Walsh & Clark Victoria engine sn 5038 RH at Wollpit 09 - IMG 1066

The museums Walsh and Clark Engine driving a threshing drum at the Woolpit Steam event 2009

The Museum of East Anglian Life is a Museum located in Stowmarket Suffolk, it specialises in presenting the agricultural history of East Anglia through a mixture of exhibits and living history demonstrations. It has recently taken to abbreviating itself as 'MEAL'.

History of the MuseumEdit

The site of the Museum was originally land belonging to the Abbots Hall estate. Changes to farming traditions in the 1950s and 1960s meant that many skills and ways of life were in danger of being lost forever thus the land and Hall was put in trust by the Longe family for the development of the Museum of East Anglian Life to preserve these in the historical context.


One of the main features of the Museum is the variety of buildings situated within its 75 acre site which include:

  • Boby Building - Features exhibitions on agricultural engines and individual craft workshops and also features a working printing press and a cinema.
  • William Bone Building - An exhibition on the history of the Ransomes company in East Anglia.
  • Eastbridge Windpump - A windpump used for draining land in the 1800s
  • Alton Watermill - A watermill dating back from the 1700s which is used to grind corn. It, like many of the museum buildings, was taken apart and then transported to the museum where it was subsequently reassembled; in the case of the watermill, it was moved to stop it being lost forever as a result of the Alton Water Reservoir.

The Museum also has two huts depicting different scenes from the 1950s including shops scenes, kitchens, living rooms and a Victorian schoolroom.


The museum has a collection of vintage agricultural machinery, and steam engines. Included in the collection are 3 Charles Burrell and Sons built engines and machines from other local manufacturers.

Ploughing engines
Traction Engine
Threshing machinery
  •  ? Threshing drum


The Museum is notable for the animals in its collection, in particular the rare Wikipedia:Suffolk Punch breed of horse. The most famous of these horses was Remus, who became something of a celebrity in the Stowmarket area.

The Museum also has other rare breeds including Red Poll Cattle as well as the Large Black Pig, Suffolk Sheep, Goats and Chickens.

See alsoEdit

Preservation & Collector related

References / sourcesEdit

  • based on wikipedia version with steam & machinery section added
  1. TER 2008
  2. Old Glory Magazine, Engines in Museums list 2009

External linksEdit

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