"BRANCASTER is a populous village of scattered houses, 4½ miles W.N.W. of Burnham, with a staith or quay, where the tide rises nine feet in a commodious creek, which crosses the salt marshes to that part of the ocean called Brancaster Bay. It has a considerable trade in coal and corn. The parish contains 247 houses, 1,079 inhabitants, and 2,969 acres of land, belonging to H. Lee Warner, Esq., S. & J. Sharpe, Mr. J. Middleton, and other proprietors; but Mary, the wife of J. N. Reeve, Esq., is lady of the manor. . . . The castle and entrenchments occupied about six acres of ground, above the marsh, where part of the ditch is still visible, and many stones on the north side, but the outer walls were used many years ago in the erection of a malt house said to be the largest in England, . . . A Roman road, afterwards called the Jews' way, passed from Brancaster along the coast to the Roman station at Caistr-next-armouth. The CHURCH, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, has a square tower, and was thoroughly repaired in 1832-'3. The rectory, valued in the King's book at £24, is in the patronage of Wm. Sadler, Esq., and incumbency of the Rev. Ottiwell Sadler, M.A., who has a commodious residence, and 9a. of glebe." [William White, History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk (1854) - Transcription copyright © the late A.J. Carter]


Brancaster is about 7 miles N.E. of Hunstanton.


Church Directories

  • In 1883 the parish was in the Deanery of Heacham, in the archdeaconry of Norfolk.
    It could have been in a different deanery or archdeaconry both before and after this date.
  • The parish church is dedicated to the Virgin Mary.

Church History

The Church of St. Mary the Virgin
Description, history and pictures.
No author
Saint Mary the Virgin, Brancaster.
[Hunstanton, Witley Press]
Linnell, Charles L.S.
St Mary's, Brancaster.
[London, Home Words, 1968-?]

Description & Travel

Brancaster Village pages.
News, pictures, organisations, etc.
Brancaster Lifeboat Station
1874-1935. This is a link to an archived copy.
Softley, Michael
The Brancaster Lifeboats, 1874-1935.
[ISBN 0952279940, Norfolk and Suffolk Research Group, 2000]
Wright, Harry Cory
Brancaster Staithe and Burnham Deepdale (photographs).
Saltwater Books, [2001]

See also Norfolk Parish Links: Description and Travel

You can see pictures of Brancaster which are provided by:




Historical Geography

Brancaster is in Smithdon Hundred.

Parish outline and location.
See Parish Map for Smithdon Hundred
Description of Smithdon Hundred
1845: White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk

You can see the administrative areas in which Brancaster has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.



De Soissons, Maurice
Brancaster Staithe: the story of a Norfolk fishing village.
[ISBN 0952090708, Woodthorpe, 1993]
Brancaster Roman Fort
Ward, Gordon
A Roman Colony near Brancaster.
[Norwich, Norfolk and Norwich Archaeological Society, in "Norfolk Archaeology" vol.25, 1935]

Land & Property

Great Britain: Statute
Brancaster Inclosure Act, 1755.
An act for dividing and inclosing the common fields and certain lands and brecks in the manor and parish of Branchaster in the county of Norfolk, and for extinguishing the several rights of common and sheep walk over the said field and brecks, and over certain half year closes and pieces of common in the said manor and parish, and for granting another right of common to the owners of certain dwelling houses in the manor and parish aforesaid.

See also Norfolk Parish Links: Land and Property



Map of Brancaster, Brancaster Staithe and Burnham Deepdale.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference TF774440 (Lat/Lon: 52.963685, 0.639438), Brancaster which are provided by: