Great Yeldham is a village in north Essex, England, about 6 miles (10 km) from the Suffolk border. Surrounding villages and towns include Little Yeldham, Tilbury Juxta Clare, Toppesfield, Stambourne, Ridgewell, Sible Hedingham, Castle Hedingham, Halstead and Sudbury (Suffolk). Great Yeldham is situated along the busy main A1017 road (formerly A604) between Braintree and Haverhill. Until 1962 it was served for passenger traffic by Yeldham railway station on the Colne Valley and Halstead Railway line between Chappel and Wakes Colne and Haverhill. The line crossed what was called Station Road at a level crossing. The road has since been renamed 'Toppesfield Road'. The village is where the infant River Colne is joined by a stream from near Stambourne and another that has flowed via Toppesfield. The river flows via Colchester on its 11-mile journey to the sea. Great Yeldham contains the "Great Oak", an old preserved oak tree in the centre of the village, which was recorded in William the Conqueror's Domesday Book. From the 1950s to the 1970s Great Yelham was home to the Whitlock Bros, manufacturers and exporters of Dinkum Diggers (tractors with backhoes and fronthoes, often known these days as 'JCB's). In 1972 Whitlock Bros. was taken over by Hymac, and production subsequently moved to Rymmny in Wales. The Great Yeldham plant closed, resulting in many job losses for the region. In 1967 Great Yeldham elected a Communist councillor, June Cohen, to the surprise of many in the area. The land around Great Yeldham is principally used for arable farming and some livestock rearing. From the early 1950s until the mid-1980s Great Yeldham was also known for its apple and strawberry farm called Lark Hill Farm, to which people came from miles around to pick their own fruit. Wikipedia
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