A fabulous reserve overlooked by the castle and fed by The River Ore, it covers 31 acres/13.8 hectares.
The mere is managed by Suffolk Wildlife Trust and is a piece of wild wetland amid an intensively arable area, with no other wetland like it for 100 square miles. Once thought to have originated during the building of the castle’s defences, evidence from soil cores taken during the restoration of the mere in 1998 suggest that it is a natural feature dating back to the ice age, or earlier. The lake mud is more than 13 metres deep, containing the remains of ancient plants and animals, and scientific analysis shows that for the first 7,000 years of its life, the lake was unaffected by human activity.
There’s a circular walk of just under a mile. You can access it via gates along New Road, at The Elms car park, from the castle court.