The Great Cornard Information Website

Home Page

Table of Contents

Cornard Community

History - Part 7

Local History

Page updated - 22 August 2008



POTTED HISTORY OF GREAT CORNARD - This series of  Potted History of Great Cornard has been submitted by Cornard News. The articles were written by Joan Herbert who researched them from a variety of local sources.


Part 7 - From 1960's onward

As the population of Great Cornard expanded the building of new schools became a priority. In 1965 Pot Kiln Primary School opened with 348 pupils followed in 1966 by a primary school at Wells Hall Road with 69 pupils.  By 1973 there was an Upper School taking pupils from a large catchment area outside Great Cornard, starting with 420 pupils.  The Middle School opened in 1974 with 407 pupils.


The Suffolk Free Press of 17 February 1966 reported that ‘A new spirit appears to be abroad in Cornard’ and that a resident’s association had been formed at CAV – ‘almost the only place where large numbers of Cornard people at present meet’. It was obvious that a community centre was needed – the Parish Council meetings were held at that time in the village hall. It was decided that before the centre was built the people of Cornard had to raise a substantial sum towards the cost to prove that it was wanted. A lot of people helped in many different ways to raise £5,000 and with grants from the Parish Council, Babergh District Council and Suffolk County Council the centre was finally opened in 1970.  It was run by a community association and even had a newsletter ‘Cornard Contact’. One of the very successful activities there was the Playscheme open for two weeks every summer available to all the children in Cornard. It was run by Mr Manuel Andres, the Community Officer, with the help of a many volunteers from the residents of Cornard. The fact that it is no longer in operation says something about the seeming lack of community spirit at present in the village.


A reminder of Great Cornards past came in 1977 when subsidence caused by old chalk workings was found on Maldon Court Estate and again in1980 when massive cavities were discovered at Pot Kiln School.  Both areas had to be filled in.


As Great Cornard grew more and more farming land succumbed to the developers and the Sycamore and Hedgerows Estates boosted the population to over 8,000.  In 1986 David Bellamy opened the Country Park for the benefit of the people of Cornard.  This was the first Country Park in Britain to have been created by a Parish Council and it reflected the fears that Cornard could develop into an urban sprawl if not checked.  This seems to have been proved by the three different schemes being discussed now for developments on the Rugby Field, the Guildford Europe site and the Ralston Purina site.  The beginning of the 21st century seems to be bringing in a ‘village’ that bears no relation to the small village that existed at the beginning of the 20th century.


Compiled by Joan Herbert – Cornard News - 16 October 2004