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Leiston

Trip Planner Europe  /  UK  /  England  /  East Anglia  /  Suffolk  /  Leiston
(4.2/5 based on 120+ reviews for 4 attractions)
Things to do: museums, historic sites
Leiston is a town in eastern Suffolk, England. It is situated near Saxmundham and Aldeburgh, about from the North Sea coast and is northeast of Ipswich and northeast from London. The town had a population of 6,240 at the 2001 Census.HistoryThe 14th century remains of Leiston Abbey lie northwest of the town.Leiston thrived in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a manufacturing town dominated by Richard Garrett & Sons, owners of the "Leiston Works". This firm made steam tractors and a huge variety of cast and machined metal products, including munitions during both world wars. The works closed in 1981 and the site was reused as a mixture of housing, flats and industrial uses. The Long Shop Museum, showing the history, vehicles and products of the works, remains as a heritage tourist attraction.During the Second World War, RAF Leiston, northwest of the town in the neighbouring village of Theberton, sent fighter squadrons of the American 357th Fighter Group to fight the Luftwaffe. Famous American test pilot and fighter ace General Chuck Yeager (who, later, first broke the sound barrier) flew out of RAF Leiston. The Friends of Leiston Airfield hold a memorial service and flying display at the end of May each year, with veterans and their families attending.
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