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The local area guide to living in Bures

The quintessentially English village of Bures is a charming rural escape, complete with lovely waterscapes adorned in graceful willows and elegant tangles of flora. Located on the border of Suffolk and Essex counties in east England, Bures is separated into two civil parishes by the River Stour, running directly through its middle. To the west of the river is Bures Hamlet in Essex and to the east is Bures St. Mary in Suffolk. Beautiful gardens and open green spaces are the order of the day, and the village is situated on the edge of Dedham Vale, which is a beautiful reserve of Suffolk countryside that is excellent for walkers and cyclists.

The village is extremely ancient, with documents mentioning the anointment of King Edmund, heir of King Offa of the East Angles, here on the ‘ancient royal hill’ in the year 855. The village has many historic buildings, the oldest being St Stephens Chapel, built in 1218. Bures was an industrial village during the Victorian era, but has since transformed into a de-industrialised residential community, with over 75 listed buildings still maintained across the parishes. On the outskirts of the village to the south is the Elizabethan manor house Smallbridge Hall, which indeed hosted a visit from Queen Elizabeth I in 1561. Other sites of interest include Bures Mill, Baker’s Hall and the Wormingford Estate.

Legend has it that Bures was once home to a dragon, with accounts from a monk in 1405 telling of the beast terrorising the villagers, eating all the sheep and fleeing down the river towards Wormingford once the villagers set upon it with arrows. The community of Bures is proud of its identity, both historical and legendary, and actively collects and preserves records attesting to its colourful past.

Despite its tranquil country setting, the community is far from dull. The village is host to quite a few events each year, including the Open Garden weekend, Jazz by the Stour, Carnival & Fete, Autumn Street Fair, Raft race on the river, Horticultural Show, Boot sales, Dog shows, Pantomime and Plays, a music festival and a year-round market.

Information about the local residents

As of the 2011 census, the population across both sides of the village was 1,667. The most common Occupations are Professional, Associate Professional and Technical and Skilled Trades, and the most common industries of employment are Wholesale and Retail, Education, Human Health and Social Work, and Construction.

The largest proportion of the population fall in the 35-54 Adult Lifestage, and the village is home to many families and quite a few retired folk. Residents are active in various clubs and societies within the community.

Nearby schools

The Bures Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School is within Bures’s own borders, near the centre of town. The closest secondary and sixth form, just under four miles away in Sudbury to the north, is Thomas Gainsborough School. Performance data states that 83% of pupils were middle to high attainers at Key Stage 4 and 83% of sixth form students achieve at least 2 A levels. Under five miles away, in Colchester, is The Ryes College and Community School, another secondary and sixth form. For additional options, there are 13 primary schools with five miles of Bures, 4 secondaries and 4 sixth forms.

Getting around

Though Bures is reached via smaller country roads, both the A131 and A12 are within easy reach, so road connections are quite decent. Colchester is just 16 minutes by car, or 23 minutes via bus, and is ten miles away. London can be reached in under and hour and a half by either train or car, and Ipswich is 30 minutes by car, though considerably longer by other means of transport. The village is served by Bures train station, which is unstaffed, but runs trains every hour.

Local shops

Bures has its own village market, surgery, deli, and post office, as well as four pubs, including the Eight Bells, the Swan Inn, Thatchers Arms and the Three Horse Shoes. There is also a lovely community centre with a beautiful open green space. Though there are only two retailers here, many towns with differing selections are within easy reach, including Sudbury in 5 miles, Long Melford in 8 miles, Colchester in 10 miles, Lavenham in 12 miles and Ipswich in 23 miles.

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Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact editor@zoopla.co.uk

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.

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