Seven of your favourite places to go growing up in Ipswich

Broomhill lid. Picture: Bromhill Pool Trust

Broomhill lido. Picture: Bromhill Pool Trust - Credit: Archant

Ipswich has had many attractions over the years for families to go and visit, and for children to enjoy.

We take a look at seven of the things you have said as being remembered from your time growing up in Ipswich.

Broomhill Pool

Broomhill pool in July 1987

Broomhill pool in July 1987 - Credit: Archant

This outdoor swimming pool was a big attraction for many years. Many of you said that this was something you remembered as one of your favourite things to do growing up in Ipswich.

Opening its doors back in 1938, it was the deepest lido in Britain at 15ft deep. It had a grandstand that could seat 700 spectators and had changing cubicles for 70 women and 108 men.

The pool was equipped with diving boards, a spring board, a children's pool and floodlights. Unfortunately it closed its doors in 2002, just one year after becoming Grade II listed.

Odeon Ipswich

The Odeon in Ipswich CINEMAES 19.3.02ES 27 09 04ES 22 07 05ES 19 08 05

The Odeon in Ipswich Cinema - Credit: Simon Parker

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Decked out with five screens, the Odeon was a popular place for families and friends to visit to watch the latest blockbuster. Opening in 1991, it had a seating capacity of 1,550 across all screens, with the largest screen holding 506 movie fans.

It closed in 2005, and was sold to a property developer. It remained unused until 2021, when it officially reopened as the Hope Church.

Foxhall Stadium

Foxhall Stadium

Foxhall Stadium - Credit: Ipswich Speedway

Still a major attraction for this area, children and families for the last 72 years have been able to enjoy the delights of going onto the banks or sitting in their seats to watch some racing.

Originally built in 1950, it hosted horse racing until it was resurfaced in 1966 for stock car racing. It has had multiple renovations and lots of work done on it over the years. It is currently the home of the Ipswich Witches Speedway team, and still gets regular visitors.

Belstead Brook Park

A beautiful autumnal day in Belstead Brook ParkGallery

A beautiful autumnal day in Belstead Brook Park Gallery - Credit: Belstead Gallery

Extending to about 250 acres, the park was mentioned a lot as something in Ipswich you remember. It offers a lovely walk around the countryside just on the edge of the town near Pinewood.

The park includes woodland, ponds, meadows, reedbeds and the brook. It is still used to this day as a great place to walk the dog, go for a run or take a leisurely stroll. It also includes a vast range of wildlife including dormice, otters and bats.

Nacton Shores

 Ripples across the shore line as the tide came in this afternoon on Nacton Shore.

Ripples across the shore line as the tide came in on Nacton Shore. - Credit:

Another place for a stroll across lovely countryside. This time next to the River Orwell, families for many years have gone on family walks on the beach, along the banks with walking paths on the side, and multiple places to stop for a picnic when it is a nice summer day. It is also right next to Deer Park, which is very popular with children to see some wildlife.

Solar Bowl

From The ArchivesSolar Bowl opens in Ipswich October 1990

From The Archives Solar Bowl opens in Ipswich October 1990 - Credit: Archant Archives

Opening in 1990, the Solar Bowl was also a popular attraction where families and friends went to spend their time. Located on Sproughton Road, it was a great place to go and bowl, or watch some sport on the big screens provided.

It was also a popular place for hosting group parties, with a bar and pool tables for customers to use. It later became Namco Funscape, but shut its doors in 2019, just ten months after the Superbowl opened in the Buttermarket shopping centre.

Christchurch Mansion

Christchurch Mansion

Christchurch Mansion - Credit: Brittany Woodman

Built between 1548-50, the mansion has been attracting visitors for years.

For anyone that grew up in Ipswich or indeed surrounding Ipswich, it is unlikely they will never have gone here with many enjoying a family or school trip to the mansion.

The Grade I listed building is located within Christchurch Park, which in itself attracts a lot of people for walks, picnics and runs. The mansion is home to a collection of paintings from local artists John Constable and Thomas Gainsborough.