 Ipswich Fused Festival.”  The film is available to view on YouTube.

Its Always Raining in Ipswich - Booda French: Produced by Muckaniks and released in May 2019, this track is by Ipswich, Suffolk born Booda French, who describes himself as an “occasional unpopular rapper”. Other releases by the same artist include Fortune Cookies, Club 27 Reservations and Awesome is Everyday. All we know about Booda French is that he could not wait to leave the place of his birth, although he still expresses a fondness for it, hence the title of this track which apparently sums up his feelings of the Chantry Estate in Ipswich.  Maybe this reflects his earlier stage-name which was Truth.

Ipswich - Chronologist: Ipswich appears on Solstice II, a four track EP released on the 21st December 2019 (the winter solstice) by the instrumental progressive rock band Chronologist. The band formed at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts in 2013, but are now based in A
ustin, Texas. Comprising of Julian Gargiulo, Nick Broomhall and Zach Sacco, the band have also released the EPs Equinox I, Equinox II and Solstice I, plus the 2016 album Cartographer.

Are You Telling Me Ipswich Has No Fun Points? - Haest:  At just one minute seventeen seconds long, Are You Telling Me Ipswich Has No Fun Points? appears on the January 2020 album Anomie by the hardcore band Haest, who formed in early 2018 and hail from Hastings in East Sussex, England. They no doubt take their name from the old spelling of their home town - Haestingas. Why Ipswich has been referenced in this title is unknown.

Ipswich Cathedral Choral - Andrei Krylov: Taken from the 2018 album 50 Medieval Gothic & Celtic Fantasies for Folk Lute and Classical Guitar, the one minute thirty three second piece Ipswich Cathedral Choral  is written  and played by Russian born guitarist, composer and poet Andrei Krylov. Now based in Canada, Krylov has released numerous albums since his 1992 debut Nostalgy. Russian guitar songs and romances. As far as we know, Krylov has had no connection with Ipswich, nor does the place have a cathedral, so we are at a loss to explain this title.  Maybe wishful thinking?

Straight Outta Ipswich - Oliver John Cameron & The Original Cast of the Colour Orange: Straight Outta Ipswich is a six minute long song taken from The Colour Orange: The Pauline Hanson Musical.

The stage show is written by Sophia Roberts and Oliver John Cameron with original music composed by Oliver John Cameron. Having won the Critics’ Pick award at the 2017 Sydney Fringe Festival, the show was subsequently performed in 2018 at the Adelaide Fringe Festival, Sydney Comedy Festival and Sideshow Festival. The Original Cast album was released in 2020.

As with the song Fish and Chip Bitch from Ipswich by Escape From Toytown (see above), the musical is based on the life and career of Pauline Hanson, co-founder of the far right One Nation Party, who, prior to entering politics, owned  a fish and chip shop in Ipswich, Queensland. The Colour Orange is a theatrical caricature of her political career.

Sydney born composer, arranger and conductor Oliver John Cameron completed a Bachelor of Music (Composition) with Honours in 2015 at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, before becoming composer in residence and composition teacher at Meriden School.  His other works include Sketches of the Moonflower for soprano and piano, Iuxta Modum for brass ensemble, Ortus for symphony orchestra, Cool Trepidation for bassoon and electronics, and Earth 10 for flute, French horn, cello and piano. 



***Beware of the songs Merry Christmas Ipswich & Happy New Year Ipswich with Countdown and Auld Lang Syne, credited to Personalisongs & available to download. These songs are not unique to Ipswich, but are available for a whole host of different towns throughout Great Britain, with just the name of the town or city being changed on each recording.***


Ipswich Town FC Songs: Starting in the 1970s, several songs have been released about Ipswich Town Football Club with Ipswich in the title.   The first of these was Ipswich Football Calypso, credited to Johnny Cobnut (a play on the name of the then club chairman John Cobbold, together with Tolly Cobbold’s Cobnut Ale, which dates from that period). Ipswich Football Calypso was the b-side of the club’s first ever 7” single from the early 70s, the a-side of which was Come on the Town (see single & original cover, right).

There have been several versions of Ipswich, Ipswich (Get that Goal) released over the years. The first appeared in the mid 70s, with a special edition, with adapted lyrics, coming out during the FA Cup winning run of 1977/78. Three different versions of this song can be found on the 2000 album Singing the Blues: The Songs of Ipswich Town FC, one of which is listed as The Ipswich Song, with another being a punk version by Elmerhassel. Other songs on the album include Blitzkreig Bop (For The Ipswich Lot) by Blue Flag ‘78 (which is based on the Ramones song Blitzkreig Bop), & Pride in Ipswich by Psychodelia.

Beware, however, of a track called Go Get the Goal (Ipswich Town). This track, by Dont Kick the Baby, appears in 26 versions on a digital album called Go Get the Goal  - Championship League. Each song is identical apart from the insertion of the name of a different English football club in the lyrics. 


The Ugly Truth about Ipswich 1981-2011: Also worthy of mention is The Ugly Truth about Ipswich 1981-2011, a double CD compilation released on the Antigen Records label. Featuring a truly eclectic mix of 45 different artists & bands from Ipswich, England, the album’s diverse line-up includes the pop sounds of Nik Kershaw, the grindcore/death metal of Extreme Noise Terror, the classic punk of The Adicts, the indie rock of Bleach, the hardcore punk of The Stupids & the reggae of Jah Warriors, amongst many others. 





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Ipswich - Indie Band from Christchurch, New Zealand

Formed in Christchurch, New Zealand in late March 2011, Ipswich are a post-punk/indie band comprising Steven Marr on guitar & lead vocals, Matthew Gunn on bass & backing vocals, & Jamie Larson on drums.

In the aftermath of the earthquake that devastated Christchurch in February 2011, with virtually no live music venues available, the band began by playing at house parties. When venues began to re-open, Ipswich became regulars on the Christchurch scene, & soon began getting attention from the local media.  Their self-titled debut EP was issued in May 2011 & was followed in November 2011 by the four track Living in a Strangers Home EP.

Ipswich’s first album was Live in Dunedin, which, as the title suggests, features a live nine track set recorded at  XII Below in Dunedin on 21st January, 2012. It was released in April 2012 through Muzai Records. The CD of the album was sold encased in a 5.25 floppy disc!

The band’s first studio album, Baby Factory, followed in July 2012 (see album cover, right), featuring ten self-penned tracks & again released through Muzai, although this time in a more conventional CD format.  A single, Whitecore/Smoke Crack, Shake Babies was released in November 2012. The majority of Ipswich’s back catalogue is still available to download.

According to the NZ Musician magazine the band took its name from a street sign somewhere between Christchurch and Dunedin. This must be either Ipswich Street in Hampden, a rural settlement between the two cities; or Ipswich Street in Bradford, a suburb of Dunedin (see Roads Named Ipswich page).

The band split up during 2013, with all three members joining other groups by the end of that year.  Steven Marr and Matt Gunn helped form Doprah in 2013, and Jamie Larsen became drummer of Christian Rock

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Ipswich – Rock Band from California, USA

Based in Fremont, California, the band Ipswich describe their music as Jazz Punk Infusion/Thrash-a-billy/Rock/Alt-Rock. Formed in 2009 from the remnants of a band named The Dying Ego, the current band line up comprises Noel English on vocals, Kenn Bobbit & Bobby Rodriguez on Guitars, Carlos Torres on bass, Dave Govang on keyboards & Rizaldy Abawag on drums (who replaced original drummer Kris Betchart). Five of their songs are available to download from the band’s Facebook page: Blurred, Self Inflicted Misery, Outta Control, Down Not Done & Save Me.

The band hosted a music venue at the Moose Lodge in Newark, CA every 4th Saturday called “Rock the Moose”, although whether this is still ongoing is uncertain, as the last post on the band’s Facebook page dates from July 2012. It may even be that the band have now split up.

                                                                                                                                                                     Band Logo

No reason has yet come to light as to why a band based in California should use the name Ipswich.

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Ipswich Down – Rock Band from New Jersey, USA

Ipswich Down was a rock/pop band from the Ashbury Park area in southern New Jersey. They combined elements of rock, pop, and punk, with the rhythmic grooves of classic R&B and funk. Or, in the band’s own words: “soulful rhythm, grooves that move, and infectious melodies, wrapped up with a rock n roll attitude”.

Formed in February 2014 by three veterans of the New Jersey music scene: drummer Damien Mendez (the Coppertones, Cross Eyed Jesus), bassist Timmy Douglas (Nick Clemons Band, Basskidd), and singer/guitarist David Fagan (Snowball 37).  The band’s influences range from The Red Hot Chili Peppers to the Ramones, and all styles of dance music in between.

You can hear five Ipswich Down tracks on ReverbNation: The Upside, Fraidy Cat, Psycho Killer (cover of the old Talking Heads song), Baby You’re a Star (Live) and I Need More. There are also a few live videos of the band on YouTube, playing The Upside, Fraidy Cat and So What at various venues in New Jersey during early 2015.

The gigs seem to have dried up in 2015, and it appears that the band broke up around this time. What remains a mystery is why the name Ipswich Down was chosen.

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Ipswich Musicians’ Union Big Band

The Ipswich Musicians’ Union Big Band was formed over 30 years ago as a rehearsal band for the benefit of local musicians wanting to play ‘Big Band Jazz’ for their own pleasure.  This 18 piece Big Band playing both Big Band jazz standards and more contemporary arrangements has been one of the leading bands in East Anglia in England for many years.

For the first ten years they went under the name of ‘The Paul Davis Big Band’ after their band leader and pianist, who has since gone on to recreate the 1940s and 1950s big swing band sound with an orchestra of this same name.  In 1983 the band recorded their first album, The Heat’s On at Hillside Studios, Ipswich, under the Paul Davis name, featuring several musicians who still play with the band over 30 years later.
After Paul left, the band was directed by Bob Bennett, a local trombonist, teacher and arranger, who worked full time for the Musicians’ Union, and thus the band’s present name was adopted.  The band, now under the direction of David Bolton, a local music teacher, recorded their latest album Hullaballoo in 2011 (see cover, right).  Recorded at the Gemini Studios in Ipswich, the CD has 11 tracks including My Funny Valentine, Sweet Georgia Brown, and Bahia Alegre.

Although the band shortens its name to the IMU Big Band, there is a danger of confusion with other groups and individuals that use these same initials.  We have noted the following shown as IMU: Intuitive Minds United, Intuitive Music Unit, Imagem Music USA, Inspire Music Unite and IMU Music Group.

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Ipswich Model Band

The Ipswich Model Band is one of the longest operating bands in Australia.  Established in 1906, the band has evolved into the community band it is today.   

The group regularly performs in concerts, festivals, and parades in Ipswich and South East Queensland.  It has a broad repertoire ranging from Bizet, Rogers and Hammerstein and everything in between.  A video of them playing “Shut Up and Dance” (original by the American rock band ‘Walk the Moon’) can be viewed on line.  The headquarters of the band is in Basin Pocket, Ipswich, Queensland, where they were given a hall in 1954.  It was renamed the Horace J. Harper Hall in 1967 after a lifetime member of the band.

The band is essentially based on wind and brass instruments and, as their name implies, they will perform in marching parades.  In Australia, a “model band” is a name given to a marching band and the band was called this as early as 23 January 1906 by The Queensland Times.  However, it had many name changes in the early days before settling on the Ipswich Model Band.

The name “model band” was coined by the English-born Australian musician and composer, Thomas Bulch.  He emigrated to Australia in 1884 and settled in Victoria, where he became the bandmaster of the 3rd Battalion Band for whom he composed several marching tunes.  He resigned in 1887 and formed his own private band known as Bulch’s Model Band “for accompanying a modern army”.  Today, this still exists as the City of Ballarat Municipal Brass Band and the name “model band” became associated with any band marching in a parade. 

Between 1972 and 1981 the band was named the Ipswich Vice-Regal Model Band.  The background to this name change is covered in the next article that follows. 

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Ipswich City Vice-Regal Band 1890-1972

During the 19th and most of the 20th century it was commonplace for every town and almost every village in the UK to have its own “Brass Band”.  The larger towns would have more than one band.  “Brass Band competitions” were regular events and it was a matter of pride for the local band to gain one of the top positions.  This popular practice was taken to the countries where the British and Irish people settled, such as Australia and New Zealand.

The Ipswich City Vice-Regal Band was long considered the “top brass band” in Ipswich, Queensland, Australia.  It had its origins in the Hancock Bros Plywood and Timber Mill at North Ipswich where, in 1890, the company sponsored a brass band named Hancock’s Band.  In these early years it had a few name changes: to the Ipswich Town Band in January 1894; the Ipswich City Band in 1904 when Ipswich became a city; and in the same year it became the Ipswich City Vice-Regal Band,  after playing before the Governor of Queensland, who gave permission for the band to bear this name to denote that it had been under Vice-Regal patronage.

As the Ipswich City Vice-Regal Band it succeeded in winning the Australian Brass Band Championship in 1923, 1929 and 1932.   

An interesting and (in 2020) topical account is the incident in 1919 when the band attended a Sydney Contest and became involved in a three week (what we now call) “lockdown” during the Spanish Flu pandemic.  The border between New South Wales and Queensland was closed and the band was not allowed to return home.  It was forced to camp out for three weeks, during which time the City of Ipswich raised funds to pay for the men’s living costs and lost wages during the time spent in the camp.

About 1972 the Ipswich City Vice Regal Band wished to wind up their affairs and approached the Ipswich Model Band with the view of handing over their assets to them.  As part of the deal the Ipswich Model Band had to incorporate “Vice Regal” into their name.  In 1981, after the annual general meeting, the constitution was changed and “Vice Regal” was deleted.  The band reverted to its original name, the Ipswich Model Band; thus, the distinctive name of the former band passed into history.

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Other Ipswich Bands

We are not listing those bands which are located in an Ipswich e.g. the Ipswich Gas Works Brass Band, New Ipswich Cornet Band, unless they have issued a record (in which case they will be covered in the above section), or they have an interesting background, usually with respect to their name.  For the record, we have noted 58 bands which have the name ‘Ipswich’ in their title, including those bands that have a separate entry above.

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Ipswich Method Ringing Compositions (Bellringing)

To say we are somewhat out of our “comfort zone” is an understatement.  Every craft, hobby and sport has their own terminology and special expressions, but with regard to Bellringing their use of language is practically unintelligible: the words are in English, but not as we know it.  We refer the reader to the abridged Glossary below.

“Change ringing”, the traditional English method of sounding bells swinging full circle, evolved during the 17th century.  The basis of the art is that having started from ‘rounds’ (ringing down the scale), each bell follows a pre-determined path amongst the others, so that the bells ring in a different order each time until they return again to ‘rounds’.  The simplest way to use a set of bells is ringing rounds, which is sounding the bells repeatedly in sequence from treble to tenor: 1, 2, 3, etc.  Ringers typically start with ‘rounds’ and then begin to vary the order of the bells, moving on to a series of distinct rows. Each row (or change) is a specific permutation of the bells (for example 123456 or 531246).  Each bell is rung once and only once, the difference from row to row being the order in which the bells follow one another

In “Method ringing” each ringer has to memorise a pattern describing his or her bell’s course from row to row; taken together, these patterns (along with only occasional calls made by a conductor) form an algorithm.  These can be shown on a chart that plots this path and, fully developed, this becomes an intricate and exacting science.  This is something that those who practice it cannot agree on: is Bellringing music, an art form or science?

Since permutations are involved, the ultimate theoretical goal of method ringing is to ring the bells in every possible permutation; this is called an extent (to us normal people we call it a full peal).  For a “method” on bells the number of possible permutations can be expressed by the factorial mathematical notation, e.g. three bells can be rung six ways: 1,2,3; 1,3,2; 2,3,1; 2,1,3; 3,1,2; 3,2,1 expressed as “factorial three” (3!) obtained by multiplying 1 x 2 x 3 = 6.  It follows that four bells will have 24 permutations, factorial four (4!).  With six bells there are 720 permutations (6!) and with 8 bells there are 40,320 permutations (8!).  This is why bellringing can be considered a ‘science’.

There are several Glossaries of Bellringing but whether the descriptions mean much to the reader we leave to their imagination.  We provide those that are relevant to this piece on “Ipswich”.

Band - a group of bellringers is called ‘a band’.  The similarity to ‘music’ enters.

Row -a sequence in which every bell is struck once, i.e. 1,2,3,4 or 2,3,1,4 or 4,3,1,2

Change - colloquially refers to a ‘row’, although strictly speaking it means the transition from one row to the next.

Method - a specific sequence of Changes all of the same Stage.  ‘Methods’ have names.  They are less baffling, if you know how they work.  They have three parts, for example ‘Plain Bob Doubles’, ‘Norwich Surprise Minor’, ‘Kent Treble-bob Maximus’, but can also only be two words!

The first part of the ‘Method’ is the specific name given by the first band to ring the ‘method’ in a peal.   ‘Methods’ are often named after the places where first rung, but they can be named after people and some names are quite comical.  “Ipswich” is a Method name.

The second part is the type.  This can get a bit technical, and is to do with the way the method is constructed.  The definitions of those used in the “Ipswich” compositions are given next (sorry, we are not able to give a translation, but we can confirm they are in English):

Alliance - a class of Symmetrical Treble Dominated method in which the treble reaches the back but rings in some positions more often than others.

Bob - a class of Plain method in which dodging occurs.

Delight - a class of Treble Bob method in which internal places are made at some but not all cross sections.

Place - a class of Plain method with no dodges and in which the paths of all bells consists of only hunting and place making.

Surprise - a class of Treble Dodging method in which an internal place is made at every cross section.

Treble Place - a class of Symmetrical method in which the Treble makes at least one place within the half lead, and the Treble has the same total number of blows in each position of the path within the lead.

Stage - this is the third part of the name and is simply the number of bells used but, of course, the bellringers have to have technical terms which are: for an odd number of bells used  3 = Singles; 5 = Doubles; 7 = Triples; 9 = Caters; 11 = Cinques; for an even number of bells used 4 = Minimus; 6 = Minor; 8 = Major; 10 = Royal; 12 = Maximus.

To use the language to complicate matters so that the average person does not know what you are talking about can only be described as an ‘art form’.

There are hundreds of these Methods which have been composed over the centuries and all have names, some very fanciful.  Each ‘Method’ or peal is a distinct Composition and belongs to the person who first produced it.  Once a person had made out a title to a peal, it was their property.  In early days the names of the authors who invented the ‘Method’ was not always recorded.  However, in the 19th century books were published and peal records were kept.  There is, of course, a body that controls this activity.  This is the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers founded in 1891.  They have to be notified and check that the ‘new’ peal conforms to set rules on peal ringing.  There are also regular “striking competitions” between different bands of bellringers.  This has led to an insistence by some members that “bellringing is both an art and a sport”.

There has been a ringing tradition in Ipswich, England, for over 250 years and from 1880 to 1939 the St Mary-le-Tower society was the leading “Maximus Company”, i.e. using 12 bells, in the country.  The 15th-century church of St Lawrence in Ipswich has the oldest ring of five church bells in the world.  (See St. Lawrence - The World’s Oldest Church Bells on the Ipswich, England page)

Given that Ipswich has had such an influence on bell-ringing it is not surprising that Compositions with the title “Ipswich” as the ‘method’ exist.  These Compositions and when first recorded are given below.  The number of bells used is shown in brackets for the reader’s benefit and would never be used by a bellringer – the title already provides that information!

Ipswich Surprise Major (8 bells) first peal on tower bells on 21 May 1927 at Newchurch Kenyon, Lancashire.  First peal on handbells at Danbury, Essex, on 19 March 1985.

Ipswich Surprise Minor (6 bells) first peal on tower bells on 9 April 1932 at Wadhurst, East Sussex.  First peal on handbells at Whewell’s Court, Trinity College, Cambridge University on 8 March 1963.

Ipswich Bob Caters
(9 bells) first peal reported in 1973.

Ipswich Delight Major (8 bells) first peal on tower bells on 5 January 1982 at St Mary-le-Tower, Ipswich.  

Ipswich Delight Maximus (12 bells) first peal on tower bells on 3 April 1982 at St Mary-le-Tower, Ipswich.  

Ipswich Delight Royal (10 bells) first peal on handbells at Wilmslow, Cheshire, on 1 June 1999.

Ipswich Bob Major (8 bells) first peal tower bells on 17 April 2004 at St Mary-le-Tower, Ipswich.  

Ipswich Alliance Major (8 bells) first peal on tower bells on 22 October 2016 at St Mary’s, Peterborough.

Ipswich Treble Place Minimus (4 bells) first peal at Llanarthne, Carmarthenshire, Wales, on 8 July 2017.

(Also refer to Suffolk Method Ringing Compositions (Bellringing) on the Suffolk Misc. page of

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Ipswich Inn, Grand Junction, Colorado, USA

This motel was located at 2222 E North Ave, Grand Junction, CO 81501. The management advised us that the name was given by the original owners who came from Ipswich, England, before 1963. Unfortunately, their names have now been forgotten, although they will certainly be held on record somewhere.  The hotel was incorporated as a company in 1973.

The Ipswich Inn was originally the San Juan Motel and is known to have still had that name in 1960 before the new owners from Ipswich bought it. The motel was probably built in or soon after 1949 to cater for visitors to the Veterans Hospital opposite which was constructed in that year.  

The motel closed in 2017 and it has been converted into one bedroom, one bathroom, fully furnished, single family studio apartments going under the name of “2222 North Avenue Apartments”. 

If anyone has any further details, please let me know by emailing

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The Ipswich Inn, Ipswich, Massachusetts, USA

The Ipswich Inn is also known as Ipswich Bed & Breakfast and 2 East Street but is better known as the historic Robert Jordan House.  A complete write-up of its history can be found on the Internet.  Briefly, according to records, the site dating back to 1689 has been occupied by several houses, including a meeting house for the Methodist Episcopal Church before the present church was built.

In May 1862 it was sold by the trustees of the church to Robert Jordan.  He was a Civil War veteran who made his living as a general merchant after the war.  Mr Jordan built this present house in April 1863.  It is an example of the Victorian Italianate-style situated on an acre of land in the centre of historic Ipswich, and includes an ice-house and carriage house at the rear of the property.      
The present owners bought the property in 1996.  Although it was not their intention to start a bed and breakfast, they thought it would be great to meet new people, and to share their home with strangers that wanted to pay for being there.  So, in 1999 the B&B was started.  This has now grown to become known as The Ipswich Inn where not only B&B is still provided, but the dining facilities cater for special occasions, business meetings and other social events.

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Ipswich View Homestead Bed & Breakfast, Toodyay*, Western Australia

Ipswich View Homestead Bed & Breakfast is situated at 45 Folewood Rd, Toodyay WA 6566, Australia.

The original homestead called Ipswich View was probably built in the late 1860s. The name was given by the owner of the land at the time, John Acton Wroth, as it reminded him of the view over the River Orwell in his home town of Ipswich in England.
John Acton Wroth was born in Ipswich, Suffolk in 1830. In 1848 he was convicted of forging orders for watches, gold chains, boots & slippers. For this he received a sentence of ten years. He was transported to Australia on the Mercury, which left Portsmouth in January 1851 & arrived in Freemantle in May of that year.  He was appointed a clerk at the York & Newcastle convict depots &, in 1854, his exemplary behaviour earned him a pardon. He married in the same year & was appointed the local postmaster at Toodyay (at that time called Newcastle) & remained there until his death in 1876.

Wroth gifted the land at Ipswich View to his daughter Elizabeth Caroline Wroth. In 1890 she married John Ferguson, who built the present house around that time. The property, however, remained in her name & was then passed on to her daughter.

The Ferguson family owned Ipswich View for over 100 years & the property has a reputation as one of the most famous haunted houses in Western Australia. Room 5 is said to be haunted by three old ladies. Room 2 keeps locking itself, even though nothing is found to be wrong with the lock. As well as this, whispered voices, knocking sounds, footsteps & the meowing of a ghost cat have also been reported.

Ipswich View Homestead is set in 7 acres, only a few minute’s drive from the centre of Toodyay. Facilities include a tennis court, mini golf & a swimming pool.  It has five guest rooms plus one self-contained family unit. Despite the paranormal activity, it is said to be a peaceful & serene place to stay, with comfortable rooms & great food. Ipswich View was sold in May 2021 as a Bed & Breakfast.  As at September 2022 it was still operating under the same name.

*Pronounced 'Too-yay'

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Ipswich in the Names of Public Houses, Bars & Inns etc.

Our research to date shows that, sadly, most pubs, bars & inns that have at one time or another had the name “Ipswich” in their title are no longer in existence;  three of the four remaining  being in the USA, two of which are in Ipswich, Massachusetts. Those that have closed or now exist under a different name are listed below. Beneath these are also listed the hotels, motels, guest houses etc. with “Ipswich” in their name.

There is a special case of a pub still existing with Ipswich in its name which is located in Ipswich, England.  This is the first entry below; its story is covered in the narrative that follows after the list. 


(Pictured above is the former Ipswich Arms on Tayfen Road, Bury St Edmunds) 

If anyone knows of any other pubs, hotels etc. with “Ipswich” in their title, either closed or still thriving, please email details to

Still existing (England):                  
The Duke Ipswich                                                                                Woodbridge Road, Ipswich, Suffolk (see below)

Still existing (USA):                  
Ipswich Tavern (formerly Ipswich Sports Bar & Grill )              Hammatt Street, Ipswich, Massachusetts
(the COVID shutdown brought an opportunity to refurbish this bar; it re-opened in October 2020 under its new name)

Ipswich Ale Brewer’s Table                                 2 Brewery Place, Ipswich, Massachusetts           See below 

The Ipswitch (or The Ipswich)                            501  Jones St,  San Francisco, California CA94102        See below 

Still Exists, but under a different name (England):
Ipswich Arms                                                         Tayfen Road, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk           Now called The Beerhouse. Established 1857 & has                                                                                                                                                                         also been called The Gaff, Segment and Bar Curvo

No longer existing (Australia):

Ipswich Arms                                                         King Street, Sydney, NSW, Australia.                  Mentioned in The Sydney Morning Herald of 3rd March
                                                                                                                                                                        1845.  A property was being sold that was adjacent to
                                                                                                                                                                        the Ipswich Arms.

Ipswich Hotel         Brisbane Street, Ipswich, Queensland, Australia.                                          See below
Ipswich Tavern      Brisbane Street, Ipswich, Queensland, Australia                                           aka Palais Royal Hotel - see below

No longer existing (England):

Ipswich Arms                                                          Fingringhoe Road, East Donyland, Essex           A listed Grade II building. Became the Walnut Tree
                                                                                                                                                                         in the 1980s. Converted to a private house in 2003.

Ipswich Arms                                                          Market Place, Ingatestone, Essex                         Became the Ipswich Arms & Chequers for a time in the                                                                                                                                                                          mid 18th century. Changed name to the White Hart
                                                                                                                                                                         in 1881, before closing & being demolished in
the 1960s.

Ipswich Arms                                                          North Hill, Colchester, Essex                                On the northeast side of the Roman wall.  Changed
                                                                                                                                                                        name to The Lancer in the 1860s, after the building
                                                                                                                                                                        of the cavalry barracks. Closed as a pub in 1908, the                                                                                                                                                                         building became a restaurant in the 1990s.

Ipswich Arms                                                         Moulsham Street, Chelmsford, Essex                  Dating from before the 18th century; a coaching inn
near to the river. Later changed its name to The
                                                                                                                                                                        Coachhouse and The Ship Inn. Demolished c.1900.  

Ipswich Arms                                                          Cullum Street, London EC3                                    Site now occupied by offices; recorded in 1677 & 1816,
                                                                                                                                                                         as it was the terminus for the Ipswich Carrier, the
                                                                                                                                                                         postal service to Ipswich. 

Ipswich Arms                                                          Lower Thames Street, London EC3                        Mentioned in 1790 as a meeting place for the
                                                                                                                                                                         Freemasons; recorded in a court case in 1795 at the
                                                                                                                                                                         Old Bailey as a place of an incident; mentioned
                                                                                                                                                                         along with the Ipswich Arms on Cullum Street in
                                                                                                                                                                         John Lockie's "Topography of London" 1810, & again
                                                                                                                                                                         mentioned in 1826.

Ipswich Arms                                                          Endell Street, London WC2                                    In 1861 the Friends of Labour Loan Society had a
                                                                                                                                                                         branch based at this pub. No other details available.

Ipswich Arms                                                         Henniker Road, Stratford, Essex                           Appears in the  London Gazette 0f 1869, as the
                                                                                  (now Greater London E15)                                       publican went bankrupt.  

Ipswich Arms                                                          High Street, Shoreditch E1 6JE                            In the censuses from 1851 to 1871. 

Ipswich Arms                                                          Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, Suffolk                   First recorded in 1684. Closed c.1900

Ipswich Arms                                                          London Road, Ipswich, Suffolk                             Briefly renamed Bridge House during the Second World
                                                                                                                                                                         War. Closed in 1999, the site is now a supermarket.

Ipswich Arms                                                          Foundation Street, Ipswich, Suffolk                   Recorded in Ipswich archives in 1764 as a former
                                                                                                                                                                         tavern that is now  part of the almhouses,
                                                                                                                                                                         property of Christ's Hospital.

Ipswich Arms                                                          Mann Island, Liverpool, Merseyside                  Closed in 19th century; a dockland pub.

Ipswich & Suffolk                                                  Princes Street, Ipswich, Suffolk                           Closed in 19th century (previously Ipswich & Suffolk
                                                                                                                                                                        Coffee House)

Ipswich Tavern                                                      Tavern Street, Ipswich, Suffolk                           Closed mid 19th century

Ipswich Tavern                                                      St Stephens Plain, Norwich, Norfolk                  Closed 1974. There had been an alehouse on this site
                                                                                                                                                                        since 1317; it was called the City of Norwich
                                                                                                                                                                        until 1864, then Ipswich Arms 1864 to 1866,
                                                                                                                                                                        before becoming Ipswich Tavern.






(The Ipswich Tavern in Norwich, pictured in 1936)






No longer existing (USA):

Ipswich Custom                 1 Appleton Street, Boston South End, Massachusetts.             See below

The Ipswich Ale House    23 Hayward Street, Ipswich, Massachusetts                                See below   


As you can see, several of the English pubs were situated in Ipswich, & no reason for their naming is therefore required. The reasons for the naming of many of those elsewhere, however,
has been slightly more difficult to ascertain. The most likely explanation, it seems, is that they were established by someone originally from Ipswich; the actual name of the person in question having long been forgotten. Much of what follows is, therefore, speculation.

Seven of the pubs outside Ipswich were in East Anglia (all within a 50 mile radius of Ipswich); one in Suffolk, one in Norfolk & five in Essex.  Of those in Essex, only the Ipswich Arms at Chelmsford, on the main route from Ipswich to London, could be classed as a coaching inn. Coaching inns were usually large hostelries that had to have stables as well as accommodation, & as such none of the other four in Essex, at Halstead, East Donyland, Ingatestone & Colchester, fit this description, as all were smaller establishments & none were on the main coaching routes.

The Ipswich Arms in Bury St Edmunds, first recorded in 1857, is also unlikely to have been a coaching inn, as by this date the railway had superseded the horse, & the days of coach travel were in decline.

The Ipswich Arms/Tavern in Norwich was tucked away down a back courtyard off Westlegate near to St Stephens Plain, which also makes it an unlikely coaching inn. Whether there was any connection with the Suffolk Arms, close by on Market Place, is also unknown. The Ipswich Arms was originally called the City of Norwich, & it may be that the name change of 1864 came about to avoid confusion with another, newer tavern called the Norwich Arms, close at hand on the corner of Hewitt
s Yard on Ber Street. The Ipswich Road is, of course, just south of St Stephens Plain, so this may have some bearing on the matter.

Of the five Ipswich Arms pubs in Greater London, the one in Cullum Street, EC3 is the only one for which a reason can be found for the name; as mentioned above, this was the terminus for the Ipswich Carrier, the postal service to Ipswich.

Another Ipswich Arms for which we are forced to speculate regarding the derivation of the name is the one on Mann Island in Liverpool. Mann Island was an artificial island between George’s Dock and Canning Dock. Formed in 1771 with the opening of George’s Dock, it was originally known as Mersey Island.  It is first recorded as “Mann Island” in Gore’s Directory of Liverpool in 1774, named after an oilstone dealer called John Mann (died there in 1784) who is believed to have been instrumental in the building of five houses in a row along this stretch of road.  The sale of these properties was advertised in 1757 and in 1765 the directory shows that all five were occupied by “victuallers” (publicans).  This gives some indication of the major leisure preoccupation of the sailors and dock workers at that time.  John Mann was listed as a “victualler” at 3 Mann Island, which became known as The Odd Fellow’s Arms.  

The address of the Ipswich Arms was 2 Mann Island, and the earliest reference by this name is in an 1819 Trades Directory of Liverpool when it was being run by an Elizabeth Hind. From 1800 to 1815 the “victualler” was John Hind (or Hinde) whom we can assume to be the deceased husband of Elizabeth Hind, so it is likely that she continued the existing name of the public house.  We can trace 2 Mann Island as a public house back to the 1765 directory.  Unfortunately, the names of the public houses are not given in the early directories so we do not know when it was given the name Ipswich Arms.  The last reference to the name Ipswich Arms is in a directory dating from 1829 when a William Wilkinson was the publican.  We know that Edward Davis took over the establishment that year and named it ‘The Tuns’.  He used the building as “vaults” since he was more of a beer and spirits retailer with another public house elsewhere in Liverpool; “vaults” being the industry term for a liquor warehouse.  In 1864 it passed to another “victualler” who operated it mainly as a public house again.  It is not known what name it had until the 1900 directory gives it as ‘The Old House’, run by a Francis Gore.  

In 1903 concern was expressed over the sanitation and poor state of repair of the licensed premises that were still operating on Mann Island.  After a visitation by the Justices, it was concluded in 1907 that the “dilapidated and insanitary conditions were such that the premises were unsuitable for their present purposes and that their licences to operate as public houses should not be renewed”, except for nos. 1 and 3 Mann Island.  Thus, No.2 ceased to be a public house in 1907.

George’s Dock was too shallow for the larger vessels of the later 19th century, so it was sold off and infilled in 1899; the famous Liverpool landmark, the Liver Building, being built on the site.  Thus the island no longer exists, but the name has been retained. The buildings where the Ipswich Arms was located are still shown on maps in 1908, but had gone by 1927. The name Mann is fairly common, & although there was a prominent family by that name in Ipswich, it has so far been impossible to make any connection between them & John Mann in Liverpool.

It would be nice to think that the whaler Ipswich, which operated out of Liverpool from 1802 to 1823 (see Ipswich (Whaler) 1786 section on Ships Named Ipswich page), may have had something to do with the naming of this hostelry. Although the dates roughly coincide with the existence of the pub, the whaler operated out of Queens Dock, which is further to the south of Mann Island, & no direct connection between the two can be made.  However, it should be noted that Mann Island was called Nova Scotia in the 18th century and a road by this name continued to exist in Mann Island until 1920.  The Whaling Station that existed from 1786 to 1793 at the town of Ipswich was also at a location known as Nova Scotia.  Is this similarity of names just a coincidence, or was the Ipswich Arms deliberately named by a mariner connected with the whaling ship?

The Duke Ipswich has a long history but this present name is very recent.  It is first recorded when a freemason’s meeting was held at its present location at 212 Woodbridge Road, Ipswich, in 1805 and it was then known as the Duke of York.  The best known Duke of York in previous centuries was Frederick Augustus (1763-1827), the second son of George III and brother to the Prince Regent, who was commander-in-chief of the British Army during the Napoleonic Wars.  It was this Duke of York after whom the nursery rhyme was supposed to have originated and also, legend has it, that this pub was named after him because he would frequent it on his way up the hill to inspect his troops and again on his way back down the hill.  There are other locations and pubs named the Duke of York which also lay claim to be the source of this nursery rhyme, but this Ipswich pub probably has a better claim than most.  

Horatio Nelson had advised that Suffolk would be the most likely place that the French would choose to land an invading army.  Thus, the Duke of York arrived in Ipswich in November 1797 with the British army units.  Soon there was a very large army camp at the top of Woodbridge Road near to Rushmere Heath where military exercises took place.  The headquarter barracks where the senior officers would stay was in Ipswich itself.  Woodbridge Road is one of the steepest hills in Ipswich.  Half way up (or down) where the pub is situated is a flat piece of land where the troops can rest.  This could easily have given rise to the lyrics in the rhyme, particularly as there would always be a large contingent accompanying the senior officers, they would be “halfway up the hill, neither up nor down”.  The Duke of York is recorded staying in Ipswich to inspect the troops in 1803, 1805, 1806 and 1807.  In October 1811 the Duke of York with the Prince Regent and the other two royal brothers came to Ipswich to review about ten thousand troops on Rushmere Heath.  There was a great military procession that marched out from Ipswich up the Woodbridge Road hill, followed by thousands of spectators.  Afterwards they marched back to Ipswich down Woodbridge Road to the headquarter barracks.

The pub remained the Duke of York up until 1995 when the owner, Adnams Brewery, changed it to The Grand Old Duke of York, emphasising its legendary link with the nursery rhyme.  Adnams sold the pub in 2008 and in 2012 it reverted to its original name of Duke of York.  By now both names were in use although colloquially this popular pub was simply known as “The Duke”.  It experienced two periods of closure on exchange of ownership from July to September 2017 and May to November 2019.  In November 2019 the present manager took over and stated that he “wanted a complete change from the past so it will be called The Duke Ipswich, but since it was still the same pub and he loved the way it looks, the pub can also be known as both The Grand Old Duke of York, which is the name over its door, and the Duke of York, which is on the sign at its side” (see photographs below).



Ipswich Custom in the USA falls into a different category from the others in that it was what is known in America as a “pop-up”.  “Pop-up” restaurants are temporary restaurants.  These restaurants often operate from a former factory or similar space that is vacant, waiting for a retail occupier.  Another side to this concept is to have “roving pop-ups” where an established kitchen will allow chefs or different cuisines to operate on part of their premises for six-month periods in rotation.  The idea is to test public reaction and interest in a new culinary theme or type of cuisine before launching out on a permanent basis.  This allows new, little-known chefs to utilise underused kitchen facilities and “experiment without the risk of bankruptcy”.  Pop-up restaurants have become known in Britain and Australia since the 2000s, but have never really caught on in the same way as in the USA.

The corner location of 1 Appleton Street and Tremont Street in Boston has been used for this purpose.  After the previous restaurant and bar closed in June 2015, having operated for just over a year, butcher Jake Elmets opened Ipswich Custom in October 2015 as a “meat-focussed” restaurant.  He said that the name was “in homage to Ipswich, the home of Appleton Farms”.  This is America’s oldest continuously operating farm (see Ipswich, Massachusetts page).  The street on which the restaurant was located is named after Samuel Appleton.  Unfortunately, the concept of Jake Elmets was not successful and the restaurant closed after one month.  The site has continued to be used by pop-ups, so still exists as a food outlet. 

Ipswich Ale Brewer’s Table in Ipswich, Massachusetts, is the restaurant and bar of the Ipswich Ale Brewery.  This opened in January 2016 and is located inside the brewery.  It is a 120 seat restaurant and has 15 of its brews on tap, including several beers that are only available at the brewery.  It is what is known as a “brewpub”.  This combines the words brewery and public house, and is a pub or restaurant that brews beer on the premises.  The antecedents of the bar go back to an earlier licensed bar attached to the Mercury Brewing Company and the Ipswich Ale Brewery at 23 Hayward Street, Ipswich.  This was known as The Ipswich Ale House and continued to exist until a new brewery was built, and all operations were finally re-located to the new site in January 2016.  A bar was opened at the new brewery in February 2015 and this became the Ipswich Ale Brewer’s Table when the restaurant facilities opened.  Further history and a list of the brews produced by Ipswich Ale Brewery are given below in the Beers Named ‘Ipswich’ section. 


The Ipswitch, San Francisco (more often referred to as The Ipswich) a genuine speakeasy in San Francisco.  While Prohibition was lifted in 1933, the city of San Francisco is still littered with secret basements, some of which are still in operation. For those not familiar with some American expressions, a “speakeasy” was an illicit establishment that sold alcohol during the Prohibition era in the USA (1920 - 1933).  Speakeasies were so called because rowdy customers were urged to “speak easy” so as not to alert the police or neighbours who could bring the place to the attention of the authorities.  The port city of San Francisco enjoyed alcohol smuggled in from all over the world and it was full of secret bars.  The very fabric of the city embraced this concept of secret bars, and from about 2000 there was a revival in the way alcohol was consumed during Prohibition.  As very few of the originals still existed, many establishments were converted into reproductions of the 1920s speakeasies.  

While working in New York City, Doug Dalton from Virginia discovered an interest for the New York nightlife.  He took this newfound interest to San Francisco and improved upon it by developing a different type of nightlife culture that revolved around “concept bars” and really good drinks.  Doug teamed up with Brian Sheehy and Dahi Donnelly to create Futurebars, a parent company for many of these establishments.  They secured a space at 501 Jones St, the former site of the 501 Club.  The previous tenant warned the Future Bars crew not to go into the basement, saying it was haunted.  They went down through a trapdoor in the floor to investigate and found a wood-panelled room with a marble staircase, a Tuscan-style canvas painting and a bar.   This turned out to be a bona fide speakeasy, the Frank Ipswitch Beverage Parlor, still intact from the 1920s.  Frank Ipswitch actually spelt his surname with a ‘t’ and that is the proper name for the bar, but the familiarity of the spelling of the place-name is such that it does not matter. (See Ipswitch & Ipswich as Surnames below.)

The Ipswitch
, a tiny, two-seat bar beneath a private room (Russell’s Room) within another exclusive bar (Bourbon & Branch) is the ultimate secret hideaway.  A reservation has to be made above and, with luck, they will grant you access to the secret hideout below.  It is difficult to get into, even with a reservation.  The entry way is a trap door in the floor.  The decor has been left largely the same as it was in the 1920s.  

The main bar, Bourbon & Branch at 501 Jones St, opened in August 2006.  It was a return to the 1920s speakeasy…..but with a different concept.  All visitors have to know a password which is given when making a reservation.  There is a no reservations bar known as The Library (but you still have to know the password which is “books”).   “House rules” forbid the use of cell phones and loud voices, a nod in the direction of Prohibition.  For the reservations-only main bar, the party has to show up at a specified time at an unmarked door on Jones Street and give the password.  A private room (Russell’s Room) can be reserved where the drinks are served in teapots, again a nod to Prohibition.  And if you ask really nicely, they might let you into The Ipswich through the trap door in the floor.


Ipswich Hotel & Ipswich Tavern - In Ipswich, Australia, there are a number of hotels, motels and guest houses that contain the place-name in their title (see the section below showing those that are “all still in existence”).  As should be expected, the place-name Ipswich Hotel was used early by a house of refreshment in that city.  As was customary at the time (and still is today), these watering-holes were also places where a decent meal could be found and a place to rest one’s head overnight, hence the “hotel” tag.  

This establishment was on the corner of Waghorn Street and Brisbane Street.  The first reference we can find to the Ipswich Hotel is on 15 January 1863 when Pierce Goold (sic) Copley applied to transfer his licence for the Ipswich Hotel to his relative, James Real (reported in the Ipswich Herald).  It is recorded in February 1860 (in the Ipswich & General Advertiser) that Pierce Gould Copley was an innkeeper. Although it does not say what the name of the inn was, we may assume it to be the Ipswich Hotel.  An article written in 1914 implies that the hotel was built between 1856 and 1860.  The article headed “Old Identities” was in the Queensland Times on 1 August 1914 and was recorded by Stephen Marsh, who arrived as a young boy with his family as one of the earliest inhabitants of Ipswich: “His father’s first milking-yards (Thomas Marsh at Ipswich in 1856) were situated in Brisbane Street, on property then occupied by the late Mr. ‘Red Joe’ Gibson, and subsequently becoming the site of the Ipswich Hotel, under the proprietary of the late Mr. James Real, the brick building being still in existence to the west of Mr. B. Duggan’s fruit and vegetable mart, on the corner of Waghorn and Brisbane Streets.”  The last reference we have found to the Ipswich Hotel is on 17 June 1910 when it was sold to a Mrs Ellen Quinn (Queensland Times).  

The first licensed hotel in Ipswich from 1849 was the Queen’s Arms on the northwest corner of East Street and Brisbane Street, owned by the prominent Ipswich merchant and pioneer George Thorn, known as “the Father of Ipswich” (see his biography on the Ipswich, Queensland page).  On the opposite southwest corner, the Thorn family’s own elaborate private residence was built in 1859.  Following George Thorn’s death in 1876 the residence was sold in 1879 and converted into a licensed hotel under the name Palais Royal Hotel.  It was destroyed by fire in the early 1970s and was then demolished to make room for the Ipswich Tavern which continued the use of the site as licensed premises.  However, the old name was too familiar to discard and by 1978 it was known as the Palais Royal Tavern.  It is recorded under that name in 2013, although the owners (Ceridale Pty Ltd) still had it trading under its legal name of “Ipswich Tavern”.  It was the subject of a test case in the Australian courts as to whether it could employ performers without paying for usage of copyright material (in Australian Performing Rights Association Ltd v Ceridale Pty Ltd (1990)).  The site was subsequently sold for development and now comprises shops and stores.

Commissioned by George Thorn in 1864, a small terrace was built which housed three two storey shops on the northeast corner of East and Brisbane Streets.  After the death of George Thorn, the shops were sold and in 1910 they were converted to a hotel named The Grand Hotel.  Further improvements were made between 1925 and 1927 and the hotel was renamed “Hotel Grande” and became very popular amongst the Ipswich community with functions being held in its large dining and lounge rooms.  In 1984 the Hotel Grande was sold and demolished to make way for a new shopping plaza to be built.  It was named in honour of the old Hotel: the Ipswich Grande Plaza (see photograph, right).  The Ipswich Grande Plaza retail and commercial complex was sold at auction in September 1992 for A$1.08 million.  It still exists in 2020 under this name.




Hotels, Motels, Guest Houses etc (all still in existence):                       


Ipswich Hotel   (see photo, above)                Old London Road, Copdock, Suffolk, England     Situated in the village of Copdock, three miles south
                                                                                                                                                                       west of Ipswich. Over the years this hotel has been
                                                                                                                                                                       operated by several different hotel chains, and had
                                                                                                                                                                       many names, including The Copdock International,
                                                                                                                                                                       Moat House, Hotel Elizabeth Copdock and Cameo Hotel.
                                                                                                                                                                       As of 2016 it has been renamed Ipswich Hotel.    

The Ipswich Inn                                                32 Canning Street, North Ipswich, QLD, Australia      This is a 22 bedroom student hostel.

Ipswich City Motel                                            86 Warwick Road,  Ipswich, QLD, Australia          A motel near to the city centre.

Best Western Ipswich Heritage Motor Inn    51/55 Warwick Road,  Ipswich, QLD, Australia   A motel.

Quest Ipswich                                                      57/63 Warwick Road,  Ipswich, QLD, Australia    Serviced apartments.

Central Motel Ipswich                                     Limestone Street,  Ipswich, QLD, Australia            A motel.

Metro Hotel Ipswich International             South Street, Ipswich, QLD, Australia                      A four -star hotel.

Ipswich Country Motel                                    South Station Road, Raceview, Ipswich, QLD, Australia     A motel with bar and restaurant

The Ipswich Inn                                                 East Street, Ipswich,  Massachusetts, USA            This is a bed & breakfast in an historic building
                                                                                                                                                                       dating back to 1863. (see above)

Ipswich View Homestead                                 Toodyay, Western Australia                                   A bed & breakfast (see above)   


No longer in existence:

Ipswich Inn                                                        Grand Junction, Colorado, USA                               A motel (see above)                      

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Ipswitch Inc.

Founded in 1991 by Roger Greene, Ipswitch Inc. is a rapidly growing company that develops & markets software for small & medium sized businesses throughout the world. It is estimated that more than 100 million people worldwide use Ipswitch software. Products include:

The network management & monitoring software Ipswitch WhatsUp®Gold.

The file transfer software Ipswitch WS_FTP® & Ipswitch MOVEit®.

The messaging & collaboration service Ipswitch IMail.

Roger Greene is a native of Massachusetts and his work locations have remained in that state.  He was born at Somerville in Greater Boston, and started work with FTP Software at Cambridge, leaving it in 1991 when he was vice president to establish his own company from his home in Reading.  The operation subsequently moved to Wakefield, then to Lexington in 1998 where it remains today.  Roger Greene recalls the derivation of the company name as coming from one of his programmers who saw a road sign for Ipswich and said that would be “a nice pun”, using the IP of the town name to stand for Internet Protocol, which was the business of the company, and by adding a ‘t’ to the ending it would become “switch” to indicate the transfer of communication, the whole providing the name of a town in the state of Massachusetts where the company was located.  

Since 2008 much of its growth has been by acquisitions of complementary businesses: In 2008, Ipswitch acquired the Wisconsin-based software producer, Standard Networks Inc. and its product, MOVEit; in 2009 the Hourglass Technologies company in Utah; in 2010 the compliance system and system log analysis software producer, Dorian Software, and in December 2012, Ipswitch acquired the German-based performance testing company iOpus, known for its product, iMacros, a web-browser extension.

With its head office located in Lexington, Massachusetts, Ipswitch Inc. also has U.S. offices in Alpharetta, Georgia; Augusta, Georgia; Madison, Wisconsin; Livonia, Michigan & Lehi, Utah; together with their European operation in Amsterdam under the name Ipswitch BV.  In March 2016 Ipswitch opened a support and operations centre in Galway, Ireland.

In 2010, Ipswitch Inc was placed in the top five ‘Best Places to Work’ in Massachusetts, in a survey carried out by the Boston Business Journal.

Ipswitch has been recognised repeatedly for its commitment to give five percent of profits to charity through its iCare program.  It does this partly by matching employees’ own donations and by giving each employee $500 for charitable gifts.

On 1 May 2019 it was announced that the Progress Software Corporation had completed its acquisition of Ipswitch, Inc., for $225 million.  As part of Progress, Ipswitch will bolster the core base of Progress with regard to small and medium-sized businesses and enterprises, enabling those businesses to respond faster to business-critical demands and to improve productivity.

Progress Software Corporation is an American publicly held company with its headquarters in Bedford, Massachusetts.  It was co-founded by several MIT graduates, including Joseph W. Alsop, in 1981.  Initially called Data Language Corporation (DLC), the company changed its name in 1987 to match that of its flagship product, Progress.  It grew to become the leading provider of application development and digital experience by a number of acquisitions over the years (see Wikipedia for article on the company).  Progress posted revenues of $397.6 million (USD) in the fiscal year 2017.  The company employs approximately 1500 employees, and maintains offices in 16 countries. 

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Ipswitch Networks Limited (IPswiTch Group)

Not to be confused with the company in the section above, Ipswitch Networks Limited was originally based in Ipswich, Suffolk, and also uses a ‘t’ in the name as an allusion to ‘switching’.  It uses as a logo IPswiTch Group, emphasising the IPT.  This abbreviation stands for ‘Internet Protocol Telephony’, a general term for the technologies that use the Internet to transfer information that has traditionally been carried over the connections of the public telephone network.  The company was founded by Charles Lamb as Progressive Networks Ltd in August 1996, based in Norwich Road, Ipswich.  This was dissolved voluntarily in 2011 after Ipswitch Networks Ltd was incorporated in December 2010.  The company moved to Abbeygate Street in Bury St Edmunds in March 2014 where it is still active.  The company has its roots in network design, which has led it to launch a series of IT design and infrastructure related services.  Its owner Charles Lamb also offers consultancy & management services.

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Candis Tyson Ipswitch, Inc. (formerly Tyson & Ipswitch), California, USA

Tyson & Ipswitch were a law firm based at 301 East Colorado Blvd, Suite 526, Pasadena, CA 91101 USA.  The name came from the father and daughter attorneys Richard Tyson & Candis Tyson Ipswitch.  Sadly, Richard died in 2016.  His daughter continues the firm at the same address as Candis Tyson Ipswitch, Inc.

(See also Ipswitch & Ipswich as Surnames, below)

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Ipswich Bay Company

Ipswich Bay Company was a private “closed company” (an American term where there are less than five shareholders and more than 50% is owned by one person or family).  It was based in Houston Texas.  It provided financial and investment advice to middle market companies in the Southwest of the USA from 1989.  The founder was Donald E. Gilbert Jr (1942-2015).  Born in Ipswich, Massachusetts, he attended Boston University School of Law and the Harvard University Business School Executive Seminar.  After embarking on a corporate banking career in New York City, where he became an executive vice president at Chemical Bank (now JPMorgan Chase), he moved to Texas.  He held a similar position with the Republic Bank in Texas before establishing the Ipswich Bay Company in 1989.  In his own words:

I’m a values driven kind of guy and I think those values that were so important to a “historic” 20th Century New England, are more prevalent in Texas today than they are where I have come

When I left the corporate life, respectful of that very heritage and the special place Ipswich, the bay, the salt marshes and Cape Ann mean in my life, I chartered my IB firm using the name.

Following the death of its founder, the Ipswich Bay Company became an associate business of Robinson Brown Investments LLC.

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Why not sign the Guestbook?

William Johnson - "Ipswichus"

Although born in London around the year 1610, William Johnson’s parents were originally from Suffolk. He became a fellow of Queens’ College, Cambridge & was ordained in 1640. Around 1635 he wrote the play Valetudinarium; a Latin comedy in five acts, which was performed at Emmanuel College, Cambridge in 1637 & at Queens’ College the following year.

The play is anti-Puritan & paints satiric portraits of the two central Puritan characters ‘Ipswichus’ & his wife ‘Lynna’ ; the names being taken from Ipswich & King’s Lynn, which were both staunchly Puritan towns at the time.

During the English Civil War (1642-51) Johnson went into exile, returning after the Restoration. He died in 1667 & was buried in Westminster Abbey.

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Descendant: Chronicles of the Ipswich Witch - A Novel by Miranda Bachman

Published in June 2010, Descendant is the first novel in the Chronicle of the Ipswich Witch series by author Miranda Bachman who lives in Northern California. Mirandas great grandmother grew up in Ipswich, Massachusetts.

Here is Miranda’s synopsis of her first novel:

Some people love life so much that they refuse to leave it even in death. Cleona Conant (The Ipswich Witch), who died in 1721, has refused to give up the ghost. She has been body swapping ever since her death to remain here in the mortal realm. In 1780, she devised an elaborate plan to cross the paths of her future granddaughter Raven (twenty generations down her line), with an ancient vampire named Alasdair. Aided by the use of spells, incantations and Uber-shadowing, her plan moved into motion in 1983, when Alasdair discovered Raven and set his heart on making her his companion. Through a span of nearly seventy years, he guarded her, all throughout her mortal life. However, once he gave her his eternal kiss he ultimately, and without his knowing, led their lives down a path which neither of them had the ability or knowledge to escape from what lay ahead. Does good always conquer evil, or does evil win once in awhile?

Find out in DESCENDANT: Chronicles of the Ipswich Witch.

According to Mirandas website, book 2 in the Chronicles of the Ipswich Witch series was to be called Retribution, whilst the third in the series was to be named Demise. As at 2013, however, these books do not seem to have been published.

For more details, including where to buy this book, visit Miranda’s website through the Links page.

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Ipswich in The Fourth Protocol - A Novel by Frederick Forsyth

Ipswich, England is featured heavily in Frederick Forsyth’s spy thriller novel The Fourth Protocol.  Forsyth (born 1938) is an English author whose other books include The Day of the Jackal (1971), The Odessa File (1972), The Dogs of War (1974) & The Cobra (2010).

The book’s title derives from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty of 1968, signed by the three nuclear powers of that time, Great Britain, USA & USSR. In signing the treaty, these nations pledged to refrain from passing on nuclear technology or materials to any other nation. According to the novel, as well as this main agreement, four other secret protocols were also included, each of which was concerned with specific threats from future developments of nuclear capabilities. By signing, each nation agreed not to contravene these protocols. The first three were, by the 1980s, considered as either impossible to achieve or obsolete due to the hazard having been nullified. The Fourth Protocol banned the use of any simplified or miniature, & therefore easily transported or assembled, nuclear weapons that might be developed in the future.  

Although the novel was published in 1984, the story takes place three years in the future, 1987, in the run up to a British general election.  This was during the Cold War era, & at a time when US Air Force bases with nuclear missiles were still spread widely throughout Britain, with the threat of nuclear war still a strong possibility. The eighties were, however, a period which had seen the rise of a sizeable anti-nuclear campaign dedicated to unilateral disarmament.

The story revolves around a plot hatched at the very highest level in the Kremlin, codenamed Plan Aurora, in which the Soviet leader (who is never named) & an elite group including spy & defector Kim Philby, send an undercover agent, named Valeri Petrofsky, into Britain. Once there he will receive various items, including uranium & plastic explosives, smuggled into the country by couriers for the purposes of creating a small, compact nuclear weapon, which would be detonated outside a US Air Force base. In other words, Plan Aurora was in direct contravention of the Fourth Protocol.

The Soviet Union had, for some time, been infiltrating the Hard Left of the British Labour Party, & the time was now thought of as right for this extreme wing to take over the party.  With the election imminent, the thinking went, any nuclear explosion close to a base where missiles were known to have been housed, would, in the minds of the British public, appear to be an accident caused by the US Air Force, & sway a significant number of people to vote for a Labour, & therefore unilateralist, government. Once in power, the Hard Left had plans to take over the party, creating a state run along the lines favoured by the Communist Party in Moscow.

The base chosen for the ‘accident’ is RAF Bentwaters, near Woodbridge, Suffolk & around 15 miles by road from Ipswich. Petrofsky, who is living in Britain under the assumed name of James Duncan Ross, hires a house in Ipswich as his base, in which he stores all the component parts for the bomb as they are delivered to him by the couriers, where it is then assembled & made ready for detonation by another Soviet agent.

The plan is discovered, however, by MI5 agent John Preston, who manages to track down the Russian. The trail leads to a house in Chesterfield, Derbyshire, where Petrofsky has gone to send an encoded message back to Moscow informing his masters that Plan Aurora is all set to be put into action. Preston & his team follow Petrofsky back to Ipswich &, with a troop from the SAS, the house is stormed & the tragedy averted. Petrofsky is killed in the process.

When Petrofsky/Ross first arrives in Ipswich, he stays at first at the Great White Horse Hotel in Tavern Street.  The following day he goes in to Oxborrow’s estate agents to rent a house. The house he chooses is described as “a small, neat brick house in a small, neat brick road in a small, neat brick private-sector housing estate off the Belstead Road.” This is the estate known as ‘The Hayes’, which lies between Belstead Road & Prince of Wales Drive. Brackenhayes, Gorsehayes, Heatherhayes & Almondhayes  are all named in the book & all exist. The location of the house that Petrofsky rents however, in Cherryhayes Close, is fictitious. The garden of 12 Cherryhayes Close, we learn later in the book, backs onto a garden in Brackenhayes (in reality, the properties in Brackenhayes border Gorsehayes, Heatherhayes, Laurelhayes or Belstead Road).  

Preston trails Petrofsky, at a distance, back from Chesterfield via Thetford into Suffolk.  The Soviet agent, unaware that he is being followed, takes the A1088 through Ixworth, then heads onto what was then the A45 (now the A14) back to Ipswich.  When he arrives back in town, Whitton, Chevalier Street, Handford Bridge, the River Orwell & Ranelagh Road are all mentioned on his route back to Belstead Road & his house in Cherryhayes Close.

A film adaption of The Fourth Protocol was released in 1987, although this is only loosely based on the book. Starring Michael Caine as John Preston & Pierce Brosnan as Valeri Petrofsky, it also features Ned Beatty, Joanna Cassidy, Michael Gough & Julian Glover. It was directed by John Mackenzie & produced by Timothy Burrill. Much of the film was shot in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, with the car chase that is supposed to take place in Ipswich actually being filmed in Chelmsford, Essex.  RAF Bentwaters is changed in the film to the fictional RAF Bayswater; the scenes of this being shot at RAF Upper Heyford in Oxfordshire. The Orwell Bridge, however, does appear in the film, in a scene where two helicopters fly beneath it.

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Scott Was Here - Book by Elaine Ipswitch

Scott Was Here is the title of a book, published in 1979, by Elaine Ipswitch. The Scott in question is Elaine & Ronnie Ipswitch’s son Scott Douglas Ipswitch (13/1/61 – 16/4/76) who passed away from advanced Hodgkin’s Disease. The Ipswitch family are from the city of Fillmore, California. The book is described as “a ‘tear-jerker’ as a mother movingly recounts her son’s long fight against Hodgkin’s Disease along with the trials of perseverance the family had to push through”.

The book has also been translated into Spanish (Scott Estuvo Aqui) & German (Scott. Aber Die Hoffnung Bleibt).

A Memorial to Scott Ipswitch can be found in front of Fillmore High School.

(See also Ipswitch & Ipswich as Surnames section, below)

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Ipswich as a Surname in Three Little Girls Dressed in Blue - A Trilogy of Novels by Marcia Lynn McClure

The Bewitching of Amoretta Ipswich is the title of a novel by Marcia Lynn McClure. Described as a Western Historical Romance, it was published in September 2012 & is the first part of a three book series collectively entitled Three Little Girls Dressed in Blue; the girls in question being Amoretta, Calliope & Evangeline Ipswich.

The second book in the series is The Secret Bliss of Calliope Ipswich, with the third & final book in the trilogy entitled The Romancing of Evangeline Ipswich, both published in 2014.

Marcia Lynn McClure was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her novels have been described as “weaving captivating stories of western, medieval, regency, and contemporary amour void of brusque intimacy”.  Her writing has earned her the title “The Queen of Kissing”. Her first novel was The Heavenly Surrender, which appeared in 2001. She has since become a prolific writer, averaging more than four books annually since 2007. Other titles include Shackles of Honor (2002), The Highwayman of Tanglewood (2008), A Crimson Frost (2009), The Haunting of Autumn Lake (2011) & Untethered (2012). She is also the author of the non-fiction book How to Determine a Good One: An Essay on Kissing (2011). She now lives in Rio Rancho, New Mexico.

In exclusive correspondence with Planet Ipswich, Marcia revealed that her paternal family line can be traced back to Ipswich, Massachusetts...& possibly back to Ipswich in England.

In Marcia’s own words:

“The word/name Ipswich has always intrigued me - from the moment I first heard it many years and years and years ago.  I just love it!  I always tell people that for some reason, “Ipswich” is one of my top 5 favorite words!  In fact, it holds the #1 spot of my favorite words to actually say!  Not sure why, I just love it!  I find it phonetically pleasing - not to mention just plain intriguing to hear.

Therefore, being that I've always loved the word/name Ipswich, and that I have family history stretching back to at least Ipswich, Mass - well, if you know many authors - that's usually all it takes to spark an entire story line!”

Regarding the characters with the surname Ipswich, Marcia revealed that:

“The Bewitching of Amoretta Ipswich, takes place in the old west.  Judge Lawson Ipswich has moved his daughters, Amoretta, Calliope and Evangeline, west, wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of Boston.  Judge Ipswich was born in Massachusetts, though his parents were immigrants from Ipswich, Suffolk, England.  Though the story is about Amoretta, Judge Ipswich does end up marrying a young woman with a daughter - therefore Kizzy and her daughter, Shay - also have the surname Ipswich by the end of the book.”

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The Postmaster of Ipswich. William Stevenson Fitch Antiquary and Thief - Janet Ing Freeman

This book published by The Book Collector, 1997, is the true story of this notable antiquary, who has been revealed as a persistent thief by the detailed study made by the author.

William Stevenson Fitch was by profession a chemist in Ipswich who in 1837 became the town’s postmaster, a position he held for 21 years until his death in 1859.  He devoted his leisure time to studying the antiquities of Suffolk and amassed a collection of original manuscripts relating to the history of the county.  When he fell on hard times he sold his collection in four auctions between 1853 and 1859. The West Suffolk Archaeological Association, of which he was a founder, purchased many of the drawings and engravings which were deposited in the museum of the society at Bury St. Edmunds.  Among his collection were 156 charters bound together relating to Dodnash Priory, known as the “Dodnash Cartulary”, that he undoubtedly obtained by dubious means from the library of the Tollemache family at Helmingham Hall.

Drawing on a wide range of archival sources the author shows that Fitch was a persistent thief of books, pamphlets and manuscripts, principally from the libraries of the Tollemache family at Ham House and Helmingham Hall, and also from the Corporation chest of Ipswich itself from which came the manuscript of John Bale’s play “Kynge Johan”.  Not only that, Fitch also stole many of the finest manuscripts that ended up in the collection of his friend and fellow antiquary Dawson Turner of Norfolk, who could not have been unaware of the original source of the material.

In his own right, Fitch did publish “A Catalogue of Suffolk Memorial Registers, Royal Grants, &c”, 1843, and “Ipswich and its Early Mints” 1848.  He was also a regular contributor to the “Journal of the British Archaeological Association” and the “Proceedings of the East Suffolk Archaeological Society”.  He also has an entry in the Dictionary of National Biography.

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Gippovicensis as part of a literary title

Well into the 20th century, it was normal for learned books to put their title in Latin as this was considered to be the language known by the better educated person.  The fact that the contents of the book itself would be written in English was, of course, immaterial, the fiction of a certain superiority had already been established by the title.  The old name for Ipswich was used in the title of two such books as “Gippovicensis”, the Latin for “of Gippeswick”.

Hortus Botanicus Gippovicensis, or a systematical enumeration of the Plants cultivated in Dr Coyte’s Botanic Garden at Ipswich by William Beeston Coyte, was first published in 1796 at Ipswich.  The title just means “Botanic Garden of Ipswich”.  A facsimile edition was published in 1984.  This is a list of the plants in the botanical garden at Ipswich maintained by Dr Coyte (1740-1810), who practised medicine in the town, and had an interest in botany.  He was Ipswich born, and graduated at Queens’ College, Cambridge, in 1763.  He was a fellow of the Linnean Society, the world’s premier organisation for the study and dissemination of natural history.   

His name is remembered today in Coytes Gardens, a short L shaped street connecting Princes Street with Friars Street. It is the only street in Ipswich to retain its cobblestone surface  & central guttering.  A memorial to Dr Coyte can be found in St Nicholas’ church.

Pharmacopoeia Valetudinarii Gippovicensis, medicamenta simplicia et composita exhibens, in usum aegrorum servanda by William Henry Williams, was published by the Ipswich Public Dispensary, 1814.  The title means “A Pharmacopoeia of Ipswich Hospital, showing simple and compound drugs, observed in the use of patients.”  A pharmacopoeia (literally ‘drug-making’) is a reference work containing directions for the identification of compound medicines.  William Henry Williams (1771-1841) was born in Gloucestershire.  He received his medical education at the Bristol Infirmary and at St. Thomas’s and Guy’s hospitals.  He became a surgeon to the East Norfolk militia.  About 1797 he designed a tourniquet of such simplicity and efficiency, that it was at once adopted by the authorities, and named “Williams’ Field Tourniquet” by the Army Medical Board.  It was ordered to be employed in every regiment both at home and abroad, and enabled non-commissioned officers to apply a tourniquet to stem loss of blood from sword, bayonet or gun-shot wounds.  Before this, only the surgeon and assistant-surgeons were competent to apply a tourniquet.  Some years before 1803 Dr Williams had settled at Ipswich, and in 1810 was appointed in charge of the South Military hospital close by the town.  Dr Williams was admitted to the College of Physicians in 1816.  He continued to reside at Ipswich until shortly before his death in 1841.  He was the author of several medical treatises including the above.

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Ipswitch, Pennsylvania, in Pie - A Children’s Book by Sarah Weeks

Ipswitch, with a ‘t’, is a very small town in Pennsylvania in this children’s book by the award-winning author, Sarah Weeks.  Pie is a story about family, friendship and, naturally, pies.  It was published in October 2011 by Scholastic Press.
In 1941 Polly Portman opened a shop called “Pie”, located in downtown Ipswitch, Pa., which has a population of 162, on the corner of Windham and Main.  Polly has a gift for making pies and as soon as she opened up, she was almost instantly famous.  It was well known that Polly had a secret recipe for her crust, a recipe so good that her pies won the national pie award 13 years running.  Her pies were so popular that people from all over the world came to try them, which brought tourist revenue to the small town.  

In 1945 her niece Alice Anderson was born.  Alice helped Polly bake pies, and spent a lot of time with her in the pie shop.  Alice loved her aunt very much.  So in 1955 when Aunt Polly, the Pie Queen of Ipswitch, died unexpectedly, Alice was devastated.  Even more so after she hears that her Aunt Polly has left her world-famous pie crust recipe to her enormously fat and disagreeable cat, Lardo, who was to be left in the care of Alice.  Then Lardo disappeared, and Alice feared he had been catnapped.  The little tourist industry that had grown up around Pollys famous pies was losing business since Polly had passed away.  Now just about everyone wanted to be the next big pie-contest winner, and it makes the women of Ipswitch pie-crazy.

This mystery moves along fairly quickly, and the book is filled with interesting characters like the bodybuilding spinster principal of Alice’s school, the publicity-driven mayor, and Charlie, Alice’s inquisitive friend who wants to help her find Aunt Polly’s secret pie crust recipe.  Each of the fourteen chapters starts with a pie recipe, everything from fruit and custard pies to a green tomato pie, a low-fat buttermilk pie, and even a peanut butter raspberry cream pie!  But be advised that the pie crust recipe is NOT included.

Sarah Weeks is a singer, songwriter, and children’s book author. She has been writing and performing in New York for more than twenty years and has numerous theatre and recording credits, as well as writing more than thirty books and novels.  Sarah enjoys visiting schools and libraries throughout the country, where she reads from her books, sings her songs, and talks to children about writing.  She currently lives in New York City with her two sons.

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Tilly Ipswitch in Tilly Witch - A Children’s Book by Don Freeman

Tilly Witch is a children’s picture book by author and illustrator Don Freeman, first published in 1969 by Viking Press.  It was republished in 1978 by Puffin Books.  

The story is about Tilly Ipswitch (spelt with a “t”), an evil witch and Queen of Halloween.  Like children play at being evil witches on Halloween, Tilly Ipswitch decides to try playing at being happy and good.  Unfortunately, she forgot how to be mean.  So she hops on a surfboard and flies to the island of Wahoo where a witch doctor, Dr Weegee, advises her to return to her old finishing school for witches to re learn the trickery of the trade.  The lessons fail to address her problem and she remains cheerful until she is sent to a corner to wear a dunce’s hat.  This makes Tilly angry and she leaps from her stool and stomps on the dunce’s cap.  Her anger makes Tilly return to her old self.  She flies back home and takes joy in frightening her cat, and then sets out on her broomstick to scare children the world over.

A follow up entitled Space Witch was published by Picture Puffin books in 1979.

Don Freeman was born in San Diego, California, in 1908.  He came to New York to study art and gradually earned a living sketching impressions of Broadway shows for The New York Times and The Herald Tribune.  He was introduced to the world of children’s literature when he was asked to illustrate several books.  Soon after, he began to write and illustrate his own books, a career he settled into comfortably and happily.  Don Freeman died in 1978, after a long and successful career as the author and illustrator of many popular books for children.

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The Good Green Witch from Ipswitch by Garnett Tremain Bond

Another book about a witch using the place-name with a ‘t’.  We cannot tell you much about the plot, other than it is a story of a good witch who safeguards the planet from pollution.  The environmental angle is obvious.  It is only 16 pages aimed at the pre-school  market, published by Dageford Publishing, USA in 1997 (no longer in business since 2004).  The American author seems to specialise in children’s books, among his other titles are “Tickley Tiger” and “The Inventions of Mr Tinkers-A-Lot”.  

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The Ipswich Witch by David L Jones

This book tells the horrifying tale of cruelty and injustice in 17th Century East Anglia.  The book focuses on witchcraft in Ipswich and the most extreme punishment ever given to an English witch.  This is the case of Mary Lackland, the so-called Ipswich Witch.  Her case is unusual in that it was one of the few instances in England of a witch being burned alive, as opposed to the more usual method of hanging.   She was put to death on Rushmere Heath in September 1645.

In this book David L Jones explores the case against Mary Lackland, and provides a thorough investigation into this miscarriage of justice. He provides a new look at the social causes of the Suffolk witch-hunts through his own research of contemporary 17th Century sources.  (This topic is briefly covered under Matthew Hopkins – Witchfinder General on the Suffolk, England page of

The author, who lives in Ipswich, is a writer and researcher who works for the Ipswich Museum.

The Ipswich Witch: Mary Lackland and the Suffolk Witch Hunts by David L Jones, is published by The History Press (2015).

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Last Voyage from Ipswich – A Novel by Peter Foster

Published in 1996, Last Voyage from Ipswich is a novel by Peter Foster. The book is basically a series of modern seafarers’ tales and adventures, interwoven into a novel about a group of Merchant Navy seamen who are hired by the owner of the Marie-Claire to take on her final voyage across the Atlantic from Ipswich in England, across to Jamaica.  Both the first and last chapters are entitled ‘Ipswich’ and take place in the town. The other chapters are named after stages of the journey across the Atlantic (Azores, Mid-Atlantic, Bahama Atolls etc.). The book was published privately by the author.






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The Artisan of Ipswich by Robert Tarule

Published in 2004 by The John Hopkins University Press, the sub-title is ‘Craftsmanship and Community in Colonial New England’ because the book entails more than the story of one man, and the re-creation of a chest to his design by using the tools that existed when the original chest was made.

Thomas Dennis emigrated to America from England in 1663, settling in Ipswich, Massachusetts.  He was a joiner who, during his lifetime, won wide renown as an artisan.  Today, connoisseurs judge his elaborately carved furniture as among the best produced in 17th century America.  Robert Tarule, historian and accomplished woodworker himself, vividly portrays Thomas Dennis building a chest for a client in his Ipswich shop.

What you quickly learn is that one of the most important things in 17th century America was access to wood for fuel, tanning, fences, construction, barrels and wheels as well as joinery.  Wood becomes a sort of currency among the artisans, and the right to cut wood was the source of lawsuits, fines and feuds.

Tarule not only deals with how Thomas Dennis selected the right trees and how he made the wood into an elegant carved oak chest, he shows how the economic wealth of the town of Ipswich depended on its access to wood.  Tarule also covers the foundation and early settlement of Ipswich.  He depicts the natural and social landscape in which Dennis operated, from the sights, sounds, and smells of colonial Ipswich and its surrounding countryside.  In addition, there is an entire chapter devoted to the other artisans in the town like coopers, carpenters, and wheelwrights and the types of wood they needed, and how they impacted on the resources available to the people of Ipswich.

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The House on Ipswich Marsh by William Sargent

The sub-title is ‘Exploring the Natural History of New England’, published by the University Press of New England, 2005.  William Sargent was formerly director of the Baltimore Aquarium and a research assistant at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.  He is a consultant for science series on television and a writer about science and the environment.  

In 2003, William Sargent bought a big, pink house in Ipswich, Massachusetts.  This is located on the Great Marsh, a patch of wetland shared by Massachusetts and New Hampshire.  Sargent received a grant to study some of the rare and endangered ground-nesting birds that inhabit the public land adjacent to his property.  ‘The House on Ipswich Marsh’ is primarily about the birdlife throughout a typical year, organised by the seasons.  However, there is much else as well in the book, delving into the natural world, ecology, and cultural history: plate tectonics and glaciers; sea level rise and glacial rebound; the 19th century New England ice trade; what a mastodon hunt must have looked like, and much more.

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Ipswitch & Ipswich as Surnames

Ipswitch (with a ‘t’) is a surname in use today in the USA.  The earliest records that we can find on the US Federal Census, date from 1880, where there seem to be two separate families; one in California, the other in Maryland.

John Ipswitch was born in Austria c 1841. He is listed as living in San Francisco, California in 1880 & his occupation is shown as saloon keeper. His wife, Elizabeth was born c 1852 in California, although her parents are listed as being from England. They have six children, all born in California:

Eugenia  -  born c 1869
George  -  born c 1871
Ada  -  born c 1873
Alexander  -  born c 1875
John  -  born c 1877
& an unnamed son born c 1879

There is also a record for John dating from 16th November 1870 from the US Naturalization records for the northern district of California, although this gives very little detail.

James Ipswitch, born in Poland c 1829, is listed as residing in Baltimore, Maryland in 1880. His occupation is given as a labourer & he is married to Margaret, also born in Poland c 1832. They are listed as having seven children, all born in Poland:

May   -   born c 1851
John  -  born c 1853
James  Jr  -  born c 1855
William  -  born c 1856
Rabie  -  born c 1862
Mary  -  born c 1863
Ann  -  born c 1866

The more recent records show the name Ipswitch as occurring predominantly in California, with just a few scattered across other states, such as Oregon, Colorado & North Dakota.

The surname Ipswich (without the ‘t’) is much rarer, although one or two records for this spelling also occur.

One erroneous record appears on the US Federal Census for 1920. Here is recorded a Frank Ipswich & his family (wife Cora & their three children; Dorothy, Robert & Lennard), at that time resident in San Francisco. Frank is listed as being born in California c 1886 & his occupation is stated as automobile salesman. Most telling about this entry, though, is that his father is listed as being born in Austria, which suggests a link with John Ipswitch & family listed above. These entries seem to simply be a misspelling, however, as in the 1930 census the name is given as the more common Ipswitch. (The recorder did seem to have a bit of a problem with the letters in this hand written document; spelling at least one member of the family ‘Ispwich’) (See also The Ipswich, San Francisco in the Ipswich in the Names of Public Houses, Bars & Inns etc.)

I can find only two other records for the surname Ipswich in the USA. One is in the California Divorce Index, where one Toni L Ipswich is listed as getting divorced from Ronald G Berndt in May 1977 at Los Angeles. The other is for a June Ipswich, who is recorded in the California Birth Index as being born on 25th June 1914 in San Francisco. The mother’s name is simply listed as Miller. Whether these are also misspellings or not is uncertain.

The surnames Epswick and Apswick, can also be found in the USA & are believed to be derived from mispellings of Ipswich; “Epswick, Suffolk” was often written down as “place of origin”. Likewise, the surname Ipswick only appears once - in the 1900 census a Henry Ipswick, born 1878, is recorded in Marion County, Florida.  As he does not appear on previous or subsequent censuses, this is most likely to be in error. (Ipswick Circle is the name of a street in Columbus, Ohio.  This is also likely to be an original error in spelling that has been perpetuated.)

In the UK, records of people with the surname Ipswich or a variant such as Ipswick are few & far between.  The earliest we have found is a Thomas Ipswich who graduated from Cambridge University in 1496.  It may be, however, that this Thomas did not have a proper surname, but merely came from Ipswich. This also applies to the many earlier ways of spelling Ipswich as Gipeswic, Gippewic, etc. which we return to below.

The next two records are from the eighteenth century: An Isabella Ipswick was buried in March 1781 at Whitechapel, aged 72, whilst a child named Elizabeth Epswick, was in buried in May 1744 at Cripplegate in the City of London.

 A century later, the 1851 Census records a John Ipswick living in Hackney, born 1822 at Walden (probably Saffron Walden in Essex) & described as an agricultural labourer.

Next we have an Ann Ipswich who is also recorded as “Ann Ipswick”.  Since the original name is handwritten, it is uncertain which of these is correct.  She was buried as “Ann Ipswick” on 28th May 1864 at Croydon St Johns in Surrey.

In the 1911 Census there are records of a Benjamin Geraint Ipswich, aged 30, born in Bangor, Co. Down, Ireland, and his wife Ellen Daisy Ipswich, aged 32, born in Dalhousie, India.  They lived in Brockley, London. He was an accountant working for a gold company.

It is noticeable that the records above with “Ipswich” shown as a surname only appear in one particular census year and not preceding or subsequent years, which leads us to suspect that the real surname was different, and the enumerator may have entered it incorrectly.

A record also exists of Viscount Henry Charles Ipswich, born 6th April 1978 at Westminster, London. Nobility & royalty, however, have a habit of using their titles as surnames, & further research has revealed that this was actually Henry Charles FitzRoy, later to become the 12th Duke of Grafton, whose subsidiary title is Viscount Ipswich (see section below).

In the Caribbean, a sad but interesting fact is that Ipswich is recorded as a slave name given to Africans (all males) six times between 1817 and 1828.  They are recorded in Antigua (owner Sir Christopher Codrington); Nevis (owner Mary Robinson); Jamaica, St Elizabeth Parish (2 different slaves aged 36 and 17 were given this name by their owner Thomas Smith); Jamaica, St Elizabeth Parish (owner Hampstead Pons); Jamaica, St Ann Parish (owner John Watkin Williams).

Gippeswic (and variant spellings) as a surname:-

As mentioned above, the earlier ways of spelling Ipswich were also used as a form of surname.  The pipe rolls and other early records have “de Gipewic”, “de Gipeswic”, or other spellings for people who came from the town.  Obviously, people who lived at Ipswich or in its proximity are regularly referred to in this way.  The earliest reference we have found for a person who lived elsewhere is with Adam de Gepeswic or Adam de Gippeswic (both spellings are used) who was the owner and lived in the property at 11 Honey Lane at All Hallows in the City of London.  He is recorded in deeds from 1192 to 1212.  It cannot be said to be a true surname at this stage of its development.  Only when it is handed down to the children who do not come from that place, can it be considered a proper surname.

The first definite usage of Gippeswic and its other forms as a surname passed down from father to sons appears to be in a will proved in the Archdeaconry Court of Sudbury in 1445.  It is the will of Nicholas Yepisswich also referred to by the surname Gypewic.  In his will he mentioned his relatives by a variety of names: his father Thomas de Gippewic, his sons William de Gippewic and John Yebyswych, and his grandsons (sons of John) William Gippewic and Nicholas Gipp.

The latter surname (Gipp) is interesting because it is used as evidence for those who maintain that people in the eastern counties who have the surname Gipp or Gipps derive it from Gippeswic, and not as a pet-name for Gilbert or ‘son of Gilbert’ which also gives the surname Gibb or Gibbs.  Ipswich, Queensland, is said to owe its name partly to the fact that the governor of New South Wales, at the time, was Sir George Gipps (see Ipswich, Queensland page).

If anyone can shed any further light on the origin of the surnames Ipswich, Ipswitch, Gippeswic or any of its variants, please email details to I would especially like to hear from anyone with the surname Ipswich or Ipswitch. Does anybody, anywhere else in the world have this surname? Any information at all would be greatly appreciated.

(See also Candis Tyson Ipswitch, Inc. (formerly Tyson & Ipswitch), California, USA Scott Was Here - Book by Elaine Ipswitch sections)

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Viscount Ipswich

Created in 1672, the title Viscount Ipswich is one of three subsidiary titles held by the Duke of Grafton (the other two being Baron Sudbury & Earl of Euston). The family seat since 1685 has been Euston Hall in Suffolk, not far from Thetford on the border with Norfolk & more than 25 miles from Ipswich. It was inherited by the first Duke, Henry FitzRoy; the illegitimate son of King Charles II & the Duchess of Cleveland . The current Duke, Henry FitzRoy (born 1978), is the twelfth. The title Duke of Grafton is taken from the village of Grafton Regis in Northamptonshire. 

(See also Islas Ipswich page)

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East of Ipswich - TV drama by Michael Palin

Although, apart from the title, not actually about Ipswich, this TV comedy drama was written by Michael Palin of Monty Python fame. Loosely based on Palin’s own experiences in small English seaside towns during the 1950s, the action centres around Richard Burrill, a seventeen year old dragged away on holiday to the Suffolk coast with his parents (he very early on asks whether there actually is anything ‘east of Ipswich’).  Bored due to a lack of anything to do except sit all day in a deckchair, admire church architecture & identify passing ships, Richard falls in with a group of teenagers who hang around coffee bars, listen to jazz & skiffle & chase girls (much to his parent’s dismay). This culminates in his sexual initiation at the hands of a promiscuous Dutch girl named Anna.

East of Ipswich was filmed in the Suffolk town of Southwold & starred Edward Rawle-Hicks as Richard, John Nettleton & Pat Heywood as his parents, Pippa Hinchley as Anna & Joan Sanderson as the overbearing landlady Miss Wilbraham. The programme was produced by Innes Lloyd & directed by Tristram Powell. It was first broadcast as part of the BBC’s Screen Two series on 1st February 1987. It was released on DVD in 2009.

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Ipswich Man – BBC Documentary

First shown on 6th May 2010 on BBC2, as part of the History Cold Case series, Ipswich Man tells the story of the investigation into the archeological discovery of a skeleton found in Ipswich, England during the 1990s, dating back to medieval times & bearing traits indicating that he was of African origin.   

The investigation, led by Sue Black, OBE, head of Anatomy and Forensic Anthropology at the University of Dundee, set out to find out why a man with these characteristics would have been in medieval Ipswich & where he originated from.

Initially thought to be of sub-Saharan origin due to the shape of the jaw, anthropological, DNA & stable isotope tests revealed that this individual was more likely to have been from North Africa. Carbon dating revealed that the skeleton originated from the period 1190 – 1300 AD, which was consistent with a medieval belt buckle found close to the body.  The man is thought to have been between 40 & 60 years old at the time of his death, around 5 feet 6 inches tall, & robust in stature. He was not undernourished & there was evidence of a healthy, balanced diet. Stable isotope tests on a leg bone also showed that the man had been in a colder climate, such as Suffolk, for at least ten years prior to his death. A facial reconstruction based on a laser scanned 3D model of the skull was also produced (see photo, left).

The skeleton was one of around 150 found in a medieval cemetery discovered in the mid 1990s, when excavation work was being done near Franciscan Way, close to the site of the Greyfriars friary that had been established in the late thirteenth century.  Close examination of his vertebrae revealed the man had suffered from a spinal abscess in the mid to lower thoracic area of the vertebral column, which would have effected lower limb mobility & made walking painful. It was thought that this abscess may have been the cause of the man’s death. Other skeletal remains from the same site show most of these individual’s were nearly all middle aged or elderly, some with visible signs of disease or physical disabilities, leading the experts to conclude that the graveyard was probably attached to an infirmary or medieval hospital run by the Greyfriars; the Franciscan friars being known to have been apothecaries & to have practiced medicine on a charitable basis.

During the Roman occupation, people of African origin would have come to Britain as both soldiers & merchants. Once the Romans left, however, during the fifth century AD, there would have been very few people of African origin to be seen in Britain up until the sixteenth century. So how did this man, whose features & darker skin would make him stand out in medieval England, come to be in Ipswich?

The answer may lie with the founder of the Franciscan friary in Ipswich; Sir Robert Tibetot (or Tiptoft) of Nettlestead, who died in 1298. Sir Robert is known to have been on the ninth & final crusade (1271-2), led by Prince Edward (later King Edward I). It is known that en route to the Holy Land, the knights stopped at Tunis on the North African coast. What is also known is that Thomas of Clare, who was on the same crusade as Tibetot, brought four “Saracens” back to England with him, although whether as slaves or free men is unknown; the term Saracen in this context meaning a Muslim. It is possible that Sir Robert Tibetot may have also done likewise.  If this is the manner in which the man buried in the Greyfriars cemetery came to Britain, then he must have converted to Christianity at some time to have been buried in a Christian friary.  Nor would it seem likely that he was poor at the time of his death, as this would have made it unlikely that he would have been in the infirmary, or buried in a single grave.

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The Ipswich Cuckoos - Film

Described as “a low speed comedy set in the fast-paced world of benefits claims investigation” The Ipswich Cuckoos is the first full length film by Optimistic Panic Productions.  Written & directed by Pete Moffat & first released in 2010, the film was originally available to watch through the website, but can now be viewed on YouTube. Starring characters calling themselves Pete Mahatma Stalin & Jon Gorogonizer, the ‘plot’ revolves around two investigators working undercover to catch a benefit fraudster.  

The film begins with a few images of Ipswich, England (‘Welcome to Ipswich’ sign/Norwich Road Bridge/an Ipswich bus etc.). Thereafter, the ‘action’ takes place almost entirely indoors or in a car, with very little clue as to location. 

Be warned that the dialogue consists of a great deal of strong language & sexually explicit banter. I’d like to tell you that its redeeming feature is its humour, but sadly this isnt the case, & after a few minutes the whole thing gets a bit tedious. If you enjoy listening to two guys talking inane rubbish for an hour & twenty minutes, then this is for you. If not....avoid!

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The ‘Sons of Ipswich’ in the film The Covenant

Released in 2006, The Covenant is a supernatural thriller film written by J. S. Cardone,  directed by Renny Harlin & produced by Gary Lucchesi & Tom Rosenberg.

The story starts in Ipswich, Massachusetts during the Salem Witch Trials of 1692, where five families, by the names of Danvers, Parry, Garwin, Simms & Putnam, form a covenant of silence to protect their families & their keep their secret powers hidden from the witch-hunters. One family  - the Putnams - become obsessed with obtaining more power, which puts the families in great danger, & as a result they are banished from the land & disappear without trace.

Fast forward to the present day: Teenagers Caleb Danvers , Pogue Parry, Reid Garwin & Tyler Simms are all students at the prestigious Spenser Academy.  Descended from the five families, they are the ‘Sons of Ipswich’, & all are warlocks with supernatural & mystical powers including psychokinesis, pyrokinesis, levitation, astral projection, shapeshifting, teleportation & clairvoyance. The downside of these powers is that excessive use causes a drain on their life force.

When the son of the long lost fifth family, Chase Collins, suddenly appears, he threatens to kill their loved ones unless they “will” their powers to him.  The four ‘Sons of Ipswich’ realise that they must stop him from stealing their powers, & they have a battle on their hands to ensure the safety of the covenant.

The five main characters are played by Steven Strait, Taylor Kitsch, Toby Hemingway, Chace Crawford & Sebastian Stan. The film also stars Laura Ramsey, Jessica Lucas & Kyle Schmid.

The movie was a critical failure, with the film review website Rotten Tomatoes stating The Covenant plays out like a teen soap opera, full of pretty faces, wooden acting, laughable dialogue, and little suspense.

The Covenant was released on DVD and Blu-ray in 2007.

There is some evidence that a sequel, The Covenant II: The Ipswich Curse, was at one stage being considered. This, however, doesn’t seem to have ever come to fruition.

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“Lord Clive Montdrako of Ipswich” and references to Ipswich in an episode of Bewitched

An episode in of the popular 1960s American fantasy situation comedy show Bewitched features several references to Ipswich, including a character called Lord Clive Montdrako of Ipswich.

Created by screenwriter Sol Saks (1910-2011), Bewitched, originally broadcast between 1964 and 1972, is about a young witch named Samantha (played by Elizabeth Montgomery, see photo, right) who marries an ordinary mortal man called Darrin (Dick York) and tries to lead the life of a typical suburban housewife. Many of Samantha’s relatives, all with magical powers, also feature in the shows, most notably Samantha’s mother Endora (Agnes Moorehead) who is constantly at loggerheads with Darrin. The programme ran for 8 series and 254 episodes.

The show in question is entitled I Get Your Nanny, You Get My Goat, and is episode 15 of season 4, first broadcast in December 1967.  The plot revolves around Samantha calling in her old nanny, Elspeth (Hermione Baddeley), to babysit their daughter Tabitha. The arrival of the English nanny (whose character is clearly based on Mary Poppins) doesn’t go down well with Endora, who calls up Elspeth’s employer, the British Lord Clive Montdrako of Ipswich (Reginald Gardiner), who she claims is “the only warlock in the House of Lords”.  Lord Montdrako doesn’t take kindly to Darrin, as he sees him as having poached Elspeth away from him.  Much magical mayhem follows, which sees a variety of spells being cast, usually to Darrin’s detriment. This culminates with a scene in which Samantha magically transports herself to Lord Montdrako’s castle in England. This scene contains two more references to Ipswich:

During a tour of the castle, the guide (Samantha in disguise) makes reference to “The Ghost of Ipswich Downs” who is alleged to make a tapestry fly up and wave whenever strangers enter the hall. She also points out to the tourists a suit of armour owned by “The First Earl of Ipswich, who in his time danced his way into the hearts of many a young lady”. Needless to say, both the tapestry and the suit of armour then perform to order, courtesy of Samantha’s magic powers.

This particular episode was written by Pittsburgh born Ron Friedman, who as well as writing more than 700 hours of episodes for many TV series, was also famous as a television and film producer.

We have been unable to find any reason for the name Ipswich being used, other than the association that the name conjures up with images of witches, magic and sorcery in some people’s minds.

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“Ichabod Ipswich” – Character in Goober and the Ghost Chasers

Goober and the Ghost Chasers was a children’s animated cartoon series produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions between 1973 and 1975. Only 16 episodes were ever made.

The show’s theme is very similar to Hanna-Barberas successful and more famous Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!, insofar as it features a group of teenagers and their dog, Goober, who work for Ghost Chasers  Magazine and go around solving  paranormal mysteries.  Goober, who is green in hue, has the ability to become invisible.

Episode 11 is entitled Go West Young Ghost, Go West and features a ghostly character called Ichabod Ipswich (see picture, left). The plot revolves around an amusement park called Funland, where a haunted house has been brought by the owner from Salem, Massachusetts and set up as an exhibit. It is haunted by the spirit of one Ichabod Ipswich, who is alleged to have been a coward and is now doomed to roam the house until he can clear the family name.  

The twist is that a rival park owner is dressing up as the ghost to scare away customers and lure them to his own business. After much mayhem and zany capers, the real ghost, plus the Ghost Chasers team, unmask the imposter. Ichabod Ipswich is now seen as a hero, instead of a coward, and has therefore cleared the family name of Ipswich.

The name Ipswich was probably used due to the close proximity of Ipswich, Massachusetts to Salem, and the connection with witches and all things paranormal.

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Fictional town of Ipswich, Oregon, USA in the film Summer of '84

The movie Summer of ’84, which was released in 2018, is a Canadian horror/mystery film directed by François Simard, Anouk Whissell and Yoann-Karl Whissell, and starring Graham Verchere, Judah Lewis, Caleb Emery, Cory Gruter-Andrew, Jason Gray-Stanford, Tiera Skovbye, and Rich Sommer.

The film is set in the fictional town of Ipswich in Cape May, Oregon, USA, and revolves around the hunt for a serial killer known as the “Cape May Slayer”. Teenager Davey Armstrong, a conspiracy theorist, suspects that a neighbour of his, Ipswich police officer Wayne Mackey, is the killer. With help from three of his friends, Davey decides to investigate in an effort to bring the killer to justice. The climax of the film sees Davey and one of his friends, Woody, abducted by Mackey and taken to an offshore island. Mackey kills Woody by slitting his throat, but spares Davey in order to leave him paranoid and constantly in fear of the killer’s return.  The movie ends with Mackey still on the loose.

So why was the name Ipswich used for the fictional Oregon town? This is down to  producer and co-screenwriter (along with Stephen J Smith) Matthew Leslie, who grew up in Massachusetts, in the area around Ipswich and Salem.

Summer of ’84 was actually filmed in Vancouver, Canada, but the geography and character of the fictional town during the writing process was inspired by Ipswich, Massachusetts, with its tidal islands only accessible by road at low tide. With its similar topography, however, the area around Vancouver was eventually chosen as the filming location.

(For details of the films soundtrack, which includes the instrumental Ipswich Lanes by Le Matos, see More Songs & Music with Ipswich in the Title, above).

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Ipswich Almond Pudding & Ipswich Lemon Pie

There are two recipes that I know of that are named after Ipswich in England:-

Ipswich Almond Pudding: Sometimes simply called Ipswich Pudding, the Recipe dates back to at least the eighteenth century. Details of the ingredients & instructions vary slightly, & there are several published versions on various websites & in books. These are the basics:

Heated milk & cream are poured onto breadcrumbs. Sugar, almonds & orange or rosewater are added & left to soak in for a few minutes. Beaten eggs are added & mixed in. The mixture is then poured into a pie dish & dotted with butter, before being placed in a water filled roasting tin. It is then baked until set & served hot with cream, custard or fruit compote.

Ipswich Lemon Pie: Also sometimes known as Mrs Kents Lemon Pie, this recipe dates back to the eighteenth century. Mrs Kent was an Ipswich housewife, & the recipe was recorded by her friend Elizabeth Hicks, who was a collector of local recipes.

This is a type of lemon curd open tart with a shortcrust pastry base. Lemon juice, grated lemon rind, sugar & butter are heated in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves, then allowed to cool. The beaten eggs are then strained into the mixture & returned to the heat until combined. This is then poured into a pastry case, glazed with milk, & put into the oven for around half an hour until the filling has set. Can be served hot or cold.

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Ipswich Super Blue Pork Sausages

Since 2007 this product (see photograph, right) has been on sale at the renowned “Jimmy’s Farm” at Wherstead, Ipswich, England.   Ipswich Super Blue Pork Sausages comprise fresh crushed garlic, blue stilton cheese and free range, rare breed pork.  One food critic says that “the blue cheese adds an almost creamy flavour to the sausage and mixes perfectly with the garlic whilst not overpowering the excellent pork”.  The name was given in tribute to local Ipswich Town FC whose colours are blue and white.

“Jimmy’s Farm” is one of the UK’s best known farms made famous by a documentary series on BBC television from 2004.  It featured Jimmy Doherty, best friend of celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, establishing a rare breeds piggery in 2003 with his wife Michaela Furney on the outskirts of Ipswich in Suffolk, mainly to save the Essex breed of pigs from extinction.  

Jimmy Doherty majored in Animal Biology at university and he champions free-range food and local produce through his numerous television documentaries and books.  “Jimmy’s Farm” is a working free-range, rare-breed pig farm first and foremost, but still prides itself on producing high quality meat, including its renowned range of sausages, as well as offering locally sourced poultry, beef and lamb.  The farm itself is open all year round to the public and has a farm shop, butchery, restaurant, field kitchen, education centre and farm park.  The farm has successfully diversified to become a top tourist attraction for the region, and “Jimmy’s Farm” now has its own entry in Wikipedia. 

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Ipswich Clams

The soft-shell clam, Mya arenaria, is commonly known in America as the Ipswich clam, due to their prominence in the Ipswich Bay area of Massachusetts. However, the species is found, not only in New England, but down the Atlantic coast from Canada to the southern states of the USA. They are also found on the other side of the Atlantic, including the British Isles, & have become an invasive species along the Pacific coast of America from Alaska to California.

Ipswich clams are a well known delicacy in America. They can be steamed or fried & are commonly used in clam chowder & clam bakes. However, most “Ipswich clams” sold today come from Maine because pollution and an invasion of predatory green crabs have almost wiped out their presence in their traditional home.

These bivalve molluscs have a very thin calcium carbonate shell, hence the name ‘soft-shell’, & are usually found buried in up to ten inches of mud on tidal mudflats.

Other colloquial names for this clam are ‘steamers’ ‘belly clam’ ‘longnecks’ & ‘piss clam’. These names are identified with the long neck, or siphon, that sticks out of the shell. The clams live in the sand just below the surface and when people walk nearby, the pressure on the sand makes the clams squirt water in the air.

(See also Ipswitch - Trademark, below)

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Almost Ipswich - Food with Names Similar to Ipswich

The first two brand names below are derived from “sandwich” rather than Ipswich, but the prefix used in each case provides a name that is very similar to the place of that name.

Chipwich - The Chipwich is an ice cream sandwich made of ice cream between two chocolate chip cookies and rolled in chocolate chips, hence the name.  The Chipwich name and logo is trademarked by Crave Better Foods, LLC.  Although ice cream sandwiches had been sold in New York City since the 1890s, the Chipwich would not be known until the chocolate chip cookie had been invented.  (We assume the non-North American English speakers are familiar enough with the American term “cookie” but, if not, it is what non-Americans refer to as a “biscuit”.) This was invented by the American chef Ruth Graves Wakefield  in 1938 when she added chopped up bits from a chocolate bar in
to a cookie that she was baking.  

The original “Chipwich” was created by Americans Richard LaMotta and  Sam Metzger in New York City in 1978.  It was made up of vanilla ice cream sandwiched by two chocolate chip cookies, with the sides rolled in chocolate chips, which stick to the ice cream.  Although very successful, the small independent company that they formed struggled to attract capital and filed for bankruptcy twice (in 1987 and 1992).  The venture ultimately passed into the hands of the larger ice cream and chocolate manufacturers, but in 2009 the then owner, Nestlé, stopped production of the original Chipwich.  The trademark was acquired in 2017 by Crave Better Foods, LLC and the product was re-launched in 2018 in the USA.  

Sipwich - Several coffee houses and cafés in the USA go by the name “Sip”, an allusion to what customers can do when they enter such an establishment.  However, only one came up with the idea of merging the name with “sandwich” to advertise their particular brand of that article.  This was the Sip Bar on Amsterdam Avenue, New York City.  Although now closed, this outlet was popular in the late 2000s especially for the “Sipwich” at a cost of $4.  The Sipwich was a delicious egg sandwich topped with all sorts of little delights, such as an extra egg, cheese, ham, avocado or chorizo.  It was also recommended that a side order of Billionaire Bacon should complete this snack.  The Sip Bar and its Sipwich was just the place for a comforting breakfast, brunch or a late night snack to recover from the day’s exertions.  

Chipswich - And it could be expected that an enterprising fish and chip outlet in Ipswich, Suffolk, would realise the potential of this brand name.  Located in the Chantry suburb of Ipswich, the entrepreneurial owner of this establishment has assured himself of the name by incorporating the business in 2016 as Chipswich Limited.  (We take it that our American readers know that “chips” in Britain are what you know as “French fries”.)   

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Beers Named ‘Ipswich’

Probably the best known use of “Ipswich” in the name of beer products is in those brewed by the Ipswich Ale Brewery in Ipswich, Massachusetts.  “Ipswich” is a brand name owned by the Mercury Brewing and Distribution Company and it is an integral part of the name of the product.  The brewing company has other beer brands that do not contain the name “Ipswich”, such as Stone Cat and Celia Saison.  

Ipswich Ale Brewery is one of the oldest craft brewers in New England and began life as a microbrewery.  A craft brewery typically applies to a relatively small, independently-owned, commercial brewery that employs traditional brewing methods with an emphasis on flavour and quality.  A brewery is considered a microbrewery if it produces less than 15,000 barrels per year, with 75% or more of its beer sold off-site.  This threshold was surpassed by 2008 and Ipswich Ale Brewery now produces 24,000 barrels per year (2016).

Today ‘beer’ an
d ‘ale’ are really synonomous terms.  Historically, ‘ale’ was a drink brewed without hops, and this still holds true to some extent in Britain.  In North America the name ‘ale’ is commonly applied to beers, particularly those with a bitter flavour and a high alcoholic content.  Ipswich Ale Brewery produces a vast range of different types of beer.  The names given to brews are often self-evident, indicating the major contributing flavour used in its production, its colour or type of beer.  There are a number of cases where it is not apparent why a name has been given to a particular brew and we have given an explanation, where known.  Ipswich Ale is particularly keen on trying continental European brews and some of these will be unfamiliar to the English-speaking world, so we have given the background to such beverages.  

A brief glossary is given below of the main styles (names) of beer used by brewers.

Pale ale (Bitter) and Dark aleThis
not only refers to the colour of the drink, but also to its strength.   Pale ale i
s one of the world’s major beer styles.  Today Pale Ale and Bitter (British usage) are more or less synonomous, and they vary in strength from 3% to 5% ABV.  Dark ales are malty beers generally above 5% ABV.   

Session ale is a North American term applied to pale ales with a low ABV up to 4.1%.

IPA (India Pale Ale) stems from the 19th century when beers from England were exported to India and this type of pale ale proved the must palatable after the duration of a long journey.

Porter was first used in 1722 to describe a dark brown beer that had been made with roasted malts and was extremely popular with street and river porters in London, hence its name.

Stout was first used in England in 1677 to describe a strong beer, not a dark beer.   “Stout Porter” was the strongest of this kind of beer, typically 7% or 8% ABV.   The term was later shortened to just ‘Stout’.

Old ale and Stock ale are used interchangeably today to describe high-alcohol dark ales.  Previously, such beers would have been kept for about a year.

Barley wine is a style of strong ale usually containing more than 6% ABV and traditionally reaches double figures, such as 11%.

Imperial or Double - The term "imperial" was used in the late 17th century for beer that was brewed in England but then shipped to the imperial court of Russia.  Brewers later started using the term more generally to indicate their top-of-the-line beer.  “Imperial" is an indication that the beer is going to be very strong regardless of the style.  The hops and malts used during brewing are doubled (hence the use of this term) and the resulting beer ranges from 8% to 12% ABV.

Bock (Witzelsucht) was originally a dark, malty ale brewed in the town of Einbeck since the 14th century and later became associated with a strong pale lager when that drink was invented in the 17th century.  In the Bavarian dialect, “Einbeck” was pronounced as “ein Bock” (“a billy goat”), and thus the beer became known as “bock”.  A goat often appears on bock labels as a visual pun, hence the alternative name of Witzelsucht, which in German means ‘an addiction to making wisecracks or puns’.  

(ABV stands for Alcohol by Volume.  This is a standard formula, containing the difference between the original specific gravity and the final specific gravity, used by brewers to measure how much alcohol is contained in a given volume of an alcoholic beverage.  It is a key measure by which comparisons are made between the strengths of different beers.  We show this figure in brackets for each of the following brews.)    

Ipswich Ale made its first brew in 1991, when the Ipswich Brewing Company, founded by Paul Sylva and Jim Beauvais, began producing Ipswich Original Ale (5.4% ABV) and Ipswich Dark Ale (6.3% ABV); both on draft and in bottles.  Over the next few years several new lines were added: in 1995  Ipswich IPA (6.3% ABV) and Ipswich Oatmeal Stout (7.0% ABV) - this is a stout with a high proportion of o
ats, up to a maximum of 30%, added during the brewing process ; in 1997 Ipswich 1084 Barley Wine (13.0% ABV) - the 1084 refers to the beer’s starting specific gravity; in 1998 Ipswich Nut Brown Ale (5.5% ABV) and Ipswich 1722 Commemorative Porter (5.9% ABV) - although usually referred to as Ipswich Porter, the full name is still retained on the label, 1722 being the traditional date when porter was first produced; in 1999 Ipswich E.S.B. (about 5.6% ABV) - E.S.B. stands for Extra Special Bitter.  

Seasonal beers were introduced in 1997 with Ipswich Winter Ale (6.2% ABV), followed by Ipswich Summer Ale (4.9% ABV) in 2003 and, for the autumn/fall, Ipswich Harvest Ale (6.9%) in 2005.  

All these early bottles of Ipswich Ale sport variations of the distinctive sailing ship label, indicative of the sea-going traditions of Ipswich; labels that are a far cry from the more colourful and distinctive ones of later years, particularly with the “limited edition” ales, as seen in some of them displayed here.  The beer was then produced by the company at its brewery, named the Ipswich Brewery, on an industrial estate in  Hayward Street, off Topsfield Road.

In January 1999 the Ipswich Ale brand was purchased by United States Beverage, but the brewery remained separately owned and operated.  Later that same year, Rob Martin, then Director of Operations, who had been an employee of the company since 1995, purchased the Ipswich Brewing Company.  It was renamed the Mercury Brewing and Distribution Company in allusion to the ‘heavenly effect’ of a brew being likened to the “messenger to the gods” in ancient Roman mythology.  However, the new company was unable to purchase the name “Ipswich Ale”, so it had to contract out its services to other companies.  It did continue production of cask ales at Ipswich for United States Beverage on a contract basis, but the main bottle production centre of the brand was now at Baltimore.  Rob Martin had very little choice but to expand the company with other brands such as Stone Cat Ales and its own line of soda pop (see Ipswich Soda Pop,below).  Four years later, in April 2003, Mercury (Rob Martin) purchased the Ipswich Ale brand from United States Beverage, and production of this brand name moved back to Ipswich and has remained with the brewery ever since.  Ipswich Ale is without doubt the flagship brand and, having purchased the name, the brewery now rightfully called itself the Ipswich Ale Brewery

Two lines were discontinued: Ipswich 1084 Barley Wine in 2000 and Ipswich E.S.B. in 2003.  Otherwise the all-year-round and seasonal ales continued to keep the brewery in business.  In 2007 Mercury brought out its first limited edition ales with its three “Whiskey Barrel-aged” strong ales: Ipswich Whiskey Barrel-aged Dark Ale (6.3% ABV), Ipswich Whiskey Barrel-aged Oatmeal Stout (7.0% ABV), and Ipswich Whiskey Barrel-aged Scotch Ale (7.5% ABV).  For the most part, a barrel-aged beer is going to be a fuller flavoured version of the base beer, thanks to the flavours imparted by the barrel itself and, of course, whatever residue of the beverage that lived in that barrel beforehand.  Each individual barrel has its own distinct character and is thus difficult to replicate in future brews, and when the barrel is empty that is the end of that particular brew. 

 In 2009 Mercury brought out another limited edition series of ales starting with Ipswich Choate Bridge Imperial Stout (8.0% ABV) to celebrate the 375th anniversary of the founding of the town of Ipswich.  The aim was to release a series of four strong ales in limited quantity.  In each series, only 800 bottles of beer were brewed.  This was followed throughout 2009 by Ipswich Castle Hill Summer Barley Wine (10.0% ABV), Ipswich Hosiery Mill Double IPA (9.2% ABV), and Ipswich Whipple House Old Ale (9.3% ABV), this last-named also being whiskey barrel-aged.  All ales commemorated a distinctive, long established feature of the town. 

Other limited edition ales produced include Ipswich 20th Anniversary Imperial Pale Ale (8.0% ABV) in 2011 and Ipswich 21st Anniversary Imperial Dark Ale (8.2% ABV) in 2012 to celebrate the 20th and 21st anniversaries of the Ipswich Ale Brewery.  In 2013 an Ipswich Red Ale (5.2% ABV) was brewed exclusively for all sporting and concert events at the TD Garden arena in Boston.                  

In 2011 Mercury returned to the series concept when they established the ‘Local Harvest Five Mile’ limited edition with the sole purpose of creating beers using local ingredients.  The aim was to use at least 50% ingredients from Massachusetts while always having at least one ingredient from within five Miles of the brewery.  The first of the series that year was Ipswich Local Harvest Five Mile Stock Ale (6.4% ABV).  This was followed in 2012 by Ipswich Local Harvest Five Mile Pumpernickel Rye Porter (8.0% ABV), Ipswich Local Harvest Five Mile Corn Bock (6.8% ABV), Ipswich Local Harvest Five Mile Rye Saison (6.4% ABV) and Ipswich Local Harvest Five Mile Hop Harvest India Pale Ale (6.4% ABV).  In 2013 the last of the six was produced - Ipswich Local Harvest Five Mile Equinox Ale (4.8% ABV) – the name ‘Equinox’ was chosen to indicate an equal 50-50% split between the use of local State and non-State ingredients.  These six were brewed only once, and they used a common label design (see above).  This was the first time that the Ipswich name was not displayed prominently, although it appears in smaller print at the bottom.  Nevertheless, all are listed by the brewery with “Ipswich” as the brand name first.

With 40% of its business now in contract brewing and its own brands selling well, Mercury Brewing needed to find larger premises.  In 2008 it bought the downtown location of the former Soffron Brothers clam-processing plant at Brown Square (see Ipswitch - Trademark, below).  Unfortunately, the recession delayed plans to transfer the brewery, and it was not until 2012 that construction work began.  In September 2013, the Ipswich Ale Brewery opened at its new location.  The building lies off Brown Square on what used to be called Soffron Lane, but has been renamed Brewery Place.  The new brewing facility is about 3½ times the size of the original brewery, and the company has been able to double its production.  It also includes the Ipswich Ale Brewer’s Table restaurant and bar on the first floor (see Ipswich in the Names of Public Houses, Bars & Inns etc., above).

With the move to a new brewery having been settled, Mercury focused on releasing new additions to the regular brews with Ipswich Rye Porter (6.3% ABV) in 2012 and, two years later, two more appeared: Ipswich Route 101 IPA (6.0% ABV) - this was named for the 1,550 mile U.S. Route 101 that spans the Pacific coastline to acknowledge that this was a west coast style IPA; and Ipswich S.I.P.A. (3.9% ABV) - the initi
als stand for ‘Session India Pale Ale’.

The seasonal beers were also added to in January 2015 with a new departure into European continental beers and lagers with the introduction of Ipswich Revival (6.5% ABV).  It is advertised as: “Our interpretation of a golden hued Belgian-style saison imbued with fruity yeast esters and hop aroma”.  It is generally considered to be a standard Belgian blond rather than a traditional saison: originating from the farmhouses in Wallonia, the French-speaking region of Belgium, traditionally brewed during the winter months then later released in the spring for the seasonal workers.  Hence the name: ‘saison’ is French for ‘season’.  This was followed by Ipswich Blueberry Shandy (5.4% ABV) appearing as a summer drink – ‘shandy’ is beer mixed with a soft drink, sometimes called a ‘fruit beer’.  Ipswich Pumpkin Porter (5.4% ABV), although released earlier in 2015, is considered a seasonal beer for autumn (fall), along with Ipswich Hop Harvest Ale (7.0% ABv), and finally in November 2015 Ipswich Ruby Red IPA (5.5% ABV) was released as the seasonal beer for winter.

To celebrate the opening of its restaurant the Brewer’s Table series was created.  As with earlier series, these were all brewed in small batches with limited release.  These beers were available for consumption at the on site restaurant and were only provided to selected speciality retailers.  The first was Ipswich Route 1A Double IPA (8% ABV) released in December 2015 exclusively for the opening of the Ipswich Ale Brewer’s Table.  Route 1A is the local north-south highway in Massachusetts.  This was followed over the next th
ree months by Ipswich Dry Irish Stout (4.4% ABV) and Ipswich Barley Wine (10.5% ABV).


In June 2016 Ipswich Cranberry Beret (5.0% ABV) was produced to celebrate the opening of the outdoor patio, and it was included with the other summer seasonal beers of Ipswich Ale.  It is technically a ‘kettle soured ale’.  Sour ale has an intentionally acidic, tart or sour taste.  Making sour beer is a risky and specialised form of beer brewing that the Belgians are traditionally best at, but the time (can take over a year to brew properly), costliness, and potential for error put off a lot of breweries from emulating the Belgians.  ‘Kettle souring’ is a relatively new method of brewing that cuts down the cost and time by boiling the brew in a temperature controlled kettle to bring the beer down to a low acidity level in a matter of days and without the risk of cross contamination.  In this brew the kettle soured ale is fermented on top of pureed cranberries. 

The name ‘Beret’ has been borrowed from a cocktail (the Raspberry Beret), only invented in 2008, at the Waldorf Astoria, New York, and named after the 1985 hit single by Prince and the Revolution. This name is now given to drinks with a sharp contrast between a white head in a red or pinkish body, like the red beret headwear that has a large white pompom in its centre.  A photo of the Ipswich Cranberry Beret is shown above, whilst the label (see right) shows a cartoon image of Prince (Prince Rogers Nelson, 1958-2016).


In March 2016, in celebration of Ipswich Ale’s 25th Anniversary, Ipswich Riverbend Pils (4.4% ABV), was released.  This Pilsner uses proper German malt, traditional Czech Saaz hops and a touch of Lemondrop hops for a bright aroma.  The world’s first-ever blond lager was the Pilsner Urquell, first produced in 1842 in the town of Plzeň, Czech Republic.  This is the inspiration for more than two-thirds of the beer produced in the world today (which are still called pils, pilsner and pilsener).  This brew also had limited availability and was given its name because a portion of the sales of the beer was donated to the Ipswich River Watershed Association, who work to protect the river system that is the source of the area’s drinking water.

The European beers theme continued throughout 2016 with continued limited releases of Ipswich iBelge (4.8% ABV), a Belgian farmhouse pale ale, the name combining a small ‘i’ for ‘inspiration’ with the French for ‘Belgian’.  It should be noted that Rob Martin is a well-known enthusiast of Belgian beers.  Then came Ipswich Smoked Helles (Witzelsucht) (4.3% ABV).  This is a lightly smoked pale lager traditionally based on Bamberg in Germany.  Helles is German for ‘light’ or ‘pale’ referring to the colour of the lager.  Smoked beer is a type of beer with a distinctive smoke flavour imparted by using malted barley dried over an open flame.  Witzelsucht is an alternative name for Bock, as mentioned in the Glossary to this article.  Then there is Ipswich Hefeweizen (4.9% ABV), a German yeast (hefe) beer with 50% malted wheat to the same amount of malted barley, the high yeast content giving it a cloudy appearance.  It has a low hop bitterness and a high carbonation causing a fizzy head to the beer.  Finally, Ipswich Chucktoberfest (6.1% ABV) was the seasonal offering.  A German style amber lager known as a Märzenbier (March beer), traditionally drunk in the fall (Oktoberfest) apparently “with your best friend Chuck”.  This lager originated in Bavaria before the 16th century.  At that era beer was only allowed to be brewed between September and April, so the Märzen was brewed in March to a special recipe that would allow the beer to last during the months when brewing was forbidden. The beer was kept in the cellar until late summer, and came out to be served at the Oktoberfest.

In 2017 Ipswich Farm House (4.8% ABV) was made available (see image, right).  This is described as a “dry hopped Belgian style saison” and would appear to be the same brew as the earlier Ipswich iBelge.  It can only be sampled in the brewery tap-room and Ipswich Ale Brewer’s Table restaurant. 

The popularity of pilsner led to the brewery producing Ipswich Pilsner (4.6% ABV) in early 2016.  This is an “American pilsner”.  This type of beer, derived from the traditional European pilsner, was developed in the late 19th century to provide a lighter lager better suited to the hotter summers in America.  Different combinations of corn and rice were added to the malt and a recognisable American ‘standard’ emerged.  In September 2016 Ipswich Radler (2.7% ABV) appeared.  The name is German for ‘cyclist’ and this type of brew originated in Bavaria.  It is a shandy made from a blend of Ipswich (American) Pilsner and in-house lemonade. 

As mentioned above, by the early 20th century, US brewers had adopted corn and rice as suitable adjuncts to traditional barley malt.  Corn and rice could smooth out the flavour and reduce the haze without adding body; it also enabled beers to be produced more cheaply.  This resulted in a distinctive American type of lager that was not full of additives as found in many of today’s mainstream factory-made lagers.  Prohibition (1920 to 1933) resulted in the loss of these distinctive lagers.  In the late 20th century, a move began among home-brewers to attempt to reproduce lagers that they considered to have greater character and a more distinct flavour as in “Pre-Prohibition” days.  It was not long before the craft breweries followed suit and named their products accordingly.  Hence, in October 2005 there appeared the Mercury Pre-Prohibition Lager (6.3% ABV) described as an “Imperial Pils” or “Strong Pale Lager”.  In 2015 this type of brew was recognised as an “Historic Beer and a Pre-Prohibition Lager”.  Ipswich Ale thus revived the earlier brew as Ipswich Ale Pre-Prohibition Commemorative Lager (see image, right).

In July 2016 a new regular brew named Ipswich Cream Ale was released.  It is described as being “slightly maltier than a pilsner”.

Ipswich Zumatra Stout (22 oz bottle), the brewery’s first “coffee beer” was released in November 2016.  A hint of coffee is common for stouts and porters, particularly those produced by dark malts.  However, “coffee stouts” or “coffee beers” are brewed with actual coffee.  The first commercial brew was produced in 1994, but it was not until after 2010 that this type of beer gained in popularity.  It is now essential for American breweries to have at least one “coffee beer” in its product range.  Ipswich Ale teamed up with a notable Ipswich coffeehouse, Zumi’s Expresso, to create this blend of the classic Oatmeal Stout with a rich, earthy cold brew made from Sumatran coffee beans.  The name indicates its origins and “hints of dark chocolate, coffee and roasty goodness”.  The label (left) reflects Nepal, the homeland of Zumi, with its prayer flags stretching from rock pinnacles against a background of the Himalayas.

In December 2016 a limited edition Double IPA (DIPA) was released named Melon Collie (7.5% ABV).  It is dry-hopped with melon, lemon drop, and Mandarina Bavarian hops which result in a fruity aroma and melon-like taste. 

In February 2017, Ipswich Jax Stout (9.1% ABV), an English-style Imperial Stout Aged on Oak Chips, had a very limited release.  Oak was commonly used to barrel beer and this gave the brew a distinct flavour.  Oak chips, held like wood shavings in a bag, try to emulate this flavour.  The small chips have a large surface area which delivers the oak flavour to the beer quickly.  This seems to have been a promotional brew done in liaison with Jax Games, the board game manufacturer, since the advertisement for the day of release states that “Jax games will be available to play; nothing brings a family together like a great board game”.  

In April 2017 a new all year round brew came out, Ipswich Trailblazer (4.5% ABV), an amber hued American pale ale, well balanced with a touch of Mandarina and Lemon Drop dry hops. 


In July 2017 Ipswich Bramble-On Kettle Sour Ale (5% ABV) was released in limited quantities in kegs as well as four packs of 16 ounce cans.  It is made with blackberry puree and is kettle soured with a special lactobacillus yeast blend; it is described as a fusion of fruity, sweet, and tart.  The name is a pun on the source of the blackberries (brambles) and  “ramble-on” in the sense of to talk or walk in a leisurely, but aimless manner.

It seems that Ipswich Ale has begun a themed line of beers centred on the historic events around the town of Ipswich and New England.  Ipswich 1620 (6.3% ABV) came out in August 2017 as an all-year round brew.  It is described as “Hazy with a rainbow of hop aromas and flavours, this New England IPA features Mosaic, Citra, Amarillo, and Idaho 7 hops, with a full body that is sure to please”.  We can only speculate that the skeleton of the Pilgrim Father can endorse this beer on the basis that he needs “a new body”.  The name of the beer, of course, refers to the year when the Pilgrim Fathers arrived in America.

‘New England IPA’ was originally considered a variety of an American IPA, but since 2015
has become a recognised style in its own right.  The New England IPA can be traced back to the release of a Vermont beer called “Heady Hopper” in 2011 that soon had a cult following.  The original IPA was a brew developed in Britain that was heavily-hopped and had a higher ABV to survive the six month voyage to India.  Over time there was less need to continue this process as journey times improved, and the English IPA became a weaker version of its original.  The Americans then introduced complex flavours using American hops to develop their own IPA with higher ABVs.  The New England IPA is basically an American IPA that is characterised by juicy, tropical, citrus, and floral flavours, and has a less piney hop taste than typical IPAs.  They are heavily dry hopped using high-protein grains that gives this New England IPA a hazy appearance that ranges from slightly cloudy to opaque or muddy. They have less perceived bitterness than other popular American IPAs.
In January 20
18 a new barley wine was released, Ipswich Hellbound (11.8% ABV), with another historic theme .  The promotional blurb and graphical depiction on the can says it all: “In the midst of the uneasy peace in 1740, a religious revival swept across New England, it was known as the Great Awakening.  Legend says that preacher George Whitfield’s powerful sermon filled the congregation of Ipswich’s First Church with a horrible sense of their sin.  The devil, lurking among the pews, was so pained by the preacher’s words he charged up the steeple stairs and leapt to the Town Green below.  A footprint left by the prince of darkness can still be found burned into the rocky ledge to this day… Our take on an American barley wine goes down smooth, but packs a devilishly bold punch.  It’s slightly sweet with lingering hints of raisins and caramel.






Launched in January 2018 as their seasonal winter beer, Ipswich Knit Wit (4.8% ABV) was a wheat beer described as “dry-hopped blood orange wit”, a deplorable pun for “wheat” beer on a knitted orange background.

Also released in January 2018 was Ipswich Sauvin Blanc (5.0%) described as “Our dreamy new kettle sour ale, drinks like a tart New Zealand white wine with notes of peach and pear from the Nelson Sauvin and Hallertau Blanc dry hops”.


In April 2018 a new year-round German Pilsner was released called Ipswich Pesky Pils (4.6% ABV).  German malt with traditional Czech Saaz hops have a touch of lemondrop hops added to give a clean, golden yellow lager.  It is described as having a light to medium body, with a sweet toasted biscuit and corn bread taste that has a mild, bitter end.







There is a Pink Boots Society for female brewers, founded in 2007 by Teri Fahrendorf and inspired by the footwear she was wearing at that time.  Since its inception, the organisation has flourished with chapters all over the country and overseas.  Arguably its largest campaign is its annual “Pink Boots Collaboration Brew Day®” which celebrates International Women’s Day which is on 8 March each year.  Chapters and members of the Pink Boots Society get together along with supporting breweries, put on their pink boots and brew their chosen beer style.  Proceeds from sales of this collaboration brew are applied to educational scholarships and the raising of women’s roles in the beer industry.

In 2018  the Ipswich Pink Boots Brew (6.3% ABV) was released.  This New England style IPA featured the Pink Boots Society hop blend chosen for 2018: Palisade, Simcoe, Mosaic, Citra and Loral.

In 2019 the Ipswich Route 101 West Coast Style IPA with Hibiscus (6% ABV) had this honour.  Naturally, pink is the prominent colour in these two labels.


Ipswich Norm’s IPA (6.3% ABV) - a full-bodied New England IPA and Ipswich Norm’s Pilsner (no ABV) are two beers brewed by Ipswich Ale especially for the Cheers Bar, Beacon Hill neighbourhood, in Boston, and can only be drunk at that location.  They have been available from June and August 2018 respectively.  Originally founded in 1969 as the Bull and Finch pub, it is best remembered internationally as the exterior of the bar seen in the hit NBC show Cheers, which ran from 1982 to 1993 and remains one of America’s best loved situation comedies of all time.  In 2002, the Bull and Finch pub was officially renamed “Cheers Beacon Hill”.  

“Norm” Peterson was a fictional character in Cheers.  The character was portrayed by George Wendt.  Norm was one of only three characters to appear in every episode of Cheers.  Norm is the most loyal customer Cheers has had since anyone can remember and always sits on the same stool at the bar every day.  Norm’s entrance into the bar and the enormous size of his tab at Cheers are running gags.  His mannerisms and sayings have entered folklore, hence the use of his name as a promotional aid.

In August 2018 there were two more releases.  An Ipswich Rustic Farmhouse (4.8% ABV) had the same image as the 2017 Ipswich Farm House (see above) but in a brown colouring instead of blue, presumably because brown is more readily associated with farming and the soil.

The second release was Ipswich Passion Pils (4.4% ABV).  A pilsner described as loaded with passion fruit puree, this hazy unfiltered pilsner starts with a malty, tart wallop followed by a clean, crisp finish.





Ipswich Doubletake IPA (7.5% ABV), released in September 2018 is a Double India Pale Ale “with a rich palate of pineapple & mango”.  That’s what the label says (see left).   





Also released in September 2018 was the latest kettle sour ale: Ipswich Bohemian Raspberry (5% ABV).  This is described as “a delightfully tart kettle soured ale fermented atop puréed raspberries.  Ipswich Bohemian Raspberry is a killer beer, a new brew elevated to rock star status.  Be a champion of the world and drink a crazy little beer called Bohemian Raspberry.”  The iconic image of the back of Freddie Mercury working the audience should be enough to make this a collector’s item!


Two seaso
nal ales followed in November 2018. 

Ipswich Spruce (6.1% ABV) is an IPA brew of hops and spruce tips, the latter providing “a hint of fruity sweetness and mint”. 

Ipswich Sled Dog (5.2% ABV) is a Winter Ale with a “balance of bready malt and English-style hop bitterness”.  The latter is a limited release that can only be sampled in the brewery tap-room. 




In January 2019 another winter special became available. Ipswich Defrost (7.7% ABV) is a Weizenbock style ale.  Weizenbocks are essentially winter wheat beers, originally brewed in Bavaria.  The colour can be pale gold to brown.  They are of a higher alcoholic strength which provides a warming personality, though they should still have a significant head when poured.  “Defrost” is described as “iconic German yeast flavours of clove and banana against a rich, complex malt base with notes of chocolate and dark fruit”.







In February 2019 a special edition of a Vienna-style lager was swiftly on sale called Ipswich Brady’s Revenge! (4.7% ABV).  Below the image of Tom Brady holding up the Lombardi Trophy were the words “The sweet taste of victory”.  The lager was just described as “Light, golden, and crisp with just a hint of malty sweetness. Victory never tasted so good.”

Americans need no explanation for this image and these words, but the rest of the world will want to know what it is all about.

Tom Brady is an American football quarterback
who spent his first 20 seasons with the New England Patriots, the professional American football team based in the Greater Boston area.  Brady is widely considered to be the greatest quarterback of all time.  The Vince Lombardi Trophy is the trophy awarded each year to the winning team of the National Football League’s championship game, the Super Bowl.  The trophy is named in honour of NFL coach Vince Lombardi (1913-1970) who coached the Green Bay Packers to victories in the first two Super Bowl games and five NFL Championships in seven years.

In the 2018 season the New England Patriots  defeated the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl championship on 3 February 2019.  With this victory, the Patriots became the second NFL team to win six Super Bowls, tying the Pittsburgh Steelers for the most in NFL history.  In addition, Brady became the oldest quarterback at 41 years of age to win a Super Bowl, as well as the first player ever to win six Super Bowls (he subsequently won a seventh).  His “revenge” was that in the previous 2017 season he had been on the losing side in the Super Bowl.


Ipswich Ch-Ch-Ch Cherry Bomb (5.0% ABV) was launched in March 2019.  It is a tart kettle sour ale fermented on top of 250 lbs of sweet dark cherry puree. Some reports say it is a “fruit punch in beer form” and it “smells greatly of cherry but more of straight sour than cherry flavor”. 











The second 1620 Pilgrimage Series (see Ipswich 1620, above) released in June 2019 is named Ipswich Southern Cross (6.3% ABV) and introduces New Zealand hop variants, including Crosby Hop Farm’s New Zealand Kiwi Blend, to the 1620 New England Style IPA as the base beer.  The New Zealand hops are said “to bring a piney, citrusy brightness to this brew”.  The Southern Cross constellation in the southern hemisphere was used for navigation by the early explorers of the South Pacific.  We are not sure whether the explorers should be considered “pilgrims”, but nonetheless accept that they are in need of some body from this brew.

Ipswich Night Watch Black IPA (6.3% ABV) released in November 2019 is the third release in the 1620 Pilgrimage Series that celebrates longer nights and cooler days (see Ipswich 1620 and Ipswich Southern Cross above). It is described as a “Cascadian Dark Ale (CDA)”.  With the revival and world-wide popularity of the India Pale Ale style, it only seemed a matter of time before a dark version of the same style would emerge.  This happened in the late 2000s with a brew that had roasted malt with coffee or chocolate overtones and citrusy hop flavours, often from Cascade hops.  In January 2010, a group of Pacific North West brewers coined this CDA term where the brew uses the hops that come from the area known as Cascadia, i.e. Oregon, Washington, British Columbia and Idaho.

It is said to have a fresh, piney hop aroma with a bitter, roasty coffee flavour that pours a smooth, inky black hue that is as “dark as the northwoods night sky”. The image (right) continues the skeletal theme of the 1620 series and is supposed to be “a dreamer who can only find his way by moonlight”. 



Ipswich Ale 1920 Dry Hopped Lager (4.6% ABV) was released in August 2020 to coincide with the 1ooth anniversary of women getting the right to vote after the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified on 18 August 1920.   






Ipswich Celia Saison (ABV 6.5%) has a somewhat different derivation.  It is a gluten-free saison ale that was first introduced in July 2009 by The Alchemist, a microbrewery in Waterbury, Vermont.  It was specifically aimed at those drinkers who suffer from Celiac disease, hence its chosen brand name.  (In British English it is spelt as Coeliac disease.)  Celiac disease (or ‘gluten-sensitive enteropathy’) is an immune reaction to eating gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye.  If somebody has celiac disease, eating gluten triggers an immune response that can damage the small intestine and leads to anaemia and skin problems.

In August 2011 Hurricane Irene hit Vermont and The Alchemist brewery was devastated by floods and had to close down.  The brewery sold its recipe and all rights to Ipswich Ale Brewery.  Ipswich Ale continued the brand in its familiar bottle, using the same image of “Celia”, a reclining nude holding a bunch of grapes on top of oranges and grapes, all beside a large wine vase.  This label was retained without the normal “Ipswich” prefix to preserve brand loyalty.  However, as sufficient time elapsed, it began to be advertised as Ipswich Celia Saison from 2014.  From 2017 a canned version of the brew has been introduced and this has the normal “Ipswich” format.  Nevertheless, the bottled version still continues as it was when The Alchemist produced the beer (See images left and right).

This gluten-free saison-style ale is made with sorghum and brewed with orange peel.  It has a thick, cloudy light orange colour and the consistency of a thick juice. 


***Since 2020 Ipswich Ale has changed its distinctive style of labelling for its beers.  Before 2020 the name ‘Ipswich’ was usually shown as part of the title for a particular brew and was therefore considered part of the name of the beer.  Hence, it was always shown under the letter ‘I’ in beer lists.  From 2020 Ipswich Ale has followed the practice of other breweries and now places its full name “Ipswich Ale Brewery” as a separate feature from the brand name on its labels.  The difference can be seen in the image next to “Ipswich Ale 1920 Dry Hopped Lager” released in August 2020.  Furthermore, recent beer lists have placed the products in their normal alphabetical order with the brewery name shown in a separate column.  We are recognising this change by not including further beer releases of Ipswich Ale Brewery on this page, unless ‘Ipswich’ is obviously an integral part of the brand name.***


Also available since 1998 is Ipswich Ale Stone Ground Mustard, made with Ipswich Oatmeal Stout.

We must not forget what is on offer in the Ipswich Ale Brewer’s Table restaurant: the Ipswich Ale Oatmeal Stout Ice Cream Float, described by one food critic as a “unique dessert that looks yummy”.  A scoop of vanilla or chocolate ice cream in a big mug with the oatmeal stout beer poured over it.

(See also Ipswich Soda Pop, below)


Wine Spectator Magazine has named Ipswich Original Ale as one of the ‘World’s Ten Best Beers’

Unfortunately, Ipswich Ale is only available in the New England/North Eastern USA region.  However, if anyone would like to send over some free samples........?!!


On the other side of the Atlantic, in Ipswich, England, Dove Street Brewery produce a wide variety of ales, two of which have “Ipswich” in the name:

Old Ipswich Liquor is a 5.5% ABV ale with chocolate and liquorice notes & a well rounded finish.

Ipswich Pale Ale is described as a traditional strong IPA with an ABV of 6.6%

Also worthy of mention is their 4% ABV Incredible Taste Fantastic Clarity beer, the initials spelling out ITFC as a tribute to Ipswich Town Football Club. This ale is described as a golden hoppy beer which is clean, clear & crisp.

Established in 2011, as the name suggests, the Dove Street Brewery is situated on Dove Street (off St Helens Street close to the centre of Ipswich).  Opposite is the Dove Street Inn, which is currently the only outlet f
or the brewery’s ales.

Also in Ipswich, England is the Briarbank Brewing Company, situated in a former bank premises in Fore Street, adjacent to the Isaacs-on-the-Quay complex on the Waterfront.

Amongst a wide variety of ales brewed here is their IPA, which in this case stands for Ipswich Pale Ale (3.6% ABV). It is described as a hoppy chestnut ale with a citrus aroma. This same brew also goes under the name of Briarbank SPA. SPA stands for Suffolk Pale Ale. (See Beers & Cyders Named ‘Suffolk’ section on

Other beers produced include Briar Bitter, Briar Lager, Cardinale Wolsey, Old Spiteful & Suffolk Pride.They also produce Gippeswyk Cider at 6.0 ABV, which is a  sweet cider produced from a blend of seven types of apples.


Another play on the IPA name and Ipswich was a brew produced by Bartrams Brewery.  This was a micro-brewery started by Marc Bartram in 1999, located at Rougham Airfield, Bury St Edmunds. (For more information, see, Misc. page - Beers  & Cyders Named Suffolk.)  The postcode (ZIP code) of the brewery was IP30, the initials standing for ‘Ipswich’.  Kevin McHenry, a brewing colleague of Marc Bartram, came up with the idea that, since the postcode is IP30, why not brew an IPA with ingredients sourced from within a 30 mile radius?  Thus, IP(30)A (6.8% ABV) was born.  It was originally brewed as a ‘one-off’ for the inaugural Yaxley Beer Festival, Cambridgeshire, in 2014 with a sack of hops from the Glemham Hall estate, near Woodbridge, Suffolk.  However, next year when some surpus barley from another estate nearby to the brewery became available, Marc went back to the Glemhall Hall estate for hops, and the rest as they say “is history”. Unfortunately, so is Bartrams Brewery as Marc Bartram decided that “the market for real ales is ‘saturated’” and closed his business in March 2018. 


Ipswich Bright (3.8% ABV) and Ipswich Pride (3.7% ABV) were two real ale brews produced by St Jude’s Brewery in Ipswich, England.  A third brew used the old name for Ipswich and was called Gypeswic Bitter (4.4% ABV)  (see label, left).  St Jude’s was a micro-brewery started in 2006 by Frank and Colleen Walsh from their home in Cardigan Street, Ipswich.  It opened its first pub in Ipswich in February 2011 (St Jude’s Brewery Tavern on St Matthew’s Street), and another outlet was opened in Felixstowe in December 2011.  Unfortunately the economic downturn hit micro-breweries hard and this venture was closed in May 2012 and these beers were retired.  However, popular demand was such that the brewery and the St Jude’s Brewery Tavern re-opened in September 2012 and they are still going in 2018.  Unfortunately, the beers named above were not revived. 

Another Ipswich Pride (4.2% ABV) and Ipswich Special Bitter (original gravity 1042) were two brews produced by the celebrated Ipswich brewery Tolly Cobbold. The Tolly Cobbold brewery on Cliff Quay in Ipswich was taken over by Brent Walker, a property, gambling and brewing conglomerate in 1988.  This organisation closed down the brewery in 1989, after 256 years of brewing at the site.  However, a management buyout in 1990 saved the brewery and to celebrate its first anniversary and return to brewing as an independent regional brewer, it launched a cask beer, Ipswich Pride, for the Ipswich Beer Festival 1991, followed later by Ipswich Special Bitter.  Unfortunately, this ‘second coming’ was not to last and the brewery finally closed in 2002.


On the other side of the world, in Ipswich, Queensland, the Four Hearts Brewing Company launched  Ipswich Challenger in 2012, a light strength at 2.9% ABV, but full-bodied pale ale using the English hop variety Challenger and an English yeast.

Founded by Wade Curtis in December 2008, the Four Hearts Brewing Company produce their ales in small batches with no preservatives or chemicals. The brewery was based at Peak Crossing, a rural community 12 miles south of Central Ipswich, which was part of Ipswich until 2008 (for details see City of Ipswich, Queensland - Land Lost to Other Jurisdictions section on The Ones That Got Away page). 

In March 2015 Wade Curtis moved to Ipswich and opened a brewery and restaurant (the Pumpyard Bar & Brewery) at 88 Limestone Street.  This is the first working brewery in Ipswich since 1903 when the Booval Brewery closed (1898-1903).  The Pumpyard takes its name from the natural spring that was located on the site back in 1862, when residents of Ipswich were allowed to fill four buckets of water per day for free.

Townsville Ipswich Challenger has just appeared on the scene in early 2017.  It is described as a pale lager (2.9% ABV) whereas the Four Hearts Ipswich Challenger above is definitely a pale ale.  It is brewed by the Townsville Brewing Company in the city of that name in north-eastern Queensland.  This release is too early to have much information about it, so we do not know if there is a direct link between the two brewing companies or whether this name is being used under a special licensing agreement.  The Townsville Brewing Company has been brewing six regular beers plus various seasonal releases since opening in 2001.  It occupies the old Townsville Post Office built in 1886 (on the Queensland Heritage Register from 2003).  In 2001 it was redeveloped by the Townsville Brewing Company as a brewery, restaurant and function centre. 

Bremer Brewing is a Brisbane company mainly into the production of home brewing kits.  Unlike most other beer kits which only use hop extract, Bremer Brewing boils in fresh hops, resulting in a real hop bitterness, flavour and aroma that is found in the finest beers around the world.  It also has on tap a selection of their brews that they have numbered in order.  Since 2019 there has been number 2 Ipswich Australian Pale Ale (5.2% ABV), seen in photo, left.








An Ipswich Rail Trip (7.9%) by the Evil Dad’s Brewery is a Belgian strong golden ale recorded in January 2016.  This home brewery is in Wellington, New Zealand, and is still producing beers in 2021.  Other than this, we can tell you nothing more. 

The Smiling Toad Brewery is a micro-brewery founded in 2015 at Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA.  In June 2017 it released a brew named Ipswich (6.4% ABV), an American pale ale. 

Ipswitch Ale (6.9% ABV) is an English IPA brewed by Smooth Sail Ales, a home brewery in the USA.  It seems that only one brew was ever made in 2016 as the brewer states “Last of these, a few changes next time I make it”.  The location is probably in New Hampshire since the venues where the beers of this brewery are drunk are all in that state.  If so, it is presumed that New Ipswich was in mind.  We have not seen a label so cannot say whether the name was really spelt with a ‘t’; it seems that not much else was right about this one, so best forgotten.

The next three are recorded on lists of beer names, but we have been unable to corroborate the brew or the breweries concerned.

Duke of Ipswich Porter (5% ABV) by Fowler’s Fine Ales.  An English porter released in June 2015.  This is said to be by an American home brewery, but we have been unable to identify it or its whereabouts.  Since most of the beers produced by this home brewery are consumed at Duke’s Pub & Grill which is at Tyngsborough, Massachusetts, we assume that this brewery must be in that state.  Ipswich and Tyngsborough are only 30 miles apart, and it could be that the name of the beer is related to the name of the pub and the nearby town of Ipswich.

Ipswitch ESB (4.6% ABV), an Extra Strong Bitter released in July 2017 by Old Colonel’s Brewery.  Another American home brewery for which we have no clues.  The name is spelt with a ‘t’ in all the beer lists.

Ipswitch IPA (6.1% ABC) brewed by Marcs Home Brew Hop Factory of Happiness.  Four beers are credited to this American home brewery in January 2014.  The place name has a ‘t’ in it.  This may be deliberate to distinguish this IPA from the other American IPA brewed by Ipswich Ales.  Despite the evocative name of this home brewery, we have been unable to pinpoint its location.

Another Ipswich IPA (5.25% ABV) is recorded by drinkers at the Whale’s Tail Brewery from 2013 to 2018.  We cannot envisage why this name has been given to a home brew by this small craft brewery considering it is in Uvita, Costa Rica, and was established by an Italian and his business partner who was of Hungarian-German parentage.  Gian Michele Pace came from the mountains of Abruzzo in Italy.  His passions are craft beer and Blues music.  He had been running his own brewery in Italy for years, then he discovered Uvita’s beautiful environment on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica.  He decided to stay and put his experience and passion for handcrafted beer into action.  He met up with Peter Marschall (who unfortunately died in 2020).  Peter was a movie producer from Budapest who considered that the jungle and the quality of its water would make excellent constituents in the brewing process.  Together both men founded the Whale Tail Brewery in 2017, bringing European beer styles to this part of the world.

We should mention that this brewery has nothing to do with the Whale’s Tale beers (note the different spelling of the second word) of Cisco Brewers on Nantucket Island whose Whale’s Tale Pale Ale is their flagship English style pale ale.


IP1 (Ipswich Pilsner One) (4.2% ABV) is an imported Belgian pilsner and the house beer for the Arcade Street Tavern in Ipswich, England since August 2015.  It is a brew of the Brewery Huyghe in the town of Melle in Belgium.  The site of the brewery has been in operation since 1654.  In 1906 Léon Huyghe purchased the existing brewery.  In 1925 he was joined by his son Albert and son-in-law Louis Droesbeque and the brewery was officially re-named.  While the company initially brewed a regular pilsner, it soon began brewing the kinds of beers now typically known as “Belgian”, including a series of beers under the ‘Delirium’ tag, with pink elephants on the label.  Its flagship beer is Delirium Tremens, a golden Belgian ale, 8.5% ABV, named as “Best Beer in the World” in 2008 at the World Beer Championships in Chicago. 


Ипсвическая сила (Ipswich Power or Ipswich Strength) (5.7% ABV) was brewed between 2016 and 2018 by 4Brewers, a Russian micro-brewery in Vladimir.  For those of you who like to see the name transliterated in the Latin alphabet it is “Ipsvicheskaya sila”.  It is classified as an ESB (Extra Strong Bitter) and is described as “formally British, in fact half-Belgian, half-Russian”.  Those who know better state that it is “not an ESB, rather an English style IPA”.  Those who tasted it likened it to cold tea.  This beer is no longer produced by the brewery.

For those who want to go there, Vladimir is one of Russia’s oldest cities on the main trans Siberian railway, so you had better get off whilst the going is good.  The 4Brewers is also a pocket-sized pub offering 20 beers on tap and over a dozen more in bottles either from its own vats or from other Russian micro-breweries.  It goes without saying that nobody knows why they decided that Ipswich was a good name for something that tasted like ‘cold tea’.

It all started in 2010 when four young men stumbled on a homebrewing forum and decided to brew their own beer.  They followed a recipe and found that what they had produced was strikingly different from everything else that anybody had tasted before.  So they generously added malt, hops and whatever was around, and a hobby became a business.  Since they had nowhere to hang out, they opened a pub as a joke in 2014.  Two years later they had made enough money to launch a fully-fledged micro-brewery.  Now, they not only develop their own products but also brew on contract for other keen enthusiasts.

Homebrew Recipes

In addition to the beers and ciders that are produced for sale to the public or sold as home brewing kits, there is a web-based community known as the “Brewers Friend” where brewers can share, critique and discuss recipes.  The senders of the recipe can remain anonymous or use a pseudonym.  The team behind this website is a group of highly dedicated and experienced brewers and technologists who disseminate the detailed information of how to make their own individual brews, each of which is given a specific name.  Those with “Ipswich” in the name are given below.

Ipswich Oatmeal Stout (6.4% ABV).  The recipe was posted by an anonymous brewer in May 2017.  Other than that it is a typical strong stout made from American hops, nothing more is known about this beer.

New Ipswich Old Ale (5.8% ABV).  An American Brown Ale, the recipe for which was posted in July 2020 by Kellycomma Chris who hails from Ipswich, Queensland.  

West of Ipswich II (6.5% ABV).  An American IPA, the recipe for which was posted in July 2022 by Jonathan Pettit from North Looe, Surrey, England.

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Ipswich Soda Pop

Mercury Brewing Company, the parent company of Ipswich Ale Brewing (See Beers Named ‘Ipswich’, above), first introduced soda in 2000 under the name “Mercury Soda Pop”.  In 2015 the soda was renamed “Ipswich Soda Pop” because the Ipswich name has better brand recognition.  As for the soda, Ipswich has, at present, ten flavours with plans for more.  All Ipswich Soda is caffeine-free, gluten-free, and made with pure cane sugar.  Root beer and orange cream are the top-sellers.  It ought to be pointed out that these are all strictly non-alcoholic drinks.  The name “root beer” only came into use in 1876 as a marketing tool to sell the product to Pennsylvania coal miners.  Before that year this medicinal and nutritional drink made from various roots was known as “root tea”.  Most root beer has a thick foamy head when poured, so it gave the appearance of a good brew. 

As with Ipswich Ale above, there is an Ipswich Soda Pop Ice Cream Float comprising vanilla ice cream in a big mug with your choice of one of the sodas.


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Old Ipswich Rum

“In Colonial days, New Englanders discovered the joys of barrel-aged rums almost by mistake, since those rums that spent time in American oak barrels took on a whole new character.” says Mathew Perry, President of Turkey Shore Distilleries LLC.  This company was formed in 2010 in Ipswich, Massachusetts, by two childhood friends, Mat Perry and Evan Parker.  The idea of starting a distillery first came to Mat in 2007.  As a history teacher and avid rum drinker, further research revealed a distillery had operated in Ipswich during the colonial days.  Moreover, that distillery owned by John Heard, which operated from 1770-1836, was located on the street that both Mat and Evan grew up on (Turkey Shore Road).  Furthermore, the manager of the distillery, Nathaniel Heard (John’s brother) lived in Mat’s house.  Upon this discovery of a personal connection, the lost tradition of New England rum production made the friends think of a possible revival.  Turkey Shore Distilleries was thus reborn in 2010, located once again on the banks of the Ipswich River.

Using table-grade sweet molasses from the sugarcane fields of Louisiana and a custom-built 250-gallon copper pot still, built in Kentucky, the Turkey Shore Distilleries obtains an authentic flavour f
or its liquor through handcrafting in small batches and ageing in oak barrels.

Currently, the Old Ipswich Rum line consists of five rums: one white, two aged and two spiced.  The flagship brand is Old Ipswich Tavern Style Rum, followed by Old Ipswich White Cap Rum, Old Ipswich Greenhead Spiced Rum, Old Ipswich Golden Marsh Spiced Rum and Old Ipswich Lab & Cask Reserve. 

Their names have been chosen in relation to the distillery’s location.  The “Tavern Style” deliberately set out to replicate the old New England-style dark rum found in their taverns. These local rums were drier than the Caribbean imports and closer to whiskey in style, especially after barrel aging.  The “White Cap” is a white rum that is said to evoke the white tops of the turbulent sea adjoining the town of Ipswich.  “Greenhead” is named after the greenhead horse fly, commonly found in the Ipswich coastal marshes at the beginning of summer, and the rum has a ‘bite’ reminiscent of this biting fly.  Turkey Shore’s other seasonal spiced rum is named for the local tidal marshes in Fall once they have turned from green to gold.  The last of the five is named after the distillery’s logo: a rum cask and the owners’ Black Labrador Retrievers (see left).  This special release is not available on shelves but only by the barrel.  Individuals, bars and restaurants can select a single barrel that yields the equivalent of about 30 bottles that can be supplied with the barrel. 


In February 2012 Turkey Shore Distilleries introduced the Old Ipswich Rum Patriot Cocktail for cheering on the New England Patriots at the Super Bowl game.  Super Bowl XLVI (46) was the American football game between the National Football Conference (NFC) champions New York Giants and the American Football Conference (AFC) champions New England Patriots to decide the National Football League (NFL) championship for the 2011 season.  The game was played on 5 February 2012 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.  The Giants defeated the Patriots by the score of 21–17.  Nevertheless, the cocktail may have eased the pain.  The cocktail comprised:

1/2 oz. grenadine drizzled down the inside of the glass to the bottom

1-1/2 oz. Old Ipswich White Cap Rum

Fill the glass almost to the top with ginger ale

1/4 oz. of blue curacao floated over the top

Finish with 1/2 oz. of Peachtree schnapps

Garnish with a lime.

It has red, white and blue layers.  The team colours of the Patriots are navy blue, red and silver/white.  Stir cocktail prior to drinking to mix flavours. 


Turkey Shore Distilleries, located at 23 Hayward St, Ipswich, is open from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. for tours and tastings.

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Monopoly - Ipswich Edition

In 2006, an Ipswich (England) edition of the famous property trading board game Monopoly hit the shops. Instead of the traditional (in Britain) Mayfair, Trafalgar Square, Old Kent Road & Liverpool Street Station etc, the Ipswich edition boasts such locations as Christchurch Mansion, Wolsey Theatre, Sir Bobby Robson Statue, The Waterfront & University Campus Suffolk.

Named after the economic concept of the domination of a market by a single entity, Monopoly first came out in 1934, after inventor Charles Darrow (1889 – 1967) started selling his board game at stores in his hometown of Philadelphia, USA . Soon the game was being made & distributed by Parker Brothers. The game was brought over to Britain in the following year, where a London version was produced & marketed by John Waddington Ltd. The game is now produced by Hasbro.

Nowadays there are numerous editions of the game available throughout the world, representing cities, towns, counties, states, sports teams & various other things such as Bible Monopoly, Beatles Monopoly, Lord of the Rings Monopoly etc. In Britain, almost every town & city of any size has its own version of the game, as do many football clubs.

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Scrabble Ipswich

Scrabble Ipswich is a board game first published by Selchow & Righter in 1983. Not to be confused with the more famous game of Scrabble, Scrabble Ipswich is a word game for two to four players. Each set consists of 153 lettered tiles, 4 boards & score sheets. Each player has their own board, on which is marked a crossword grid (see photo, left). After drawing fourteen letters, the players have ten minutes to make up interconnecting words on their boards, taking advantage of letter usage bonus points. For the first minute there is the option of discarding tiles for new ones, although this incurs a penalty for each tile changed. After the ten minutes have elapsed, scores are recorded & players retain any four letters of their choice, whilst passing their board & the remaining tiles on to the player to their left. Each player then draws two more tiles & the process resumes; thus in each round the number of letters per player increases by two. This is repeated for a total of five rounds.

It is unclear exactly why the name Scrabble Ipswich was chosen for this game, although as the box states “The Crossword Game with a Real Switch”, part of the reason may be a play on the word “switch”.  If anyone can shed any further light on this, please email with details.

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Ipswich Fives Darts Board (aka Wide Fives Dart Board)

There are two Fives Darts Boards, the Ipswich and the East London.  The Ipswich is the classic Fives dart board.  This version has the standard width doubles and trebles, as found on a normal regular (clock) darts board.  It is also called the Wide Fives Darts Board.  This distinguishes it from its cousin from the East of London which has narrower double and treble scoring segments.  The boards are also called ‘Narrow Fives’ and ‘Wide Fives’.  The boards differ from the regular board by having twelve segments made up in sequences of 5,10, 15 and 20, plus an inner (50) and outer bullseye (25).  The game is usually played down from 505 instead of 501, although games starting at 705 or 305 are also sometimes played.

It seems obvious that this was named the Ipswich Fives Board because this particular darts board and game was peculiar to Ipswich and the surrounding area in Suffolk.  This could possibly be the same as the otherwise unknown Suffolk Darts Board (see 

If anyone has any information, please send to

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Ipswich & Double Ipswich - Sailcloth

During the late sixteenth century, a sail making industry flourished in Ipswich; dying out during the late seventeenth century.  At this time two types of sailcloth are known to have been exported bearing the names “Ipswich” & “Double Ipswich” (there was also a type called “Suffolk”). Whether any of these is synonymous with the Mildernex sailcloth known to have been made in Ipswich from Suffolk hemp around this period is unknown, as today no records survive to tell us what features or qualities made these different from the many other types of sail being produced at the time. 

One of the first sailcloth makers in Ipswich was John Collins who, in 1574, was granted a licence by the Crown to supply the Navy. Until this time, much of the sailcloth used in England had been imported from France.

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The Ipswich Window

Based on the seventeenth century windows of the Ancient House in Ipswich, England, the Ipswich Window became fashionable with Victorian architects & was used in other buildings around the town; eventually spreading to other towns & cities around Britain. The Ipswich Window is an upper-storey, bow-fronted oriel or bay window which sits on supporting blocks known as corbels.

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“Ipswich” Range of Agricultural Machinery

From the 1870s onwards, the agricultural engineering firm of Ransomes, Sims & Jefferies in Ipswich, England, began to manufacture a range of agricultural machinery bearing the name “Ipswich” at their Orwell Works on the docks. (See also Ransomes section on the Ipswich, England page).  One such machine, made from 1890, was known as the Ipswich Potato Planter, which was capable of planting on previously ridged soil (see left). 



There was also the Ipswich Potato Digger whose task is self-evident in the name (see  below).











An illustration dating from 1892 shows the horse drawn, double-action Ipswich Haymaker, also made by Ransome Sims and Jefferies.  At the same time in 1892 a similar model was exhibited at agricultural shows and reported in ‘The Engineer’ magazine on 24 June 1892 as the improved Ipswich Hay Kicker (see pictures, right).  Ransome, Sims and Jefferies manufactured these farming implements from 1883 to 1916.

Haymaking used to be very labour-intensive.  After the grass had been cut it had to be dried; when it was partly dried it had to be turned over to dry the other side.  This used to be done with a hand rake by labourers advancing across the field, turning the hay by regular strokes.  This part of the work was the “haymaking”.  The first mechanised ‘haymaker’ was designed in 1814 and this was gradually developed and improved by manufacturers throughout the century.  The machines were known variously by that name, or ‘tedders’ or ‘kickers’, the latter referring to the hay being ‘kicked over’.

Each manufacturer patented their own machine which would have slight d
ifferences from other models in their mode of operation, in each case claimed to be “an improvement”.  The Ipswich Hay Kicker was advertised as being very suitable for uneven ground because its fork tines were mounted so as to be capable of springing either way.


An Ipswich Solid Axle Rake made by Ransome Sims and Jefferies with the number BBL9 is preserved in perfect working order by  Don Hobbs, who runs a Working Historic Farm in the Mudgee District of central New South Wales (photograph by courtesy of Don, left).  This is a stubble rake, a horse-drawn agricultural implement with long teeth (or tines) for gathering (raking) stubble together in order to smooth the surface of the ground.  Stubble is the short stalks of hay or corn left sticking up from the ground after the harvest.



The Ipswich Steel Cultivator is recorded from 1897 (see right).  This is the farm implement for stirring and pulverising the soil before planting or to remove weeds and to aerate and loosen the soil after the crop has begun to grow. The cultivator is sometimes called a mini tiller or a tiller/cultivator, although its primary purpose is to prepare the soil for the plants that will grow there.



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Ipswich - Glass Pattern by A.H. Heisey & Company

Between 1931 & 1946, A. H. Heisey & Company of Newark, Ohio produced a pattern of glassware known as ‘Ipswich’.

Founded in 1895 by Augustus H. Heisey, the firm began trading in the following year. In the early days the company produced colourless pressed glass tableware, although by the 1920s they were experimenting with many different exotic colours such as Moongleam (green), Sahara (yellow), Alexandrite (cobalt), Flamingo (pink) & Dawn (purple). From the 1930s onwards, Heisey’s produced dozens of different designs including Charter Oak, Chintz, Orchid, Plantation, Kalonyal, Ridgeleigh & Yeoman, as well as Ipswich. Heisey’s pieces can normally be recognized by their distinctive logo, an H inside a diamond, although some genuine pieces are known to exist without this mark. From the 1940s, the company also began producing glass art & were especially noted for their glass animal figurines in a variety of colours.

In 1922 the company acquired some patterns from Boston & Sandwich Glass Company of  Massachusetts. One of these patterns, which had been known as the ‘Comet’, was the inspiration for Heisey’s design that was at first produced as ‘Early American Sandwich’ but soon underwent a change of name to ‘Ipswich’. The design is a swirling wave effect around a circle (see photos, above & right). Pieces produced include various styles of vases, bowls, goblets, jugs, tumblers, plates, candy jars & urns, both in clear glass & a range of colours. The pieces can have either a round or a square base. Apart from the fact that the design had its origins in Massachusetts, no other information is available at present as to why the name ‘Ipswich’ was chosen for this pattern.

A. H. Heisey & Co. closed down in 1957, but The Imperial Glass Corporation of Bellaire, Ohio bought the existing molds from Heisey in the following year & continued to use a small number of these for several years. Imperial Glass went out of business in 1984.  Since 1974, the Heisey Collectors of America, Inc. have operated the National Heisey Glass Museum in Newark. Heisey glassware is now highly collectible, especially in the USA.

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Ipswich - China Pattern by J & G Meakin Ltd

Around the year 1912, J & G Meakin Ltd began producing china tableware with a pattern called ‘Ipswich’. This had blue & white arches & medallions around the rim, with the rest of the item being plain white (see photos).

J & G Meakin was founded in 1851 when James and George Meakin succeeded their father in his pottery business based in Hanley, Staffordshire; one of the six major towns that joined together to form the city of Stoke-on-Trent in 1910. Based at Eagle Pottery, close to the Caldon canal, they became the largest pottery manufacturers in Britain during the late nineteenth century.  During that period they became renowned for their white granite (undecorated ironstone) products, which were in imitation of contemporary French porcelain. Up until 1945 they were predominantly involved in producing inexpensive tableware, particularly for the American market. 

It seems that the two brothers were quick to realise the potential of the American market, and George Meakin went to Boston in the 1850s and established their marketing centre in that city.  Living in Boston he would have been aware of the “cultural and artistic” significance of Ipswich, Massachusetts in late 19th century America.  Since the company’s main pitch was towards the American market rather than the domestic British market, it made commercial sense to go with an American theme, and this is probably why the name Ipswich was chosen for this particular design.    

During the twentieth century the firm became known for the Sol wares, which were produced between 1912 and 1963. The company was taken over by the Wedgwood Group in 1970, although production under the Meakin name continued until 2000, at which time the Eagle Pottery was used for the production of Johnson Bros pottery; a firm with which J & G  Meakin had long standing affiliations. The Eagle Pottery finally shut in 2004 & was demolished the following year.

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Ipswich Pine – Wood Stain

Two companies in the USA advertise a wood stain colour named ‘Ipswich Pine’:

Rust-Oleum Corp. of Vernon Hills, Illinois have a product in their Varathane range described as a  Premium Gel Stain (see photo, left).

Minwax of New York also have a wood finish called ‘Ipswich Pine’ (catalogue no. 221), which is described as “an oil-based wood stain that provides long-lasting wood tone color”, & is recommended for use on furniture, woodwork, doors, floors, cabinets & accessories.

No definite details are currently available as to why the name Ipswich has been chosen, although Gordon Harris, on his blog has the following theory concerning the origins of the name:

“Most of the pine trees in colonial America (Northeast U.S.) are Eastern white pine (Pinus Strobus), a quick-growing and easily workable lumber that was used in much early construction, along with American Chestnut. Freshly cut white pine is creamy white but aged lumber can acquire a golden or reddish tone and is sometimes called “pumpkin pine.”
Other genus of pine are rare in the Northeast, but Pitch pine (Pinus Rigida) dominates the pine barrens found in southeastern Massachusetts and New Jersey. Castle Neck in Ipswich MA has one of the largest stands of pitch pine on the Massachusetts North Shore. The coarse knotty wood of these trees contains a large amount of resin (pine tar) that was used for pitch. The wood was used primarily for ship building and railroad ties because the high resin content preserves it from decay.”

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Ipswich Fog - Evangeline Ghastly Doll

Now this is a strange one. Evangeline Ghastly is a collectable gothic doll inspired by Tim Burton’s The Corpse Bride, The Addams Family, & even, apparently, Barbra Streisand. The dolls, together with a large selection of outfits & accessories are marketed by Wilde Imagination Inc., who are based in Mullica Hill, New Jersey, USA. Her creator is Joe Petrollese & the dolls are sculpted by renowned fashion doll artist and designer Robert Tonner. But the really strange thing about Evangeline Ghastly is that the tale woven by her American creators around her has it that she was born & lives in Ipswich, England. The story is that she was born on 24th April 1924 in the attic of the ancestral home of the Ghastly family; the fictional Barkley Manor, located near the cemetery, where she still lives, alone, to this day. Evangeline is a mortician’s assistant at Mort’s Mortuary. She collects rocks & has a pet skunk named Mouette, a bat named Bella & a cat called Valentine.

The original Evangeline Ghastly doll is 19 inches tall, ball jointed & made from luminescent pale resin, individually hand-poured, strung, and hand painted. Later versions are also now manufactured from high quality vinyl.

There are many different outfits available for Evangeline Ghastly, with names such as Cemetery Stroll Skirt, Shrouded in Darkness Blouse & the Graveside Picnic Outfit. Accessories include Raining Bats & Skunks (umbrella), Rest in Peace Carry-all, & a host of wigs, shoes & boots.  Also available her models of her pets Mouette, Bella & Valentine. Many of the pieces, & the outfits, are limited editions only. The dolls & all the accessories can be purchased from Wilde Imagination’s website, where visitors can also read about Evangeline’s ‘life’, see her family tree & view her diary entries.

One of the vinyl versions of Evangeline on the market is a 17 inch tall doll named Ipswich Fog (see picture, above). A limited edition of only 350, Ipswich Fog’s outfit consists of layers of deep grey chiffon, matching lamé underlay, and a delicate lace overlay, together with a matching high-collared cape, stockings, matching shoes, and designer jewellery. She also comes with a changeable red wig.

One of the accessories also available for the resin dolls, are a pair of boots called the Ipswich Lace-ups (see picture, right).


So why was Ipswich chosen as the location for Evangeline's hometown?  Creator Joe Petrollese explained to the Ipswich Evening Star newspaper on 14th August 2007:

“I thought that the small towns depicted in English murder mystery shows seemed to have a lot of history as well as mystery and might be an interesting place to set her story.
“I then went online and did a little research and came up with Ipswich. I read that it was one of the oldest places in England and that made it seem even more interesting. I pictured it with large manor houses and that the town could possibly be haunted.
“Being from Ipswich made it very easy to give her a very old family history.
“Since the town is extremely old she could have a family tree in Ipswich that went back to the 1500s”

He also added:

“Myself and Evangeline feel honoured to be part of Ipswich.”

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Ipswich Shoewear Brand Names

Two shoe manufacturers in the USA have adopted Ipswich as a name for one of their range of shoewear styles.  These are the Bostonian Ipswich Oxford Shoe and the Florsheim Ipswich Kiltie Loafer.

In the 19th century there was a shift in industrial development to textiles, lace production and shoe making in Ipswich, Massachusetts.  However, the latter two were very much cottage industries and Ipswich was not particularly renowned for its shoe industry.  Nevertheless, the name of Ipswich had become known for its cultural, artistic and generally “up-market” image.  This is reflected in the use of “Ipswich” as a brand name for other quality products sold in North America (see Ipswich – Glass Pattern and Ipswich- China Pattern, above).  The name “Ipswich” would not have the same resonance of quality in either Britain or Australia!

The Bostonian Ipswich Oxford Shoe  (see photo, right) is recognised as a quality men’s dress shoe.  It has a smooth, full grain leather upper with a gently squared toe, and is appropriate for office use and as a dress shoe for special occasions.  The same shoe is sometimes advertised as the Bostonian Ipswich Blücher Shoe.  The meanings of the terms Oxford and Blücher vary geographically; in North America the “Oxford” is used to refer to any “dressy” style of lace-up shoe, including the “Blücher”.  Elsewhere outside North America, especially in Britain, the “Oxford” and “Blücher” (sometimes called the “Derby”) describe different types of shoe.   

In Britain, the Oxford style was popularised at Oxford University in 1800.  An Oxford is a style of laced shoe characterised by the bottom part of the  shoelace eyelet side pieces  being  stitched down to the upper part of the shoe so that the bottom parts cannot flap up, a construction method that is also sometimes referred to as “closed lacing”.  This is considered to be the most formal class of dress shoe.  A Blücher (or Derby) is a style of shoe characterised by the bottom part of the shoelace eyelet side pieces being able to flap up from the shoe.  This construction method is known as “open lacing”.  It was named after the 18th century Prussian general who introduced this improved style of footwear for his soldiers and it became popular in Europe.  It also became popular in Britain in the 1850s where it became known as the Derby, and was considered more appropriate for casual wear or working day use.
The Bostonian Shoe Manufacturing & Retail Co was founded as the Commonwealth Shoe & Leather Co. in 1884 by Charles H Jones in Weston, Mass., a suburb in the west of Boston.  Its Bostonian range of shoes soon gained recognition for their quality, comfort and durability that this name was adopted for the company.  Bostonian Shoes were made in the 1930s to the mid 1960s at Whitman, Massachusetts, and then moved to Newton Upper Falls in Boston.  In 1979 the company was taken over by C&J Clark, a British shoe manufacturing company.  As part of Clarks Companies North America, which is based in Massachusetts, the Bostonian brand name continues today.  We have not been able to find out when the “Ipswich” style was first introduced by the company.

In 2020 Clarks entered a company voluntary arrangement (CVA), a form of insolvency, in which the Clark family lost overall control of the company.  A 51% share is now held by Viva China Holdings, an investment holding company principally engaged in the operation of multi-brand clothing and footwear businesses.  This company was founded in 1989 by Li Ning, a former Chinese Olympic gymnastic gold medal winner.

The Ipswich Kiltie Loafer  (see photo, left) is manufactured by The Florsheim Shoe Company.  This company has been going since 1892 when Milton Florsheim began producing shoes in a small factory located in Chicago, Illinois.  As far as we can tell, this company has no connection with any Ipswich, so we assume that the name has been selected by association with the reputation of the Bostonian Ipswich as a dress shoe.  The terminology for this type of footwear will generally be unfamiliar to those on the European side of the Atlantic, so a brief explanation follows.

The Norwegians were producing leisure slippers of the moccasin style in the 1930s and began exporting them to the rest of Europe, where they were taken up by visiting Americans.  A shoe manufacturer in New Hampshire started making shoes based on this design in the 1930s and gave them the trade name of loafers.  This soon became the general term used in North America for a step-in leather shoe with a broad flat heel and an upper resembling a moccasin.  In Britain and Europe these are referred to as slip-on shoes.

The Kiltie is a casual Oxford shoe with a fringed tongue that flaps over the laces and eyelets on the upper part of the shoe.  It originated in Scotland as an adaptation of the ghillie shoe which is a shoe without a tongue and the laces are wrapped round the ankle or around the bottom of the leg.  Both shoes were designed to be worn in the wet and muddy environment of the Scottish countryside.  The advantage of both styles was to prevent water and mud getting trapped between the tongue and lacing, thereby weighing down the shoe.  The shoes were often worn with kilts (hence the name), or plus fours, and the kiltie became very popular as a golf shoe.  It is said to have been introduced to the USA by the Duke of Windsor when he was the Prince of Wales.  The name has since been transferred to slip-on shoes in North America that have a tongue or tassel on the upper part of the shoe.

The reputation of the brand name Ipswich has led to it being used in other footwear.  The Ipswich Kiltie Wedge Heel was introduced by the fashion designer Rachel Comey in her Spring collection of 2010 (see photo, right).  This is a peep-toe, with a lace-up tie and sling-back strap above a raised, wooden wedge heel; the upper has cut-outs, tassels and fringe at the tongue.

Rachel Comey was born in Manchester, Connecticut, and moved to New York in 1998 to pursue life as an artist.  She soon gained a reputation for her designs and launched her namesake brand in 2001 with a limited run of menswear, and expanded into womenswear in 2003 when she found women buying her menswear in smaller sizes.  Today, Rachel Comey clothing has gained high status in the contemporary scene, and her main focus is now on women’s collection of clothing, shoes and accessories.

It appears that
the brand name has reached world-wide proportions since a New Zealand company launched the Ziera Ipswich Tan Leather Women’s Sandal in 2013 followed by a Ziera Ipswich Black version in 2015.  Ziera is the company brand name.  The Ziera Ipswich is a casual women’s lace-up sandal (see photo, left).  It has generous widths, roomy toe area, and padded toplines.  The Ipswich name may conjure up style and beauty, but comfort is at the heart of the company’s reputation in Australasia, since it is the most recommended footwear brand by podiatrists and other medical professionals.  Ziera orthotic shoes have extra depth and a removable insert to accommodate individual orthotics.

A few words of explanation are now needed.  “Podiatrists” is the modern terminology for “chiropodists”.  “Orthotics” is a specialty within the medical field concerned with the design, manufacture and application of “orthoses”.  An orthosis (plural: orthoses) is “an externally applied device used to modify the structural and functional characteristics of the neuromuscular and skeletal system”.   Foot orthoses comprise a custom made insert fitted into a shoe.  These are commonly referred to as “orthotics” and provide support for the foot by redistributing reaction forces as well as realigning foot joints while standing, walking or running.

Ziera is a family-owned New Zealand company, now headed by its third generation.  Formerly known as Kumfs, they are inspired by fashion but driven by comfort; which guarantees that their shoes always incorporate the latest in orthopedic comfort technology.  In 1933 New Zealand born brothers-in-law Mervyn Adams (1899-1982) and David Robertson (1910-2004) went into partnership as podiatrists.  Frustrated by treating foot problems caused by ill-fitting shoes led them to create unique ‘lasts’ (shoe moulds) based on anatomical need.  In 1946 a local manufacturer was found to develop their range and in 1950 they opened a store in Hamilton, New Zealand, and began supplying shoes to other podiatrists.  In 1961 they established their own factory and in the 1970s they broke into the Australian and American markets.  In 1996 they began marketing their shoes under the name Kumfs.  In 2009 all manufacturing was shifted to a factory in Guangdong, China.  In 2010 they wanted to make a change that reflected a new direction for the company, hence the Ziera brand name.  Pronounced ‘zee-air-rah’, the name is supposed to conjure up “a wonderful walk-on-air-and-sea” feeling. 

Rising rents and staff costs, combined with falling in-store sales because Ziera was slow to consider an on-line facility (only launched in December 2016), and a weaker New Zealand dollar affecting their overseas profits, led to the closure of the Ziera stores in 2019.  The administrator sold the brand to the Munro Footwear Group.  This is an Australian family business started as a small footwear store in Melbourne in 1962 by Kerrie and Graham Munro, and it has grown to be one of Australia’s leading retailers and wholesalers of footwear.

The Ipswitch Chambray Boat Shoe (see photo, right) has the name spelt with a ‘t’.  It is a children’s shoe designed by Ralph Lauren.  Fashion designer Ralph Lauren is one of the most famous figures in the fashion world.  Born in 1939 in the Bronx, New York, as Ralph Lifshitz to Ashkenazi Jewish immigrants, he later changed his name to Ralph Lauren.  In 1967, with the financial backing of Manhattan clothing manufacturer Norman Hilton, Lauren founded the Ralph Lauren Corporation and opened a necktie  store where he sold ties of his own design under the label “Polo”.  From 1971 he expanded his clothing and fashion interests worldwide, and has diversified into other areas of luxury goods and accessories.  

Boat shoes (better known as deck shoes) are typically canvas or leather with non-marking rubber soles originally designed for use on a boat.  Thin slits are cut across the rubber soles to provide grip on a wet deck.  Modern boat shoes were invented in 1935 by American Paul A. Sperry of New Haven, Connecticut.  Since the 1970s they have become casual footwear, and are found world-wide.  Chambray is a lightweight clothing fabric with coloured warp and white filling yarns.

Ralph Lauren also sell Ipswich vacchetta leather sandals (Ipswich without the ‘t’) made in Italy (see photo, right).  Vacchetta is untreated Italian leather generally used on luggage, luxury handbags and footwear.  The word is Italian for “cowhide”.



The Ipswich S3 SRC Safety Ankle Boot (see photo, below left) is yet another product using the locality name but has no apparent links with Ipswich.  This footwear is sold by an Italian company, COFRA S.r.L., based in Barletta, a city in Apulia in south eastern Italy.  Most of its products are now manufactured in Albania.  The company was established in 1938 by Ruggiero Cortellino as Cortelgomma, a small workshop where shoes were manufactured using the tyres of military trucks for the soles and military uniforms for the uppers. The shoes were distributed all over Italy.  In 1983 the company became COFRA which is now managed by Giuseppe Cortellino, the founder’s son, under whom it soon expanded into the international markets.  In 2004 the safety workwear division was established, and COFRA is now a world leader in this particular segment.    

The COFRA ‘Ipswich’ S3 SRC Safety Boot has a water repellent full grain leather upper and slip resistant sole.  The breathable internal anti-bacterial lining absorbs and releases moisture.  It has a metal free composite toe cap with 200 joules protection and puncture resistant fabric midsole.  This Protective Footwear conforms to European safety standards.  This footwear has been produced to European standards since 2007, but it is not clear when the product name ‘Ipswich’ was adopted.  It may have been soon after June 2013 when manufacture began to the new European standard (introduced in 2011).  We do not know why ‘Ipswich’ was chosen as a brand name by an Italian company, but it may have been because Ipswich had already become a highly regarded, quality product name in footwear, and as a locality the name cannot be given trade protection.

The A.S.98 Ipswich Women’s Motorcycle Boot (see photo, right) is yet another product from Italy that has jumped on the “Ipswich footwear” bandwagon.  This brand was released in late 2017 and is described as “a mid calf boot with roguish flair, A.S.98 Ipswich features a full grain Italian leather upper with wrap style gaiter with two buckled straps accented with spiked studs, with a burnished toe, side zipper for easy off/on, leather lining, cushioned footbed and durable rubber outsole”. It comes in colours brown, green and smoke.

The manufacturer is Olip Italia SpA, based near Verona in Italy.  Most of its products are made in Bosnia.  The company was founded in 1972 by Piero Oliosi.  He and his sons continue the business which produces shoes, bags and accessories made of high quality handmade Italian leather.  The A.S.98 is one of their brand names. This was originally the Airstep brand created in 1998 for footwear.  In January 2o14 the brand name was changed to A.S.98 from the initials of ‘Air Step’ and the founding year of that label.  We have no idea why an Italian company should name a product after a foreign locality such as Ipswich.

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Ipswich Screw Removal System (formerly Ipswich Nail Extractor Kit)

The Coremus ® IM Nail Extractor System (also known as the Ipswich Nail Extractor) includes a screwdriver set for all types of screws.  However, it is not your normal mechanic’s tool kit, nor is it an instrument of torture.  It is a far more serious piece of equipment used by orthopaedic surgeons.  

We need to explain some technical terms first.  “IM” stands for “intramedullary”.  This is the medical term meaning the inside of a bone.  An “intramedullary rod”, also known as an “intramedullary nail” (IM Nail) or a “Küntscher nail” (after its inventor), is a metal rod forced into the medullary cavity of a bone to treat bone fractures in orthopedic surgery.  IM nails have been used since 1939 to treat fractures of long bones of the body.  Prior to that, treatment of such fractures was limited to traction or plaster, both of which required long periods of inactivity.  IM nails allowed earlier return to activity, often within weeks, especially useful for soldiers and athletes, since the nails share the load with the bone, rather than entirely supporting the bone.

The problem and reason for the name Ipswich Nail Extractor are best explained by Jeffrey Hallett, who was then consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Ipswich Hospital in Suffolk, England, in an interview given in December 2001:  “The Ipswich Extractor Kit is used to remove the metal ‘nails’ that are inserted inside fractured bones temporarily, the size of which can change depending on which hospital a patient is treated at.”  Mr Hallett said: “It is not too difficult to put the nails in - you just hammer them - but when you try to get them out it is not so easy.  Quite often we would hear about patients having an operation to remove a nail that has been put in by surgeons in a different part of the country or overseas, and the operation has had to stop because they had not got the right equipment.  There may be 20 different sizes of thread used in different hospitals around the world and in Britain, and what we have done is to make a set of sockets that can screw any of the nails out.”

Jeffrey Hallett, who has since retired, had been at Ipswich Hospital since 1983, and said that he had the idea for the kit in 1989 when he began working as a technical committee chairman for the British Standards Institute (BSI) and realised the effect using different sizes of nails sometimes had on patients.  He designed what has been described as “a revolutionary toolkit” to help orthopaedic surgeons, and convinced the orthopaedic implant manufacturer, Newsplint plc, to market it as the Ipswich Nail Extractor, named after his place of work.  Jeffrey Hallett has been recognised as a “pioneer in patient care” by the British Medical Association for his invention.

In 2012 Newsplint plc renamed this instrument kit as the Coremus ® IM Nail Extractor System, although it is usually referred to by its old name.  It consists of 34 re-usable dedicated extractor bolts.  These extractor bolts will remove in excess of 80 nails of various manufacturers’ designs, both old and new.  In addition there is a comprehensive range of other instruments associated with the safe removal of IM nails whose origins are not known.

Newsplint changed its name to Aquilant Orthopaedics in 2013 and, soon after, it seems the rights to the manufacture of the instrument kit were acquired by a new company called Echo Orthopaedics (established in November 2014).  In February 2022 Echo advised its customers that, because most of them still referred to the kit as “the Ipswich System”, Echo was reinstating the brand as the “Ipswich Screw Removal System”.  The new ‘Ipswich’ not only contains all the same instruments as the Coremus® IM Nail Extractor System, but has been upgraded and it now incorporates smaller driver sizes for foot, ankle and hand surgeries and additional damaged screw removal options. 

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Ipswich Eye Shadow

The brand name “Ipswich” for this cosmetic product, marketed by the company Youngevity, seems to be another case where North Americans associate “quality” and “artistic” with Ipswich, Massachusetts, as there does not seem to be any other link with the communities so named.  The company specialises in products made from mineral pigments and other natural ingredients, free from chemicals, dyes, preservatives and irritants.

Dr Joel Wallach established his practice in 1991 with the intention to help people “Live Younger Longer!”  In May 1997 he founded ‘American Longevity’, a network marketing company providing “unique products to health conscious customers”.  In 2006 this company changed its name to ‘Youngevity’.  The company “is known for its comprehensive ‘Anti-Ageing’ product line and emphasis on quality products and company integrity” (according to the ‘credits’ it gets).

At this point we have to warn our readers that the founder of this company is controversial and has been challenged in the claims that he has made.  In 1982, he obtained a Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine (now the National University of Natural Medicine) in Portland, Oregon.  “Alternative medicine” websites like to claim that Dr Wallach was a Nobel Prize nominee.  What they do not mention is that he was nominated by the “Association of Eclectic Physicians”, a non-scientific naturopathic group not recognised as an accredited organisation by the Nobel Prize committee.

 “Naturopathy is a form of alternative medicine.  A wide array of pseudo-scientific practices branded as ‘natural’, ‘non-invasive’, or promoting ‘self-healing’ are employed by its practitioners.  Naturopathy is considered by the mainstream medical profession to be ineffective and harmful, raising ethical issues about its practice.  Naturopaths have repeatedly been denounced and accused of being charlatans and practising quackery.  Their practices are illegal in two US states and tightly regulated in many others.  Some states allow naturopaths to perform minor surgery or even prescribe drugs, and some jurisdictions allow such practitioners to call themselves doctors.  The lack of accreditation and scientific medical training means they lack the competency of true medical doctors.  Wallach believes that people can live more than one hundred years if they take colloidal mineral supplements, including colloidal silver.  His ideas have been described by medical experts as false, misleading and dangerous to the public” (extract from article on “Naturopathy” in Wikipedia). 

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The Gippeswyk Engine

In 1876 E. R. and F. Turner, an engineering company in Ipswich, Suffolk, introduced a vertical steam engine called the Gippeswyk (after the early name for Ipswich) at the Royal Agricultural Show, Birmingham, available in sizes from 2 to 8 NHP, the smallest having a cylinder of 4½ bore x 7½ stroke.  By setting it on its side in 1878 it became a horizontal engine available in sizes from 2 to 16 NHP, the largest having a 13 bore x 15 stroke (NHP = nominal horse power).  By the turn of the century the Gippeswyk engine was superseded by the John Bull series.  Illustrations taken from promotional brochures are shown right and left. 

The business was founded in 1837 by Mr Walton Turner and two partners under the name of Bond, Turner & Hurwood.  Walton Turner died in 1847 and his son, Edward Rush Turner, took over his father’s interest, renaming the firm Edward Turner, Rush & Co.  He was joined later by his brother, Frederick Turner, and when the other partners dropped out, the firm’s name was changed again to E. R. & F. Turner.  It became a limited company in 1897.  The site of the original works was in Foundry Lane off College Street in Ipswich.  The company had built its first steam engine by 1842 which was used to power machinery in its factory.  At the turn of the 20th century, E. R. & F. Turner began producing flour mills before diversifying into flaking mills, particularly for the breakfast cereal industry from the early 1920s.  After 1912 no further engines were made and the Company concentrated on machinery for the flour milling industry.  Still active in Ipswich to this day, after various acquisitions the business is now known as Christy Turner Ltd, and is located at Miracle Mill along Knightsdale Road in Ipswich. 

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The Gyppeswyk Fountain Pen

Writing instruments designed to carry their own supply of ink had existed in principle since the 17th century.  The oldest surviving fountain pen was designed by a Frenchmen named M. Bion and dated 1702.  However, progress in developing a reliable pen was slow until the mid-19th century.  The modern metal pen nib was invented in 1828, but it was not until 1884 that the American Lewis Waterman patented the first practical fountain pen that could be mass-produced.

Frank Jarvis and Thomas Garner worked for the De La Rue Company, the leading British fountain pen manufacturer at the turn of the 19th century.  Drawing on the experience they had gained at De La Rue, the two started their own business in 1905 at 13 Paternoster Row, London EC1, next to St Paul’s Cathedral.  They called the company “Conway Stewart”.  It is believed that the name derives from a popular vaudeville act of the day.  “Conway and Stewart” were a comedy double act who appeared at Collins Music Hall in Islington.

Jarvis and Garner had identified a market niche for attractive and reliable writing instruments at an affordable price.  They had a single aim to produce elegant, beautiful, yet functional writing instruments.  Each Conway Stewart fountain pen was made in England by hand, using traditional techniques, combining British craftsmanship and using only the highest quality materials, including hallmarked solid 18ct gold and sterling silver.

The 1920s saw a rapid development of the Conway Stewart product line.  Pens of several different types of filling mechanisms, materials and sizes were offered for sale.  In addition, the company sought out a market where a product line was made especially for a specific company.  The Gyppeswyk Fountain Pen was made for W.S. Cowell Ltd of Ipswich, England, between 1932 and 1942.  The length of this pen was 12.8 cm; the clip and thin lollipop lever were nickel and both had the intertwined CS logo.  The nib was guaranteed 14ct.  The barrel was marked “GYPPESWYK” with the name of the company below.

The business model proved successful for Conway Stewart and its market share increased at the expense of other established manufacturers.  The years after World War II proved difficult because of shortages of materials, but the company managed to survive by continuing to offer good reliable pens at reasonable prices.  However, by the 1960s, refinements in ballpoint pen production gradually ensured its dominance over the fountain pen for casual use.  Nibs, which had been 14ct gold until this time, were generally replaced by stainless steel.  The company tried to compete by introducing ball point pens to its range, but its financial health continued to deteriorate and the original company was wound-up in 1975.  The name was revived in 1998 and it caters for the high-end of the writing instrument market, with a range characterised by the use of precious metals, and the production of limited edition fountain pens.

Today the fountain pen is seen as a collectible item or a status symbol, rather than an everyday writing tool.  A Gyppeswyk fountain pen in good condition can fetch a high price at auctions because of its rarity value.

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Ipswich (Motorcycle)

This is a Belgian historical brand of motorcycle.  These machines were produced around 1904 by Eric Béranger on Rue Botanique in Brussels.  A group of enthusiasts found this brand in the “Livre d'Or de l'Automobile et de la Motocyclette” which was published in 1951 by the Royal Motor Union.  The brand name was then given as “Swipsch” with a date of manufacture 1900.  It was later discovered that this was a typographical error.  The Australian connoisseur of classic motorcycles, Howard Burrows, provided an image of an advertisement from E. Béranger, where the brand “Ipswich” was mentioned.  This was an advertisement in a British magazine in 1906, written in English and aimed at finding dealers.  It had the then conventional motorcycle 2½ and 3½ stroke single-cylinder engines of unknown origin.  The engine was mounted in a bicycle frame that was open at the bottom where the motor was placed.  Advertising in the UK was not uncommon for Belgian and French brands since the British motorcycle industry had yet to develop.
We acknowledge Dutch Wikipedia as the source of this information. If anyone can provide further details please email

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Ipswitch – Trademark

Ipswich spelt with a ‘t’ is the registered trademark owned by Atlantic Capes Fisheries, Inc. of Cape May, New Jersey.  This company is a leading harvester and supplier of scallops and other seafoods from the North and Mid-Atlantic.
In addition to the harvesting, processing and marketing of scallops, the company also harvests clams, squid, mackerel and other Mid-Atlantic species.

As can be seen by the trademark (left), it is a play on the pronunciation of Ipswich in that a witch is seen escaping from a clam.  It was first used by the Soffron Brothers Clam Co of Ipswich, Massachusetts, in 1969.  Thomas Soffron (1907–2004) was an immigrant from Greece who, with his three younger brothers, originally worked in the mills of the town.  In 1932 they started digging clams along the shoreline for the local market.  They later ventured further offshore where they were able to dredge the hard-shelled clams from the ocean bottom since these could be harvested in larger quantities, and they travelled better when frozen than did the soft- shelled coastal variety (See Ipswich Clams above).

The family also operated a farm and a restaurant.  Thomas Soffron disliked the taste of the clam’s belly and, as a consequence, he created the “fried clam strip” or “tendersweet clam” which was a battered and fried sliced clam strip made from the ‘foot’ of hard-shelled sea clams, and excludes the clam’s belly.  This soon caught on and in 1938 the brothers established the Soffron Brothers Clam Company, acquiring their Brown Square property in 1940 where they built a seafood processing factory.  They arranged an exclusive deal to provide their clam strips to the Howard Johnson’s restaurant chain which were sold under the trade name ‘Tender-sweet Fried Clams’.  Eventually, Soffron Brothers operated seven processing plants from Maryland to Nova Scotia.  In 1971 the Atlantic Capes Fisheries, Inc. bought the firm and continues to use the Ipswitch trademark.

Soffron Brothers continued in business as a separate company to 1998 when it closed down and its plant in Brown Square became vacant.  In 2008 the building and land were sold to Mercury Brewing, and that company’s new Ipswich Ale Brewery was constructed on the site (see Beers Named ‘Ipswich’, above).

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Ipswich Cottage – A Model Train Building

This is the name given to what is described as a “miner worker’s house” in Australia (see photograph, left).  It is one of the artifacts that enthusiasts can place by a model railway to make it look realistic.  The model is made from wood weatherboard and is pre-painted.  The building is 72mm long and 80mm wide.  It comes in a building kit and has to be assembled.  The kits come with step by step building instructions.  The manufacturer states that these are scale model replicas for real Australian buildings affiliated with the train industry or buildings found in the nearby township.  Given its name, we presume that there is (or was) such a building in close proximity to the railway at Ipswich, Queensland.  The manufacturer is Walker Models (previously known as “Model Train Buildings” or “MTB”, but this used to be confused with the accepted acronym for “mountain bike”).  This seems to be an individual who describes himself as a graphic designer based in Rosemount, Queensland, on the Sunshine Coast just north of Brisbane and Ipswich.

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Ipswich Weekender & Ipswich Day Pack

The name was inspired by fishing trips on leaving Ipswich Bay in Massachusetts with a bag packed for a long weekend on the water, and enough supplies to last from Nantucket Sound up to Maine and back.  The Ipswich Weekender (see right) is built with heavy-duty waxed canvas and sturdy bridle leather.  With an abrasion resistant body and rustproof antique brass hardware, this travelling bag is durable and long-lasting.  It has an adjustable leather shoulder strap and comes in two colours, navy and grey.  Its signature feature is the “Sailor Block stripe” at one end.


In 2016 the Ipswich Day Pack was launched.  A versatile backpack (with the “Sailor Block stripe”) which complements the Weekender by being able to fit in a laptop, camera, water bottle, snacks and other necessities for the ramble in the woods or a shopping expedition in the town after you have arrived with the Weekender (see left).

 These products come from Long Wharf Supply Co. located in Back Bay, Boston.  The company was founded in 2015 by Mike Lamagna of Andover, Ma. specialising in maritime-related accessories.

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adidas Ipswich Watch

Adidas AG is a German multinational corporation, based in Herzogenaurach, Bavaria, that designs and manufactures sports shoes, clothing and accessories.  It is the largest sportswear manufacturer in Europe, and the second largest in the world.  Adidas and sports go hand in hand, even though the brand has a stronger lifestyle presence today, and produces goods that are now only loosely connected with sports.  In 2015 it launched its “Ipswich Watch” which comes in five major colours.  The ‘adidas Men’s Black Ipswich Watch’ (left) is the brand leader but the multi-coloured dials of the others are also very popular, such as the ‘adidas Men’s Grey Ipswich Watch’ (also called the ‘adidas Unisex Ipswich Watch’) - see right.  All the watches have in the centre the famous adidas logo of a trefoil and three parallel bars.  The brand name is always uncapitalised and is stylised with a lower case ‘a’.

So why does a German company name its product Ipswich?  Quite simply because of its long association with Ipswich Town Football Club.  From 1978 to 1989 the football club had a deal with Adidas AG to supply its football kit.  This coincided with the most successful period of the club’s history when it won the 1978 FA Cup and 1981 UEFA Cup.  In April 2014 Ipswich Town entered a four-year kit deal again with the sportswear giant.  Their famous three white stripes always adorn the Ipswich Town kit in one place or another: on the shoulders or at the top of the socks.

Adolf “Adi” Dassler began producing his own sports shoes for track and field in his mother’s kitchen in Herzogenaurach after his return from World War I, and with his older brother, Rudolph, in 1924 founded the Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik which became one of the leading athletic shoe manufacturers.  The firm successfully marketed its sports shoes to athletes at the Berlin 1936 Summer Olympics, which helped cement their good reputation.

Following a family feud the brothers became estranged in 1948, and Rudolf set up his own company in the same town.  Rudolf Dassler originally registered the newly established com
pany as Ruda from “Ru” in Rudolf and “Da” in Dassler.  A few months later that year, he changed its name to Puma.  After this happened, ‘Adi’ Dassler formed Adidas, the name being derived the same way from the first three letters of his first name and surname, registered in August 1949.  The two firms became rivals, both based in Herzogenaurach.  When Adidas started to expand its business in the 1960s, it needed a logo and the trefoil, representing ‘diversity’ was adopted.  The three stripes were originally put on their sneakers to add stability, not for style (American English “sneakers” are known as “trainers” in British English or by the older name of “plimsolls”).  The stripes or bars were soon added to the logo, and this was first displayed at the 1972 Munich Olympics (right).

In June 2022 Ipswich Town ended their association with Adidas and it is presumed that this will eventually mean the end of the ‘Ipswich Watch’.

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Flora - Introductory Note

In the horticultural world a “variety” is a naturally occurring plant which is different from others within a species, and a “cultivar” is the same, except that it has been ‘man made’.  However, it is common for gardening outlets to refer to them all as “varieties”, and we have adopted this practice, although all of the following, except the first two (Ipswich Daisy and Ipswich Wonga Wonga Vine), are actually cultivars.  Where we have been unable to find an image of the actual plant, we have used an image of a similar variety.

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Ipswich Daisy (Olearia nernstii)

Olearia is a genus of flowering plants belonging to the family Asteraceae (commonly referred to as the aster, daisy, or sunflower family).  There are about 130 different species within the genus found mostly in Australia, New Guinea and New Zealand.  The genus includes herbaceous plants and evergreen shrubs with large daisylike flowers.

Olearia nernstii, which is better known by its common name of the “Ipswich Daisy”, is a shrub two metres high found in forest or open woodland, and is widespread in the eastern coastal areas of Queensland and New South Wales from Sydney to Brisbane.  It has alternate toothed or prickly leaves which has given rise to its other common name in the Sydney area of “Jagged Daisy-bush” (see photograph, right).                                                                                                                                                                                   Photo: Robert Whyte

The name Ipswich Daisy was given to this plant by 1853 because it reminded the people around Ipswich, Queensland, of the daisies that they were familiar with back in Britain.  At that time it was noted by the German botanist Ferdinand von Mueller, and he brought it to the notice of the scientific world in 1865 when he gave it the scientific name of Olearia nernstii.  Ferdinand von Mueller (1825-1896) was born in Rostock and emigrated to Australia in 1847, where he was appointed government botanist for the colony of Victoria.  He discovered and named many Australian plants.  The English botanist George Bentham described the plant properly for valid acceptance by the scientific community in his “Flora australiensis” (1867).  

The name Olearia was applied to this genus in 1802 by the German botanist Christia Moench, when plants from Australasia were becoming known to Europe.  He named the genus after Johann Gottfried Ölschläger, a 17th century Lutheran theologian and horticulturalist, whose Latinised name was “Olearius”, as all scientific work was then written in Latin.  The species name of “nernstii” was given by von Mueller in recognition of his compatriot botanist J. Nernst, the discoverer of the Mount Blackwood Holly, who lived in Ipswich, Queensland.

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Ipswich Wonga Wonga Vine (Pandorea floribunda)

The “Ipswich Wonga Wonga Vine” and the “Yellow-flowered Wonga Wonga Vine” are names commonly given to the Pandorea floribunda plant.  (The second “Wonga” is often omitted, but in the aboriginal language the word is repeated.)  “Wonga” is a common aboriginal word with several meanings, one of which is simply “vine”.
The Ipswich Wonga Wonga Vine is a fast-growing Australian native woody, climbing plant.  It can be found in Australia from no
rth-eastern New South Wales to south-eastern Queensland growing vigorously over tall trees.  It is a large and vigorous vine growing right to the top of the tree canopy.  Their height is only limited by the height of the supporting host tree.  The stems of these large vines can measure up to 20 cm in diameter.  It has pale yellow, tubular flowers growing in clusters from 4 to 40 cm long on the ends of the stems.  The vine has a profusion of flowers in early spring, and is a dense evergreen creeper all year round.  It has a brief flowering time for two to three weeks in spring (between early August and October depending on its location).  It grows on the margins of the rainforest, but is also widespread outside the rainforest and can be found in bushland areas.

Pandorea floribunda in the Fort Bushland Reserve, Oxley, Brisbane

Allan Cunningham (1791–1839), the English botanist and explorer, collected the first specimen in 1828 when he was exploring the Moreton Bay, Brisbane and Bremer rivers area, where Ipswich is now located.  The Swiss botanist Augustin Pyramus de Candolle published a description of the plant and gave it the scientific name of Tecoma floribunda in 1838.  It was recognised as a Wonga Wonga Vine, but it was not known if it was a separate species.  This was because it is very difficult to differentiate between this species and others from the appearance of the stem, and although the leaves are very different they were difficult to see in the tops of the trees.  The above scientific name was thus just considered another synonym given to the Wonga Wonga Vine.  The latter had first been described by the English botanist Henry Charles Andrews in 1800 as Bignonia pandorana in the family Bignoniaceae.   It was also named Tecoma australis by the Scottish botanist Robert Brown in 1810.  Eventually all these names were ruled invalid and the current scientific name of Pandorea pandorana was finally decided upon in 1927 when the Dutch botanist Cornelis van Steenis coined the name.

In 1987 the Australian botanist Keith Williams in the 3rd Volume of his “Native Plants of Queensland” referred to the Wonga Wonga Vine in the Ipswich area as “Pandorea sp. (Ipswich)”.  This is what is known as a cytoform – an entity of which the exact nature is still undetermined.  To emphasise that it is not yet regarded as a separate species, the cytoform name is not italicised and the first letter is capitalised.  This gave rise to its common name of the “Ipswich Wonga Wonga Vine” as it was now accepted as something different from the others.  (See also Ipswich as a Scientific Name page)
In the scientific literature it remained “an undescribed species that is very similar to Pandorea pandorana”, until 2008 when Dr Gordon Guymer, today the Director of the Queensland Herbarium, was able to show that it was a separate species (Austrobaileya 18 Dec 2008).  It was given the scientific name  Pandorea floribunda.  The genus name Pandorea is derived from Greek mythology, because the tightly packed seed pod of this vine genus recalls the myth of “Pandora’s box”.  (She was the first woman on Earth, and was given a gift of a beautiful jar by the gods, with instructions not to open it under any circumstances.  Impelled by her curiosity, Pandora opened it and all evil contained therein escaped and spread over the earth.)  Floribunda means “profusely flowering” and, as is customary in scientific circles, this species suffix is taken from the name given to it by the first person to describe it scientifically in 1838.

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Ipswich Pink, Ipswich Crimson & Ipswich Mulberry – Varieties of Dianthus plumarius

Dianthus is a genus of about 300 species of flowering plants in the family Caryophyllaceae, native mainly to Europe and Asia. Common names include carnation (D. caryophyllus), pinks (D. plumarius) and sweet william (D. barbatus).  The name Dianthus was cited by the Greek botanist Theophrastus in the 4th century BC; it takes its name from the Greek words dios (‘god’) and anthos (‘flower’).  The first recorded modern use of this scientific name was in 1849.  The earliest common name for the various plants of the genus Dianthus was “pinks”. This was not because of the colour of the petals but because of their jagged edge (see photograph). In the 13th century, “to pink” a piece of cloth or leather was to cut or punch a hole in a zigzag manner along the edge.  Although the word is now archaic, this meaning is still preserved today in “pinking shears” which are scissors with a serrated blade, used to cut a zigzag edge in fabric. “Pinks” as a flower is in the written record from 1566.  The colour pink is actually named after the flower since, as a colour, it is not recorded before 1669.

An individual Dianthus plumarius ‘Ipswich Pink’ clearly showing the jagged edge

Dianthus species have been extensively bred and hybridised to produce many thousands of cultivars for garden use, in all shades of white, pink, yellow and red, with a huge variety of flower shapes and markings.  D. plumarius, the parent of all pinks, has been cultivated in Britain since 1560.  ‘Plumarius’ means ‘feathery’ pertaining to the shape of the petals.  Its variability of colour led to the introduction of a seed-raised strain which were called ‘Ipswich Pinks’ in the first half of the twentieth century by Jose
ph Sangster, breeder and proprietor from 1913 to 1952 of the Ipswich, England, based seed and plant merchants Thompson & Morgan.

Dianthus ‘Ipswich Pinks’ are considered to be the traditional English-style “pinks”.  They are evergreen hardy perennials and grow to a height of around 9 inches and can spread over an area of up to 30 inches. Tightly knit masses of single, fragrant flowers cover the foliage mound in spring until late summer in a mixture of colours ranging from red to pink to white.  The fragrant one-inch blooms often have a dark rose-red centre, or dark stripes or markings on the petals.  The flowers are rotate shaped with scalloped edges and have a pleasant clove scented smell.  It has a green stem and leaves.  They are ideal for borders, rockeries and containers.

        Dianthus plumarius  Ipswich Pinks Mixed

Thompson & Morgan were established in 1855.  It began with a baker’s son, William Thompson, who maintained a small garden behind the bakery in Tavern Street, Ipswich.  From the back garden he moved to a nursery at the edge of Ipswich.  William Thompson produced his first seed catalogue in 1855.  He entered into partnership with John Morgan, a businessman who was able to offer capital resources that enabled the expansion of the business into three nurseries.
Thompson specialised in growing rare and unusual plants, seeds of which were sent to him from many overseas countries.  His efforts made him one of the most distinguished plantsmen of his day and he was honoured by the Royal Horticultural Society with the Victorian Medal of Honour in 1896.  He died in 1903 at the age of 80 but he had lived to see Thompson & Morgan become one of the country’s largest seed firms with a reputation for introducing more species and varieties to the gardening public than any other seed company.  Joseph Sangster succeeded William Thompson as the leading plantsman at Thompson & Morgan, and in 1913 he became a partner in the business, and took over the company completely when, in 1921, John Morgan died.  Today Thompson & Morgan has become one of the UK’s largest mail order Seed and Plant companies, and also exports around the world.  

In 1929 another variety named Dianthus ‘Ipswich Crimson’ was also being advertised in Thompson & Morgan’s catalogue. It
is described as a “grand new variety” with “deep crimson flowers”.  The only reference to this variety still being in existence today comes from the Sussex Country Gardener website, which lists the Dianthus ‘Ipswich Crimson’ as a herbaceous perennial with red double flowers and pale serrated foliage, which thrives on well drained chalk soils.

Dianthus ‘Ipswich Mulberry’ is yet another cultivar listed, but no further details are given. 

                                                                                                                                                                                  Dianthus ‘Crimson Treasure’

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Gem of Ipswich & Pride of Ipswich – Varieties of Fuchsia

The first Fuchsia (Fuchsia triphylla) discovered by a European was on the Caribbean island of Hispaniola in about 1696-1697 by the French botanist Charles Plumier.  He named the new genus after the renowned German botanist Leonhart Fuchs, and gave the first description of the plant in 1703.  It was introduced to Britain in 1788.  The first attempts to raise hybrids began in 1825, but it was not until 1832 that English growers were really able to raise new varieties of this plant.

All but one Fuchsia are shrubs; they belong to the family Onagraceae which is characterised by flowers with usually four sepals and petals.  Fuchsia flowers are very decorative and they have a pendulous “teardrop” shape.  They have four long, slender sepals and four shorter, broader petals; in many species the sepals and petals are in bright contrasting colours that attract the hummingbirds which pollinate them, but the colours can vary and hybrids have been raised in various combinations.  There are currently almost 110 recognised species of Fuchsia.  The vast majority are native to South America, but with a few occurring north through Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean.  The number of varieties that have been raised is in excess of 11,000.   

The Fuchsia ‘Gem of Ipswich’ was bred by F. Stokes in 1847 in Great Britain.  We can find no record of this breeder, but presume he must have been located in the vicinity of Ipswich, Suffolk.  The flower catalogues of the day describe it as “dark coral red tubes and sepals, purple coloured corolla”. Its seeds were still being offered for sale in 1881 (John Saul’s Catalogue of Plants, February 1881 USA). 

The Fuchsia ‘Pride of Ipswich’ is an upright variety that has dark pink sepals and a lavender corolla (the central petals).  It was bred by Edwin Goulding in 2000, and was named after the Ipswich in Suffolk, England, near to his home.  Edwin Goulding is a nurseryman and fuchsia hybridist, and has been, at various times, show manager and editor for the British Fuchsia Society and president of the East Anglian Fuchsia Fellowship.  He has written extensively for magazines and lives in East Anglia, England.  The Fuchsia ‘Pride of Ipswich’ has been on the Royal Horticultural Society database since 2005.

The same name ‘Pride of Ipswich’ has been applied to a hybrid cultivar of the genus Neoregelia, but the name here refers to the Ipswich in Queensland, Australia (see below)


Upright Fuchsia ‘Little Beauty’ – sepals bright red, corolla lavender blue.  

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Ipswich Beauty – A Variety of both Dalhia & Gaillardia

The name ‘Ipswich Beauty’ (also named as the ‘Beauty of Ipswich’) was first used in 1835 for a variety of dahlia, a genus of the Compositae (Asteraceae) family.  It was described as “white with rosy pink edge” by the ‘Floricultural Cabinet and Florist’s Magazine’ (London, 1835), and was grown by John Harris of Upwey in Dorset who advertised it in the ‘Annual Dahlia Register, 1836’.  It was exhibited at shows over the next few years, but then seems to have lost popularity.  It is no longer bred.    

The largest family of flowering plants, the Compositae (Asteraceae), comprises about 1,100 genera and more than 20,000 species.  The second plant bearing the name ‘Ipswich Beauty’ also belongs to this family, and is a member of the Gaillardia genus.  This is an annual and perennial wildflower, native to northern and western North America, where it grows in many habitats.  It is drought-tolerant and will grow under very harsh and dry conditions, forming mounds 8 to 18 inches high.  The single or double flowers resemble daisies and grow singly on wiry stems.  They are 2 to 3 inches across.  It is commonly called the blanket flower in reference to the resemblance of its rich and warm flower colours to the blankets woven by Native Americans.  The genus Gaillardia was recorded in 1788 by French botanist Auguste de Bondaroy and was named after Antoine René Gaillard de Charentonneau, an 18th century French magistrate and patron of botany.  This plant was introduced into Britain in 1812 after it became better known to the English-speaking world from descriptions and collections made by Lewis and Clark during their famous expedition across North America from 1804 to 1806.

All garden varieties originate from Gaillardia aristata, a beautiful daisy like flower with an orange-red centre and petals that comprise a great range of colour from pale primrose, bright yellow to orange, and various shades of crimson-red to burgundy, all flowering from June to October.  Gaillardia x grandiflora is the accepted name of a hybrid species in the genus Gaillardia that was bred in 1857 by Louis van Houtte (1810-1876), the notable Belgian horticulturist, at his nurseries in Ghent.  Gaillardia aristata with Gaillardia pulchella is the parent of Gaillardia x grandiflora from which several cultivars have been created.  One of these is ‘Ipswich Beauty’.  This variety grows up to 3 feet and has large crimson with deep yellow edged petals.  It is recognised as an “old English variety” that was well established before the turn of the 19th century.  It is not known whether its name is related to that of the dahlia variety mentioned beforehand, nor what relationship either flower had to the town of Ipswich.


                                                                                                                                   Antique Print (pre-1900) showing Gaillardia ‘Ipswich Beauty’ at bottom 

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Ipswich Gem – A Variety of both Rosa & Kniphofia

The name ‘Ipswich Gem’ was first used for a rose bred by Robert Ward who lived at Ipswich, England.  It was advertised in ‘Curtis

s Botanical Magazine’ in 1867; this is the longest running botanical magazine dating from 1787.  It is described as a hybrid perpetual with a large double bloom: “brilliant rosy carmine; large and very double petals, smooth and beautifully disposed, with a fine outline; very distinct in growth and foliage”.  It was advertised widely for a few years, but the lineage has subsequently been lost.  

Kniphofia ‘Ipswich Gem’ was bred in 1934 by Frances Perry of Perry’s Hardy Plant Farm, Enfield, England.  It is described as between 32 to 36 ins. tall, “a pretty shade of rich canary-yellow with bold spikes”.  Frances Mary Perry MBE VMH (1907–93) was a botanist, writer and broadcaster, born Frances Everett in Enfield, Middlesex, where she lived most of her life at Bulls Cross.  Her interest in plants took her to Swanley Horticultural College (now Wye College, part of the University of London), and in 1927 she was employed by Amos Perry, a local plant nurseryman.  She married Perry’s son Gerald (d.1964) an expert on ferns and water plants.  Frances Perry soon became a recognised expert on hardy perennials and is known for her writings about them.

Kniphofia is a genus of flowering plants in the family Xanthorrhoeaceae, subfamily Asphodeloideae.  There are 70 species of Kniphofia that are native to Africa of which 47 are found in the eastern areas of South Africa.  They are grown in temperate conditions around the world.  All plants produce dense, erect spikes of upright, brightly coloured flowers well above the foliage.  Kniphofia are commonly called red-hot pokers, in reference to their upright silhouette and reddish colouring, which gets more intense towards the tip.  However, the small, tubular flowers are produced in shades that range from red, orange, yellow to lime green and cream, and are often bicoloured, depending on the species; numerous cultivars and hybrids have been developed from species originating in South Africa.    

The Kniphofia genus was name
d in 1794 by botanist Conrad Moench (1745–1805) after Johann Hieronymus Kniphof (d.1763), another German botanist.  In 1804, when introduced to Britain, it was known as Tritoma (from the seed capsule splitting into three valves), and it was not until 1854 that ‘Curtiss Botanical Magazine’ used the name Kniphofia.  It was also mistakenly thought to be a member of the Liliaceae or lily family, hence another alternative name for this plant is that of the torch lily.

                              Kniphofia Tawny King 

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Ipswich Town – Variety of Pelargonium

‘Ipswich Town’ is a variety of the Pelargonium genus, better known as geraniums.  It was bred as a miniature geranium by the late Ray Bidwell of Suffolk in 1976 who named many of his introductions after Suffolk villages; this one seems to have been named after his favourite football team.  (A miniature geranium is one that is very unlikely to exceed 13cm (5in) in height; their leaves may be tiny, but their flowers can be quite large and striking.)  

Pelargonium is a genus of flowering plants which includes about 200 species of perennials, succulents, and shrubs, commonly known as geraniums (in the United States better known as storksbills because the seed head looks like a stork’s beak).  Pelargonium species are evergreen perennials indigenous to Southern Africa, and are drought and heat tolerant, but can survive only minor frosts.  They are extremely popular garden plants, grown as bedding plants in temperate regions.  The first species of Pelargonium known was a native of South Africa.  It was probably brought to the Netherlands before 1600 on ships which stopped at the Cape of Good Hope.  In 1631 the plant was introduced to England.  It was named Pelargonium by Johannes Burman in 1738 from the Greek word for “stork”.  

Confusingly, Geranium is the correct
botanical name of a separate genus of related plants often called cranesbills or hardy geraniums.  Both genera belong to the family Geraniaceae.  The hardy geranium is found throughout the temperate regions of the world, but mostly in the eastern part of the Mediterranean hence the name is derived from the Greek word which means “crane” because it bears a fruit similar in shape to the bill of a crane.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Dwarf Pelargonium 'Claydon' 

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Ipswich Gold, Pride of Ipswich & Little Ipswich - Neoregelia Hybrids

‘Ipswich Gold’, ‘Pride of Ipswich’ and ‘Little Ipswich’ are three hybrid cultivars of the genus Neoregelia, created in 2000 and 2001 by Alan Freeman, Queensland, and named after his home town.  The late Alan Freeman started hybridising and naming his plants in 1982.  He is said to have created over 10,000 hybrids.  It was not until he came to an arrangement with Keith Golinski of Palmwoods in Queensland that these became commercially available.  After some few years of pricking out the seedlings, Keith Golinski was eventually ready to release them under the name of ‘Alan Freeman’ from his company, the Bromeliads of Australia, better known as the “Bromagic Nursery”.  This is at Palmwoods on the Sunshine Coast, 90 km (55 miles) north of Brisbane and Ipswich, Queensland. 

Neoregelia is a genus of the family Bromeliaceae, subfamily Bromelioideae. The genus is named after Eduard August von Regel (1815-1892), who was director of St. Petersburg Botanic Gardens in Russia. There are 112 species of Neoregelia, with more than 5,000 registered cultivars (a variety of a plant that has been created intentionally through cultivation). Most species have broad, flat leaves, many of which are brightly coloured, & some show striping or banding.

The Bromeliaceae, commonly known as the bromeliads, is a family of flowering plants native mainly to the tropics & sub-tropics of the Americas. There are around 3,170 species. The bromeliads include such diverse species as Spanish moss, pineapple, & a large number of desert dwelling succulents.



                              Ipswich Gold                                                            Little Ipswich                                                                          Pride of Ipswich

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Ipswich Centenary – Variety of Hibiscus

Launched in 2004, to commemorate the centenary of Ipswich, Queensland becoming a city, the Ipswich Centenary is a hybrid variety of hibiscus. Grown & hybridized by Alfred T Westerman, & registered with the Australian Hibiscus Society Inc. in January 2007, the Ipswich Centenary is a dense bush that grows to a height of three to four feet, with a large flat orange/apricot flower, around eight inches in diameter, of the bloom type known as a ‘single cartwheel’. It is a hybrid of the Tarentella & Tamibon varieties.

There are around 300 species of hibiscus, which is a genus in the malvaceae or mallow family of flowering plants. They are native to warm-temperate, subtropical & tropical regions of the world. The genus includes both annual & perennial herbaceous plants, as well as woody shrubs & small trees.

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Ipswich – Variety of Hemerocallis

Hemerocallis ‘Ipswich’ was registered by the Russell Gardens Nursery, Pennsylvania, in 1949.  It grows to a height of 36 ins (91 cm) and is a dark red flower with a violet centre.

Daylily is the common name of a plant in the genus Hemerocallis.  The name Hemerocallis comes from the Greek words (hemera = day) and (kalos = beautiful).  The scientific and common name both allude to the fact that the flowers typically last no more than 24 hours.  The flowers of most species open in early morning and wither during the following night, possibly replaced by another one on the same stalk the next day.  Hemerocallis is now placed in the family Xanthorrhoeaceae, subfamily Hemerocallidoideae, when formerly it was part of the Liliaceae family which includes true lilies.

Originally from the orient, daylilies have been cultivated for over 4,000 years.  They were originally introduced to Europe not as an ornamental plant but as a culinary and medicinal herb.  The flowers and buds of old-fashioned varieties are still used today to make a tasty and colourful addition to salads.  These bright, exotic flowers are produced in such profusion that it is not a drawback that the flower only lasts a day since another plant will be in bloom.  It means the plants always retain a freshness, as the flowers never hang fading and waning on the plant.  They range in colour from white through yellows and orange to the deepest, richest reds.  They flower for such a long period of the summer that they remain a constant feature while other flowers appear and disappear around them.

Daylily cultivar flowers are highly diverse in colour and form, as a result of hybridization efforts of gardening enthusiasts and professional horticulturalists. There are now over 60,000 registered cultivars.  Daylily breeding has been a specialty in the United States, where daylily heat- and drought-resistance has made them garden standbys since the 1950s.

The common Tawny Daylily (h. fulva) found along the roadsides around New Ipswich NH.

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Ipswich – Variety of Dahlia

The background to the Dahlia genus is given in the Fauna & Flora section on the Suffolk Misc. page of

The Dahlia ‘Ipswich’ is recorded in the World Directory of Dahlias as being introduced by 1961. It is noted as a medium cactus dahlia type, 6 to 8ins. in diameter, pink in colour.  No other information is provided.  

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City of Ipswich – F-111C Tactical Strike Aircraft

Pictured left is the F-111C tactical strike jet named City of Ipswich (ADF serial number A8-144), which was stationed at RAAF Base Amberley in Ipswich, Queensland from 1973 until 2010. (see also Amberley in the Ipswich Suburbs & Localities section of the Ipswich, Queensland page)

The F-111 was a twin-engine swing-wing aircraft, which could take off and land at relatively low speeds with the wings swept forward, then fly at more than twice the speed of sound with its wings tucked back. It could fly close to the ground at supersonic speeds, as well as being capable of  reaching altitudes of over 60,000 ft. It was capable of carrying nuclear, as well as conventional weapons.

Developed in the 1960s by the US defence contractor General Dynamics, it first entered service in 1967 with the United States Air Force. In 1973 the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) ordered the F-111C, which was an export version for Australia, combining the initially produced F-111A with longer F-111B wings and strengthened FB-111A landing gear.  They were operated by No. 6 Squadron based at RAAF Amberley for nearly four decades until 2010, when they were replaced by the  Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet on an interim basis, pending delivery of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, initially scheduled for 2012 but since delayed due to problems with the F-35 program.

In December 2010, the RAAF decommissioned its F-111s, 23 of which had their fuselages buried at Swanbank landfill site near Ipswich in November 2011, including A8-144 City of Ipswich.

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City of Ipswich – Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet Aircraft

The Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet is a twin-engine, carrier-based, multirole fighter aircraft. The tandem seat F/A-18F, together with its single seat variant, the F/A-18E, are larger & more advanced versions of the F/A-18 Hornet. The Super Hornet is equipped with General Electric F414 afterburning turbofan engines, has an internal 20 mm gun & can carry both air-to-air & air-to-surface missiles. Additional fuel can be carried in external tanks & the aircraft can be equipped with an aerial refueling system for the refueling of other aircraft.

Designed and initially produced by McDonnell Douglas, the Super Hornet first flew in 1995, with full production commencing in September 1997 after the merger of McDonnell Douglas & Boeing. The Super Hornet entered service with the US Navy in 1999, replacing the Grumman F-14 Tomcat.

In 2007 the Australian government signed a contract for twenty four F/A-18Fs, as an interim replacement for their aging F-111s. On 26th March 2010, the RAAF’s first five Super Hornets arrived at their home base, RAAF Amberley in Ipswich, Queensland. The first plane to touch down on Australian soil has been named City of Ipswich (A44-202), in honour of the relationship between the base & the city.

The first RAAF Super Hornets squadron became operational in December 2010. Australia is the only nation apart from the United States to operate the Super Hornet.

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The Ipewik River, Alaska, USA

We list this one because an alternative name sometimes given is the Ipswik River, (no doubt because of the similarity of spelling with Ipswich), and since the first ever descent of this river was made in the summer of 2013, some people may well associate it with “Ipswich”.

The Ipewik River is located at 68° 21’ N 165° 44’ W in the county of North Slope, Alaska.  It is considered to be North America’s most northwestern river.  It is a major tributary flowing from the north into the Kukpuk River.  The latter flows into the Chukchi Sea between Alaska and Siberia at the Marryat Inlet, where the settlement of Point Hope is situated.  These two rivers drain the Lisburne Peninsula, a little known area of Alaska. 

In the summer of 2013 an expedition was launched to descend the 135 mile long Ipewik River to collect data on the effects of climate change, and collate information on the wildlife and flora of the region.  The two canoeists, Tyler Williams and John Govi, were supported by a back-up team of two, and completed the journey in 10½ days over July and August 2013.  The total mileage travelled was 220 of which 185 were river miles, including tributaries of the Ipewik (see photograph).  Although there was plenty of evidence to indicate that indigenous peoples had used the river for hunting forays, this expedition was probably the first to travel from source to mouth.  Further photographs of the expedition can be seen on the expedition leader’s website: “The Lisburne Traverse”.  Sponsors were Kokatat, Osprey, Werner and Sazzi (drysuits, kayak and cold weather gear).   

The name is first recorded in 1890 as Ippewik.  This is derived from the Inuit word “ipivik” meaning “drowning-place” from “ipi” = to drown, and “vik” = place.  It is just coincidence that this place-name ending in both Inuit and Norse is similar, since “wic” as found in Ipswich also means “place”.

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The Ipewik Formation, Alaska, USA

The Ipewik River has also given its name to a stratigraphical unit found in the western part of the Brooks Range that runs west to east across northern Alaska.  It consists of about 100 metres of poorly exposed soft, dark, maroon and grey clay shale, mudstone, organic shale, coquinoid limestone and local elements of resistant fine-to medium-grained quartzose sandstone.  This Formation is made distinctive by the 2 metre thick reddish weathered “limestone coquinas containing highly compressed Buchia pelecypods”.  Coquinas are sedimentary rocks composed either wholly or almost entirely of the transported, abraded, and sorted fragments of the shells of molluscs, trilobites, brachiopods, or other  invertebrates, and the “Buchia pelecypods” are a genus of bivalve molluscs such as oysters, clams, mussels and scallops.  The Ipewik Formation is believed to have been deposited on a fairly inactive, shoaling marine shelf or lagoon in the Lower Cretaceous period, between 145 to 130 million years ago.  (“Ipewik Formation” article in the American Association of Petroleum Geologists Bulletin, 1976 by R. C. Crane & V. D. Wiggins).  

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Gipsvika, Svalbard, Norway

As you are probably aware, Gippeswick, or any one of its variant spellings, is the ancient name from which Ipswich is derived. As this section is devoted to places with names similar to Ipswich, we felt that a mention had to be made of Gipsvika, although the similarity of the names is nothing more than coincidence.  The name translates as gypsum bay from Norwegian gips = gypsum and vik = bay or inlet.

Gipsvika is a bay in Svalbard, the group of islands that make up the northernmost part of Norway within the Arctic Circle. Located at 78° 25’ 38.4” N 16° 32’ 20.5” E, Gipsvika is situated on the northern side of Sassenfjorden. To the north, the river Gipsdalselva flows down the 14 mile (22 km) long Gipsdalen (gypsum valley) & empties into Gipsvika. The bay is approximately 20 miles (30 km) from Longyearbyen, the capital of Svalbard.

Gypsum was first mined in this valley in 1909, & sporadically since then, hence the names given to the area in 1927 by the Svalbard commissioner, Kristian Sindballe.  Gipsvika was the only entrance into the valley & the place where the ships moored offshore.

Gipsvika is included in the Sassen-Bünsow Land National Park, opened in 2003. Relics from the early mining industry at the site have now been defined as a cultural heritage, and the valley has now become a tourist attraction.                              Photo by Jacob van der Weele 2007

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I Put Some Water In Charlie's Hat

This mnemonic was used to teach children (& adults) how to spell Ipswich.


ut (or Poured)

Does anyone know who invented this & when it was first used? Is this a British thing, or is it used in Australia & America too?  Are there other acronyms or mnemonics that you know of that are used to spell Ipswich? If anyone knows anything, please let me know by emailing

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Ipswich x 5

Photographer Charles Page’s “Ipswich x 5” is an exhibition of black & white photographs from five Ipswiches around the world; namely Suffolk, Queensland, Massachusetts, South Dakota & St. Elizabeth, Jamaica. It began at the Ipswich Art Gallery in Queensland on 13th February 2004 & ran for three months. A small pamphlet was produced for the event entitled “Ipswich x 5, A World Tour by Photographer Charles Page of Places Called Ipswich”.  His photos of the event can be seen at:

A review of the event by Prue Ahrens can be found at:

Thanks to site member Andrew Vinyard for the above information.

Charles Page is a Melbourne born photographer now based in Brisbane. He is also a lecturer at the Queensland College of Art. His “Ipswich x 5” collections is, in his own words:

a unique document that explores the social complexities of five distinct and disparate communities that share a common lineage, and remain inexorably linked by being named Ipswich.

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Gyppeswick Historic House, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

This is located at 1040 Rock Street, Rockland, Victoria, which also comprises the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

Rockland is an historic neighbourhood in Victoria, located on an escarpment overlooking Juan de Fuca Strait and the Olympic Mountains.  The first Governor of the Colony of Vancouver Island received 1000 acres of land at Rockland known as the “Governor’s Reserve” and this was added to in later years.  The first subdivision plan for Rockland was registered in 1865, and lots were large, from five to seven acre estates.  Designed to be a prestigious neighbourhood, the Rockland area was developed in the early 1880s from a 500-acre estate called Fairfield Farm, and it became the home of wealthy entrepreneurs, bankers, and politicians. 

The Gyppeswick House complex includes the Italianate home built in 1889 and designed by William Ridgway Wilson for A. A. Green, a wealthy local banker.  It was named Gyppeswick for Mrs. Green’s ancestral home, Ipswich, in England.  It had gardens, tennis courts, coach house and a stable.  The Greens abandoned it in 1894 when their bank, Garesche and Green, failed.

It acted as a temporary Government House from 1899 to 1903, following a fire at the official residence.  David Spencer, owner of David Spencer’s Department Stores, bought it in 1903 and renamed it “Lan Dderwen”, Welsh for ‘under the oaks’.  His daughter, Sara Spencer, donated it to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria in 1951, when the house reverted to its ori
ginal name.

The grounds house one of Canada’s finest art galleries with over 15,000 pieces in its collection, drawn from Asia, Europe and North America, although the primary emphasis is on Canada and Japan.  A Shinto shrine from the Meiji era (1886-1912) is located in the garden, and is the only Shinto shrine outside Japan.  It was found abandoned in Japan and brought to the gallery in 1987.  Once a year the gallery organises The Moss Street Paint-In where artists line the street and people can watch them at work.

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Ipswich Soil

The Ipswich series of soils are very deep, level, poorly drained non-sticky peat that occurs typically in the north eastern United States.  They are found in salt grass tidal marshes close to the Atlantic Ocean, extending inland along some rivers. Ipswich Soils are usually dark greyish-brown, getting darker with depth, & can range from strongly acid to slightly alkaline.  They can extend downwards from the surface to a depth of up to 65 inches. Some common vegetation found growing in Ipswich Soil includes marsh hay, cordgrass, saltgrass, sea-lavender, glasswort & sea-blite. Ipswich Soil is found in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey & Maryland.

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Ipswich Time

Before the coming of the railways, travellers would adjust their timepieces slightly as they journeyed eastwards or westwards from the Greenwich meridian.  Most major towns in Britain, therefore, had their own local times, & Ipswich was no exception. From at least the late eighteenth century onwards, & probably much earlier, “Ipswich Time” was calculated as five minutes faster than Greenwich Mean Time (GMT).

In 1840, Great Western Railways began the process of standardising their timetables by using only Greenwich Mean Time, or “London Time”, throughout the country, although it would be another forty years before the passing of the Statutes (Definition of Time) Bill in 1880, when Britain finally had a standard time imposed across the land; thus signalling the end of “Ipswich Time”. In the intervening years, however, the issue caused much debate.

A few months prior to the opening of Ipswich’s new Town Hall in January 1868, local people had petitioned Ipswich Corporation to ask that the new building should have two clocks; one set at GMT, the other at Ipswich Time. On the day that the Town Hall was officially opened, one of the items on the agenda of a special meeting of the Corporation was that the new clock should show Greenwich Mean Time.  This was proposed by Deputy Mayor R C Ransome, but met with opposition from a Mr E Grimwade, who felt that the people of the town would be better served if the clock was to show the local time. The matter was referred to the Estates Committee, which eventually found in favour of the more standard time.

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Ipswich House, Rangiora, New Zealand (Hunnibell Building)

It is little known fact that one of the oldest buildings in New Zealand was known as “Ipswich House” for the first 30 years of its existence.  This building is located in Rangiora, a rural town in South Island, 25 km (16 miles) to the north of Christchurch.
Luke Hunnibell, with his wife Sarah and two young sons, arrived in New Zealand in 1864 on board the Bellissima.  They came from Ipswich in Suffolk, England.  Luke was born in 1838 at the village of Haughley, and Sarah Wenham in 1839 at the nearby market town of Stowmarket.  They were married at Ipswich in 1860 and in 1861 they were living at Foundry Road, St Margarets, in Ipswich.  His occupation was that of a shoemaker.  

In New Zealand they made their way to Rangiora and Luke became the first bootmaker in the town, setting himself up in a little cottage where they lived at the corner of Direct Road (now Victoria Street) and Brook Street (now Northbrook Road).  The Hunnibells soon had a slate-roofed house built in King Street which they called “Ipswich House”.  This no longer exists.  In June 1870 Luke purchased a one acre piece of land for £140 on the corner of the Oxford and Rangiora Road (now High Street), and in about 1872 he built a two storey colonial style bootmaking shop and dwelling there with a brick chimney and cellar.  It was designed with five bedrooms upstairs to accommodate the apprentice bootmakers for the business.  Local newspapers of the time refer to it as the “Ipswich House Boot & Shoe Shop”, so it was evidently also given the name of the family’s home town in England.

Luke was an enthusiastic cricketer, often turning out for the local tradesmen’s side.  He was also captain of the No. 2 engine room when the Rangiora Fire Brigade was formed.  Luke died in November 1913.  On his retirement in 1903, his youngest son, Alfred (Alf), took over the business.  He inscribed the name ‘A Hunnibell’ in wooden letters on the front of the building, and that was when it became known as the “Hunnibell Building”.  The Hunnibell family was very musical and took a large part in that aspect of life in the town.  Rangiora cinema-goers in the early 1900s would break into applause when local boot maker Alf Hunnibell arrived at the theatre with his candle tucked inside a boot box.  This was the era of silent movies, and the arrival of Alf, a talented pianist, would herald the start of the movie. He would light his candle and play the piano by ear, matching the mood of the music to the action on screen.

Alf and his wife Ethel lived behind the boot shop and workroom.  During the Second World War, the front portion of the shop was used to pack and despatch food parcels to New Zealand soldiers on the front lines and prisoner of war camps.  Alf ran Hunnibell’s Bootmakers until he died, aged 70, in 1951.  Ethel remained in the High Street house for many years afterwards, renting the shop out to tenants.  After she died at the age of 90 in 1976, the building’s association with the Hunnibell family from Ipswich came to an end and it was finally sold.  Its large, often admired garden was also subdivided and sold off.

Several businesses have since occupied the building including the ANZ bank, an accountant, hairdresser, second-hand store and cycle shop.  Capone’s Restaurant was operating out of the building (257 High Street) for about 14 years.  It has also had a few colourful tenants upstairs that led to police raids, with tenants jumping out onto the fire escape and stashing their drugs in the guttering.  And there is the mystery of the loaded Colt pistol found a few years ago when the cellar was being cleaned. One assumes that this had nothing to do with the restaurant’s name!

In December 2012 a ceremony was held when the Hunnibell Building, as the oldest commercial building in the High Street, was given the New Zealand Landmarks Status (Historic Places Trust Category II registration); the plaque was unveiled by two of Luke Hunnibell’s great grandchildren.

In 2023 it is the Nom Nom Kitchen, a restaurant and take-away, which has been operating from the building since 2017, specialising in South-East Asian cuisine, mainly Thai and Vietnamese. 

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Ipswich Touch Test

Before this test was developed, diabetic patients when they were first being examined by junior doctors or nurses did not have their feet checked to see if there was a danger of possible heel ulceration.  Diabetes can lead to damage of the foot in up to 40% of patients.  The complications include damage to the peripheral nerves and to the large blood vessels that serve the limbs and, if undetected, can result in amputations.

A simple method to screen patients with diabetes is officially known world-wide as the Ipswich Touch Test (IpTT).  Dr Gerry Rayman MD, FRCP, Head of Service at the Diabetes Centre and diabetes consultant with his team at the Ipswich Hospital in Suffolk, England, designed this test.  Hence its name.     

It is a test for neuropathy (malfunction of one or more peripheral nerves typically causing numbness or weakness) to detect the sensitivity in the toes of diabetic patients.  With clearly written instructions, this simple test can be used by non-professionals to accurately assess for loss of protective sensation.  The test involves lightly touching the tips of the first, third and fifth toes of both feet with the index finger to detect a loss in sensation.  The patient, who is not looking, just indicates when they can feel something.  

The IpTT proved as reliable as tests using other screening methods involving sophisticated medical equipment to evaluate reflexes and feeling.  At the Ipswich Hospital, the use of this test resulted in the development of severe heel ulcers dropping by 62% in two years.  A less experienced clinician could now quickly assess a patient on first admission, and this procedure was soon rolled out across the UK, and is now used world-wide.  

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A seemingly unintentional rendition of the ‘Ipswich’ name.  This is the e-mail address of Integrated Plastics Solutions (IPS) based at El Dorado, near Wichita, Kansas, USA.  

This is a plastics recycling company begun in August 2008 by two brothers Brian J and Sean M Riley.  The company calls itself a full-service recycler specialising in all types of plastics, X-ray film and non-ferrous metals, as well as asset disposal of equipment specifically related to the plastics industry.  The company is presently (in 2015-16) experiencing difficulties with the law enforcement authorities.  In a plea bargaining decision, the company admitted that from 2009 to 2013, it knowingly stored hazardous waste without a permit at its facility in El Dorado.  The waste included paints and solvents, many of which were highly flammable and subject to flash fire or explosion if not properly stored.  Integrated Plastics Solutions LLC has been ordered to pay $97,612 in restitution along with a $10,000 fine after pleading guilty to a charge of unlawful storage of a hazardous waste, and the owners were ordered to each pay restitution of $118,807 in the case. Sean Riley was sentenced to 18 months of probation and Brian Riley was sentenced to three years of probation.  As at 2016 the county commissioners are requesting suitable clean-up and fencing requirements to their property before allowing the continuance of their permit of use. It is reported that the company was dissolved on 15 July 2021.

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Ipswich Street in a Californian Ghost Town

Palisades del Rey was a 1921 neighborhood land development by Dickinson & Gillespie who purchased a three-mile stretch of prime property along the seashore on the outskirts of Los Angeles in California.  The location later became called Playa del Rey (Spanish for “Beach of the King”).  All of the houses in this area were beachfront properties, custom built for Hollywood actors and producers, among them Cecil B. DeMille, with panoramic views over the sand dunes to the Pacific Ocean.  It was developed in the 1930s as “an isolated playground for the wealthy”.

A small airfield was opened to the east of the development in 1928.  This was at first an added attraction as it became a popular location for residents to see air shows.  The city purchased it to be the municipal airfield in 1937.  It became the Los Angeles International Air
port in 1949.  The development lay immediately west of the perimeter of what was to become one of the busiest airports in the world.  Many residents learned to co-exist with the noise from propeller planes from the growing number of commercial flights into Los Angeles following World War II.  However, jet engines were impossible to ignore when they began using the airport in the late 1950s.

In the 1960s and early 1970s, the area was condemned and acquired by the City of Los Angeles in a series of “eminent domain purchases” (in the UK known as “compulsory purchases”) to facilitate airport expansion and to address concerns about noise from jet aeroplanes.  Home owners were forced to sell their property to the city.  Several homeowners sued the city and remained in their houses for several years after the majority of houses were vacated.  Eventually all 800 houses were either moved or demolished. 

Today one can see only barbed-wire fences protecting vacant land and old streets where houses once sat.  Ipswich Street is the third one up from the bottom edge of the photograph, right (the other street names all seem to have had a French flavour to them, so how the name Ipswich came to be used is a bit of a mystery).  This clearly shows the complete abandonment and dereliction of the of the former luxury estate as it looks today.  Weeds are thriving through the cracks, streets are still lined with their palm trees (see below). What’s left of demolished property can be found hidden behind thick bushes and disconnected power lines lie in the sun, but no-one is allowed there.

The reason why the area remains desolate is because it is an 80-acre habitat for the endangered El Segundo blue butterfly.  It was found that there were only three colonies of
this tiny butterfly still in existence.  The largest of these is in the grounds of the former development.  Ultimately, concerns about the butterfly superseded all other options for the property.  In 1976 the butterfly became a federally designated endangered species and the El Segundo Blue Butterfly Habitat Preserve now exists behind barbed wire to protect the species.  From the insects’ point of view, this story has a happy ending.  From fewer than 500 butterflies in 1976, it is now numbered in tens of thousands.

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