Kirton Creek, April 2010 : photo by Martin R-H
This part of Suffolk is fairly isolated as it is between the two rivers Deben and Orwell. Some people think this is an advantage as it has stopped the villages from being over-exploited, and we also seem to have a somewhat individual climate with low rainfall. The ports of Ipswich and Felixstowe have developed enormously in the last decade as has the industrial estate on the historic airfield at Martlesham, mainly due to the large complex at Adastral Park housing BT Laboratories and to many other enterprises that have availed themselves of the facilities offered by this area.
Although this is an expanding area, it is also very ancient in origin, and we are justly proud of our very early connection with the Christian faith. Romans are believed to have settled in and around Falkenham but it is the Anglo Saxon era that gives us the confirmed facts. The name Kirton comes from the Anglo-Saxon name of Kirkatuna, meaning “the place of the church”. Kirton is mentioned in the Domesday Book, not just as having a church, but also having a priest of its own. His name was Godric and to find such an entry is exceptional. We also know that there has been a place of Christian worship, probably on the site of the present church, since the 7th century. This does give us a great sense of continuity. Click here for a list of incumbents of Kirton.
Falkenham also has an ancient history based on the mining of coprolite, and the river was used for its transport. Earlier the part of the river Deben known as Kings Fleet was where Edward III fitted out his fleet for his expedition to Flanders in 1338. Parts of Falkenham church probably date from this time, though it was extensively refurbished in the late 19th century.
There are many beautiful walks in this area, mostly well marked by signpost.
Kirton and Falkenham share the Parish Council, the school, the Village Hall, and most of the organisations.
If you have any historical information about Kirton or Falkenham, please contact the village history recorders Len Lanigan (Kirton) or Jo Shaw (Falkenham) via the webmaster.