I.C.A. ... R.I.P.
Caribbean Association (or alternative
meanings of the letters ICA) at 15-17 Woodbridge Road stands between
the sometime The
Milestone , now reverted to The
Mulberry Tree, and the
Existing as an International Community Centre from around 1970, an
'alleged' shooting by an out-of-towner at one of the events at the
venue in December 2009 sent a shock-wave through the local community.
The building seems to have stood empty and unused since that time.
Indeed there were plans to demolish the ICA by the Ipswich Borough
Council as early as 2008, opposed by the Caribbean, Chinese, Sikh,
Bangla Deshi, Hindu and other groups.
Music fans will know the ICA as a venue for all sorts of
– Afrobeat, punk, Two-Tone, jazz, techno and more traditional
forms over many years. It was home to the famous Suffolk Samba Band and
steel bands as well as a sports venue for martial arts groups, a lunch
club for elders from the ethnic communities and so on. All ruined by
the actions of one armed non-Ipswich person. A trawl of the internet
reveals that the Association was wound up on 5 April 2012 following a
decision by the previous Conservative/LibDem council to withdraw
funding amid allegations of mismanagement. Apparently, in 2012 the
council are still planning demolition to enlarge the public car park
behind and most of the people who used the venue and have fond memories
of it have nowhere to go.
that we had better add this photograph and
description to this website before it tumbles into dust. It prominently
features the British Government's version of the Royal crest, although
the paint job is getting a little ancient. It reads around the oval:
SOIT ... QUI MAL Y PENSE'
(French for 'Evil be to
him that evil thinks', alternatively 'Shamed be he who thinks evil of
and in three sections across the lower scroll:
... ET MON ... DROIT'
'God and my right')
This former statement supposedly originated when King Edward III was
dancing with his first cousin and daughter-in-law, Joan of Kent. Her
garter slipped down to her ankle, causing those around her to snigger
at her humiliation. In an act of chivalry Edward placed the garter
around his own leg, saying "Honi soit qui mal y pense", and the phrase
later became the motto of the Order (of the Garter). The oval strip on
which the axiom is displayed – and which surrounds the
for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales –
The latter is the motto of the British monarchy (a fuller version is
"God and my right shall me defend") and is said to have first been
adopted as the royal motto of England by King Henry V in the 15th
[UPDATE August 2012: this
building has been razed to the ground. Park your car with pride.]
The new Drill Hall
Here is a 1911 postcard of the building, then called The Drill Hall:
The building was opened on the 13th of May, 1911. The first occupants
were the men of the 6th (Cyclist) Battalion of the Suffolk Regiment.
Watling & Company supplied the stonework for the building and, with
clumsy hand-lettering added, used this image as a promotional card;
they traded from Derby Road station. The hoarding to the left belonged
to Garrod, Turner & Son, Land Agents & Auctioneers. It was
replaced by garage/motor works with a semi-classical frontage which was
demolished in recent years.
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throughout the Ipswich
Historic Lettering site: Borin Van Loon
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