1891 Census Names Index
Cobholm postmill, Green Cap towermill, Hamilton road postmill, Nelson road postmill, South Denes postmill,
    Southtown tower-mill and steam mill, and York Road towermill [Jonathan Neville]
Yarmouth Beach Railway station [Berney Arms Web]
Newtown Methodist church and churches of St James (new) and St. Pail [Simon Knott]
Cobholm church of St. Luke and The Tabernacle [Simon Knott]
Yarmouth Archeology (with 15 linked pages) [Norfolk Heritage Explorer]
More on Yarmouth [GENUKI-NFK]
Parish Information on Great Yarmouth and Yarmouth St Nicholas [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]
Return to villages index
Paddy's home page

Norfolk - Yarmouth

Kelly's Directory for Cambridgeshire, Norfolk & Suffolk, 1883, pp. 570-579.

[Complete entry. Transcription Copyright © E.C."Paddy" Apling]


YARMOUTH (or GREAT YARMOUTH, Magna Jernemutha) derives its name from its situation at the mouth of the river Yare (the Garienis of the Romans): it is 145 miles from London by rail (viâ Cambridge), 120 by the East Suffolk railway (viâ Ipswich), 123 by turnpike road, 10 east-by-south from Norwich by rail and 24 by road, 9 north from Lowestoft, 54 north-east from Ipswich, and 50 north-east from Bury St. Edmunds, in lat. 52o 16' N. and long. 1o 43' 7" E. The town is a municipal borough, polling station for the Northern division of the county, seaport, and bathing place, and has separate quarter sessions, and is in the hundred of East Flegg, rural deanery of Flegg, archdeaconry and diocese of Norwich.

The parish of Yarmouth is wholly in Norfolk, but the municipal borough includes the parish of GORLESTON and the hamlet of SOUTHTOWN, which are in Suffolk, and over which, for municipal and sanitary purposes, the town council of Yarmouth have jurisdiction. Yarmouth formerly returned two members of Parliament, but it was disfranchised by the "Representation of the People Act, 1867."

The town is under the government of a corporation, consisting of mayor, twelve aldermen, and thirty-six councillors, with a recorder, high steward, town clerk, coroner and clerk of the peace. The Corporation Act [sic. act] as the Urban Sanitary Authority. There is a separate commission of the peace, including the mayor and ex-mayor, and under it petty sessions are held daily, and also quarter sessions. The recorder presides in the borough court.

Next to Norwich, Yarmouth is the chief town of the eastern counties, and the port of East Norfolk and Suffolk, and is a flourishing town, owing to its fisheries, its foreign trade, its advantages as a bathing place, and its manufactures; its situation is as peculiar as its origin, being founded on a sand which formed at the entrance of the estuary which flowed up to Norwich, and which sand gradually became dry land, added to by the sand drifted from the beach in the prevailing easterly winds in the spring. Here the Bure, the Waveney and the Yare empty their confluent streams with those of their tributaries the Ant, the Thurne, and the Wensum, after fertilizing very extensive tracts of the country, through a long and broad artificial haven, into the German ocean. At a very early period this place was frequented by fishermen from different parts of England, especially the Cinque Ports, who dried their nets on the denes or downs, and eventually erected houses thereon, so that in the time of Edward the Confessor there were 70 burgesses, and it became the great mart for herrings, especially during the annual free fair. The Cinque Ports for a long while exercised the right of sending bailiffs to Yarmouth to govern the place during the herring season, from Michaelmas to Martinmas: they held concurrent jurisdiction with the bailiffs of Yarmouth, being the only instance of the kind on record: it led to many disputes, and in the reign of Charles II. the bailiffs of the Cinque Ports finally ceased to attend.

There was a chapel here as early as the reign of the Confessor; but in 1100 Bishop Herbert de Losinga, the first Bishop of Norwich, built the church of St. Nicolas (since greatly enlarged), with a Benedictine priory adjoining (now a National school), where the priests and monks who served the church resided. King John granted to the burgesses a charter (which is still preserved), making Yarmouth a free borough, and conferring many valuable rights and privileges, in consideration of a fee farm rent of £50, which is still paid to the crown. From this period Yarmouth greatly increased, and became so powerful that it supplied Edward III. with more ships and men for carrying on his wars than any other place in the kingdom. Many subsequent charters (all of which were preserved in the Hutch or Town Chest, and are now in the Muniment Room at the Town Hall), were conferred by successive monarchs; and in the reign of Charles II. Southtown was incorporated with Yarmouth. The town was encompassed by a wall, commenced temp. Henry III. having ten gates and sixteen towers, the remains of which can still be traced. The town is now defended by two batteries.

The "Denes" on which Yarmouth is situated, form a long and narrow tongue of land or peninsula, running from the north towards the south, washed on the east side by the German ocean, and on the west by the river Bure, Breydon Water, which received the Yare and the Waveney, and the main channel, which carries all these rivers to the sea. The old town is built on the river side of the denes, but of late years Yarmouth has extended completely to the sea for a frontage of nearly three-quarters of a mile.

The town is regularly built and has some fine houses, both in the old and the new parts; the Health of Towns Act has been applied to it, and it is well paved, drained, and lighted. The North and South Quays, which are very broad, and extend for nearly a mile and a quarter, are among the peculiar features of Yarmouth. The principal streets run parallel with the quays, and are crossed by 145 narrow lanes called rows, which are numbered.

The town is lighted with gas, and watched by a borough police, under Government inspection.

The bridge over the Yare, between Yarmouth and Southtown (a connecting link between Norfolk and Suffolk) was completed in 1854 and is built of iron on the tubular principle upon two massive stone piers, each 12 feet across; on either side, between the piers and the abutments the span of the waterway is 65 feet, and in the centre between the piers the span is 50 feet; the centre span opens in two parts, the leaves of which weight upwards of 90 tons, and the structure, with the approaches, comprise upwards of 2,000 tons weight of granite and stone and about 300 tons of iron; the cost, including the purchase of the site, was about £50,000. An iron tubular bridge, in two compartments, connects the railway with the tramways, which extend the whole length of the quays. A wrought-iron bridge has been erected over the Bure, at the same spot where many persons were plunged into the river by the fall of the previous bridge in May, 1845, and some drowned.

The Britannia Pier at the north end, and the Wellington Pier at the south end of the Parade and the Old Jetty between them, afford agreeable promenades, and the former pier is useful for passengers landing from boats. A promenade and carriage drive extends along the entire sea frontage of the town, from the Cemetery road at the north end to the Haven's mouth at the south end, and returns along the east bank of the river back to the town.

The town is supplied with water from one of the lakes (formerly called "broads,") having an area of between 700 and 800 acres, at Ormesby, about 8 miles north-west from Yarmouth: the works belong to a company of shareholders, who obtained their Act of Parliament in 1853. There is a large covered reservoir at Gorleston, from which both that place and Yarmouth are supplied, the old open reservoir at Caister is now disused

There is water communication with North Walsham, Aylsham, Norwich, Beccles and Bungay.

At an early period there was a channel to the sea on the north side of the town, called Grubb's Haven, but this gradually became choked with sand, and is not now discernible. The south channel was then at Newton, near Corton, in Suffolk, 4 miles south of the present: afterwards the channel was beyond Corton; and in 1337 it became so choked with sandbanks, and was so inconvenient, that the trade of the town was stopped. Subsequently many attempts were made to cut channels at different places, but these failed; and after seven trials, in 1550 the present channel was made: these works were completed in 1567 by Joost Jansen, or Joyce Johnson, a Netherlands engineer: the shores on each side are now defended by piers and jetties. The rise of the spring tides is about 6 feet, and of neap tides 4 feet, the depth of the water on the bar being about 12 feet, and at high tides, from 18 to 20 feet. The roadstead, except with eastern and north-east winds, afford excellent anchorage, and was much resorted to by the navy in time of war, as it is by merchantmen and colliers passing the east coast at the present time; frequently as many as 1,000 vessels are to be seen at anchor at one time. There are commissioners for the haven and pier, and also for pilotage.

A railway to Norwich forms part of the Great Eastern system, and is the route to the North and the Midland counties; whilst the East Suffolk line, which has a separate station in Southtown, affords communication with all the towns of Suffolk, and is the shortest route to London.

The Eastern and Midlands railway had its terminus at the Beach station, Nelson road north, closely adjoining the aquarium, parade, beach &c. This railway company has been formed by the amalgamation of the Lynn and Fakenham, Yarmouth and North Norfolk, Midland and Eastern, Peterborough, Wisbech, Sutton and Yarmouth Union Companies, and by means of it a new and direct communication is afforded to London and the Midland and Northern counties; via Fakenham, Lynn, Sutton Bridge and Peterborough. The company also brings to the towns and districts of North Walsham, Aylsham, Melton Constable, Fakenham &c. in direct communication with Yarmouth, and provides an alternative route to Norwich and Lynn. The celebrated Norfolk Broads are easily accessible by this railway.

The parish church of St. Nicolas, which is cruciform, was founded early in the 12th century by Herbert de Losinga, the first Bishop of Norwich, and received various additions during the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries, until it became a large and splendid edifice, with numerous chapels rich in plate, jewels and ornaments: in 1551 the monumental brasses were cast into weights and measures, and during the time of the Commonwealth the church suffered great mutilation and damage; various repairs were carried out in a very unsatisfactory manner during the first decade of the present century, but it was not until 1847 that the restoration of the church was properly commenced when a partial reconstruction was affected, at a cost of about £6,000; the unsightly pews were replaced by good open benches and various other works were carried out, under the direction of the architect, Mr. J. H. Hakewell: in 1862 the work of restoration was recommenced, under the direction of Mr. J. P. Seddon: the old tower was thoroughly repaired and the parapet and the pinnacles at the angles replaced; the chancel proper was also restored and the partition walls dividing the chancel and its aisles from the remainder of the church were taken down, and, for the first time during the last 300 years, the whole of this noble edifice was thrown open: the south aisle which was in a ruinous state, has been thoroughly restored; a stained glass east window was inserted in 1878 in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Palgrave, by their children; the artist is Mr. Dickson, of London, and the window is, in most particulars, a very successful one of the ancient glass character; very handsome oak stalls are being erected in the choir from time to time, the product of a ladies' working party held at the Vicarage weekly: a magnificent pulpit, erected at great cost, may be pronounced as unique in character, it is extremely handsome but not less useful because by moving about it the preacher can see and be seen by the congregation in every part of the church, a circumstance which helps very much to secure the attention of all present: a splendid piece of decoration has been added to the west end of the south aisle, which is known as the "Mills Memorial" and consists of a beautiful stained window and mural decorations: the area of the building is larger than that of any other parish church in the kingdom, and it will seat a congregation of about 5,000 persons: the organ, first built by Jordan in 1733, is a magnificent instrument and has been divided and thoroughly repaired and enlarged by Bishop and Son, the two parts facing westward in two enormous chancel aisles: they were opened 6th July, 1875: there are monuments to the Englands, Fullers, Turners, and some few other families of distinction, while plain marble slabs mark the resting places of John Carter, the friend of Cromwell and of Mrs. Bridget Bendish, daughter of General Ireton and granddaughter of the Lord Protector: the font, which is of Purbeck marble, is octagonal and very ancient: the vestry contains a small collection of old books and a curious revolving reading-desk: the vicar is very desirous to erect a magnificent and lofty spire about 60 feet from the west end of the church, the gilt cross of which would be the first thing in England on which the rising sun would shine. The parish register dates from 1558. The living is a vicarage, yearly value about £360, but precarious and uncertain, with residence, in the gift of the Dean and Chapter of Norwich and held since 1874 by the Rev. George Venables S.C.L., F.R.A.S. of St. Edmund Hall, Oxford, rural dean of Flegg, honorary canon of Norwich and late one of the Royal Commissioners on Patronage.

St. George's chapel of ease was built in 1714 and is a fair specimen of the architecture of the time: it consists of apsidal chancel, nave and aisles and has a gallery and sittings for about 800: it has recently (1883) been thoroughly repaired and reseated at a cost of about £1,200.

St. Peter's church was built in 1833, at a cost of £12,000: it is of white brick, consisting of nave, aisles and gallery, with a tower 118 feet high, in which is a clock having four dials: there is in it a copy of Rubens' Descent from the Cross: it has sittings for about 1,500. The living is a perpetual curacy in the gift of the vicar of Yarmouth; the Rev. William Thorpe Goodrich has been incumbent since 1861.

St. John's church near the beach, erected in 1857, and since then enlarged five times, is built of cut flint with stone dressings, in the Early English style. The chancel is terminated by a round apse, many of the windows are filled with painted glass in memory of various persons who were members of the congregation: designs have been prepared by Messrs, Bottle and Olley, architects of the town, for further alterations; when these are completed the church will consist of chancel, with apsidal end and south chancel aisle, nave, aisles and transepts, organ chamber, north and south porches and bell turret over the south porch, clergy vestry and large octagonal vestry connected with the church by a corridor: it will seat about 700 persons. This is a curacy in the gift of the vicar, and held since 1875 by the Rev. Arthur John Spencer M.A. of Trinity College, Cambridge and Wells Theological College.

St. Andrew's church and schools, near the north quay, were erected in 1860, principally for the river population. The style is Early English: the church is built externally of cut flints, with stone dressings, and in internally faced with red bricks with white brick bands, and consists of apsidal chancel, nave, south aisle and north and south transepts, a north aisle is now (1883), about to be added. The Rev. George Girling has been curate since 1879.

St. James' church Queen's road, the erection of which was commenced some years back, is still incomplete and consists at present of chancel and nave only, the Rev. George Augustus Frederick Quentin M.A. of St. John's College, Oxford, has been minister of this district since 1882.

The Catholic church, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, was erected in the year 1874, at an expense considerably exceeding £10,000: it stands at the junction of the Regent road with Nelson road south: the sacred edifice is Gothic and consists of chancel, nave which is lighted with quatrefoil windows in the clerestory), aisles, sacristy and lofty tower at the north-west angle: the interior is partially decorated: the high altar, reredos and pulpit are of stone, elaborately carved: the fourteen stations of the Cross are represented in bas-relief on the walls. The Rev. Thomas Williams, S.J. and James Foley S.J. are the priests. The new elementary schools belonging to this church are spacious and ornate: they were erected in the year 1881, and opened in January, 1882, and will hold nearly 600 children. The cost of the ground, which is freehold, and the buildings was £5,000 and upwards, and the money was furnished by the priests of the mission, and the schools are the private property of the clergy attached to the church: the number of scholars is about 300. The Catholic Cemetery is in the Caister road, in which stands a mortuary chapel.

The Society of Friends have a Meeting House, in Row 60, Howard street.

The Baptist chapel, Wellesley road, was erected in 1870, for the congregation formerly worshipping in the Old Meeting, built in 1756, Row 15. The Baptist chapel, York road, was built in 1841.

The Brethren have a small chapel in Albion road.

The Congregational chapel, Middlegate street, built in 1870, at a cost of £3,500, has sittings for about 800. A large lecture hall with class rooms as added in 1879, at a further cost for £3,500. The Congregational chapel, King street, was built in 1855.

The Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion church, Fish street, contains 450 sittings.

The Methodist New Connexion chapel, King street, contains about 400 sittings.

The Primitive Methodist chapel (Yarmouth Temple), Priory plain, was built in 1875, at a cost of £4,891. The Primitive Methodist chapel, Queen's road, was built 1867, at a cost of £1,680, and has sittings for about 600.

The Old Meeting House, Unitarian chapel, Middlegate street, has sittings for about 500.

The United Methodist Free church, Regent road, was built in 1856, sittings for about 600.

The Wesleyan chapel, Dene side, was built in 1837, and has sittings for about 1,200.

The parish churchyard, which is extensive, was enlarged about the year 1833. A cemetery of 12 acres, north-east of the church and adjoining the churchyard, was enclosed in 1855 and a further enclosure of 15 acres of ground adjoining the latter was made in 1875: the total extent of burial-ground contiguous to the church is about 40 acres.

The Blue Coat Charity School, in Market place, was erected in 1713 by the corporation, it has an income of about £200 yearly from invested funds, which is augmented by subscriptions: there are 100 boys and 50 girls educated and occasionally provided with clothing: the master's residence adjoins the school-house.

The Old Priory, near the parish church, has been purchased and converted into a National school for boys, girls and infants, together with an upper school for boys, in which various extra subjects are taught: these schools were opened in 1852 and will hold about 80 children. In 1853 buildings were erected in a style corresponding with that of the schools, to form a reading-room, library and museum.

The charities of the town are administered by trustees under the control of the Charity Commissioners and others: the revenue is about £1,000 a year.

The Hospital of the Blessed Virgin was founded in the reign of Edward I. by Thomas Fastolfe, for eight poor men and eight poor women: it passed into the possession of the corporation and was dissolved at the Reformation. In 1551 a Grammar school "for all the inhabitants" was established, to which was appropriated the great Hall of the Hospital and other parts of the old building, including a house for the master, and part of the revenue of the Hospital was applied to the support of the master and of the Grammar school. This school continued until 1757, when having fallen into decay it was closed and so remained until 1869, when it was re-established by the Charity Trustees (with the concurrence of the Commissioners) under a scheme which provides that the son of any inhabitant can obtain a good commercial or classical education for £6 a year. The new buildings are in Trafalgar road: the school-room was opened on the 6th June, 1872, by H.R.H. the Prince of Wales: about 130 boys are annually educated.

In 1650 Mr. Owner, a wealthy inhabitant of Yarmouth, proposed a scheme "for maintaining and setting the poor to work" and settled a sum of money for that purpose, which was supplemented by the corporation out of the Hospital and other charity funds in their hands: ultimately, instead of applying the money to a workhouse, schools for the poor were established, called the Hospital schools, where a number of boys and girls were lodged, clothed, fed and educated; in 1842 the old buildings were pulled down and the present buildings erected on the former site on the east side of the Market place, when the number of boarders was reduced and in 1850 the lodging, clothing and diet of the children (under the advice of the Charity Commissioners) ceased and the peculiar dress was abolished, but the gratuitous education of a larger number of poor children has continued to the present time: the boys' and girls' schools have an average attendance of 200: the boy's school is under Government inspection.

The Fishermen's Hospital was founded in 1702, for decayed and disabled fishermen and is endowed with property amounting to £63 yearly: there are free houses for twenty decayed fishermen who have attained the age of sixty, and the yearly income of the charity is divided among them.

Warne's Charity amounts on an average to about £500 a year, derived from an estate at Thrigby, in Norfolk, and a small sum in Consols, and is applied in gifts of money in sums not exceeding £1 each, to the poor widows of Great Yarmouth.

Paston's, Packer's, Hall's and Colby's charities for distributing money and coals, for the poor of the parish, amount in the aggregate to about £30 yearly.

The new Town Hall has been erected on the Quay, from plans by Mr. John B. Pearce, architect, of Surrey street, Norwich: it is built of red brick, with dressings of red sandstone from St. Bees, Cumberland: the site is a square of about 115 feet; the principal entrance is on the north, opening into a vestibule and thence to the central hall, which is 80 feet by 24 feet, and from the ground to the pinnacle of the clock tower, 125 feet; from the vestibule access is gained to the various offices for the town clerk, the muniment room, committee room, accountants' room, chief constable's and police room, with convenient access to the cells; also the surveyors' offices and rooms for barristers, and waiting rooms for witnesses &c.: the grand staircase ascends from the central hall, and is on white Portland stone, with balusters of teak, beautifully carved: the staircase gives access to the first floor, on which are the quarter sessions court, 32 feet by 49, with gallery for the public, with judges retiring room: the Assembly room, which is the principal apartment, as it extends the full length of the building on the west side, and is 100 feet long by 45 feet wide: there are chairs for 900 persons: the northern end is shut off by a teak screen for a refreshment room: here are also the council room and rooms for the use of the grand and petty juries, connected with the court by a small corridor, through which the jury pass to present their bills, and on this floor, at the south-east corner, is the police court, which is well arranged and ventilated, and specially adapted to its use: there is a separate room for witnesses and a stone staircase leads from the cells to the court by which prisoners are placed in the dock: Messrs. J. W. Lacey and Son, of Norwich, were the contractors for the entire building: all the furniture and fittings have been designed by Mr. Pearce so as to be in character with the building: the stoves have been specially made for the building by Messrs. Barnard, Bishop and Barnard: the furniture was principally supplied by Messrs. Norman and Son, of Great Yarmouth: the hall was opened in state by H.R.H. the Prince of Wales, on Wednesday, the 1st day of June, 1883, when a magnificent déjeuner was given.

The Tol-House,---Since the erection of the New Town Hall, and the transference of prisoners to the gaol at Norwich, the old Tol-House has become useless: the front portion of it, however, is an unusually interesting piece of architecture, containing two of the most beautiful Early English doors that remain to us, and the lower part forming the ancient gaol, which ought most certainly to be preserved as a specimen of what gaols were in early days. The corporation, having regard simply to finance, proposed to sell the whole site and buildings, but on consideration they willingly arranged upon certain conditions to secure the preservation of the ancient part of the building, which is accordingly let on lease to a corporate body, the Mayor and the Vicar, with others added from time to time, who will preserve, as long as possible, one of the most interesting relics in this, to the Antiquary, most interesting town. The report of Mr. Loftus Brock and Messrs. Bottle and Olley, joint architects, states that a sum of about £1,200 will be required to restore the building and erect certain necessary adjuncts, and it is hoped that archæologists generally will respond to the appeal that has been made.

The Royal Assembly and Reading Rooms, adjoining the Victoria Esplanade, were erected by a public company in 1863, from a design by Mr. H. H. Collins, of London: the total cost was £5,000: they are now the property of Mr. William Butcher, of Norwich.

The corn market is held on the Hall quay.

The market days are wednesday and saturday. The fairs are held on Shrove monday and tuesday, and on Easter friday and saturday.

The Custom House, on the Quay, is a large and handsome building.

The Bath House (to which has been added a comfortable family hotel), situate in the centre of the Marine drive, is held on lease from the corporation by the executors of the late Mr. Samuel Walker Bly, for a term of 500 years from September, 1759, with a covenant that no other baths shall be erected on the corporation waste lands: it was rebuilt and enlarged in 1836, and fitted with baths of modern construction, and the bathing accommodation has since been extended form time to time to keep pace with the requirements of this rapidly improving town.

There are several small docks or basins belonging to the shipbuilders, one of which will take a 500-ton ship.

The first workhouse at Yarmouth was established, through the instrumentality of Mr. Owner, on a part of the site of the ancient hospital of St. Mary. All the old buildings were demolished in 1842, when the present school-rooms, with residences for the master and mistress, were erected. The present workhouse was built and opened in 1838, costing £7,000: it stands on the North Denes: when first erected it stood open to the Denes, and was built to hold 400 inmates. Land has since been granted on lease by the corporation, and a substantial brick and stone wall has been built on three sides, enclosing an area of about eight acres, including that on which the house stands. The house itself has also been enlarged by the addition of infirmaries, lunatic wards, and other buildings, so that at the present time the workhouse is capable of holding 500 inmates and its staff of officers. The Board of Guardians consists of 16 members, who hold their board meetings fortnightly at the Middlegate Hall.

The Public Library, South Quay, was established in 1802 by a number of shareholders and yearly subscribers; it now possesses a valuable collection of about 14,000 volumes of all classes of literature and on all subjects of general interest, and among them are 40 large folios of the Public Records, printed by the Government and deposited here for public use in 1825 including the great Domesday book of 1800; the new edition of 1875 has since been added. The library room is 45 feet long by 22 feet 6 inches wide. The reading room, which is 30 feet by 24 feet, is open to all subscribers, and is well supplied with the best London and local daily and weekly newspapers and the leading magazines of the day.

The Theatre Royal was erected in 1778, and was remodelled in 1820, and is capable of seating 800.

The Gaiety Theatre, in Victoria road, is a structure of wood, and was erected in 1881, and will seat about 1,800.

Telegraph offices are at Regent street, Marine parade (near the Norfolk hotel), and Fish Wharf (during the fishing season), and at Gorleston, and communicate with all parts of the world.

One of the chief ornaments of the town is the conspicuous column erected on the South Denes by county subscription in 1817, to commemorate Admiral Lord Nelson: it is a fine pillar, of the Doric order, with fluted shaft, and its extreme height is 144 feet: the summit is reached by 270 steps in the interior, and the views from it are varied and extensive: the roof of the shaft is supported by caryatides, and these are surmounted by a ball and figure of Britannia holding in her hands a trident and a laurel branch.

The Yarmouth Hospital and Dispensary was founded in 1838, and contains 30 beds.

The Sailors' Home a noble edifice of red and white brick situated on the Marine parade, was erected in 1860 at a cost of about £2,000, and is a refuge for the many shipwrecked seamen who are annually landed from the wrecks occurring on this dangerous part of our coast: since its establishment 5,717 such persons rescued from shipwreck have been received: there are baths and other appliances for the restoration of the apparently drowned: it contains also a reading-room, library and small museum for the use and benefit of sea-faring persons; it is supported principally by voluntary contributions; Henry Edward Buxton esq. is the honorary treasurer, and Mr. George Thomas Watson, secretary

The Walrond Memorial Smack Boys' Home and Fishermen's Institute, on the Ballast quay, was erected in 1875: it contains all the necessary appliances for securing the comfort and accommodation of smack boys when ashore: the buildings are of a Gothic character, freely treated, and contain office, dining room, reading-room, large room for meetings, dormitories on the separate bunk system, rooms for the manager and necessary offices: it will accommodate 38 boys, each having a separate bed and apartment.

The Boys' Home, in Belfort place, was founded in 1870, for the purpose of feeding, clothing and bringing up destitute children, giving them the advantages of a family in every respect: it is unsectarian, the only qualification being that the boys are poor and without friends: it is supported by voluntary contributions and the boys' own industry.

Yarmouth is the headquarters of the Norfolk regiment (Regimental district No. 9); the barracks are at Southdown.

The Naval Hospital, situate at the southern extremity of the town, is now occupied as a Naval Lunatic Asylum, it being the only one in the kingdom, and is open daily for visitors: the inmates consist of 40 officers of all ranks and 160 seamen and marines, making a total of 200. Further south is the depôt for the 4th battalion Norfolk regiment (2nd Norfolk Militia) and Prince of Wales' Own Norfolk Artillery Militia: it was erected in 1850. There are two corps of volunteers, one artillery and the other rifles: the butts are on the North Denes. The Drill Hall of the rifle volunteers was erected in 1867, on St. Peter's plain and covers a space of ground 147 feet in length by 65 feet in width: the south elevation, which is the principal front, presents a picturesque appearance: the large hall is roofed in one span with elliptic ribs, and is lighted chiefly by a skylight at the apex of the roof; the ribs and trusses of the roof are stained brown with stencilled patterns and edgings in white and gold, and the general effect is very good.

The Volunteer Artillery Drill hall, built in 1881, is 66 feet long and 35 feet wide.

The trade of Yarmouth is the supply of the towns on the rivers, which are navigated by wherries and lighters. During the year ending March 25th, 1882, 87,540 tons of coals were imported, the port and haven dues upon which were £1,459; 147,688 quarters of corn and see were imported and exported, the port and haven dues upon which were £923 1s. There has been of late years a large increase in vessels of 150 tons and upwards, the tonnage of which, during the year, was 80,214: vessels of smaller size amounted to 87,649 tons; the dues on the two classes of vessels amounting to £3,100 19s. 3d.; the dues upon fishing vessels were £2,527 13s 4d.; the total amount of collection of port and haven dues was £11,319 17s. 10d. Barley is the chief article of export. There are numerous and very extensive malting-houses in Yarmouth and its neighbourhood, belonging to Messrs. E. Lacon and Sons and to the metropolitan brewers and others, which afford employment for a large number of hands. The town is a great centre of the fishing trade; the herring fishery, for which Yarmouth is so highly and justly celebrated, employs upwards of 800 first-class smacks of 15 tons and upwards, carrying form 6 men each; and a somewhat larger number of vessels of smaller size, whilst a very large number of persons, both men and women, are employed on shore in salting and curing the fish: those called "red herrings" being first cured with salt and afterwards dried with the smoke of a wood fire: the produce is equal to one-fifth of the entire return of the herring fisheries throughout the kingdom, the number taken being reckoned by "lasts," each last consisting of about 13,000 herrings; from September to the end of November is the time for herring fishing; there are also fisheries for mackerel, cod, sprats, turbot, soles, skate, whitings, eels and shrimps. A large portion of this produce is sent to London, Manchester, Birmingham and other distant towns. The Fish Wharf, on the South Denes (commenced April 20th, 1867, opened February, 1869) is 2,251 feet in length, with shed 750 feet long and 40 feet wide: the roof rests on 148 iron columns, about 9 feet high in front, and 7 in the rear; the cost was about £23,000: on the east side are fish salesmen's offices, and at the rear of the market a series of curing houses and yards. Ship and boat building employ many hands, and vessels of 460 tons are built here. There are several rope and twine and trawl net manufactories. The silk crepe works belonging to Messrs. Grout and Co., erected in 1818, give employment to nearly 1,000 operatives of both sexes.

There are steam packets to and from London, Hull, and Newcastle, for passengers and goods, and the Scotch steam packets pass through Yarmouth Roads and occasionally land and embark passengers.

The Aquarium, the lower storey of which was built in 1876, has now been completed on a somewhat modified yet considerable scale: it comprises a large hall for entertainments about 115 by 60 feet, with spacious promenade galleries on the upper floor; the hall at the south end has a large and well constructed stage, provided with the most modern appliances, having a depth of nearly 40 feet and a width of about 50 feet, the proscenium opening being 33 feet wide: on each side of the hall are the Aquarium tanks: the main entrances are to the south, the corridors, and the staircases to galleries being of ample width, with cloak and retiring rooms adjoining: large doors at the north end of the large hall open on to the spacious north corridor, the refreshment department and the lavatories being on the opposite side of the corridor: there are public entrances at each end of this corridor and a broad staircase at the west end leading to the minor hall on the upper floor, which is approached by a spacious lobby, and is about 80 feet long and 38 feet wide, with gallery at the west end: large doors on south side of the minor hall open on to the promenade gallery of large hall and to east terrace: to the north of minor hall are lavatories and retiring rooms, and also a bar about 40 feet by 20 feet with various smaller rooms: the south front is entirely new and forms an imposing elevation in the Italian style, the material of which it is built is buffa terra cotta: this front has also a projecting ornamental iron verandah and balcony: the remaining elevations are chiefly of brick with moulded brick or stone dressings, the old ground floor being retained: the expenditure incurred in completing the buildng was about £10,000: the architects are Messrs. Bottle and Olley.

Races take place on the South Denes, in August. There is also a yearly regatta, in the roadstead, and another on Breydon Water, near Burgh Castle.

Among the curiosities are the remains of the town walls, gates and towers. The Star Hotel contains some curious carvings and pendant ceilings: and No. 4, South quay (the residence of Mr. Samuel Aldred, built in 1596), contains some fine Elizabethan rooms, in one of which, according to tradition, the death of Charles I. was determined on: it belongs to the Carter family, and a granddaughter of Oliver Cromwell resided in it. In the neighbourhood of Yarmouth is the site of the Roman camp at Burgh, called Garianonum, one of the most perfect and considerable of such remains in Great Britain; and the ruins of Caister Castle, erected by the renowned Sir John Fastolf in the fifteenth century; also some curious parish churches.

The parish comprises 1,510 acres; rateable value, £120,545; the population in 1881 was 37,313, and of the borough, 1871, was 41,819, and in 1881, 46,159, —viz., Great Yarmouth, 37,151; Gorleston and Southtown, 9,008; Cobholm Island is included with the return for Great Yarmouth.

Official Establishments, Local Institutions, &c.

Savings Bank & Goverment Annuitity & Insurance Office,
Hall quay & Regent street
Postmaster—Charles Henry Stevens Geake.



Lines of Road & Chief Places from which mails are received By Letter Carriers at Delivery to Callers at
From London, Norwich, Lowestoft & all parts of England, Ireland & Scotland

7.0 am

7.0 a.m.

From London 10.30 a.m. 10.30 a.m.
From London & all parts with Norwich mail 1.45 p.m. 1.45 p.m.
From London & all parts with Norwich & local posts 8.0 p.m. 8.0 p.m.
Letters for delivery to Yarmouth may be posted at the head office, 1st delivery, up to 6.45 a.m.; 2nd, up to 10 a.m.; 3rd, up to 1 p.m.; 4th, up to 7.30 p.m. For Gorleston, 1st delivery, up to 4.50 a.m.; 2nd, up to 10.30 a.m.; 3rd, up to 3 p.m.


Lines of Road & Chief Places of Destination

Letters can be posted at ordinary rates until Letters can be posted with an additional stamp until
To Gorleston, Reedham, Limpenhoe, Fritton, Belton, Burgh Castle, Hopton, Caister, Hemsby, Ormesby, Martham, Winterton, Flegg, Burgh Filby, Rollesby, Repps, Thurne, &c. 4.50 a.m. . .
To Beccles 4.50 a.m. . .
To London 5.45 a.m. . .
To Norwich 7.0 a.m. . .
To Norwich & Lowestoft 9.50 a.m. . .
To London, Ipswich & all parts 10.30 a.m. 10.40 a.m.
To London & all parts 1.0 p.m. 1.15 p.m.
To North of England, Scotland, the Midland & Western Counties

3.20 p.m.

. .

To London (to meet the midnight dispatches) and all parts

3.30 p.m.

. .

To Norwich 5.0 p.m. 5.15 p.m.
To Ipswich & most parts of Suffolk & Essex 8.0 p.m. 8.15 p.m.
To London, Norwich & all parts 8.0 p.m. 8.40 p.m.
For Lowestoft 9.0 p.m. . .


Elected 1877. Elected 1880.
Youell Edward Pitt Palmer William Henry
Steward Thomas Burton Harmer Henry Robert
Stone Allison Davie Mabson William
Press Benjamin Howard Teasdel Henry
Wiltshire Charles Henry Aldred Charles Cory
Smith John Caporn Elected 1883.
  Edward William Worlledge


North or St.Nicholas' St George's Ward.
Ward. Harrison William
Bly John Henry Green Thomas
Stafford Stephe John Fredk Doughty Thomas William
Nightingale Samuel Bonfellow Edmund John
Burroughs Thomas Proctor Palmer Frederick Danby
Nightingale Samuel, jun. Johnson John William
Market Ward. Nelson Ward.
Norman John Arundel Woolverton Charles
Garratt John Tomkins Daniel
Tunbridge Richard Henry Fenner Horatio
Barnby Johnn Edger Buxton Henry Edmund
Martins Richard Palmer Frederick
Barge Samuel Sutton James
Regent Ward. Gorleston & Southtown or
Carpenter Frederick St. Andrew's Ward.
Barnard William Combe Edwd. Henry Harvey
Diver Charles Hammond John
Arnold Frank Dendy Frederick
Currie Donald Augustus Saul Thomas
Clowes John Storey Morgan William
  Dowson Richard Enfield

Quarterly meetings of the Council at the Town Hall, at four o'clock in the afternoon of the second tuesday in February, May & August & an noon on the 9th November


North or St. Nicholas' St. George's Ward.
Ward. Benjamin Howard Press
William Hurry Palmer Nelson Ward.
Market Ward. Henry Robert Harmer
Henry Teasdel Gorleston & Southtownor
Regent Ward. St. Andrew's Ward.
Allison Davie Stone Edward Pitt Youell




The Board consists of 11 members, and was formed in 1875. Clerk, Charles Henry Wiltshire; office, South quay
The Board meet at the Town Hall the 1st & 3rd tuesday in every month at 2.30 p.m.


The Board consists of 5 members and was formed in 1876 Clerk, John Cory; office, Howard street
The Board meet at Howard street, the 3rd thursday in every month at 2.30 p.m.






Stradbroke road... 1877 boys, girls & infants    631 538
Cobholm Island 1877 girls & infants              295 208
St. George's.... 1877 girls & infants              472 308
Trafalgar road 1878 boys                            200 187
Northgate 1880 boys, girls & infants     610  
Day industrial   boys                              60  

Note: Here follow, on pp. 579-601, the directory of PRIVATE RESIDENTS and COMMERCIALS for Yarmouth, and on pp. 601-603, the same for Gorleston.
These have not been transcribed.
For look-ups send me an e-mail message.

And for description of GORLESTON, SOUTHTOWN and COBHOLM ISLAND, see "Suffolk Directory."

© Transcribed by E.C.Apling, May 2005; formatting & minor corrections May & December 2010; links last updated December 2010..

1891 Census Names Index
Cobholm postmill, Green Cap towermill, Hamilton road postmill, Nelson road postmill, South Denes postmill,
    Southtown tower-mill and steam mill, and York Road towermill [Jonathan Neville]
Yarmouth Beach Railway station [Berney Arms Web]
Newtown Methodist church and churches of St James (new) and St. Pail [Simon Knott]
Cobholm church of St. Luke and The Tabernacle [Simon Knott]
Yarmouth Archeology (with 15 linked pages) [Norfolk Heritage Explorer]
More on Yarmouth [GENUKI-NFK]
Parish Information on Great Yarmouth and Yarmouth St Nicholas [Geoff Lowe & Andrew Rivett]
Return to villages index
Paddy's home page