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Bury St Edmunds is a market town in the county of Suffolk. In the UK census of 2011, the town had a population of 41,113 [1].

Links With Peel

The town lies approximately 11 miles to the north west of Peel Acres, the Ravenscroft family home in the village of Great Finborough.

On 9 March 1984 Peel was a guest on Round Table which was broadcast from the town as part of 'Radio 1 in East Anglia' week [1].

JP at The Nutshell pub Bury St Edmunds 1984

Peel at The Nutshell pub, Bury St Edmunds during R1 East Anglia week in 1984 (pic:

In late 1996 Peel was the chosen local celebrity who opened an animal feed store in Bury St Edmunds, his payment taking the form of a year's supply of layers pellets - "it's the kind of glamorous life that I lead in showbiz", he commented (17 March 1997 (BFBS)).

On 17 April 1997, Peel related to Mary Anne Hobbs how he was once roped into judging a Miss Bury St Edmunds beauty competition for the Round Table organisation. In a slightly drunken state, he moved forward to give one of the winners a kiss: "This poor woman came up on the stage and I made as if to kiss her on the cheek and flew straight past her and off the edge of the stage." He told the same story to the Independent in June 2002 for the paper's regular 'My Greatest Mistake' feature.[2]

Cathedral of Bury St Edmunds

Cathedral Of Bury St Edmunds where Peel's public funeral took place.

On 30 May 2000 Peel mentions spending the previous day (a Bank Holiday) working on the "utterly bizarre events in the Abbey Gardens, Bury St Edmunds, as part of BBC Music live" [3], but does not give details. He may have elaborated on this in a future show. The booking meant he could not attend the play-off final between Ipswich Town and Barnsley, to his disappointment.

On 12 November 2004 the public funeral for John was held at Bury St Edmunds cathedral prior to a family service and burial at St Andrew's church in Great Finborough [2].

Featured Bands

"Well I don't think that Bury St Edmunds is the new Seattle as somebody suggested to me during the course of last Sunday night's [Miss Black America] gig, but obviously there are some good bands there." (04 July 2001)

Peel was a keen supporter of bands from Bury St Edmunds and often expressed something akin to paternalistic pride in their achievements. Amongst those artistes from the town featured on the Peel show are:

(Please add to this list if known)

(Related page: Stowmarket)

Mentioned On Shows

  • 17 March 1980: Peel dedicates an Undertones song to three lads that he'd met at the weekend in The One Bull pub in the town.
  • 15 December 1980: Peel mentions having played some records at an event in the town the previous Saturday (13th December).
  • 30 March 1991: The Bury St Edmunds bypass (now the A14) was mentioned when Peel celebrated it being free of road works after an interminable period where it seemed always to be being dug up or coned off. Sadly, the following week (06 April 1991) he reported that it was back to business as usual as sections were closed for resurfacing.
  • 01 March 1996: Peel mentions having attended a piano recital the previous evening at the Athenaeum in the town.
  • 09 March 1996 (BFBS): Peel describes how slow service in a usually brisk Indian restaurant in the town meant he failed to get to Cambridge to see Bis.
  • 04 July 2001: Peel had been to the town on Sunday 1st July to see Miss Black America at Pestello's.
  • 04 July 2001 and 18 July 2001: Peel plugs an all-day event called 'Baby Barbecue' to be held on Sunday 22 July at Pestello's club. It's a festival featuring local bands that include Blue Gandhi, Dawn Parade and Miss Black America [3]. Peel says that he intends to go along, but reveals on 24 July 2001 that he didn't make it.
  • 31 July 2001: Having been informed of the death of John Walters, the previous evening Peel, Sheila, Tom and Flossie had gone to Bury St Edmunds and had a meal out, including "a bottle of cheap house champagne to toast Walters because we felt that that's what he would have approved of our doing."
  • 18 April 2002: Peel plugs an event at the Corn Exchange in the town that is happening on Sunday 21st April, featuring Miss Black America, Blue Gandhi, Dawn Parade, Antihero, Terrashima and others.
  • 11 February 2003: Peel plugs the Bury Sound all day event at the Corn Exchange that is happening on Sunday 16th February, featuring amongst others Exiles, Antihero and Secret Hairdresser. John notes the absence of Blue Gandhi and questions their whereabouts.
  • 14 October 2003: Peel mentions having attended a record fair in the town over the weekend. Amongst purchases mentioned during the week are singles by the Nightcaps, Don French and Red Foley & Ernest Tubb.
  • 16 December 2003: Over the weekend, Peel had taken part in a parcel-wrapping service in the town at the invitation of the Samaritans.
  • 27 July 2004: Peel mentions having attended another record fair in the town over the weekend. On this occasion he didn't buy anything, however.


  2. (BBC report of Peel's funeral).

External links

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