HEACHAM is a parish, large village and station on the Lynn and Hunstanton railway, 12 miles west from Burnham Market, 14 north-north-east from Lynn, 3 from the pleasant watering place of Hunstanton and 112 from London, in the Western division of the county, Smithdon hundred, Docking union, Lynn county court district, Heacham rural deanery, Norfolk archdeaconry and Norwich diocese, very pleasantly situated on the German Ocean, and on a small rivulet abounding in trout. The village appears from a distance as embosomed in wood, above which peeps the church tower: it has fine firm sands, rendering sea bathing safe and agreeable. Colliers and other small craft can unload here. Here is the junction of the West Norfolk and Lynn and Hunstanton railways. The church of St. Mary is a noble edifice of stone and flint, in the style prevalent in the fifteenth century, and exhibits traces of having undergone repeated alterations: it consists of chancel, nave, aisles, handsome south porch and a vestry, and has a square central tower containing 2 bells: it contains monuments to the Rolfe family, also one to Nicholas Styleman esq. who died April 30th, 1833, aged 72 years: it has an organ: the windows contain some ancient stained glass. The register dates from the year 1558. The living is a vicarage, yearly value £263 with 1 R. 20P. of glebe at Heacham, 1R. 5P. in Snettisham and 7 acres in Sprowston, near Norwich, in the gift of Eustace Neville-Rolfe esq. J.P. and held since 1873, by the Rev. George Thomas Thompson B.A. of Trinity College, Cambridge. There are places of worship for Wesleyans, Congregationalists and Primitive Methodists. The poor's land, of 6 acres, is let for £12 10s. yearly, which is distributed in coals, as also is a charity of 20s, yearly; Rolfe's, producing £16, is for clothing. A fair is held on the 20th June in each year. Here was a cell of Cluniac monks, under Lewes Abbey. In 1850, several coins of the reign of Henry I. II. and III. were dug up in the churchyard. There are several excellent quarries in the vicinity for carr stone, which is used for building; it is soft when taken from its bed, but acquires hardness when it is exposed to the air. Brick and tile making is carried on in the parish and there are corn mills. The Hall is a picturesque building of red brick, pleasantly situated, the property of Eustace Nevile-Rolfe esq. J.P., and occupied by William Belgrave esq. Hamon le Strange esq. who is lord of the manor, Eustace Neville-Rolfe esq. and Caius College, Cambridge are the principal landowners. The soil is various; the subsoil is chiefly chalk. The chief crops are wheat, barley, turnips and mangold wurtzel; and beans on the part next the sea. The area is 3,353 acres of land and 1,500 of water; rateable value, £6,971; the population in 1881 was 998. In 1851, 225 acres of common were enclosed from the sea.
POST & MONEY ORDER OFFICE & Savings Bank.Edward Crisp, sub-postmaster. London & other letters are received
through Lynn by mail cart, arrive at 7.10 a.m. & are dispatched at 5.30 p.m.; the telegraph office at Hunstanton.
INSURANCE AGENT.County Fire, J.G. Burcham
A Public Elementary School for 120 boys, girls & infants is supported on the voluntary system; average attendance, 100.
A Sunday school is held in the school room; Miss Edith Foulsham, mistress
Railway Station, William Nelson Wright, station master
CARRIERS.Matthew Patrick, to Lynn, tues. thurs. & sat.; other carriers pass through for Lynn.
© Transcribed by E.C. ("Paddy") Apling, October 2006; links updated February 2011.
1891 Census Names Index
Book reference for Heacham & Stiffkey
White's 1836, 1845 and 1883 [all GENUKI-NFK]
Heacham postmill and watermill [Jonathan Neville]
Heacham archeology [Norfolk Heritage Explorer]
More on Heacham [GENUKI-NFK]
More Parish Information [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]
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