Lavenham Guildhall

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Lavenham Guildhall
Lavenham Guildhall - - 67529.jpg
LocationLavenham, Suffolk
Coordinates52°06′38″N 0°47′42″E / 52.1106°N 0.7951°E / 52.1106; 0.7951Coordinates: 52°06′38″N 0°47′42″E / 52.1106°N 0.7951°E / 52.1106; 0.7951
Architectural style(s)Jettied timber framing
Listed Building – Grade I
Designated23 January 1958
Reference no.1037186
Lavenham Guildhall is located in Suffolk
Lavenham Guildhall
Location of Lavenham Guildhall in Suffolk

Lavenham Guildhall is a timber-framed municipal building in Lavenham, Suffolk, England. It is Grade I listed.[1]


By the late 15th century, Lavenham was at the centre of the East Anglian woollen cloth trade. Its specialised production of woad-dyed broadcloth, known as Lavenham Blue, had made it one of the richest towns in England.[2] To reflect this prosperity, four guilds were established in the town by the local merchant families. The most important of these founded the Guildhall of Corpus Christi in 1529.[3]

With the decline of the woollen cloth trade and Lavenham's prosperity, the guildhall's role changed. By 1689, the guildhall was in use as a Bridewell, and from 1787 was used as a workhouse.[1] It was restored by Sir Cuthbert Quilter around 1911 and given to the people of Lavenham in 1946. It became the property of the National Trust in 1951 and is today open to the public.[4]


  1. ^ a b Historic England. "The Guildhall  (Grade I) (1037186)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
  2. ^ "History of Lavenham Guildhall". The National Trust. Retrieved 26 January 2020.
  3. ^ Pevsner, Nikolaus. The Buildings of England: Suffolk. Yale University Press. ISBN 978-0300096484.
  4. ^ "Lavenham Guildhall". The National Trust. Retrieved 12 July 2014.

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