The Suffolk Horse Society is a registered charity whose purpose and aims are to preserve and promote the Suffolk breed of heavy horse, encouraging ownership and long term interest in the breed. The Suffolk Punch was widely used as a draught horse providing power in the rural and urban economies until just after the second world war, but it is now widely recognised as a critically endangered rare breed.
The Society has been awarded an £85,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to safeguard, catalogue and use the extensive archive and collection owned by the Suffolk Horse Society to offer greater public and community access. The archive and collection comprising around 100,000 items, some dating back to the early 1800s, has intrinsic heritage value and provides the historical material, context and focus to generate significant volunteering and learning opportunities. It comprises sets of letters and papers, stock and stud records alongside relevant publications, photographs, paintings and other artefacts.
The archive and collection contains rich primary sources which will provide a unique opportunity to ‘tell the story’ of the Suffolk Punch, to better understand the growth and decline of the breed, its use in the rural economy, its place in the social history and heritage of East Anglia and its importance to people locally, nationally and internationally.
This two year project will run to the end of June 2017.
Office 8, Britannia House Base Business Park Rendlesham Suffolk IP12 2TW
Contact Kathryn Cooper, Project Officer, for further details.
Currently the archive collection is not open to the public. Research enquiries can be made on an appointment only basis by contacting the Project Officer. A full set of stud books from volume 1 1880 up to 1999 can be viewed at the Suffolk Record Office, Ipswich, together with other associated documents.
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