Chelsworth is a small village of about 70 houses sitting on the banks of the river Brett in one of the most beautiful, and almost entirely untouched, parts of Suffolk. The village is very old. Documents in the British Museum record King Edgar giving the village to Queen Aethelflaed in 962, and perhaps its greatest blessing is that, architecturally at least, time seems to have passed it by. Indeed photographs from the 1860s show the many thatched and wattle and daub houses, its lovely bridge, and its well-known pub looking almost exactly as they do today. The map is Suffolk circa 1910
The quiet and graceful nature of the area has been admired by many over the years, and Julian Tennyson, great grandson of Queen Victoria’s Poet Laureate, said of our village: "But I have a perfect village of my own finding, which I pride myself is quite unknown. It is Chelsworth. It lies completely hidden in a little valley. Its cottages are irregular, very well kept and finely timbered. It borders a stream, a quiet reedy stream, whose banks are lined with rich and gigantic trees. I can’t tell you why I think it is perfect. Perhaps it is because Chelsworth has been left to itself."
Equally significant is the historic church in its parkland setting: “There is no other church in Suffolk quite like All Saints.... character quite in keeping with this pretty village of half-timbered houses. It is bold, and majestic, and seen across the fields has a beauty of its own that none can match. Chelsworth is the thinking-person's Prettiest Suffolk Village.”
Chelsworth is in the heart of south Suffolk, not far from Sudbury and Bury St Edmunds, on the B1115 between Monks Eleigh and Bildeston. If you would like more detailed directions to find us, the Map is interactive.
Select 'Directions' and you will be taken through a few steps that will give you a visual representation of a route. You can print the route information should you need to.
GOOGLE map to be inserted once the errors on Google have been fixed. ie Village Hall shown in the wrong place!