Norfolk: Gazetteers and Directories


The term gazetteer means "Geographical index or dictionary" and may contain some biographical information about previous inhabitants of a place.

Directories are books containing some of the following:

  • classified lists of inhabitants of a district
  • members of trades or professions
  • a list of the streets in a place (usually only the largest ones)
  • telephone numbers

which existed at the date of publication. Many also include a short account of the history of the place first. Examples of directory entries are available for a number of Publishers and years so one can ascertain their usefulness.

They have been grouped together because of the difficulty of splitting them into the separate topics of directories and gazetteers. Most of the books contain both so have been listed as follows:

  • Volumes covering the County or a number of Counties of which Norfolk is one.
  • Town directories.

Please note that the early directories (pre 1900) do not list every person in a town or village. This is because some were by subscription and others did not justify the cost. Some of these also contain archaic terms and unexplained abbreviations which are not in general use any more. The later Kellys and others (1890s onward) give a far better coverage but generally only include the head of the household.

An increasing number are being reprinted of which some are on fiche.

Norfolk County entries


  • Aylsham
      Aylsham Directories 1793-1937
  • Gorleston (was in Suffolk but is included in some Great Yarmouth dirs.)
  • Great Yarmouth
  • Kings Lynn
  • Norwich
  • Swaffham
    Swaffham and District Directory
  • Thetford
      Henry Green
    Thetford and District Almanac and Directory
    [Bibliopolis CD books, 2005]
  • Watton
    Watton Directory


Many Towns and Parishes have been transcribed from the White's directories of 1845 and 1883 and are fully searchable individually or via the icon at the top of this page.

Online Images

Online images (some of which are searchable) may be found at:

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Copyright © Mike Bristow.
April 2011