Long Melford is a beautiful village on the Suffolk and Essex border, packed with things to see, a rich variety of shops, galleries, eateries, and walks nearby.
Parking here is free, and anywhere you choose will be a good starting point for exploring the village as it is uniquely concentrated along one main high street.
Long Melford was one of Suffolk’s ‘wool towns’ and during the Middle Ages the village thrived on the cloth industry. From the 18th century the village began to evolve to include an iron foundry, horsehair weaving, and coconut matting manufacturing. It was also mentioned in the Doomsday Book of 1086!
To the north of the village you can visit the impressive Kentwell Hall, and Melford Hall. Kentwell Hall is a moated Tudor house, with a fascinating history and set in 25 acres of parkland and gardens. Melford Hall is the family home of the Hyde Parker family and was passed over to the National Trust in 1960, with a cafe, walks, and a rich history to explore.
Across the road from Melford Hall, and overlooking the village green, is the fantastic Black Lion restaurant. The perfect place to have lunch, dinner, or a relaxing drink (they also offer prepared meals to take away!). As you walk up the pretty street from this restaurant, you will be greeted by the Holy Trinity church. An impressively breathtaking building with beautifully maintained gardens, and regular events throughout the year.
Heading South along the picturesque high street, you are treated with a charming selection of period properties, each one as beautiful as the last. If you are an art lover, or are looking for a special gift or souvenir, you are in such luck! Long Melford high street has a wide variety of quality shops and galleries. You can explore the Long Melford Antiques Centre, The Rug & Carpet Studio, several art galleries, vintage boutiques, curiosity and book shops.
The top it all off, the village has a wealth of places to eat delicious food; with several pubs, restaurants, and cafes dotted throughout the village. You can enjoy dinner beside a roaring fire at the award winning Scutchers Bistro, or perhaps a cream tea and cake at Tiffins Tea & Coffee House.
Even on a cloudy day Long Melford has so much charm and such a rich selection of things to see. It’s a wonderful day out. If you have time it’s a short 5 mile drive to Lavenham, yet another beautiful and diverse village to explore during your time in Suffolk.