The small Saxon settlement of Bedricesworth was transformed when the body of Edmund, martyred king of the East Saxons, was brought here in the early 10th century. Around it grew up one of the largest abbeys in England and a new, planned town, the grid-iron pattern of which still survives. After the abbey was dissolved, Bury remained the heart of West Suffolk and was county town until 1974. The second half of the 20th century brought rapid growth, with new light industry and tourism supplementing the traditional trades. This briliiant combination of archaeological evidence with meticulous documentary research is well illustrated, resulting in a book that Bury has long needed.