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Broads History and Old Photos websites


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I thought I'd start a thread where links to websites which feature information about Broadland's history, or have collections of old photo's of the area, could be gathered together. I wasn't sure whether this should be here or in the Historic Broads section?

Anyway, I will start with a few and add some more later ... I have quite a few which I have gathered in my favourites whilst researching things! Please feel free to add any others that you know about.

"George Plunketts photographs of old Norwich" has some fabulous images of the city, including the river, taken by george between the years of 1931 and 2006.


"The Berney Arms web" has history and old photos of the Berney Arms Mill and area and also a detailed section on the old rail lines which ran in and out of Great Yarmouth:


"Picture Norfolk" enables you to search online through the County Councils photographic archive. Just type in the names of Broadland towns and villages and away you go! There are some stunning images within this collection, some of which date back to the 19th century.


In a smilar vein is the "Francis Frith Collection" which has many images of Norfolk and Suffolk dating back to the turn of the last century. The Frith collection contains old photographs from all over Britain, so you could serach for your hometown too. You can also purchase copies of any of the photos they have online or even get calendars made up. This link takes you straight to the Norfolk section:


"Norfolk Mills" has lots of photos, history and information about the mills and windpumps in Norfolk:


"Our Great Yarmouth" has been put together as part of the GY Museums Our Town project, and is a collection of photographs, history and memories of the town. Again, there is lots about the riverside, fishing industry etc....


"Great Yarmouth On Film" is a growing database of past and present photographs of the town:


the "Beautiful Britain" website has a nice section on the Broads with pictures and info about cruisers from the 50s and 60s and a section on Broad Ambition:


And of course there is Dan's "F.B. Wilds" website which is devoted to Frank Wilds revolutionary Carribean cruiser and the subsequent sister classes:


I'll leave it at that for now and and some more later.


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Your knowledge of the Broads amazes me....

It amazes me too Terry ... mainly because, in the scheme of things, I actually know very little!!

But I am learning more all the time through people recalling their memories of the Broads, through information passed on via forums and talking to others, and though an awful lot of reading and internet searches!! There is a lot of fascinating stuff out there!

A few more links of an historical nature ...... these mainly relate to town and village history around Broadland.

First up is the Ludham Community Archive website which has lots of interesting historical bits and pieces about the village and some wonderful old photographs. There is a large section devoted to photographs from the Boardman collection which date back to the beginning of the last century .... some truly fabulous images amongst those!


Loddon local history group also have a website which has a few old pics:


.... and there is also another website which has a large collection of of photos of old Loddon and surrounding area. There are 24 pages of them here:


"Whiteswan" is the Stalham website and it has a history of the village here:


And also (for Simon) a Stalham "Past & Present" page of comparison photos ....


The Oulton Broad Community Enterprise website has a bit of history on Mutford Lock and Lake Lothing:


"Lothingland On The Internet" has a history of St Olaves and Herringfleet:


The Acle village website has a section on the history of the town:


Buxton has a website which has a village history timeline and includes some wonderful old photos, several of which show the aftermath of the 1912 flood which destroyed the Locks above Coltishall and ended the navigation beyond it. Just click on the small thumbnails on the page to see larger versions.


That'll do for todays selection .... I hope that you are all paying attention as there will be questions later!! :o:lol::naughty:


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And also (for Simon) a Stalham "Past & Present" page of comparison photos ....


It pays to actually read the burb on that page PROPERLY. :oops:

I spent ages sitting there staring at the two pictures of the post office trying to work out what was going with the building next door which appeared to have changed in a manner that I could not quite put my finger on. When I eventually gave up I went back to the main page to carry on down and discovered that the very next line said:

The shop the other side of the old Post Office, was damaged by fire in 1906 and rebuilt in its present form, which is now a supermarket.

Doh! :roll::oops:

I'm not sure how up to date some of the "today" shots are - the shot of Stalham crossroads says 65.9ppl for unleaded. Yes please!!! :mrgreen:

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  • 2 weeks later...


A few more links to add to the collection:

Following on from the previous town and village history links ....

Brccles town website has a page with some interesting history about it:


There is a website for the village of Martham which also has a brief history and some very interesting old photos within it's galleries. Once you get to the gallery page, click on the links listed along the bottom to view the individual collections:


Old Norfolk.Net has old photos, maps and illustrations of Norwich and Great Yarmouth:


The Gorleston Heritage site has some great history about the area and lots of old photos and postcards:


The Norfolk Broads Yachting Company have a very nice article on their history and also some fabulous old photographs of Broadland during the Victorian and Edwardian era ...

History: http://www.norfolk-broads.com/history/index.php

Pastimes & Past Times Gallery: http://www.norfolk-broads.com/galleries/pastimes.php

Yacht Racing in the Victorian & Edwardian Era: http://www.norfolk-broads.com/galleries/vic_ed_racing.php

And Royalls have a nice page devoted to the history of the yard including photos:



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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi Jill

Thank you for that ... I had forgotten about the Science & Society picture library website! Unfortunately you can't paste a link to search results (much like the Picture Norfolk website) ... you need to do a fresh search each time. If you put "Norfolk Broads" into the search page, you will be presented with a great selection of pre 1900 Broads photos taken by Peter Henry Emerson and some superb old railway posters promoting Broadland. I believe that you can also order prints from them.


Another site I came across recently is the WISE Archive which aims to record personal memories of the working lives of older residents. It does cover a wider area that Norfolk, but there are quite a few interesting articles on the website for Norwich and Norfolk. Just click on the link to the projects section and there is a list of various occupations on the right hand side.


One that really needs a good trawl through is the Foxearth & District Society website! Whilst most of it relates to history around the West Suffolk/Essex area, there are a few interesting articles about Beccles including some fascinating transcriptions of newspaper artciles dating as far back as the early 1800s. I still haven't had the time to go through this lot but bits I did read before gave a wonderful insight into life in the area during the 1800s.

Main website: http://www.foxearth.org.uk/

Beccles Newspapers: http://www.foxearth.org.uk/BecclesAreaNewspapers/index.html

Suzanne, I am really pleased that you found some of the links interesting .... there is a lot of great stuff out there if you search round. It's funny really, as History was one of my least favourite subjects when I was at school but I just find it all so fascinating now!


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  • 2 weeks later...


A few more links of an historic nature:

I came across the Archant (EDP etc) photosales Historic Archives recently. The photos cover various areas of Norfolk & Suffolk, but if you search through the various categories there are some wonderful shots of Broadland from the past. There are also some incredible photographs of the Blitz bombing of Norwich and Great Yarmouth in the wartime. Most people are aware of the terrible Blitz on London, but Norwich and Yarmouth were on the recieving end of some devistating raids during the 1940s. Once in the galleries just click on the thumbnails for a larger view. As I mentioned, it is their photosales website, so copies of all the images are available to buy through them.


Whilst with Archant - the EDP run an ocassional series called "Hidden Norfolk" which has produced a few interesting articles related to Broadland over the years. Some of these are still available to view online. The Archant websites can sometimes be a little flaky, so if any of the links below don't load first time and produce errors, jut hit the refresh button in your browser and hopefully the pages will then load normally!

The first is about the wherry Hathor, includes an interview with her owner Peter Bowers and dates from 2005. I did post the link to this on the Lord Roberts thread, but felt it relevant to place it on this thread too:

http://www.edp24.co.uk/content/HiddenNo ... Hathor.asp

"Broads Flotilla" from 2004 is a fascinating feature about Broadland role during WW2:


And there was a follow up article on this which includes people personal memories of wartime on the Broads:


Also from 2004 and sticking with the WW2 theme is an article on the Blitz:


From 2003 is "Making The Cut" which tells the history of Haddiscoe New Cut. This one runs over two pages:


"On the road to the past" features a little history about Thorpe St.Andrew and is another two page article:


And "Safe view from the hill" is about How Hill:


There are lots of interesting articles on Norfolk within the main Hidden Norfolk directory .... just click on the drop down menu to scroll through the list.



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Another interesting series of articles in the EDP was entitled "A Place In History" and, amongst them, are a few relating to Broadland landmarks:

The first is about the many bridges on the Wensum in Norwich:


There is another about the history of Cow Tower on the Wensum:


One about the history of St. Benets Abbey:


This one is about Yarmouth's Row houses:


And the final one for now is about the Wherryman's Way:



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Wow, enough information there to form the basis of a PhD methinks! Just a note to say that some of the links generated ASP errors but some (if you tried two or three times) eventually loaded a page. One or two, however, appear to be missing an "includes" and fail to load (i.e. where the server assembles a page using chunks of code taken from different source files).

Active Server Pages error 'ASP 0126'

Include file not found

/content/HiddenNorfolk/asp/2003/01/Cut1.asp, line 20

The include file '/include/admentor2.asp' was not found.

It may be a temporary thing but if there's still a problem in a few days time probably worth dropping an email to Archant.

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Thanks for the link Ian ... another bit of useful information to add to my notes!

Simon ... I do find Archant's websites seem to be a bit flaky at times! I tried all the links above again and most of them seemed to work OK first time. Where they didn't, I just hit refresh and they then loaded normally. I will edit my above post to make a note of it there - thank you for mentioning it.


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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 weeks later...

For anyone interested in the history of the North Walsham & Dilham Canal, there are a few pages relating to it's history, the current Canal Trust and the working parties who are helping to clear and maintain what remains of the canal, on the East Anglian Waterways Association website. The link below takes you to the NW&D Canal "Then & Now" page which has some fabulous old photos on it along with the history of that stretch of waterway.



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It would be great ... but I don't think it is ever likely to happen! The idea of restoring the canal to open it up to river traffic has been mooted several times over the last 40 years or so ... along with the navigation to Bungay from Geldeston. It's just not economically viable to do though.

The canal trust are doing great works to try and clear debris, trees and general undergrowth etc. and it would be great if it was at least accessible to those in canoes or rowing boats (if they can get the permission of land owners to allow quiet recreational use that is!). The canal has been de-watered for a section above Bacton Wood though.

I created a Google map last year which traces the canal from Wayford Bridge right up to Antingham ..... if you view it in sattelite and then zoom in to follow the course, you can see the outline of the original channel and it is amazing just how wide it used to be!! You can also see the section which has no water in it .... I left a gap there.



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  • 11 months later...


There are several links which I posted in the past which no longer work .... either the URL's have changed, or the websites no longer appear to exist. As I can't go back in and edit those posts I'll update those changes in this post.

On page 1 of this thread - I'm not quite sure what is happening with the Francis Frith website at the moment as it doesn't seem to be functioning properly. I suspect it's an issue at their end and hopfully it will get sorted!

"Whiteswan" the Stalham website seems to have sadly disappeared. I have tried to find the site on and off over the last six months but it seems to have gone for good.

The "Old Norfolk" website also seems to have vanished!

On page 2 - The Eastern Daily Press revamped their website last year .... in the process they took down all of the "Hidden Norfolk" series of articles which haven't been replaced. It's a real shame as there were some fascinating bits of Broadland history amongst them.

They did keep the "Place In History" section however, but the website address for all the pages I listed have changed. You can find the main dirsctory for that series of articles here: http://www.edp24.co.uk/content/edp24/norfolk-life/place-in-history/ .... just scroll down the column on the right of the page to find the relevant articles!

I think that is all of the corrections!


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A few new ones to add to the list!

The BBC have a section of their website called "WW2 People's War" which gathers together people's recollections of the second world war in Britain. It has contributions from all over the UK but below is the link to the Norfolk section. In amongst them are some fascinating memories related to Broadland if you search through the pages.


"Postcards Of The Norfolk Broads" gathers together one man's collection of old postcards together with some interesting notes on the boats and history featured in those images:


The "Barton Turf History Project" aims to gather together old photos and history of the Barton Turf area as well as providing external links to other online info about Barton Turf:


I did post the link to the British Pathe website elsewhere on the forum but feel it's worth including on this thread too. Thousands of old newsreels featuring various counties, towns, subjects, sporting events, motor shows and famous people etc. etc. .... hours of endless fun can be spent using the search facility! The link below should take you to those related to the Norfolk Broads:



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  • 5 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...

I posted a link to the Foxearth Society website earlier in this thread as they have a collection of transcribed newscuttings from old Beccles newspapers which cover the 18th and 19th centuries.

I revisited the site a couple of days ago as I was searching for info on something, and got rather distracted by a fairly new addition of newspaper transcriptions relating to Beccles during the years of WW2. They provide an absolutely fascinating glimpse into a Suffolk town in wartime - both in the preparations made in the months leading up to the declaration of war, the war itself and the aftermath. There are some incredible little snippets of news amongst these ..... preparations for evacuees should war come and the speed at which the country mobilised that evacuation within the first week of the war. There was notice of the old wine vaults in Hungate (now a restaurant) being converted into a air raid shelter, people being fined for being concienscious objectors or flouting blackout rukes. Notices about rationing .... etc. .. etc. There are also a few amusing bit and bobs ... like the market trader who was fined £35 for selling over priced hairpins and combs!

If you have an hour or two to spare then it is quite interesting stuff!



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