WEST SOMERTON is a parish. 1¼ miles from station on the Eastern and Midlands railway, about 9 miles north-by-west from Yarmouth, in the Northern division of the county, the incorporation and union of East and West Flegg, Great Yarmouth county court district, rural deanery of Flegg and archdeaconry and diocese of Norwich. The church of Sr. Mary is a stone thatched building, consisting of chancel and nave amd tower, the lower part of which is circular and the upper part octagonal: when this church was undergoing some repairs in 1857 a mural painting about 12 feet long, representing the Son of Man coming in the Clouds of Heaven with great Power and Majesty, was discovered between the windows in the nave, which had been covered with several layers of plaster, and subsequently several additional frescoes were discovered, all of which have been carefully preserved: there is one of St. Chrisropher: in 1878, a very interesting Early English painting of the Virgin and Child was found under the floor of the pulpit: the church has been partially restored, under the supervision of Mr. J. T. Bottle. The register dates from the latter part of the 18th century. The living is a rectory, gross yearly value £199, in the gift of Sir Thomas Fraser Grove bart. and held since 1867 by the Rev. Joseph Budd, of Cuddesdon Theological College. Here was a hospital for lepers, founded in the reign of Henry II. by Ralph de Granville, Lord Chief Justice of England. Human bones have occasionally been found on the Hall estate, and a stone jug and skeleton were dug up in 1844 near the churchyard. Hales, the Norfolk giant, was born and buried in this parish; his height as stated on his tomb was 7 feet 6 inches. The Hall, the seat of Bernard James Cuddon-Fletcher esq.J.P. is situated on an eminence, and commands views of the German Ocean both to the north and east, and is the old manor house of Somerton-cum-Butley: some portions are very old, but it has been considerably enlarged. B. J. Cuddon-Fletcher esq. J.P. who is lord of the manor, Captain Bird, Miss Hilton. the trustees of the late Robert Rising esq. amd F. Charsley esq. are the principal landowners. The soil is a fine rich loam; subsoil, generally brick earth, intersected with veins of sand. The marsh land in this parish has been thoroughly drained by a commission of Sewers under the Local Drainage Act of 1861; a large portion of the land so drained belonging to and farmed by B. J. Cuddon-Fletcher esq. K.P. produces large and successive crops of corn. The chief crops are wheat, oats, barley &c. The area is 1.130 acres; rateable value, $2.114; and the population in 1881 was 232.
POST OFFICE.William Blackburn, receiver. Letters received from Yarmouth at 9.0 a.m. & dispatched at 5.0 p.m. The nearest money order & telegraph office is at Martham
This place is included in the United School Board District of Winterton, formed in 1875
NORWICH.William Hales, every wed. & sat. morning
YARMOUTH.Thomas Hales, every saturday morning
Transcription © Copyright E C ("Paddy") Apling, February, 2009; minor corrections and links updated December 2009.
1891 Census Names Index
White's 1845 [GENUKI-NFK]
Somerton Archeology [Norolk Heritage Explorer]
More on West Somerton [GENUKI-NFK]
More Parish Information on West Somerton [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]
and see East Somerton
Return to villages index
Paddy's home page