Suffolk

 

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Suffolk: 52.200874, 0.873413

Suffolk is an East Anglian county of historic origin. It has borders with Norfolk to the north, Cambridgeshire to the west and Essex to the south. The North Sea lies to the east. The county town is Ipswich; other important towns include Lowestoft, Bury St Edmunds and Felixstowe, one of the largest container ports in Europe.

The county is low-lying with very few hills, and is largely arable land with the wetlands of the Broads in the north. The Suffolk Coast and Heaths are an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. With an area of 1,466 square miles (3,798 square kilometres), Suffolk is the eighth largest county in England by area, though it is ranked 32nd in terms of population, with 730,100 residents in the middle of 2011 (based on data from the Office for National Statistics).

Suffolk was early among the most populous of English counties, doubtless owing to its proximity to the continent. Fishing fleets have left its ports to bring back cod and ling from Iceland and herring and mackerel from the North Sea. From the fourteenth to the seventeenth century, it was among the chief manufacturing counties of England owing to its cloth-weaving industry, which was at the height of its prosperity during the fifteenth century. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, its agricultural resources were used to provide the rapidly-growing metropolis with food. In the following century various textile industries, such as the manufacture of sail-cloth, coconut fibre, horse-hair and clothing were established; silk-weavers migrated to Suffolk from Spitalfields, and early in the nineteenth century an important china factory flourished at Lowestoft.

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