William White's History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk 1845
[Transcription copyright © Pat Newby]
BOROUGH OF THETFORD.
THETFORD, an ancient Borough and Market Town, was once a large and important City, being the capital of the kingdom of East Anglia, in the Saxon era; and the See of the Bishopric of Norfolk, from the year 1070 to 1094. (See page 102 [which is the entry for the Diocese of Norwich].) It also shared with Norwich as the capital of Norfolk, till 1833, when the Lent Assizes, which had previously been held here, were removed to Norwich. It is a widely spread town, mostly on the north and partly on the south side of the Little Ouse river, which divides the counties of Norfolk and Suffolk, and receives here the small river Thet, from which the town has its name. It is encompassed on the south and west by extensive sandy heaths, abounding in rabbits, and is distant 12 miles N. of Bury St. Edmund's, 6 miles E.S.E. of Brandon; 28 miles S.S.E. of Lynn; 28 miles S.W. by W. of Norwich; 19 miles N.E. of Newmarket; and 80 miles N.N.E. of London.
A branch line will shortly be extended from Thetford to the Norwich and Brandon Railway at Santon, and it is also proposed to construct railways from Thetford to Wells and Bury St. Edmund's; the latter to be extended to the London line at Bishop Stortford.
The town has been much improved during the last ten years, especially the Market place, where the Shambles, which stood on the site of the Red Lion Inn, were taken down in 1837, and rebuilt on their present site, with a handsome front, adjoining the Guildhall. The market, held every Saturday, is well supplied with provisions, &c., and here are four large annual fairs, viz., on May 14th and Aug. 2nd, for sheep; September 25th, for cattle, pedlery, &c.; and in July, or early in August, for wool. Horse Races were held here from an early period till 1620, when they occasioned such tumults, that they were suppressed by the Privy Council. They were revived in 1833, but discontinued about six years ago.
The town has several good inns, many well-stocked shops, four large breweries, three foundries, a tannery, several malt and lime-kilns, several corn mills, and an extensive paper mill, the latter employing about 50 hands in the manufacture of the finer sorts of paper. Its principal commercial transactions are in the importation of coal, timber, &c., and the exportation of corn, wool, and other agricultural produce, for which the Little Ouse opens a water communication by barges to Lynn, Wisbech, &c.: the navigation being extended from White House, near Brandon, to Thetford, under an act passed in the 22nd of Charles II., and improved under another act, obtained in the 50th of George III., by the Corporation, who, in 1829, erected a neat cast iron BRIDGE, in lieu of the old wooden bridge, which previously crossed the navigation, and connected the Norfolk and Suffolk parts of the town.
Thetford retains many relics of its former architectural greatness, and when viewed from the top of the lofty castle hill, the town has a highly picturesque appearance, many of the houses having large and tastefully laid out gardens and shady enclosures, descending to the winding banks of the river, which are margined by a rich display of elm, ash, poplar, walnut, sycamore, mulberry, Western-plane, and other trees. In the vicinity have been found various extraneous fossils, particularly large cockle shells, or cardii, and button fish, or eschintæ. A petrified curlew and a perfect nautilus were found here many years ago.
The fisheries in the rivers within the limits of the borough, are noticed as early as the reign of Henry I., as abounding in pike, pickerel, eels, salmon, chub, perch, carp, tench, dace, &c. In 1715, a sturgeon, weighing 31st. 10lbs., was taken out of the mill pool. On the south side of the town, near the Little Ouse, is a chalybeate spring, which supplied a Bath House, erected by subscription about 12 years ago, but the bath was filled up in 1838, though the water is said to possess similar virtues to those of Toplitz and Tunbridge.
The BOROUGH OF THETFORD encreased [sic] its population from 2246 souls in 1801, to 3934 in 1841, and comprises 835 houses, and 6976 acres of land, divided into three PARISHES, of which the following are the names, areas, and population, viz.:- St. Peter's, 2281 acres, and 1184 souls; St. Cuthbert's, 215 acres, and 1543 souls; and St. Mary's, 4480 acres, and 1207 souls. St. Peter's is wholly in Norfolk, but all the land in St. Cuthbert's and St. Mary's, except about 100A., is in Suffolk, as also are 58 inhabitants of the former, and 677 of the latter. St. Cuthbert's has also about 1300A. of warren, which is returned with Lackford Hundred, Suffolk, making the total area of the three parishes 8270 acres, nearly half of which is open sandy heath, abounding in rabbits, but in some places affording good pasturage for sheep.
Lord Ashburton and Lady Buxton own the greater part of the enclosed lands, and the former is lord of the manor of Thetford-cum-Halwich, with Sibton in Croxton. FORD PLACE, formerly considered as extra-parochial, is a small estate in St. Cuthbert's parish, belonging to Geo. Beauchamp, Esq. The air of Thetford is highly salubrious, as is evident from the longevity of many of its inhabitants. Mrs. Cath. Maine, now living here, is 98 years of age; and in 1844, John Jackson died here, aged 98, and Mrs. Tyrrell, aged more than ninety.
The Borough forms a Deanery in the Archdeaconry of Norwich, and gives name to a large Union.
THETFORD UNION, formed by the new poor law commissioners in 1835, comprises the three parishes of Thetford, the parishes of Santon Downham, Brandon, Barnham, Fakenham Magna, Euston, Honnington, Sapiston, Coney Weston, Barningham, Weston Market, Hepworth, Thelnetham, Hopton, and Knettishall, in Blackbourn and Lackford Hundreds, Suffolk; and the parishes of Kilverstone, Croxton, East Wretham, West Wretham, Brettenham, Rushford, Methwold, Northwold, Santon, Hockwold-cum-Wilton, Feltwell, Mundford, Lynford, West Tofts, Sturston, Cranwich, and Weeting-cum-Broomhill, in Norfolk. These 34 parishes comprise an area of 180 square miles, and a population of 17,542 souls, of whom 11,051 are in Norfolk, and 6,491 in Suffolk. Their average annual expenditure for the support of their poor, during the three years preceding the formation of the Union, was £10,408; but in 1838, it amounted only to £6,188, and in 1840, to £6,953 18s.
The UNION WORKHOUSE, erected in 1836, at the cost of about £5000, stands in St. Mary's parish, Thetford, but within the bounds of Suffolk, about half a mile from the Town, on the Bury road. It is an extensive brick building, and its boundary walls enclose three acres of land. It has room for 300 inmates, but has seldom half that number, having only 83 in July, 1841, and 110 in Sept., 1843. The Board consists of 43 Guardians, and Edward Abbott, Esq., is chairman, and H. Edwards, Esq., vice-chairman. Wm. Clarke, Esq., is union-clerk and superintendent registrar, C.W. Hotson, Esq., auditor, and Mr. John Lucas, master of the Workhouse. The relieving officers and district registrars are - Mr. Denny Smith, for Thetford District, and Mr. Jno. Sharpe, for Methwold District.
Thetford, according to some authors, was first a British city, and afterwards a Roman station; but the arguments adduced in support of these conjectures, are not very conclusive. Camden and Plot place the Sitomagus of the Itinerary here; but Gale and Horsley contend that that station was at Woolpit, in Suffolk.
At the east end of the town is a large entrenched mount, about 100 feet in height, 984 in circumference at the base, and 338 in diameter at the base, and 81 at the summit, which is dished or hollowed out to the depth of 12 feet below the outer surface. The slope of the mount is extremely steep, forming an angle with the plain of the horizon of more than forty degrees; and yet no traces remain of any path or steps for the purpose of carrying up machines, or any weighty ammunition. It has been surrounded by a double rampart, with an outward ditch, the sides of which were protected by the horns and bones of the animals slaughtered for the use of the garrison, but these have been much injured by time and the depredations of man. On the east side is a large area, 300 feet square, evidently intended for parading the troops. The remaining parts of the ramparts are about twenty feet high, and the ditch from 60 to 70 feet wide. These once formidable works, commonly called the Castle Hills, are composed of a mixture of mould and clunch; and on the top of the great mound or keep, are many tumuli. They were undoubtedly raised for the defence of the town during the predatory incursions of the Danes, who overthrew the Saxons in a dreadful battle fought at Snare-hill, near Thetford, in 870, when Edmund, King of East Anglia, surrendered to the marauders, who cut off his head, and after plundering and butchering many of the inhabitants of Thetford, reduced the city to ashes. In 1004, Sweyne, King of Denmark, invaded East Anglia, and among other places, burnt this. In 1010, Ulfketel, the Saxon earl, suffered a complete defeat, and Thetford was again destroyed. After the truce, which was concluded between Edmund Ironside and Canute, this town, like a phœnix, arose from its ashes.
In the time of Edward the Confessor, there were in the borough 944 burgesses, all of whom except 36, could put themselves under the protection of whom they pleased, without the royal license, providing they paid all the customs, heriots excepted. In the time of the Conqueror, the burgesses were reduced to 720, and Bishop Herfast removed the episcopal see from North Elmham to Thetford, whence, however, it was transferred to Norwich in the following reign. From numerous coins in the cabinets of the curious, it is evident there was a mint here, from the reign of Athelstan to that of King John.
The manor-house, the ancient seat of the Earls Warren, became a royal palace, when the manor passed to the Crown as part of the Duchy of Lancaster. The mansion, now called the King's House, was rebuilt in the reign of Elizabeth, and sold by James I. to Sir P. Wodehouse, whose descendants were long seated here. It was modernized by the late T. Wright, Esq., and is now the property of James Cole, Esq. Queen Elizabeth, Henry I. and II., and James I., occasionally resided here; but the latter, being offended at the remonstrance of a farmer, over whose grounds he had been hunting, sold the manor-house to Sir P. Wodehouse.
Though an ancient borough by prescription, Thetford is comparatively a modern CORPORATION. In the Conqueror's time, the town was governed by a præpositus, and other inferior officers, generally nominated by the Crown; but in 1573, Queen Elizabeth granted the burgesses a charter, by which a mayor, ten aldermen, twenty common councilmen, a recorder, town clerk, sword-bearer, and two sergeants-at-mace, constituted the corporate body and their officers, till the passing of the Municipal Reform act of 1835. The mayor, during his mayoralty, was clerk of the markets, and in the following year officiated as coroner. The same charter also granted them permission to send two burgesses to Parliament, "provided they were discreet and honest men, and were elected at the expense of the borough." This charter was surrendered to Charles II., and an imperfect one obtained in its place; but this was rescinded in 1692, and the original charter restored. The town was governed by the latter till the passing of the Corporation Reform Bill, in 1835, under which the Town Council consists of a mayor, four aldermen, and twelve councillors; and a Commission of the Peace has since been granted, on the petition of the burgesses.
The income of the old corporation, in 1833, was £1,054, of which £955 was derived from the navigation of the Little Ouse, from Thetford to White-house ferry. This navigation had been mismanaged and neglected till 1827, when it was put into the hands of a superintendent, and a debt of £4,200 incurred in improving it by the formation of sluices, &c. The income of the new corporation, in 1840, was only £656. 16s. 8d., of which £510 arose from borough rates; £47. 15s. from rents, and £38. 8s. 10d. from tolls and dues. The expenditure, in the same year, was £598. 7s. 1d.
Quarter Sessions are held for the borough, before the Recorder, the Mayor, and the Magistrates. The number of voters is about 300, nearly half of whom exercise their elective francise [sic] as householders, and the rest as freemen. The present Members of Parliament for the borough are the Hon. W.B. Baring, and Sir James Flower, Bart. There was a return of writs and gaol delivery here as early as the reign of Edward I. The Guild Hall, in which the Lent Assizes were held till their removal to Norwich, in 1833, is a fine old building, with commodious court rooms, &c. It was enlarged and repaired in 1800, and the gaol in 1816. The sword and mace borne before the mayor, were presented by Sir J. Williams, Kt., in 1678.
The CORPORATE BODY and Officers, (1845,) are as follows:-
|Mayor, H.A. Bartlett, Esq.|
|Recorder, T.J. Birch, Esq.|
|Magistrates, Henry W. Bailey, Richard Munn, and Leonard Shelford Bidwell, Esquires.|
|Aldermen, Shelford Clarke Bidwell, L.S.Bidwell, William Watts Wickes, and John Burrell Faux, Esqrs.|
|Coroner, Robert Eagle Clarke, Esquire.|
|Councillors, Messrs. C. Fison, Edward Frost, George Thompson, M.F. West, S. Spendlove, R. Edwards, G. Kingdon, W. Rogers, J.W. Branford, James Cole, jun., H.A. Bartlett, and H.R. Tyrell.|
|Town Clerk and Clerk of the Peace, Wm. Clarke, Esq., and Clerk to the Magistrates for Guiltcross and Shropham Hundreds, and to the Commissioners of Taxes.)|
|Clerk to the Borough Magistrates, Robert Willan, Esq.|
|Treasurers, Harveys & Hudson.|
|Auditors, Messrs. J. Palmer & J. Meadows.|
|Gaoler & Chief Constable, Mr. Philip Penn Wilson.|
|Mayor's Officer, John Clement Tyler.|
|Beadle & Crier, Wm. Boldrick.|
|The Rev. Robert Ward is chaplain, and H.W. Bailey, Esq., surgeon to the gaol; Wm. Clarke, jun., Esq., is sub-distributer of stamps; and Mr. George Green, corn inspector.|
On the 9th of August, 1843, this town, like many other places in the neighbourhood, suffered severely from a dreadful STORM of thunder, lightning, hail, rain, and wind. For about twenty-five minutes, between six and seven in the evening, rain and hail descended in torrents, and most of the windows that faced the hurricane were broken. Many of the cellars were filled with water, and some of the warehouses and shops were inundated to the depth of two feet. When the coach came in from Lynn, the horses, in passing through Bridge street, were up to their chests in water. In various parts of the town, walls were thrown down by the immense weight of water pressing against them; and in the surrounding country, the gardens and corn fields sustained great injury. Many of the hailstones, or rather pieces of ice, were upwards of 1¼ inch square, and after the storm, more than 100 sparrows were picked up dead in the garden of W. Clarke, Esq. Similar storms happened in the preceding and in the same month, in various parts of the kingdom.
CHURCHES AND MONASTERIES,- The lofty Castle-hill, and the ruins of ecclesiastical and other buildings, in various parts of Thetford, remind us of its ancient splendour. It had at one time 20 churches and 8 monasteries, besides other religious and charitable foundations, and was called by the learned of the monkish ages, "Hierapolis et Monachopolis." Of these ecclesiastical edifices, the names only of many of them remain, and the sites of others are marked only by a few dilapidated walls. Most of the monastic institutions were granted at the dissolution, to Richard Fulmerston, Esq., and the Duke of Norfolk. The Nunnery was founded originally for monks, as a cell to Bury Abbey, in the reign of Canute; but in 1176, the monks being reduced to two, it was re-founded for a convent of nuns, who removed hither from Lynn. Some of its remains may be seen in the outbuildings of a farm-house.
The Priory, or Abbey, first erected on the Suffolk side of the town, in the churchyard of the cathedral, was removed to a more convenient situation, on the margin of the river. It was founded by Roger Bigod, for Cluniac monks, in 1104. The ancient gateway, of freestone and black flint, with part of the church, &c., still remains. Its revenues were valued at the dissolution, at £312. 11s. 4½d.; the Nunnery, at £50. 9s. 8d.; and the Monastery of St. Sepulchre, at £82. 6s. The latter was founded by Earl Warren and Surrey, in 1109, for Augustine canons; and the porter's gate and part of the church still remain, in Canon's close, - the latter converted into a barn. The Austin Friary was founded by John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, in 1387, for mendicants, and its site is still called the Priory close.
On removing the foundations of the friary church, the remains of Lady Todenham and Lady Hengrave were discovered, and re-intered near the same spot, under a handsome altar tomb, erected in 1807, by George Beauchamp, Esq. The latter lady died in 1402, and the former in 1412.
The Maison de Dieu, which stood at the corner of Canon's close, was founded by Wm. Rufus and Earl Warren, for two chaplains and three poor men, who were to be fed, clothed, and lodged, and have water for washing the pilgrims' feet. Here were four Hospitals for lepers, &c., dedicated to St. John, St. Mary and St. Julian, St. Mary Magdalen, and St. Margaret, but no vestiges of them now remain.
Of the 20 churches, only three are now standing, and they give name to the three parishes. The first church here, dedicated to St. Mary, was rebuilt by Bishop Herfast, as the cathedral, and is supposed to have stood on the site of the free school. It had four churches appendant to it. The tower of St. Nicholas, and some small fragments of a few of the other ancient churches, are still extant. ST. MARY'S, formerly called St. Mary the Less, is the only church in the Suffolk part of the town. It is a large thatched fabric, with a square tower and six bells. The interior is neatly pewed, and has several marble monuments - one to the memory of Sir Richard Fulmerston. The benifice is a perpetual curacy, valued in the King's Book at £1. 13s. 6½d., and in 1835, at £83. It was augmented in 1722-3, with £200 given by Henry Campion, Esq., and £200 of Queen Anne's bounty. The Duke of Norfolk is patron, and the Rev. Wm. Collett, M.A., incumbent.
St. PETER'S is a large and handsome church, chiefly of flint, and consisting of a nave, chancel, side aisle, and tower. The latter, containing eight bells, was rebuilt in 1789, when a great part of the body was also rebuilt. The battlements on the south side, and the buttresses, are decorated with ornaments and large letters, inlaid in flint work. The living is a rectory, valued in the King's Book at £15. 1s. 5½d., and in 1835, at £55. It was augmented in 1726, with £200 royal bounty, and £200 given by Hy. Campion, Esq.; and in 1814, with a parliamentary grant of £1200. It is united with the perpetual curacy of St. Cuthbert's, in the patronage of the Duke of Norfolk, and incumbency of the Rev. Thomas Sworde. The latter benifice was valued in 1835, at £50, and was augmented with £1600 of Queen Anne's bounty, in 1811 and 1813. Chapel Acre, given by Wm. Tyllis, in 1501, is let for £4. 10s., which is applied in repairing St. Peter's church.
ST. CUTHBERT'S CHURCH is a small fabric, with a tower and five bells. The tithes of the parishes of St. Cuthbert and St. Mary were commuted in 1845.
The other places of worship in the town are a Friends' Meeting House, a Wesleyan Chapel, built in 1830; an Independent Chapel, erected in 1817; a handsome Catholic Chapel, built in 1826; and a Primitive Methodist Chapel, erected in 1838.
The FREE GRAMMAR SCHOOL and HOSPITAL, in St. Mary's parish, on the Suffolk side of the river, were founded in 1566, by Sir Richard Fulmerston, who endowed them with part of the possessions of the dissolved monasteries, some of which had previously been employed for similar uses. The property derived from the founder consists of the school and play-ground; three tenements and Black Friars' Close, (3R.) let for £15 a year; the schoolmaster's house, with an acre of land attached to it; the usher's house, with a small garden; the Hospital, containing rooms for four almspeople, and having a small garden for each; and a farm of 1435A. 2R. at Croxton, now let for £508. 15s. per annum. According to the founder's will, part of this endowment is for the support of a preacher at St. Mary's church; but his intentions were not carried into full effect till the 7th of James I., when an Act of Parliament was obtained incorporating the preacher, schoolmaster, usher, and four almspeople, (two men and two women,) by the name of the "Master and Fellows of the School and Hospital of Thetford, founded by King James, according to the will of Sir Richard Fulmerston." This act provides that the preacher be called the master, and the schoolmaster, usher and almspeople, the fellows; and that they shall be governed by such ordinances as shall be made by the mayor, burgesses and commonalty of Thetford, with the sanction of the Bishop of Norwich and the justices of assize.
Since 1825, the school has been open to 30 free scholars, who are taught reading, writing, and arithmetic; and eight of them may also be instructed in the classics. They are selected by the Corporation from the sons of freemen or settled parishioners of Thetford, and may remain till 14 years of age, paying only for pens, ink, paper, and firing.
In 1817, the Corporation obtained the sanction of the Court of Chancery, to a new scheme for the future management of the charity. They appoint the schoolmaster, usher, and almspeople; but as the preacher is always to be the curate of St. Mary's, his nomination is virtually in the Duke of Norfolk. The schoolmaster and usher are allowed to take other scholars, and in their residences they have each accommodations for 20 or 30 boarders. The former has the salary of £60. 13. 4d., and the latter £50 a year. The preacher receives from the endowment £110 per annum, of which £20 is in lieu of a residence; the house in Black Friar's yard, appointed for him, being let in three tenements. The four almspeople have each a weekly stipend of 5s. After paying the above salaries, &c., and deducting for all necessary repairs of the buildings, the surplus income is to be divided every third year, among the "master and fellows," according to the ratio of allowance prescribed by the Act of the 7th of James I.
Here is a NATIONAL SCHOOL, built by subscription in 1825, and now attended by about 70 boys and 70 girls; a Spinning, Knitting, and Reading School, supported by subscription, for 30 poor girls; a school connected with the British and Foreign School Society; and also an Infant School. Attached to the churches and chapels are several well-attended Sunday Schools.
SIR JOSEPH WILLIAMSON, KT., in 1701, left £2000 to be laid out in the purchase of lands or tenements for such public uses of the town of Thetford, as his executors, with the advice of the Corporation of Thetford, should think fit. Sir Joseph was recorder of the borough. His legacy was not received from his executor till 1717, when it was laid out in the purchase of an estate at Fornham All Saints, and the Ox Pastures at Great Barton, in Suffolk. This property was exchanged in 1826, with Sir H.E. Bunbury, for a farm of 563A. 3R. 27P. at Tuddenham, and the sum of £1223. 19s., which was laid out in repairing and enlarging the farm-house and outbuildings, all of which were burnt to the ground in 1844, by one of the incendiary fires which have of late been so frequent in the county of Suffolk. They were insured for £1150, and are now being rebuilt. The farm is let for about £300 per annum; which, after paying incidental expenses, is applied in apprenticing poor children of the borough, with premiums of about £15, agreeable to a scheme which was sanctioned by the Court of Chancery, in 1718, when the charity estate was vested in trustees, to be appointed, as vacancies occur, by the Corporation. The rules and orders of the Court also recite "that the mayor, recorder, and coroner of Thetford, for the time being, though they could have no estate in the lands, (in virtue of their office,) should be trustees to all intents and purposes." New trustees have been appointed from time to time, by the Corporation, and it has not been customary to confine the appointments to members of their own body.
In Magdalen street are ALMSHOUSES, for six poor men, built by Wm. Harbord, Esq., in 1680, and kept in repair by the Corporation. They were endowed with a yearly rent-charge of £30, left in 1679, by Sir Charles Harbord, during the term of a 99 years' lease. In 1806, this lease was renewed without any reservation for the almspeople, so that they have now no endowment.
The BENEFACTIONS for yearly distribution among the poor of Thetford, are the dividends of £966. 12s. 7d. new 3½ per Cents., purchased with £1000, left by PETER STERNE in 1814, subject to the expense of repairing the tomb of the donor and his father; £4 a year out of the Red Lion Inn, paid by the Corporation in satisfaction of the gifts of MARGARET EDEN, (£40) in 1616, and Sir JOHN WODEHOUSE, in 1751; £4 a year paid by the Corporation of Norwich, as the gift of WM. BARNHAM, in 1659; £8. 10s. out of Abbey farm, paid by Lord Ashburton, under the name of the DUKE OF NORFOLK'S CHARITY; a yearly rent-charge of £20, left by Sir EDWIN RICH, in 1675, out of Rose Hall Farm, in Beccles; subject to the deduction of £2 for land tax; and about £25, received yearly out of the Stoughton Estate, vested with the trustees of HENRY SMITH'S CHARITIES, left in 1627. The latter is distributed in blue-grey cloth coats. In 1608, Thomas Gent, left a house and about a rood of land, to pay 6s. 8d. yearly for ringing the morning and evening bell, and to divide the rest of the rent among the poor. The house was burnt down about 60 years ago.
The FUEL ALLOTMENTS awarded to the poor of the three parishes, under the Enclosure Act of the 44 of George III., and vested in trust with the lord of the manor of Thetford-cum-Halwich, and the ministers, churchwardens, and overseers, are as follows: to St. Cuthbert's, 13A. 2R. 30P., now let for £32; to St. Peter's, 19A. 3R. 10P., let for £22 10s.; and to St. Mary's, 23A., let for £20 a year. These rents are distributed in coals. The poor of St. Cuthbert's have also about £5 a year, as the rent of 2R. 11P., left by Samuel Snelling.
Among the WORTHIES born at Thetford, are Thomas Martin, F.A.S., author of the History of Thetford, born in 1696, and died 1771; and Thos. Paine, author of "The Rights of Man," "Common Sense," "The Age of Reason," and other political works, which, being written in a peculiarly popular style, with much freedom of thought and expression, and published at a time when the French Revolution had excited an extraordinary ferment in the public mind, were eminently calculated to produce a revolution in this kingdom, and were consequently suppressed by Government. Paine died in America in 1800, but his bones were afterwards brought to England by the late Wm. Cobbett. The late E.H. Barker, Esq., of Thetford, was author of "Parriana," or notices of the Rev. Samuel Parr, L.L.D., and also re-edited an edition of "Lempriere's Classical Dictionary."
On the 12th of August, 1555, Thos. Cobbe, Roger Coe, and James Abbes, three martyrs to the Reformed religion, were burnt at Thetford, after undergoing a mock trial, before Michael Dunning, the bloody chancellor of Norwich.
Assemblies are occasionally held in the town; but the small Theatre, which used to reap a good harvest during the assize week, has been but little used since the removal of the assizes to Norwich, in 1833. Here is a Mechanics' Institution, established in 1841, and now having 70 members, and a library of 409 volumes. At the Red Lion, Dolphin, and White Hart Inns, are Lodges of Odd Fellows, and there are in the town several Friendly Societies, and other provident institutions.
POST-OFFICE: Mr. Wm. Christopher, postmaster, King street. Letters despatched to London, &c., at 8 evening; to East Harling, &c., 20 min. past 6 mg; to Watton, &c. 6 mg; and to Newmarket, &c. at ½ p. 8 nt.
Marked 1, reside in Bank street; 2, Bury road, (in SUFFOLK;) 3, Botany Bay Lane; 4, Bridge street; 5, Chapel street; 6, Croxton road; 7, Earls lane; 8, Gaol street; 9, Guildhall street; 10, Great Magdalen street; 11, King street; 12, Little Magdalen street; 13, London road, (in SUFFOLK;) 14, Market Place; 15 Oldman's lane; 16, Old Market place; 17, Water lane; 18, White Hart street; 19, Raymond street; and 20, in Well street.
Ashby Rev John (Indt.) Norwich rd Backley John fellmonger & glover, Common 12 Barker Mrs Ann Elizabeth Bartlett Hy. Albert, Esq. Canons farm 10 Barton Miss Sarah 1 Best Henry, Esq. Prospect House 8 Bidwell Thomas, Esq 7 Boldrick Wm. town crier 2 Burrell James iron founder &c Calkin W. excise officer, Castle row 4 Capes Mrs Elizabeth Chandler F. gamekeeper 10 Churchard Thomas letter carrier 10 Clarke James carrier 13 Clarke Rt. Eagle, Esq. coroner 13 Clarke Wm. Esq. solicitor, town clerk, union clerk, supt. regr. &c 13 Clarke Wm. jun. sub-distributor of stamps 4 Clarke Wm. bookkeeper 2 Coburn Isaac tea dealer 18 Cole John bookkeeper 2 Collett Rev Wm., M.A. incumbent of St Marys 12 Cooke Miss Elizabeth 12 Cooke John dyer 1 Cronshey Mrs Margaret Debenham Alfd. clerk, Ford Cottage 9 Dent Miss Mary 9 Duly Daniel solicitor's clerk Elsey Mrs. Norwich road 4 Faux J.B. Esq. bank manager 20 Faux Mrs Susan Featherston Thomas gent. Abbey 4 Fison James & Sons merchants, bone & cake crushers, and timber sawyers, Steam Mills 16 Gates Mrs Susan 2 Gifford Mrs Sarah 19 Gill Mrs Eliz. 16 Gill Elizabeth fishmonger 17 Godfrey Mrs 17 Godfrey George & Isabella boat builders and owners 11 Green George corn inspector 11 Guest Mrs Mary D. 9 Hailstone James attorney's clerk 19 Harvey Wm. brush maker, &c 10 Harvey Miss Mary 12 Hawks James clerk of St Mary's 4 Hipper J. broker 13 Hobbins Mr Wm. 9 Humphrey Mr Jonathan 11 Hunt Edward carriers' agent 2 Jackson Oliver (P. Meth. Min.) 12 Jones Rev Thomas Lewis 2 Kemp Mrs 13 Lane Rev Matth. (Catholic priest) 2 Lucas Jno. govrnr. Union Workhs 13 Mc.Dougal Daniel supervisor 2 Mann David manager 9 Mann Mr James Marsham Miss S.V. New Plac [sic] 11 Methold Rev Thomas, M.A. rector of Kilverstone 18 Milnes Mr George D. 12 Newbury Mr George 1 Norman Mr Wm. 2 Palmer Mrs Susan 13 Pollard Mrs 13 Pratt Miss My. 2 Ray Robert excise officer 13 Rumball Miss Elizabeth 12 Sayer Richard Edwd. bank clerk 12 Smith Denny registrar, &c 12 Spalding Thomas foreman 11 Steggall Mrs Ann 15 Stone Wm. carrier 18 Sworde Rev Thomas rector of St Peter's 9 Stokes Joseph cork cutter 10 Thrower Jas. hay & straw dealer 9 Tyler Jno. Clement mayor's officer Vipon Mrs Mary Ford place 11 Whistler John game dealer 11 Whistler Wm. game dealer, and clerk of St Peter's & St Cuthbert's 2 Whitrod Chas. & Son reed layers 16 Wilson Philip Penn gaoler and chief constable 10 Woods Mr Wm. 11 Young Andrew, Esq 10 Youngman David traveller BANKS. 4 Harveys and Hudson,(on Hankey and Co;) J.B. Faux, manager 4 Oakes, Bevan, & Co. (on Barclay and Co;) John Juler, agent FIRE AND LIFE OFFICES. 18 Family Endowment G. Faux 4 Farmers' Robert Willan 13 Guardian Wm. Clarke 11 Norwich Equitable Wm. R. Green Norwich Union Wm. Catton 4 Royal Exchange John Juler 4 Suffolk Amicable Henry Brown 13 Sun Henry Newson 13 Union John Houchen, junior INNS AND TAVERNS. 4 Anchor Wm. Johnson 14 Angel Wm. Gunstone Bell Inn Robert Edwards (posting) 10 Black Horse Jno. Walter Tyrrell 11 Chequers Wm. Penteny, junior 9 Dog and Partridge Peter Fitch 16 Dolphin Wm. Boyce 18 Fleece John Golding 14 Green Dragon Wm. Bullen Half Moon Hy. Moore, Mundford rd 15 Horse Shoe Samuel Burt 11 King's Arms Edward Hunt 18 King's Head Isaac Gray 14 Red Lion Chas. Dewing Tyler 1 Rose and Crown James Pooley 16 Spread Eagle Thos. Penteny, sen 2 Star Wm. Smith 2 Trowel and Hammer Jno. Carter White Hart Inn Charles Balaam 19 White Horse Daniel Davy Academies. (* take Boarders.) 7 Bundy J. 7 Carr Emma (Infant) 9*Cross Mary 13 Ward Rev R. & Gates Jno. Free Gramr. 2 Hayward Eliz. *Kingdon John Norwich road 6 Cobb J.J. & Kingdon Maria National 4 Pecher E. *Rogers Misses King's House 2 Skippins Saml. Catholic School 9 Miller S. Spinning, &c. Attorneys. 13 Clarke Wm. 18 Faux Gregory 18 Houchen Jno. junior 4 Willan Robert Auctioneers, &c. 11 Christopher W 13 Deck & Newson 11 Green George Bakers, &c. 2 Clarke Susan 19 Craske Edmd. 18 Handcock J.A. 9 Harrold Ann 16 Jones Wm. Johnson Sarah 11 Oldman Stepn. 15 Oldman Wm. 2 Palmer James 10 Rogers Mary 1 Sterne Susan 10 Traise John Basket Makers. 20 Reynolds Jno. and Robert Beer Houses. 7 Basham Geo. 2 Cary John 7 Francis Frances 1 Fuller Jn. Avis 9 Hammond Jno. 10 Howard Chas. 12 Jay Wm. Largent William, Mundford rd 1 Meek Mrs 2 Parlett Francis 6 Rudland Thos. Skippins Thos., Norwich road 2 Spalding John 8 Whistler Hy. Blacksmiths. 18 Arbon John 19 Booth George Booth Richard 1 Chamberlain J. 16 Gill Robt. and bell hanger 10 Howard C. 11 Howard Jph. 1 King Thomas 1 Rushbrooke J. 2 Smith Wm. Booksellers and Printers. 14 Carley Robert 7 Fleet James (binder only) 2 Lock Hy. Peter Catholic books. 11 Priest Thos. Boot & Shoe Mkrs. Archer John 18 Carr Isaac 10 Churchard Rt. 12 Davy George 9 Fletcher John 18 Frost Edward 12 Foulger John 14 Howard Jacob Humphrey Fras. 15 Pallant Wm. 1 Payman John 10 Pechey Jph. 2 Porter Henry 8 Sterne Charles 9 Sterne Barnard 12 West Michael Braziers & Tinrs. 8 Clarke J. & Son 9 Diver John Brewers and Maltsters. 16 Bidwell Leonard Shelford 5 Branford J.W. 10 Tyrrell J.W. 19 Wickes Wm. Watts Bricklayers. 16 Boyce Wm. 15 Huggins Rt. 12 Nunn Edward 1 Norman Wm. 12 Palmer Jph. 2 Palmer James 10 Palmer John 2 Porter Robert 18 Snare Robert Brick & Tile Mkrs 6 Snare Robt. sen Tyrrell Hy. Rt., Mundford rd Butchers. 16 Boyce James 10 Flack Nathl. 14 Fuller Geo. 1 Fuller John 10 Whistler Ths. 18 Wright Wm. Cabinet Mkrs. and Upholsterers. 2 Atkins Wm. 9 Battle John 4 Browne Jno. B. 11 Oldman John, (& appraiser) Chemists & Drgts 4 Cronshey Jas. 11 Nye Chas. (& Brit. Wine dlr.) Medical Hall China, Glass, &c. Dealers. 11 Catton M. & A. Coach Makers. 2 Huggins Geo. 13 Palmer Alfred 20 Tyler Peter Confectioners. 14 Bond Wm. 12 Craske Robt. 18 Edward Jas. (& toy dealer) 11 Oldman Stpn. 11 Pratt Sarah 10 Traise John Coopers. 2 Parlett Francis 12 Thompson G. Corn and Coal Merchants. (* are Maltsters.) 16*Bidwell Lnd. Shelford 5*Branford J.W. 4*Fison Jas. and Sons, Steam mill 5 Gill Jn. Withers and Garner (& boat owners) 8*Tyrrell Henry Roberts Corn Millers. 10 Flack N. Gill J.W. & G. Water mill 3 Green Henry 15 Oldman Wm. 6 Oldman W. jun Curriers, &c. 18 Frost Edward 14 Howard Jacob Skippins Thomas Earthenware Manfrs. (Brown Ware.) Scales T. sen. & jun. Croxton rd FARMERS. Bartlett Hy. Albt. Canons Farm Featherston Ths. Abbey Farm 3 Green Henry Hipperson Jno. Thetford place Turner Harrison Norwich road 18 Tyrrell H.R. 10 Tyrrell Walter Gardeners, &c. 2 Sparrow Thos., Nursery 13 Stebbing Jph. Grocers & Drprs. (* Hatters also.) 18*Gayford Fdk. 10 Hammond Sophia 12 Hill Charles 9 Hill Mary 11 Hunt James 4*Juler John 16 Kingdon Geo. 5 Richardson Ts. 14*Rogers Wallis 11 Scott John 11 Smith Wm. 18 Spurgeon Simeon Hairdressers. 18 Christopher B. 2 Judd Henry 10 Storkey Wm. 14 Todd Charles Iron and Brass Founders & Agl. Machine Mkrs. Burrell Chas., St. Nicholas lane 11 Hall Thomas 13 Palmer Edw. Ironmongers. 14 Bond Wm. (& gun maker) 4 Brown Henry 8 Clarke James 9 Diver John Joiners, &c. 9 Battle John 12 Betts Wm. 10 Coats Wm. 16 Hearne Robt. 19 Hambling Js. 16 Johnson John 12 Palmer Jph. 1 Smith James 12 Thompson G. 14 Tyler C.D. 18 Tyrrell Geo. Lime Burners. 12 Palmer Jph. 2 Porter Robert 12 Thompson G. Linen & Woollen Drapers. (See Grocers, &c.) 11 Scott John Milliners. 7 Brock M. & Ann 20 Brown J. 11 Clarke Har. 2 Cummings M. 12 Davy Mary 11 Howard Eliz 18 Nunn Sophia. 10 Newell Elnr. 27 Petch Sarah 9 Pilgrim Robt. Smith Mrs Wm. 12 Tyler Eliz. Paper Mfrs. Munn Rd. & Co. Ouse mill Plumbrs. Glazrs. and Painters. 18 Browne Peter 7 Cooper John 11 Norman Sarah 9 Pretty John Rope Makers. 12 Cock John Noble William, Common Saddlers. 18 Abel Samuel 10 Barnard Jno. 6 Codling John 4 Tunney John Shopkeepers. 16 Basham Geo. Booth Richard 12 Burgess Eliz. 18 Dickman Wm. 18 Edwards Jas. 2 Gunstone Dd. 1 Lovely Harriet 15 Nunn Mary 2 Sparrow Thos. Stone Masons. 11 King Wm. 1 Knowles Hy. 9 Sharp Wm. 10 Snare Rt. sen. Straw Hat Mkrs. 17 Dickman M.A 18 Garner Ann 11 Howard Har. 12 Hurrell Har. 18 Tyler Har. SURGEONS. 14 Bailey Henry Woodruffe 11 Best Hy. W. 13 Firth Chas. Ed. TAILORS (* Drapers also.) 2 Baker Noah 4*Brett John 11*Carley Php. 11*Christopher William 1 Ellis Philip 7 Farrow Benj. 2 Hayward John Jackson Evan, Norwich road 11 Jarvis Wm. 11*Meadows J. 19 Sewell Wm. 9 Smith Wm. 12*Towell Geo. 8 Watson John Alfred Tanner. 5 Frost Edward (fellmonger & wool mercht) Timber Merchts. 4 Brown Henry 17 Godfrey Geo. & Isabella (& boat builders) 10 Hollingsworth Richard 12 Thompson G. 18 Tyrrell Geo. Vety Surgeons. 11 Howard Jph. 4 Parry Thomas Watchmakers. 12 Branch Chas. 7 Feltham Thos. 11 Snelling Jas. 4 Spendlove John Simpson 13 Zipfel Chas. (Ger. clocks) Wheelwrights. 7 Brock Henry 2 Huggins Geo. 1 King Thomas 12 Thompson G. Wine and Spirit Merchants. 16 Bidwell Lend. Shelford 11 Cole Jas. jun. (& ale) King's House 5 Gill J Withers and Garner 13 Neobard John 19 Wickes Wm. Watts
- (From the Bell Inn.)
- To London, ¼ before 6 mg., ¼ before 11 morning, and at 11 night
- To Bury, ½ past 10 mg.; to Cambridge, 2 aftn.; to Norwich, ¼ before 4 mg., and at 1 and 3 aftrn - daily, except Sunday. Also, to Bury, Wed. 10 mg., & Tue. Thu. & Sat. 8 evg.; and to Lynn, Tues. at 7, & Thu. & Sat. at 8 morning
- (From the White Hart.)
- Mail, to Bury, Newmarket, &c. at 8 night; and to Norwich, 6 morning
The Norwich and Brandon Railway will be completed before the close of 1845, and will have a branch to Thetford. After it is opened, the Norwich and London coaches will cease running.
VESSELS to Lynn weekly; J.W.& G. Gill, and Geo. and Isabella Godfrey, owners and wharfingers
- Deacon, Mack, & Co's Vans, &c.
- to London, &c. 2 mg.; and to Norwich, &c. 11 night. daily (except Sunday:) Edward Hunt, agent, King street.
- W. Fowell's Van,
- from Gaol street, to London, Monday, 12 noon
- To Bury,
- Hy. Reeve, Market place, Wed.; G. Ashburn (Green Dragon,) Sat.; and Wm. Stone, Oldman's lane, Wednesday and Saturday
- To Dereham, &c.
- Hy. Reeve, Market place, Monday and Thursday
- To Diss,
- Ths. Miller, Oldman's lane, Fri
- To Hockham,
- (Golden Fleece,) Wm. Hudson, Saturday
- To Ipswich,
- G. Lambert, (Green Dragon) Monday and Thursday
- To Ixworth,
- John Rowley, (Chequers,) Wednesday & Saturday, 3 afternoon
- To Lynn,
- Rd. Steward, Mundford road, Mon. & Thu. 9 mg.; and to Bury, Wednesday and Saturday
- To Norwich,
- Jas. Clarke, Gt Magdalen st. Mon. & Thu. 3 aft; & Salter & Co. (Golden Fleece) Mon. Wed. & Fr. 5 mg
See also the Thetford parish page.
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