Five Suffolk venues to watch live music this winter

Inset: Ward of Iron at The Smokehouse Ipswich, DJ Chris Coco, Main image: Martyn Joseph

Inset: Ward of Iron at The Smokehouse Ipswich, DJ Chris Coco, Main image: Martyn Joseph - Credit: Sam Emmens//Ken Kawamura/Martin Woodhead

As the entertainment industry in Suffolk recovers from the significant impact of the coronavirus pandemic, venues across the county are once again encouraging music lovers to get out and enjoy a gig. 

From the Apex in Bury St Edmunds to The Smokehouse in Ipswich, here are some places where you can enjoy a concert in Suffolk over the coming months. 

John Peel Centre, Stowmarket

Martyn Joseph will be performing at the John Peel Centre in Stowmarket

Award-winning singer-songwriter Martyn Joseph will be performing at Stowmarket's John Peel Centre in early December 2021 - Credit: Martin Woodhead/ImageAcoustic

Named after the legendary Suffolk DJ, the John Peel Centre for Creative Arts in Stowmarket Town Centre is one of the key venues in mid Suffolk offering live music.

On Friday, December 3, singer-songwriter and guitarist Martyn Joseph will be playing the venue for the first time in his 30 year career.

The Smokehouse Ipswich 

Joe Bailey at the Smokehouse in Ipswich, which has been awarded government cash

Joe Bailey director of Out Loud Music who manage The Smokehouse in Ipswich - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

The Smokehouse is a intimate live music venue based at the South Street Studios in Ipswich, which has hosted national and regional artists since it opened in 2016. 

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Earlier this month the venue was awarded £30,000 in government cash to help with their pandemic recovery. 

Joe Bailey, director of Out Loud Music CIC, who manage the Smokehouse, said: "Coming off the back of Sound City Ipswich in October, it was essential to keep up the momentum bringing culture and music back to our town."

Ward of Iron

Ipswich based band Ward of Iron played The Smokehouse in Ipswich in November  - Credit: Sam Emmens

The Chill Out Tent, Woodbridge Community Hall

Chris Coco, international DJ and music producer

Chris Coco, an international DJ and music producer, came up with the idea for the Chill Out Tent during lockdown - Credit: Ken Kawamura

On Friday December 10, DJ and music producer Chris Coco will bring his first live 'Chill Out Tent' event to the Community Hall in Woodbridge.

The special guest at the Chill Out Tent, which is part of the Woodbridge Festival line-up, will be Richard Norris, who has worked with Bryan Ferry and the Pet Shop Boys. 

Norris, a member of electronic dance band The Grid, will be tempting the audience onto the dancefloor with his as yet unheard new music. 

Hunters Club, Bury St Edmunds

The Hunters Club in St Andrew's Street South in Bury St Edmunds is establishing itself as a busy live music venue in the west Suffolk town. 

At the start of December the club will play host to a BBC Introducing night on Friday, December 3. They are also big supporters of the regular 'Washing Machine' live music nights which promote local talent. 

Apex, Bury St Edmunds 

Staying in Bury St Edmunds the Apex, which can be found in the middle of The Arc, shopping complex is one of the larger venues for live music in Suffolk.

In December Maddy Prior & Carnival Band, Slade and Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel will all perform there.