Bury St Edmunds: Mythic City, Delicious Food

I’ve been to Bury St. Edmunds many times, but never quite like this!

Locals call it “Bury” for short, and in this area of Suffolk it’s seen as a city centre – a place you’d go for shopping & restaurants. It’s also chock FULL of history; namely it’s the burial site of the first patron saint of England, Edmund the Martyr. St. Edmund is surrounded by loads of legend and lore; there was even a posthumous cult dedicated to his (never-decaying, supernatural?) body!

Bury provides an exceptional example of a town that conforms to the notion of a mythic city, organized as an elaborate temple with divisions between sacred and profane. 


In Bury St. Edmunds, you can shop the street market, tour the Greene King Brewery, grab a pint at the UK’s smallest pub, visit at the cathedral, meander the Abbey Gardens, and – apparently – stuff yourself silly. We opted for the last two.

It turns out there’s a ton of good food in Bury St. Edmunds – and the immediate area. Thankfully I researched, stumbled upon the Instagram for Lark, and booked two months (yes, two months) in advance for a Wednesday lunch.

Lark is light, bright, airy, and teeny. There’s only like 6-8ish tables in the whole restaurant, plus “the bench,” which is where we sat. (The bench is a tight squeeze, but the people-watching out of the window is excellent.) We informed our server Yann that we’d come from America to eat all of the things and promptly ordered the “kitchen selection.” £65 per person translates to $83 each, and it was. Worth. Every. Penny. And then some. The food just kept coming. Yann instructed us to “mop it up, please” and wouldn’t take our plate if it wasn’t clean.

Lark emphasizes fresh and local. They have a forager who goes out every day for truffles and other goodies. They are particularly known for their pies (meat, not fruit), but honestly everything was… exceptional. Amazing, stupendous, ridiculous meal.

After lunch we attempted (with medium success) to walk off the food coma in the Abbey Gardens, which is just across the street from the restaurant. After about an hour of shenanigans, we admitted defeat and asked Rich to fetch us a little early. He drove us through some of the Suffolk countryside on the way back to the Airbnb, where we collapsed for a couple of hours prior to dinner at the pub (and our last night in Haughley).

Bury is easily reachable by train, bus, and taxi. It’s a solid day-trip, but I’d love to come back and stay 2-3 nights. Windmill, anyone?

Re: the video. I don’t own the rights to the music, which is by The Incredible Moses Leroy. None of this is for commercial gain. All photos and video shot by T and me.