"GAYTON, a fertile parish and extensive and well-built village, pleasantly situated on the Litcham road, 6½ miles E. of Lynn, increased its population from 397 in 1801, to 789 in 1841, including 57 in the large Union Workhouse, which was built here, in 1836. The parish comprises 3,214A. 1R. 28P. of land, under which are beds of excellent lime and flint. It is in three MANORS, viz:- Gayton Hall, (about 1,500 acres,) belonging to Andrew St. John, Esq., of Dover; Well Hall, (nearly 1,000A.,) belonging to Robt. Mitford, Esq., of Gateley; and West Hall, of which Sir T.J. Jones, of Crammer, is lord and owner. The CHURCH, (St. Nicholas,) is an ancient structure, in good repair, with a tower and two bells, and a spacious burial ground. The living is a vicarage, valued in the King's Book at £8 6s. 8d., and now possessing 23A. 2R. 3P. of glebe. The Ven. Archdeacon Glover, of Southrepps, is the incumbent, and the Bishop of Norwich is the patron. A. St. John, Esq., holds the rectorial tithes, on a renewable lease for three lives, under the Bishop of Ely. In 1839, the rectorial tithes were commuted for £483 18s. 6d., and the vicarial for £310 per annum. Here is a Wesleyan, and also a Primitive Methodist Chapel; the former built in 1811, and the latter in 1844." [William White, History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk (1845) - Transcription copyright © Pat Newby]


The name may also be spelled Geyton.
See also Gayton Thorpe.


Church Directories

  • In 1883 the parish was in the Deanery of Lynn Norfolk, in the archdeaconry of Norwich.
  • The parish church is dedicated to St Nicholas.

Church History

Church of St Nicholas
Description and pictures.
Church of St Nicholas
Description, services, pictures, etc.

Church Records

Marriages 1702-1837
See Phillimore's Marriage Registers, Volume 10.
These are included in Boyd's Marriage Index.
Workhouse Registers
Baptisms 1837-1880

See also Norfolk Parish Links: Church Records


Civil Registration

For the civil registration of births, marriages and deaths between 1837 and 1930 (and for the censuses from 1851 to 1901), Gayton was in Freebridge Lynn Registration District.

See also Norfolk Parish Links: Civil Registration


Description & Travel

Gayton News
Parish council, news, church, etc.
Gayton Post Mill
Description and history.
Gayton Tower Mill
Description, history and pictures.

See also Norfolk Parish Links: Description and Travel

You can see pictures of Gayton which are provided by:




Historical Geography

Gayton is in Freebridge Lynn hundred.

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



Cutting, W. Aubrey
Gleanings about Gayton, in the olden time.
[Norwich, Agas H. Goose, 1889]
Romney, Marie
Gayton in the olden time.
Based on "Gleanings about Gayton" by W. Aubrey Cutting.
Walker, R.V.
Gayton Lime Kiln.
[Norwich, Norfolk Industrial Archaeology Society, in "The Journal of the Norfolk Industrial Archaeology Society", vol.2, no.4, 1979]

Land & Property

Great Britain: Statute
Gayton Inclosure Act, 1810.
An act for inclosing lands in the parish of Gayton, otherwise Geyton, in the county of Norfolk.
[An independently printed edition of the act, 1810]

See also Norfolk Parish Links: Land and Property



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference TF726192 (Lat/Lon: 52.743151, 0.55593), Gayton which are provided by:


Poor Houses, Poor Law

After 1834 Gayton became part of the Freebridge Lynn Union, and the workhouse was in this parish.

Freebridge Lynn Union
Parishes in the union, their arrangements for the poor before 1834, etc.
Freebridge Lynn Union and Workhouse
Description from White's Directory of Norfolk, 1845.
Freebridge Lynn Union and Workhouse
Description and pictures.


These figures are from the population tables which were produced after the 10-yearly national censuses. The "Families" heading includes families and single occupiers.

Year  Inhabited
1801  52  82397
1811  61103490
1821  69104545
Year  Inhabited

There may be more people living in detached parts of the parish (if there were any) and, if so, the number may or may not be included in the figures above. It is quite difficult to be sure from the population tables.

1831 Census
"Many houses have been built in the Parishes of Gayton and Gaywood, to which cause the increase of Population (166 and 450 Persons respectively) is attributed."
1841 and 1851 Censuses
"The Return includes 57 persons in 1841, and 118 in 1851, in the Freebridge Lynn Union Workhouse."
1911 Census
Out of the population of 780, 89 were in the workhouse.