NOSTALGIA: Hardwick House library - from the Spanton Jarman collection

Hardwick House library. From the Spanton Jarman collection
Hardwick House library. From the Spanton Jarman collection
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Hardwick House occupied the site where today’s West Suffolk Hospital stands.

After the death in 1921 of its last occupant, George Gery Milner Gibson Cullum, who died without issue, the Crown claimed the estate though an entailment clause and it was demolished in 1925. This is probably the main library at Hardwick House, there was also a ‘Little Library’. Most of the library collection, the Cullum Collection, is now at the Bury Record Office.

-- -- This picture is part of a remarkable collection of 4,000 photographs in the care of Bury St Edmunds Past and Present Society which offers a glimpse into the town’s history.

Taken by two families of professional photographers, the Spantons and the Jarmans, the images span a period from the 1860s through to the outbreak of World War Two. The fragile glass plate negatives were donated to the society in 1997 and in recent years many of these have been ‘digitised’ thanks to a Lottery grant and donations. They can be viewed at www.burypastandpresent.org.uk where you can also find details about membership and the group’s programme of events and lectures. The Spanton-Jarman collection is held at the Bury St Edmunds branch of the Suffolk Record Office. For more details about the Record Office, including its programme of talks and courses, visit www.suffolkarchives.co.uk.