Ufford

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History

In the 5th century, Anglo Saxons began to invade East Anglia and the Suffolk coast became a separate kingdom with the Wuffingas being the ruling family. The family gave its name to the village and thus we can account for the beginnings of Ufford, a ford with a hard gravel bed over the River Deben, crossing the narrow neck of marsh and river between the higher ground of Bromeswell and Ufford. Over the years the name has changed from Juffeforda, Offewarda, Uffewarda, Ufforda, Usford and finally to Ufford.

Recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086 Ufford had 146 acres of arable land, 9 ½ acres of meadow, 14 freemen, 2 boarders, 2 ½ ploughs and 1 mill. It is believed that this is still on the same site. There is no reference to a church in Ufford, but 2 were recorded in Bromeswell and 2 at Bredfield. It is probable that one of the churches at Bromeswell could be the Ufford church.

Crown Farmhouse on the High Street is the oldest remaining dwelling in the village; a traditional Suffolk Long-house built in the 16th Century. Many other Listed buildings date back to the 17th and 18th Century and can be found throughout the village, scattered in between later housing developments.

There are 2 distinct parts to the village; the western part, where development is centred on Upper Street, which was the London to Great Yarmouth trunk road until the by-pass was built, and the original core of the village in around St Mary's Church. These 2 parts of the village are linked by School Lane, and by Spring Lane.

The lower part of the village, now a Conservation Area, is a particularly attractive collection of traditional buildings, which remain somewhat hidden away. There are no main roads through this part of the village and, up until the Second World War it remained relatively isolated and un-developed.

Lower Street, Ufford c1900  Lower Street, Ufford 1998

Ufford boasts some 25 listed buildings, among which are included the now disused stocks and whipping post. Oldest by far is St Mary’s Church which dates back to 11th century and houses the 15th Century 18 ft hanging font cover "said to be the most beautiful cover in the world”

All six of the Manor houses of Ufford no longer exist. The last, Ufford Place was sold upon the death in 1956 of Major Eardley Blois Brooke and then later destroyed in a fire. Fortunately the gates and piers survived.

What did they say about us in 1868?

"UFFORD, a parish in the hundred of Wilford, county Suffolk, 2 miles N.E. of Woodbridge, its post town, and the same distance S.E. of Wickham Market. The village is situated on the river Deben, which occasionally inundates the adjoining lands. The parish includes the hamlet of Sogenhoe. The living is a rectory* in the diocese of Norwich, value £376. The church, dedicated to St. Mary, contains a brass of R. Ballett, bearing date 1598, an ancient font with a cover, and tombs of the Woods of Loudham. There was anciently a chapel-of-ease at Sogenhoe, but long since demolished. There are some small charities and a school supported by the rector. The Earls of Suffolk took their names from this place."

Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson © 2003