Where old pubs have been re-named, we list only the most recent known name here. Other names can be found in the Pub list tab.
May also be written in Victorian directories as "Bildestone". This pleasant market town still has some very fine timbered buildings. Recorded in Domesday as "Bilestuna" and appearing on John Speed's 1610 map as "Bilston Strete". The old market place is dominated by Victorian clock tower. Edward Rotherham, captain of Royal Sovereign at Battle of Trafalgar is buried in church. There's said to be an old tunnel from the cellar of the Crown to the clocktower.
The village originally clustered around the church (whose west tower collapsed in 1975) but moved to its present location in the 13th century. Some say this move was connected with the Black Death, though is is more likely that it was to be nearer resources for the nascent cloth industry.
The Red Lion was originally in a detached part of Wattisham parish (and is often listed there). It was incorporated into Bildeston on August 18th, 1882.
The picture gallery contains photos of several buildings which look as if they might once have been pubs (especially Wellington House). Can anybody identify/confirm/refute this idea?
(** historic newspaper information from Bob Mitchell)