Norfolk: Aylsham


Invasion instructions: 1803

Aylsham is one of the few places in the county for which a military namelist exists although it should be noted that this document contains only a very small percentage of all those living in the town at this time.

This 1803 document covers one large page which has been split up into sections indicated by [Page xx] in the text.

When invasion (by Napolean and the French) was thought to be a real possibility local Militia's were formed and plans were formalised to safeguard the population and impede the enemy. This is how this parish would react.

Preceding the publication of these instructions a census would have been taken of all those able to serve and who could provide waggons etc. An example of one of these survives for Great Yarmouth.

[Transcription copyright © Mike Bristow]

Surname Index

The following surnames are contained in the document. The numbers following each are the Page numbers which contain one or more occurences of the name. Note that a number of the same people appear in more than one table. The original sections have been given page numbers as follows :-

Page to Section Index


Assistants to the Agents
Persons with Waggons for Use of Government
Drivers of Sheep and other Live Stock
Overseers for Removal of Horses and Waggons
PROPRIETORS and Waggons for removal of people

Name Index


Abbs (4,8)
Addison (1)
Adey (1)
Amies (10)
Ashley (1)
Barnard (10)
Barnes (5,10)
Beevor (11)
Blomfield (1)
Bulwer (1,4)
Clark (10)
Cook (6,11)
Copeman (1,11)
Cubitt (1,11)
Culley (10)
Dey (2,10)
Donnett (10)
Dotheridge (9)
Doughty (5)
Drake (3)
Foremage (10)
Francis (1)
Geese (7)
Gibson (5)
Gray (3)
Hagon (10)
Harriman (10)
Harvey (2)
Holley (4)
Hurnard (11)
Jex (9,11)
Kemp (10)
Lincoln (10)
Lockett (10)
Mack (7)
Mayers (10)
Moore (11)
Nash (4)
Neale (2)
Palmer (9)
Peck (5)
Peterson (11)
Piggon (11)
Plane (11)
Raymes (5,10)
Robins (11)
Scottoe (8,11)
Shaw (1,4)
Silence (2,3)
Soame (4,10,11)
Soames (6)
Spink (10)
Starling (11)
Warnes (4)
Wells (10)
West (10)
Whitham (7)
Wiley (7)
Williams (9)
Woodhouse (7)
Yaxley (5)

Street Index


Hungate Street (11)
Market Place (11)
Millgate (11)
Red Lion Street (11)

The Census

The original documents layout was too big to display as one page. Its layout was :-





Assistants to
the Agents
Persons with
Waggons for
Use of
Drivers of Sheep
and other Live Stock



PROPRIETORS and Waggons for removal of people


For their own use
For the Service
of the Parish

[Further Instructions]

This census contains the following information :-



In Pursuance of the Instructions sent to the Superintendants of Parishes by the Deputy Lieutenants and Magistrates of the County, the following Regulations are proposed by the Superintendants and Agents of the Parish of Aylsham, as most likely to ensure the Safety of the Inhabitants, to prevent Confusion and Delay in Case of Removal, and to Harrass and Impede the Progress of the Enemy---Viz.

  • That on the First Alarm, the Bells be rung as in Case of Fire, and a Red Flag be hoisted on the Church Steeple.
  • That the Agents appointed for conducting the Business of the Parish, in case of Invasion, and their Assistants, immediately assemble in the Vestry.
  • That the Farmers collect together of their Servants, and get up their Cattle and Horses into their respective Yards; and leaving them there, repair immediately to the Vestry, to take the Opinion of the Superintendant or Agents there assembled.
  • That the Drivers of Cattle and Live Stock, and all persons willing to render assistance,assemble in the Church-yard and wait for further Orders.
  • That the Volunteers assemble in the Market-place, properly equipped, in marching Order.
  • That the Guides assemble in the same place, mounted.
  • That the Pioneers assemble in the same place, each Man bringing his Tools, a Blanket or Great Coat, A Bottle of Water, A Knife, and whatever other Comforts he can provide and carry.
  • That the Bakers who have offered to furnish a Supply of Bread begin baking immediately.
  • On a Further Alarm, or whenever the Superintendants or Agents shall see cause, (the Enemy not being more than thirty Miles distant from the Parish) the following Measures are proposed---Viz.
  • That the Farmers should return to their Homes, and that those who furnish Waggons and Carts for Public Uses of any kind, should then send them with proper Drivers up to the Town, to be appointed in the manner hereinafter mentioned.

N.B. The above Propositions being made in conformity to the express Instructions of the Deputy Lieutenants and Magistrates, or other proper Authority, it is expected that they will be punctually complied with; and upon the same ground it is presumed that no person will refuse or neglect to attend at the Places fixed, or to give every Assistance in his power (when called upon) to promote Regularity and Order.


It is to be observed, that several respectable Householders are sworn to act as Special Constables in case of Invasion.

[Page 1]

John Adey
Robert Francis
Stephen Ashley
John Cubitt
} Names returned first in
} Schedule No. 2 [*]
Edw. Addison Clk.
James Bulwer
Sam. Jeoffrey Shaw
} Names returned after-
} wards in the remarks
} to Schedule No. 6
Peter Copeman
P. Blomfield
} Appointed
} since

* = See Notes

[Page 2]

Assistants to the Agents.
Charles Neale
Richard Silence
Robert Harvey
Edward Dey

[Page 3]

William Gray }
Daniel Drake } Mounted
Jeremiah Silence }

[Page 4]


Persons who have volunteered with Waggons for
the Use of Government

John Holley, Esq. 2 Waggons, 2 Carts, 5 Horses
James Bulwer, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses  
John Warnes, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses  
Samuel Nash, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses  
Robert Abbs, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses  
Thomas Soame, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses  
Sam. Jeoff. Shaw, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses  

N. B. A Driver must be reserved for each Waggon and Cart by the Persons offering them.


William Robins, Conductor

Samuel Jeoffrey Shaw, Agent for the Management of this Business.

[Page 5]

Christopher Doughty, Sen.
Samuel Gibson
Samuel Yaxley, Sen.
Francis Barnes, Sen.
Thomas Peck
James Raymes

[Page 6]

John Cook
Thomas Soames

[Page 7]

Drivers of Sheep and other Live Stock.
Philip Wiley
Robert Woodhouse, Sen.
----- Whitham
Robert Mack, Jun.
Thomas Geese.

[Page 8]

Edmund Scottoe
Robert Abbs

[Page 9]


Persons appointed as Overseers to Superintend the Removal of Horses and Waggons conveying such Persons as are unable to move themseves.

George Palmer, William Dotheridge, Peter Williams, Richard Jex

[Page 10]

Thomas Soame, Jun. Leader } Selected
Christopher West } to
Leonard Mayers } attend
John Lincoln } the
John Kemp } Aylsham
Thomas Wells } Volunteers,
Thomas Lockett }
Joseph Raymes } when
Stephen Barnes }
John Amies } called
James Donnett } into
Robert Dey } Actual
Thomas Spink } Service.
Thomas Clark, Leader -
Freeman Barnard -
John Hagon -
William Lockett -
William Harriman -
Benjamin Culley -
William Foremage -

[Page 11]

The following is supposed to be the Number of Waggons, Carts, and Horses, which each Proprietor would willingly appropriate for the removal of such Infirm Persons, Women, and Children as are unable to move themselves.

PROPRIETORS For their own use. - For the Service of the Parish - WHERE TO
Sarah Soame, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 2 Waggons, 5 Horses - - Hungate Street
Edward Starling, 1 Cart, 2 Horses 1 Cart, 2 Horses - - Hungate Street
Richard Jex, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Cart, 3 Horses - - Millgate
William Robins, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Waggons, 4 Horses - - Market Place
Edward Plane, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Waggons, 3 Horses 1 Cart, 2 Horses Market Place
John Soame, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Waggons, 3 Horses 1 Cart, 2 Horses Market Place
John Peterson, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses 2 Waggons, 6 Horses 1 Cart, 2 Horses Millgate
Edward Piggon, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Waggons, 3 Horses - - Market Place
Edmund Scottoe, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Cart, 2 Horses - - Millgate
John Cook, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses 2 Waggons, 6 Horses 1 Cart, 2 Horses Red Lion-Street
James Beevor, Esq. 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Waggons, 3 Horses 1 Cart, 2 Horses Millgate
Robert Copeman, 1 Waggon, 4 Horses 1 Waggons, 3 Horses - - Millgate
Edward Moore, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Waggons, 3 Horses - - Market Place
William Hurnard, 1 Waggon, 3 Horses 1 Waggons, 4 Horses - - Millgate
John Cubitt,
1 Waggon,
3 Horses
1 Cart and
2 Horses
of Bread
for the
Market Place

[Therefore] In conformity to the Instructions received, Tickets of removal will be delivered to each Person intended to be conveyed, and the Carriage-room cannot be allowed to any Person or Family not producing a Ticket; those to whom no Tickets are delivered, are expected to walk; but in retreating, the Walkers must go before the Carriages, for the purpose of receiving Relief in case of Sickness or Fatigue.

N. B. It is necessary that it should be distinctly understood, that the Superintendant has received Instructions, and is fully authorised to give directions in the Parish to shoot or destroy all Horses and Draft Cattle, and to break to pieces, or damage as much as possible, all Wheel Carriages that are in evident danger of falling into the Enemy's Hands, except such as are wanted for some of the above purposes ; it will therefore be the particular duty of the Agents to attend to this point. It is hoped that the Proprietors will see the necessity of this Regulation, and will of themselves take measures for the speedy removal or destruction of their Property of this description, particularly of Supernumerary Horses; and also of their Stock, whenever there may be evident danger of its falling into the Hands of the Enemy; and if there be no such danger, it is to be reserved for the use of his Majesty's Troops; and in every case of Losses sustained by Individuals in the execution of these measures (except in that of inattention or negligence on the part of the Proprietor), the most perfect assurance of Indemnification is given under the authority of Government.



[End of Census Document]


  • Schedule No. 2 asked :-
    Persons appointed for the removal of Cattle, Waggons, Horses and Live Stock as well as to take charge of the Dead Stock.

See also the Aylsham parish page, main Census page and the census before 1841 page.

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Copyright © Mike Bristow.
November 2007