HAPPISBURGH, commonly called Haisborough, 4 miles N. of Stalham, and 7 miles E. of North Walsham, is a large village scattered on the summit and declivities of the sea bank, comprising 621 souls, 156 houses, and 1,930 acres of land, belonging to a number of proprietors ; but Andrew Siely, Esq., of Walcott, is lord of the manor. The copyholds are subject to certain fines. The continual encroachments of the sea during the last 70 years has wasted upwards of 250 yards, and it is calculated that a great part of Happisburgh will be engulphed in the ocean, if the same wasting process continues during the ensuing century. The Church, dedicated to St. Mary, has a lofty tower 112 feet high, and stands on an elevated point of land, within a short distance of the sea cliff. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the King's book at £6 6s. 8d., enjoyed by the Rev. Richard Holmes, B.A. The Bishop of Norwich is patron and appropriator of the rectorial tithes, which are held by G. Wilkinson, of North Walsham, and Andrew Siely, Esq., and have been commuted for £665, and the vicarial for £252 10s. The Rev. Jonathan Chaloner, in 1727, charged his estate, now belonging to Lord Suffield, with the payment of £20 per annum, viz.£10 for the education of poor children, of Happisburgh and Lessingham ; and £6 14s. to the former and £4 6s. to the latter parish, to provide clothing and bread for the poor. Several children are now taught in the National school in respect of this charity. There was a large school built about 90 years ago, by subscription, and 3r. of land were allotted to it at the enclosure, in 1803. Robt. Summers kept this school from about 1770 till his death, in 1831, after which his son claimed it, and the land allotted to it as his private property. The Poor's Allotment, 3a. 3r. 28p. is let for £8 8s. a year, which is distributed to the poor, who have also £3 15s. from several rent charges left by R. Smith, Mary Williams, and Mrs. Allison, and from the charity of James Chaloner, from which the clerk has 2s. 6d., and the vicar £4 8s. 6d. for a sermon. There are two Lighthouses within a mile of Happisburgh, one 100 and the other 80 feet high, and the lights may be seen at the distance of from 15 to 17 miles in clear weather. The Newarp Floating Light, at the south-end of the Newarp sand, is moored in 21 fathoms, and has three lights and a flag. During fogs, a gong is sounded every ten minutes ; at the north-end of Haisbro' sand is another floating light vessel, established in 1831, and moored in 13 fathoms. Here is a Coast Guard station where a mortar and rockets are kept for assisting shipwrecked seamen. There are also two yawls stationed to render assistance ; Mr. W. Freeman, chief officer. The Primitive Methodists have a chapel here.
Post Office at Thomas Ducker's; letters arrive at 11.15 a.m., and are despatched at 1.15 p.m.
Return to villages index
Paddy's home page
1891 Census Names Index
1891 Census Names Index for Waxham & Happisburgh Lighthouse
White's 1845 and 1883 [GENUKI-NFK]
Happisburgh Archeology [Norfolk Heritage Explorer]
Happisburgh postmill and Mill Farm postmill [Jonathan Neville]
Local village campaign web-site
Erosion history [Coastal Concern Action Group]
More on Happisburgh [GENUKI-NFK]
More Parish Information [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]