During the years 1663 to 1665 the town of Needham Market was placed
into isolation because of the plague. Chains were placed at either end
of the town effectively stopping anyone from entering the town and more
importantly anyone leaving the town. Money and food were left by these
chains by well wishers, but as the years rolled by rumours began to
spread that everyone in the town had died. The streets were empty and
grass began to grow in the roads. It is not known how many of its
residents died from the plague, but Black Death effectively brought
about the end of the towns wool industry.
To this day there are areas in the town named after these chains - Chainbridge at the north end of the town and Chainhouse at the south end of the town.
Those of you who are fans of the BBC series Eastenders may be interested to know that the character Dot Cotton actress June Brown came from Needham Market.
Much of the High Street has been designated as a conservation area and there are many buildings of interesting architecture especially in the High Street, which contains a mix of Georgian and Tudor properties. The church of St. John the Baptist also in the High Street contains a wonderful double hammer beam roof.
Needham Market has lots of places to eat and drink with a good selection of inns and pubs.
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