For the love of Charlie’s Hat Written by Miranda Acres, Team Member,

Published on September 15, 2023

For the love of Charlie’s Hat -

Dear Ipswich, How are tricks?

I Put Some Water In Charlie’s Hat – I remember, at school, feeling fortunate that I wasn’t born in Norwich! (if you know, you know!). I feel so fortunate to have been born under Suffolk’s hugely beautiful skies – and in the county town to boot. Ipswich, here’s why I love you:

I don’t remember, as a child, really thinking about where I was from, or what that meant – even now, as an adult, I’m not hugely patriotic – I really do subscribe to the model of loving your family and friends first, then your street, your community, your town and then your country … and that’s why Ipswich suits me. We’re a welcoming, diverse, friendly and generous place to be – our people are enterprising, caring and they have energy in heaps – and we are inclusive; we’re happy for you to be a part of everything no matter who you are, where you’re from, what you do or believe in.

Wherever you look in our town there are things going on; things to join; things to do; things to experience, things to learn, or there are places of calm.

Wherever you look in our town there are things going on; things to join; things to do; things to experience, things to learn, or there are places of calm, with long stretches of riverside or huge skies with countryside below. Whatever you want, Ipswich has it and that’s why, having moved away for a number of years, I came back and will probably never leave.

There is so much to be positive about in our town: one of my own projects is bringing the Ancient House back to life as a ‘hub’: a department store of small, independent businesses; a springboard / incubator allowing creative people to start off in retail and to fly the nest and expand on their own into the town; a restaurant opening onto Arras Square; an information centre to promote all of our town’s numerous assets and attractions. This 15th Century beauty is hugely important to me – I remember running around and hiding in this incredible heritage building as a child, believing it to be the best place in the world – full of books and pens! The Ancient House was an amazing warren; Christchurch Mansion was my ‘house’ (I used to imagine myself living there when we went to explore), and the staircase in the old Croydon’s jewellers building was where I would emerge and descend for the latest ball that I was attending. The heritage that our town has is just phenomenal – if you look around, look up and look down, our history just seeps out of every pore, and that applies to the entire town, not just the town centre.

And if you want entertainment, we have it in bucket loads – from award-winning theatres and internationally-renowned dance venues and festivals to numerous independent music venues and arts centres – outlets for creativity abound in our town – and every single person can access all of them, all over the town.
I also love that our town covers a huge area and each ‘ward’ has so much to be proud of – our parks are amazing – urban meets suburban meets rural; entertainment meets tranquility. We’re an hour from London; we’re minutes away from the coast, from rivers and reservoirs. Whether you want watersports, land sports, music, entertainment, culture, history, whether you want to join clubs, meet friends, make friends, create, eat, drink, shop, rest… you can do it here and you’re welcome.

I’m a proud and passionate member of the team. Ipswich is changing and evolving and so are we all. Ipswich, you’re my hero and always will be – glad to be growing older with you.

Miranda Acres
Team Member,

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