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News about Woodbridge and Edward FitzGerald

August 23, 2019

We have received two items of news from the town of Woodbridge which are of particular relevance to the heritage of Edward FitzGerald and his Rubaiyat.  For those who don’t know East Anglia well, Woodbridge is an important market town in south east Suffolk on the river Deben, and FitzGerald lived either in the town or close by for almost all his life.

10MarketHill Woodbridge

The first piece of news, sent in by Charles Mugleston, is that the property in which FitzGerald lived for 13 years between 1860 and 1873 is up for sale.  This is 10 Market Hill (pictured above) and there is a plaque on the outside marking FitzGerald’s residence there; he lived in rooms on the first floor.  The property is on sale together with no 12 next door with a guide price of £450,000 – for more details see the link below.  As Charles suggests, the property would make an excellent site for a FitzGerald-Khayyam museum if we could find an interested body.  Suggestions would be welcome?

The second news item relates to the Bull Hotel which is also on Market Hill in Woodbridge.  This is a place mentioned often in FitzGerald’s letters and he met there with his friends, including the group known as the Woodbridge Wits.  Later on, some of FitzGerald’s visitors stayed there when they came to see him.  And, over the past century, the Bull has been the location for various celebratory and anniversary events relating to FitzGerald and the Rubaiyat.

bullinn woodbridge 2894711

The Bull Hotel has recently been purchased by David Clarke.  He is very much aware of the Hotel’s association with Edward FitzGerald and he is keen to explore ways of re-establishing the links with other interested organisations notably the Omar Khayyam Club of London which has held dinners at the Bull in the past.  We have put David in contact with the Club – see previous post for new contact details for the Club secretary.  David would also like to promote Edward FitzGerald’s work and heritage as part of the wider development of Woodbridge as a tourist, arts and literary destination.  We can certainly vouch for the attractions of Woodbridge as a destination for anyone with an interest in the Rubaiyat and Edward FitzGerald.  There is much to be seen and enjoyed.  A link to the Bull Hotel is shown below.  If anyone wants to get into direct contact with David Clarke on these issues, we can pass on a message.

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