NARBOROUGH, or Narburgh, 10 miles E.S.E. of Lynn, and 5 miles N.W. by W. of Swaffham, is an ancient village, on the river Nar, which is navigable for small craft from Lynn, and has here a water-mill (owned by Mr. Everett) and a wharf, where much business is transacted in coal, corn, malt, &c., by Messrs. Marriott. It is in Swaffham union and county court district, King's Lynn bankruptcy district, South Greenhoe hundred and petty sessional division, and Swaffham polling district of West Norfolk, North Cranwich rural deanery, and Norfolk archdeaconry. It had 435 inhabitants in 1881, living on 3545 (3411A. 2R. 4P. on rate book) acres, and has a rateable value of £3820.
Pentney station on the Lynn and Dereham Railway adjoins this parish.
Half of the land is cultivated heath extending southward to that of Swaffham. H. Villebois, John Hotblack, W.G. Winearls, and J.C. Martin, Esqrs., have estates in the parish, and the latter is lord of the manor, and resides at the Hall, an ancient mansion of brick and stone, formerly encompassed by a moat, and built in the reign of Henry VIII., by Judge Spelman.
Near the hall is a lofty entrenchment, from which a large fosse and rampart extended southward along the boundary of Clackclose hundred, to Eastmore fen, a distance of 8 miles, as may still be traced. John Brame, in a manuscript history quoted by Spelman in his "Icenia," says Narborough was a British city in the time of Uter Pendragon, about the year 500: that it was governed by Earl Okenard, and stood a seven months' siege against King Waldy. At the head of the fosse near the hall, Sir Clement Spelman dug up several human bones and pieces of armour, whilst making a garden, in 1600.
The manor was anciently held by a family of its own name, from whom it passed by marriage to the Spelmans and then to the Dashwoods.
The CHURCH (All Saints) comprises nave, chancel, aisles, and square embattled tower. It formerly had a spire, which was taken down in 1679, and it still contains several monuments and fine brasses to the Spelman family, and tablets to the Marriotts, Tyssens, and Chamberlins.
The vicarage, valued in the King's Book at £9 10s., is endowed with the rectorial tithes, and is annexed to Narford. The value of the joint benefices is £518 a year. The living is now in the patronage and incumbency of the Rev. William Edward Allfree, M.A. The vicarage-house is a good brick building, erected in 1765.
The sum of £91, given by Wm. Harvey and other donors, was laid out in 1761, in the purchase of ten small tenements, occupied by poor families. In 1793, the Rev. Henry Spelman gave £500 three per cent. stock, and directed the dividends to be applied as follows:- £5 5s. to the parish clerk, for teaching the catechism every Sunday to poor children; and the remainder for distribution in books and clothing among the children. By his will, dated 1803, he left £722, which was invested in the purchase of £968 5s. 7d. three per cent. Consols; the dividends of which are applied, as far as required, in paying a surgeon for attending poor lying-in women, and the residue is distributed in coals or money among the poor communicants.
The Wesleyans have a chapel here, erected in 1863, by H. Boyce, Esq.
An Act was passed in 1881 for improving the drainage of the Nar valley (see page 20 [which is part of the History of Norfolk]).
POST, MONEY ORDER, TELEGRAPH, and SAVINGS BANK at Mr. Daniel Nuthall's, sub-postmaster. Letters from Swaffham arrive at 7.50 a.m., despatched at 5.20 p.m., Sundays at 10 a.m.
Allfree Rev. Wm. Edward, M.A. The Vicarage Anthony Thos. farmer; h Marham Arnold Wm. shoemaker & poor's rate collector Boyce Chas. farmer, Lower farm Boyce Henry farmer, Church farm Brown Mr Edwin Clark Jas. gamekpr. to J.C. Hotblack Coe Mrs Susan blacksmith Collinson Wm. farm bailiff [see note below] Everett Frith miller, bkr. & corn mht Hotblack John farmer; h Norwich [see note below] Lawson Thos. shoemaker Marriott Jno. & Rbt. maltsters & mhts Marriott Jno. Lewis mht. (J. & Rbt.) Martin Mr Joseph Critchley Narborough hall Mitchell Wm. Saundirs vict. Ship Inn and posting house Nuthall Danl. grocer, drpr. & post office Robinson Geo. farmer, Chalk farm Waller Thos. Turner btcr; h PentneyRAILWAY STATION - James Chapple Smith, stationmaster
Copyright © Pat Newby.