are delighted to report that the Alabaster
Gathering held on Saturday, 29th April 2017, was a great
success. You can read all the details in the Chronicle.
The next Gathering is yet to be arranged, but it is just possible, based on past experiences, that it could be in April 2020. No guarantee can be given, so please do not start making plans etc until the official announcement by the Committee, which you will be able to read here, nearer the time.
What happened in the past...
The 2011 Alabaster Gathering
by Laraine Hake
Chicken Goujons with Dip
On Good Friday evening (22nd April) many members followed the custom of dining informally in "The George" in Hadleigh, after setting out the hall ready for the following day`s meeting.
On Easter Sunday, 24th April, many of us attended the Easter Day morning service in St. Mary`s Church, Hadleigh. After lunch in "The George" there was a walking tour of Hadleigh itself, taking in many of the local Alabaster locations and other places of historical interest.
Laraine Hake writes:
The Eighth Alabaster Gathering took place in Hadleigh over the weekend of 25th to 27th April 2008. On Saturday 26th April, we were in the Guildhall Complex. We had the Guild Room for the daytime meeting to "gather" and listen to talks on aspects of Alabaster history, eat well and thoroughly enjoy the day. The Guild Room has good access for disabled people and, even more importantly, would have been used by our Alabaster ancestors in the 16th and 17th centuries. It can accommodate up to 100 people. For the evening dinner we were in the Old Town Hall which adjoins the Guildhall. This is an exceptionally attractive medieval room on the first floor with a crown post roof and timbered floor, and it also would have been known by those Alabasters past.
The cost for the daytime meeting, including Buffet Lunch was £18. The cost for the full day, that is Evening Dinner as well as the daytime Buffet Lunch was £37.
On the Friday evening we met for an informal meal in a The George Public House, Hadleigh. We did this in 2005 and it made a great start to the weekend. On the Sunday we visited Ipswich which was of particular interest to Branches IIIA and IIIB. These extra activities were at additional cost, details below.
Saturday evening, 26th April: Members enjoyed an excellent dinner upstairs in the Old Town Hall in the Guildhall Complex, and many brought their own wine!
This was followed by Clive Paine who spoke to us about the Plague in Suffolk during the seventeenth century, with particular reference to Hadleigh.
On Friday, 25th April, many of us dined at The George. Bookings: contact The George directly on 01473 822151.
On Sunday, 27th April, members were able, if they so wished, to attend the morning family service at St. Matthew`s Ipswich, where some Alabasters were baptised, married, and buried during the 17th and 18th centuries.
This was followed by a guided walk around Ipswich (£3 per person) with lunch overlooking the Quay at Isaac`s, a former merchant`s house (around £10 per person).
And, what happened in 2005, I hear you ask............?
10.00 a.m. Arrival and coffee
11.00 a.m. General Meeting of the Alabaster Society - chaired by Ron Alabaster West - see agenda
12.00 noon “Holts - Another Alabaster Home” – Sue Andrews
12.15 p.m. “How the Alabasters lost their Wealth” - Tony Springall
1.00 p.m. Lunch Quiche and Salad~Fruit Salad~Fruit Juice
2.00 – 4.30 p.m. Your chosen activities:
4.30-5.15 p.m. Tea, biscuits and the drawing of the raffle at the Old School
7.00 p.m. for 7.30 p.m. Dinner at The Old School
Mushroom Soup, Hungarian Goulash with Noodles, Lemon Meringue Souffle or Poached Pears with Cream -- Licensed bar available
To be followed by a talk by Roy Tricker (pictured, left): "Some Norfolk Churches”- with some input by Laraine
Sunday 24th April 2005
11.00 a.m. Family Church Service at Snape, Suffolk.
George Alabaster (Branch IV) was the churchwarden here from 1754 until his death in 1759, aged 37. His gravestone still exists just outside the door of the church. It is the oldest gravestone in the churchyard.
1.00 p.m. Lunch at Castle Inn, Framlingham. Choice of Roast; Beef, Pork or Chicken + Dessert for less than £10!
2.30 p.m. Framlingham Castle where Dr William Alabaster
was imprisoned: he was transferred here from the Tower of London in
The cost: £4.30 per person, £3.30 for concessions (OAPs!) and free if you are a member of English Heritage – but do remember your card! We get a discount if we all pay in a block so I will do something complicated, collecting the money while we eat!
The staff at Framlingham Castle hope to be able to give us a short talk about the castle in the 16th and 17th centuries before we begin. After that we will make our own way around the castle and disperse at our own pace. It is suggested that you allow something in the region of one and a half to two hours to complete the visit. There is an audio tour which takes 50 minutes.