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Norfolk: Heacham

William White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk 1883

[Transcription copyright © Pat Newby]

HEACHAM, 14 miles N.N.E. of Lynn, is a large and scattered village on the sea-coast, and on the Lynn and Hunstanton Railway. It is in Docking union, Lynn county court district, and bankruptcy district, Smithdon hundred, Smithdon and Brothercross petty sessional division, Docking polling district of West Norfolk, Heacham rural deanery, and Norfolk archdeaconry. It has a rateable value of £6814, and had 998 inhabitants in 1881, living on 4853 acres.

Heacham is sheltered behind by a bold acclivity, at the foot of which a small rivulet flows across the salt-marsh to the flat beach. The principal owners of the soil are Hamon Le Strange, Esq., lord of the manor; C.F.N. Rolfe, Esq., and Caius College, Cambridge. The hall, a handsome red brick mansion in a well-wooded park, belongs to Mr. Rolfe, and is occasionally occupied by William Belgrave, Esq.

Heacham had a cell of Cluniac monks, under Lewes Abbey, to which this parish was given by William de Warenne, Earl of Surrey, in the reign of William Rufus. After the dissolution, the manor and rectory were given to Thomas, Duke of Norfolk.

The CHURCH (St. Mary) is a spacious building, originally in the form of a cross; but the transepts are gone. It comprises nave with aisles and clerestory, chancel, south porch and massive square central tower with two bells. The west window is a splendid specimen of the Decorated style, but all the other windows are Perpendicular, and many of them are enriched with stained glass, the original east window has been filled up, a square-headed one now occupying its place. The nave and aisles are filled with high pews. A low ceiling hides the roof of the church and cuts off the whole of the arch of the fine west window. The south doorway is a beautiful specimen of Early English work, and in the porch are the remains of a holy-water stoup. The restoration of the church at an early date is in contemplation.

The church contains numerous tablets of the Rolfe, Redmayne, Elsden and other families. One of the Rolfes sailed with Sir Walter Raleigh, and his marriage with the Princess Pocahontas, daughter of one of the most celebrated Indian chiefs, greatly facilitated the friendly intercourse between the natives and the English.

The vicarage, valued in the King's Book at £6 13s. 4d., was augmented in 1779 with £200 of Queen Anne's Bounty, and is in the patronage of C.F.N. Rolfe, Esq., and in the incumbency of the Rev. George Thomas Thompson, M.A., who has a yearly rent-charge of £263, awarded in 1839 in lieu of tithes. Messrs. Hamon Le Strange and C.F.N. Rolfe are impropriators of the great tithes.

The Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists have each a chapel in the parish. The former was originally occupied by the Independents, and was erected in 1831, and the latter was built in 1862.

The PAROCHIAL SCHOOL, built in 1838, by a former incumbent, is attended by about 110 children. The Infant School was erected in 1815 by subscription, and is attended by about 70 children.

The Poor's Land, 6A. 3R. 15P., with a cottage, is let for £13 10s., and has been vested in trust, from an early period, but was partly exchanged at the enclosure in 1781. The poor have also two yearly rent-charges of 10s. each, left by unknown donors; and the dividends of £500 three per cent. consols, left by Mrs. Frances Rolfe, in 1837, to be given in clothing.

POST OFFICE at Edward Crisp's. Letters arrive at 7.30 a.m., and are despatched, viâ Lynn, at 5.30 p.m. Hunstanton St. Edmunds is the nearest Money Order and Telegraph Office.

	Atthow     William            vict. Wheatsheaf
	Baney      Benjamin Charles   farmer
	Beck       Misses Dinah
	             and Susan
	Belgrave   Mr William         The Hall
	Benstead   Thomas             baker
	Black      Mrs Fanny
	Bly        Francis            carpenter
	Boothby    Octavius           market gardener
	Boythorne  Miss Mary          shopkeeper
	Boythorne  Robert             wheelwright
	Brown      William Thomas     farmer and oil cake merchant
	Burcham    Mr John Geo.       The Poplars
	Chadwick   Mrs Jane Chadwick
	Crafer     Geo.               vict. West Norfolk hotel
	Crisp      Edward             shopkeeper, banker, and postmaster
	Crisp      Thomas             carpenter
	Desborough Mr John
	Duffield   Thomas             farmer & coal mchnt
	Ferrers    Rev. Norman        master of Caius College, Cambridge,
	             Macleod, D.D.      Heacham lodge
	Foulsham   Miss Edith         schoolmistress
	Foulsham   Mr William
	Fray       Charles            farmer and butcher
	Land       Miss Annie         farmer, College fm
	Lewis      Alfred             farmer & corn miller
	Lewis      Mrs Mary           Mill house
	Lord       George             farmer
	Mackey     Edward             carpenter
	Mallett    William Granger    blacksmith
	Massingham Mrs Martha
	Minns      William, jun.      beerhouse
	Monement   Edward, L.S.A.     surgeon, medical examiner of
	                                recruits, Church Hill house
	Monument   Edw                secondhand clothes dlr
	Mouldham   George             butcher
	Mullins    Mrs Lydia          infant schoolmsts
	Newton     Obadiah            beerhouse & whlwgt
	Nourse     James              bricklayer
	Nourse     Robert Joyce
	             Edmund           vict. Fox & Hounds
	Nourse     William            carrier
	Oliver     Lionel, Esq. J.P.  Summerhill
	Patrick    Robert             farmer & brickmaker
	Perfitt    Robert Samuel      grocer & drper
	Pull       James              painter and paperhanger
	Rix        Robert             farmer
	Robertson  John               farmer and butcher
	Russell    Benjamin           grocer and draper
	Russell    John               baker
	Savory     Thomas             baker
	Skerry     Thomas             bootmaker
	Southgate  Robert             grocer
	Spencer    Edward             farmer
	Spencer    Miss Jane
	Spencer    Miss Lucy
	Thompson   Rev. Geo. Thos.,
	             M.A.             vicar
	Wells      Lieut. Robert
	Wilson     James              farmer
	Woodbine   Wm.                horses & traps for hire
	Wright     Wm. Nelson         G.E.R. stationmaster
	Yaxley     Samuel             bootmaker

RAILWAY (G.E.R.) - Wm. N. Wright, stationmaster

CARRIER - William Nourse, to Lynn, Tuesdays and Saturdays

See also the Heacham parish page.

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Copyright © Pat Newby.
December 2009