Great Yarmouth Norfolk Family History Guide


Great Yarmouth is an Ancient Parish and a market town in the county of Norfolk.

Alternative names: Yarmouth

Other places in the parish include: Great Yarmouth South and Great Yarmouth North.

Parish church: St. Nicholas

Parish registers begin: 1558

Nonconformists include: Calvinist, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Countess of Huntingdon Methodist, General Baptist, Independent Methodist, Independent/Congregational, Jewish, Methodist New Connexion, Particular Baptist, Presbyterian, Primitive Methodist, and Roman Cat.

Table of Contents

Adjacent Parishes

  • Acle
  • Southtown
  • Caister
  • Gorleston

Parish History

The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales 1870

YARMOUTH, or Great Yarmouth, a town, a parish, and a district, in Norfolk. The town stands on the coast, at the mouth of the river Yar, and at the termini of two lines of the Great Eastern railway, 19 miles E of Norwich; originated on alluvial deposits at what was anciently the mouth of a long estuary; did not acquire firm footing, from consolidation of these deposits, till about the year 1008; appears first on record in 1081; had a church and 60 burgesses at Domesday; was long a mere fishing-village, frequented by fishermen from France, Holland , and Norway; was for a considerable time, during every herring season, controlled or governed by bailiffs sent from the Cinque ports; got borough rights of its own from King John and subsequent monarchs, and eventually asserted these to the exclusion of the Cinque ports bailiffs; was fortified, with encompassing walls and with a central castle, in the times of Henry III., Edward I., and Edward II.; sent 43 ships to the siege of Calais in 1346; was ravaged by the plague in 1348, 1554, 1579, and 1664; was besieged by Kett, in the rising of 1549; was visited by James I. in 1614; was denuded of its castle, but fortified with an additional rampart, in 1621; was garrisoned by the parliamentarians in 1642; witnessed the burning of 16 reputed witches inn 1644; was visited by Charles II. in 1671, by Prince George of Denmark in 1687, by William of Orange in 1692, by the Princess of Orange in 1795, by Louis XVIII. in 1807, by the King of Sweden in 1810; was a naval station during the great war with France; was the place to which Duncan brought his prizes after Camperdown, and where Nelson embarked and landed in connexion with Copenhagen; numbers among its natives and residents Bishop Felton who died in 1626, Bishop Ellys who died in 1761, the antiquary Wilson who died in 1652, the antiquary Swinden who died in 1772, the antiquary Ives who died in 1776, General Ireton, Sir W. Gough, the painter Crome, and the antiquary D. Turner; and gives the title of Earl to the Marquis of Hertford.

A narrow peninsular strip of land extends from N to S, between the sea on the E, and the river Bure, Breydon-water, and the river Yar on the W, and terminates in a point on the S at the influx of the Yar to the sca. The old town stands on the river or W side of this peninsula; is regularly aligned; comprises five principal streets, crossed at right angles by 145 narrow lanes called rows; and has not inaptly been designated by Dickens the Norfolk Gridiron. The ancient encompassing wall restricted it to a length of 240 yards; occasioned it to assume the density of narrow lanes,-not intersected by an open cross street till 1813; consisted of flint, pebbles, and shingle, very strongly cemented; was pierced with 10 gates, and surmounted with 16 towers; and is still represented by very considerable remains. The new town extends both N and S of the wall-line, spreads eastward to the sea, and includes fine terraces, places, and squares, along the beach. The North and South quays are nearly 1½ mile long, and very spacious; and present peculiar and interesting features. The Victoria suburb, facing the sea, was commenced in 1841; lines an esplanade 2,610 feet long; and comprises Brandon terrace, Kimberley terrace, Albert-square, Camperdown-place, and other fine ranges of superior houses. The unedificed portions of the peninsula form pleasant outskirts, include a promenade and carriage-drive along the entire sea-frontage, afford pleasant facilities for sea-bathing, and command charming views across the Yare. The Wellington and the Britannia piers, at respectively the S end and the N end of the Parade, also afford agreeable promenades. Water supply is obtained from Ormesby broad, 6 miles distant.

The Town-hall was built in 1716, is in the Tuscan style, and includes court-rooms and a record-room. The Toll-house is mainly early English, and is the place of the town council meetings. The Town-house was built in 1600, and contains the public library and the office of port-dues. The Borough jail stands behind the Toll-house, and has capacity for 44 male and 12 female prisoners. The Custom-house stands on the Quay, and is large and handsome. The Corn exchange was built in 1842, but is now used only for meetings and exhibitions; and the corn market is held on the open Quay. The Market place covers an area of 3 acres. A new and spacious fish-market, with wharves and very complete appliances, was formed in 1868. The Bath-house was built in 1759, but has been converted into a hotel, with hot and cold sea-water baths. The Star-inn was the mansion of the Bradshaw family, and contains some curious carvings and pendant ceilings. A house on the South quay was the mansion of the Carter family, and contains some fine Tudor rooms. The Theatre was built in 1778, and remodelled in 1820. Spacious and elegant assembly and reading rooms stand immediately opposite the Wellington pier; were built in 1862; and are in the Italian style, with an open colonnade and wings. A handsome iron lifting bridge over the Yare into Suffolk, was completed in 1854. A suspension bridge, over the Bure, at the N end of the town, was constructed in 1821, at a cost of £4,000; but fell under pressure of a crowd in 1845, when 400 persons were precipitated into the river, and 79 were drowned. A substantial wrought iron bridge now occupies the same site; and was erected in 1854, at a cost of £5,000. A handsome iron tubular bridge in two compartments, connects the railway with lines of tramway along the quays. Nelson’s monument was erected in 1817; consists chiefly of a Doric column, with fluted shaft, rising to the height of 144 feet; and is crowned by a statue of Britannia.

St. Nicholas’ church was founded in 1101, by Bishop Lozinga, as part of a cell to Norwich priory; underwent additions, restorations, and alterations, in 1251, in 1286, and at subsequent periods; is a cruciform structure, 230 feet by 108; has a central tower, with a spire 186 feet high, rebuilt in 1806; included, at one time, sixteen chapels; and now has accommodation for about 4,000 persons. St. Peter’s church was built in 1833, at a cost of £12,000; and is of white brick, with a tower 118 feet high. St. George’s church was built in 1714; and is an octagon, with tower and cupola. St. John’s was built in 1857, for the accommodation of seamen; and St. Andrew’s was built chiefly for a similar class. There are two Independent chapels, four Baptist, one of Lady Huntingdon’s Connexion, two Wesleyan, two New Connexion Methodist, one Primitive Methodist, two U. Free Methodist, one Unitarian, one Roman Catholic, and a Jews’ synagogue. An ultra-mural cemetery of 12 acres for Churchmen, Dissenters, and Jews, was recently formed. A small cemetery for Roman Catholics is on the road to Caistor; and was provided, in 1867, with a mortuary chapel. An old Benedictine priory, near St. Nicholas’ church, has been converted into a national school. An Augustinian friary was founded in 1278, a Black friary, in 1270, a Grey friary, in the time of Henry III.; but all these, as also two ancient leper-houses, have disappeared. The grammar-school was rebuilt in 1863, and has £857 a year from endowment. The Children’s hospital school was rebuilt in 1845; gives free education to 30 boys and 20 girls; admits also, as day scholars, 150 boys and 50 girls; and is largely endowed. A charity school is attached to the Unitarian chapel. National schools, besides the one in the old priory, are connected with St. Peter’s and St. John’s churches, and with Gorleston and Southtown. A British school is in St. George’s-road. A school for the Church South-end mission, in the Gothic style, was built in 1867. The public library is supported by subscription, and contains about 10,000 volumes. A parochial-library, with museum, is in Priory-row; and a working-men’s institute, with reading room, is in High-street. The Victoria gardens contain an American bowling-alley and other attractions, and are open to the public. The Sailors’ home was erected in 1860, at a cost of about £2,000; serves as a refuge for shipwrecked seamen; and contains baths, a reading room, a library, and a small museum. The Fishermen’s hospital was built in 1702, for 20 decayed fishermen; and has £217 a year from endowment. The Royal hospital and dispensary was founded in 1838, and has accommodation for 20 inpatients. The workhouse was built in 1838, at a cost of £7,000; and has accommodation for 400 inmates. The aggregate of endowed charities is about £1,430.

The town has a head post-office, a r. station with telegraph, four banking offices, and five hotels; publishes two weekly newspapers; and is a seat of petty sessions, quarter sessions, and county courts, a polling place, a sea-bathing resort, and a head port. Markets are held on Wednesdays and Saturdays; fairs, on Shrove-Monday and Tuesday, and on Easter-Friday and Saturday; races, in the latter part of Aug.; and two yearly regattas, in the roadstead and on Breydon-water. Silk mills employ nearly 700 hands; ship and boat-building employs many h and s; and there are three large roperies, a cement manufactory, and numerous and extensive malting-houses. The mackerel fishery employs about 90 boats and 870 men; the herring fishery employs upwards of 200 luggers and about 2,000 men; fisheries for cod, whitings, skate, soles, turbot, eels, sprats, and shrimps, also give large employment; and all these fisheries involve likewise much employment to men and women on shore. The import trade is chiefly in coals and corn; the export trade, chiefly in barley, timber, salt, and colonial produce. Three several harbour channels existed prior to 1337, but were successively choked up. The present channel was formed in 1559-67, by a Netherland s engineer; is defended, along each side, by piers and jetties; has a depth, on the bar, of about 12 feet in neap tides, and of from 18 to 20 at spring tides; and was improved in 1866-8, at a cost of about £14,000. The roadstead, outside, somewhat resembles the Downs in Kent; is protected by various sands from all winds except the easterly and the north-easterly: affords excellent anchorage in from 15 to 18 fathoms; is a great resort, by merchantmen and colliers, for shelter from the neighbouring dangerous coast navigation; and has often so many as 1,000 vessels at anchor at one time. The vessels belonging to the port, at the beginning of 1868, were 509 small sailing-vessels, of aggregately 15,819 tons; 166 large sailing-vessels, of aggregately 18,764 tons; 8 small steam-vessels, of aggregately 168 tons; and 2 large steam-vessels, of jointly 327 tons. The vessels which entered, in 1867, were 4 British sailing-vessels, of aggregately 1,051 tons, from British colonies: 1 foreign sailing-vessel, of 288 tons from British colonies: 125 British sailing-vessels, of aggregately 13,413 tons, from foreign countries; 96 foreign sailing-vessels, of aggregately 11,954 tons, from foreign countries: 1,169 sailing-vessels, of aggregately 96,919 tons, coastwise; and 166 steam-vessels, of gately 34,682 tons, coastwise. The amount of customs, in 1862 was £22,496. Steamers sail regularly to Hull, Newcastle, and London. The borough comprises Yarmouth and Gorleston parishes; is governed, under the new act, by a mayor, 12 aldermen, and 36 councilors; and sent two members to parliament from the time of Edward I. till 1867, but was then disfranchised. The corporation revenue is about £7,960. Pop. in 1851, 30,879; in 1861, 34,810. Houses, 7,792.

The parish comprises 1,270 acres of land, and 240 of water; and is ecclesiastically distributed into the charges of St. Nicholas, St. Peter, St. George, St. Andrew, St. John, and South Mission. Real property, £76,849; of which £289 are in gasworks. Pop. in 1851, 26,880; in 1861, 30,338. Houses, 6,819. The living of St. Nicholas is a vicarage, and the other livings are p. curacies, in the diocese of Norwich. Value of St. N., £360: of St. P., £190; of St. G., £200; of the others, not reported. Patrons of St. N., the Dean and Chapter of Norwich; of St. P., St. A., St. J., and South Mission, the Vicar of St. Nicholas; of St. G., the Church Patronage Society.—The district is conterminate with the parish; and is cut into two sections, N and S. Poor rates in 1863, £16,065. Marriages in 1866, 346; births, 1,088,-of which 89 were illegitimate; deaths, 808,-of which 344 were at ages under 5 years, and 26 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 2,826; births, 9,261; deaths, 7,075. The places of worship, in 1851, were 3 of the Church of England , with 6,028 sittings; 1 of Independents, with 700 s.; 3 of Baptists, with 780 s.; 1 of Quakers, with 255 s.; 1 of Unitarians, with 400 s.; 1 of Wesleyans. with 1,200 s.; 1 of New Connexion Methodists, with 750 s.; 1 of Primitive Methodists, with 1,000 s.; 1 of Wesleyan Reformers, with 400 s.; 1 of Lady Huntingdon’s Connexion, with 620 s.; 2 undefined, with 480 s.; and 1 of Jews, with 60 s. The schools were 10 public day-schools, with 1,490 scholars; 61 private day-schools, with 1,653 s.: and 7 Sunday schools, with 2,214 s.

Source: The Imperial Gazetteer of England & Wales [Wilson, John M]. A. Fullarton & Co. N. d. c. [1870-72].

A Topographical Dictionary of England 1848

YARMOUTH, GREAT (St. Nicholas) a sea-port, borough, market-town, and parish, and a union of itself, having separate jurisdiction, locally in the E. division of the hundred of Flegg, E. vision of Norfolk, 19 miles (E. by S.) from Norwich, and 123 (K. E.) from London; the parish containing 24,086 inhabitants. This place, which, from its extensive and prosperous trade and many other advantages and privileges, may be considered the most flourishing town on this part of the coast, derives its name from its situation at the mouth of the river Yare, which here falls into the ocean. It occupies ground originally covered by the sea, which, on its receding, left a bank of sand whereon a few fishermen settled, the first of whom, denominated Fuller, imparted his name to the higher portion, still called Fuller’s Hill. As the bank increased in extent and density, the population augmented; but the channel of the northern branch of the Yare, on which the first settlers fixed their habitations, becoming choked up with sand, they removed in 1040 to the southern branch.

The earliest authentic record of the place is in Domesday book, in which it is described as “the king’s demesne, and having seventy burgesses.” Its fishery at an early period attracting many residents, a charter was granted by Henry III., at the request of the inhabitants, allowing them to inclose the burgh, on the land side, with a wall and moat; the wall was 2240 yards in length, and had sixteen towers and ten gates. A castle having four watch towers, and upon which a fire beacon was placed in 1588, was also built about this time, in the centre of the town. In the last-named year, a mound called South Mount, was thrown up and crowned with heavy ordnance; and the place was then considered impregnable. The castle having been demolished in 1621, and the changes introduced into the system of warfare rendering further defences necessary, strong parapets were constructed in front of the town, and cannon planted on them, facing the sea: the circuit of the fortifications thus completed was nearly two miles and a half. The only military operation in which the inhabitants have been ever actually engaged was their gallantly repulsing Kett, when in his rebellion he attempted, at the head of 20,000 men, to take the town by assault. But though the place has been only slightly visited by the scourge of warfare, it has suffered severely from the plague, to which, in 1348, upwards of 7000 persons fell victims; in 1579, upwards of 2000; and more than 2500 in 1664.

The town occupies an extent of 153 acres, on the western bank of a peninsula formed by the river Yare and the sea; and is connected with South Town, or Little Yarmouth, on the opposite bank of the stream, by a bridge. It is of quadrangular form, about a mile long, and half a mile broad, and consists of four good streets parallel with each other, a handsome street leading to the quay, on which is a noble range of buildings, and a great number of narrow rows intersecting the principal streets at right angles. Within the last twenty or thirty years, many handsome houses and several hotels have been built on the Denes, a fine down south of Yarmouth. The town is lighted with gas, is well supplied with fresh water, and the streets are kept remarkably clean. There are several very ancient houses, one of which, built in 1596, was the residence of a granddaughter of Oliver Cromwell: in the drawing-room, which is elaborately ornamented with rich carved work, and has been restored to its pristine state, a meeting of principal officers of the parliamentarian army is said to have been held for the purpose of deciding the fate of Charles I. The theatre, a commodious edifice erected in 1778, near the market-place, is open during the summer months; and races take place in August, on the South Denes. The bathing-houses on the beach, near the jetty, possess every accommodation for visiters; and adjoining is a public-room, built in 1788, where balls and concerts are occasionally held. There are very pleasant walks on the quay and beach; and the extensive sea view, enlivened by the number of vessels in the roads, is a source of considerable gratification to those who frequent the town as a watering-place. The barracks on the South Denes, near the beach, form a magnificent quadrangular range of buildings, designed by Mr. Pilkington, and erected at a cost of £120,000: the armoury in South Town will contain, exclusively of other military and naval stores, 10,000 stand of arms. Between the barracks and the entrance to the harbour is a grand fluted column, 130 feet high, surmounted by a statue of Britannia, erected to the memory of Admiral Lord Nelson, and, as a landmark, well supplying to seamen the loss of Gorleston steeple, which was blown down in the year 1813. On the quay is the custom-house; within a short distance is a public library with a good collection, and adjoining the library are subscription reading-rooms. A handsome suspension chain-bridge, of eighty-six feet span, was constructed at the northern part of the quay, over the river Bure, under the provisions of an act passed in 1827. On May 2nd, 1845, a frightful accident occurred, by the breaking down of this bridge. A clown had announced that he would perform a certain feat on the river, and at the moment when all eyes were strained to witness his approach, the bridge gave way, and those upon it were plunged into the water below: 79 lives were lost.

Yarmouth is not a manufacturing town, but a considerable establishment for winding and throwing silk has been formed in connexion with a larger concern at Norwich, for which buildings have been erected on the site formerly occupied by the barracks, on the north of the town. There are also extensive yards for ship-building, with corresponding rope-walks, and several large breweries. A great trade is carried on coastwise in malt, corn, flour, coal, timber, and other articles. A direct intercourse is maintained with the Baltic, the Mediterranean, Portugal, and other parts of the continent; and a regular communication by steam-vessels is kept up with London and the north of England. But the principal source of trade by which the town is supported is the herring-fishery, which is usually productive to a remarkable extent. The fish, when cured, or dried, for both which processes there are very extensive establishments, are not only sent to every district in the kingdom, but exported in considerable quantities to other parts of the world, particularly to the West Indies. Many vessels from other places on the coast fish here, and some, at a defined distance, from foreign countries. The mackerel-fishery is also extensive.

The situation of Yarmouth, in a commercial point of view, affords unusual advantages. The Yare is navigable here for vessels of 250 tons’ burthen; and to Norwich, a distance of thirty-two miles, for smaller vessels, without the intervention of locks. The Waveney, which falls into the Yare, is navigable by Beccles to Bungay, a distance of twenty miles; and the Bure, which also joins the Yare, by Horstead to Aylsham, thirty miles, and another branch to North Walsham, twenty-five miles hence; thus opening an extensive and valuable channel of inland communication. An act was obtained in 1842 for the formation of a railway from Yarmouth to Norwich, along the northern bank of the Yare: the line was completed in 1844. Many attempts have been made to form a safe harbour, at the enormous expense of above £240,000; the present one, which is the seventh that has been constructed, was projected and executed, at an expense of about £4200 only, by Jans Johnson, a native of Holland, and affords secure anchorage at all times. In 1835, an act was passed for improving the haven and the several rivers connected with it; also for repairing or rebuilding the bridge over the haven, and St. Olave’s bridge across the Waveney. At the entrance of the Yare are two piers; that on the south, 1230 feet long, forming an agreeable promenade; and that on the north, 400 feet in length, erected on wooden piles, and secured by an iron railing. The quay, which in length, and beauty of construction, ranks the first in England, is a very great ornament to the town; its centre is formed into an agreeable walk, planted on each side with trees. A duty is levied on all coal brought to the port, and applied, under the direction of twelve commissioners, to keeping the jetties and piers in repair, and deepening and clearing the river. The number of vessels of above fifty tons, registered at the port, is 315, and their aggregate burthen 34,676 tons. The navigation of the coast is very dangerous; the Roads, in which are two floating lighthouses, are frequently resorted to by the North Sea fleet, and merchant-vessels are constantly repairing to them for shelter. The market is on Wednesday and Saturday; fairs are held on the Monday and Tuesday at Shrovetide, and on the Friday and Saturday in Easter-week. The present corn-exchange was opened in 1842, the fish-market in Oct. 1844.

Prior to the reign of King John, the town was governed by a provost appointed by the crown; but a charter of incorporation granted by that monarch in the ninth year of his reign, empowered the burgesses to choose their own magistrates, called bailiffs, who were authorized to hold a court of hustings, now called the Burgh court. The privileges were extended by succeeding sovereigns. Edward II. granted tronage to the burgesses, and exemption from serving on any assizes, juries, or inquisitions, out of the borough; and the charter of Elizabeth conferred power to hold an admiralty court weekly, with liberty to try all maritime causes, except piracy. The corporation at present consists of a mayor, high steward, recorder, twelve aldermen, and thirty-six councillors, assisted by a town clerk, water-bailiff, gaoler, three sergeants-at-mace, and other officers, appointed under the act 5th and 6th of William IV., cap. 76; the borough, formerly consisting of eight wards, is now divided into six, and the number of magistrates is twenty-six. Courts of session take place quarterly before the recorder; a court leet and court of pie-poudre are also held. The freedom is obtained by birth or servitude. The borough first sent members to parliament in the reign of Edward I.; the elective franchise was extended, in 1832, to the £10 householders of an enlarged district, which comprises 2823 acres: the mayor is returning officer. The admiralty jurisdiction was abolished by the Municipal Corporations’ act; the last court of admiralty was held on the 7th of Sept., 1835. The jurisdiction of the corporation, by charter of the 20th of Charles II., extends to South Town, or Little Yarmouth, in the county of Suffolk, and, as regards the Yare, Waveney, and Bure, for ten miles upon each of those rivers. The inhabitants are not liable to serve on juries for the county, nor to the payment of county rates, as the corporation supports the gaol, and maintains the prisoners; and writs, unless accompanied with a non omittas, can only be executed under the warrant of the mayor, and by one of his officers. The powers of the county debt court of Yarmouth, established in 1847, extend over the two registration-districts of Yarmouth, and East and West Flegg, and part of the district of Mutford and Lothingland. The town-hall, near the centre of the quay, is an elegant building of the Tuscan order, with a portico in front, and is also the mansion-house: the council-chamber, in which public meetings and assemblies are held, is a splendid room, ornamented with a fine portrait of George I., in his robes; the card-room is spacious, and contains paintings, by Butcher, of the quay, the Roads, and the market-place, and a portrait of Sir Robert Walpole, who was high steward.

The living is a perpetual curacy 3 net income, £430; patrons, the Dean and Chapter of Norwich. In Domesday book mention is made of a church dedicated to St. Benedict, probably erected by the barons of the cinqueports, and of which the foundations are still visible, about a mile from the entrauce of the town. The present edifice, situated in the north-east part of the town, was founded by Herbert de Lozinga, Bishop of Norwich, about 1101, and appropriated to the prior and monks of the Holy Trinity at Norwich, who had a cell here: he built only the cross, which constitutes the present nave and transepts; the aisles were added in 1250, and in the following year the church was dedicated to St. Nicholas. It is a handsome cruciform structure in the early, decorated, and later English styles, with a central tower and spire, four turrets at the west end surmounted by pinnacles, and an elegant south porch. Seventeen oratories, each with an image, altar, lights, &c., and supported by a guild, were instituted in it. The organ, built in 1733, is a splendid instrument. On the tower was a wooden spire, which appeared crooked from whatever side viewed; it was replaced by the present one in 1804. St. George’s chapel, a handsome edifice built in 1716, is supported by a duty of one shilling per chaldron on all coal consumed in the parish: patron, the Rev. Mark Waters; net income, £200. An additional church, dedicated to St. Peter, and in the later English style, with a lofty square tower, was erected near the White Lion Gates, on the north side of the road to the jetty, in 1833, at an expense of £7596, which was defrayed by subscription, aided by a grant from the Commissioners for Building and Enlarging Churches. The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £160; patron, the Incumbent of St. Nicholas’. There are places of worship for Baptists, the Society of Friends, Independents, Primitive Methodists, Wesleyans, Lady Huntingdon’s Connexion, Unitarians, and Roman Catholics.

The free grammar school, in the market-place, commonly called the children’s hospital school, was founded by the corporation, in 1651, and was part of St. Mary’s hospital. It is now a free school for reading, writing, and arithmetic only; thirty of the boys and twenty of the girls are maintained and apprenticed. The revenue of the charity, independently of fines upon the renewal of leases, is £856. 19., of which £100 per annum, with a septennial fine of £100, are derived from an estate in Ireland, now worth £6000 per annum, but of which a lease for 1000 years at the above rental was granted in 1714. The Rev. Edward Warnes, in 1694, bequeathed an estate now let for £375 per annum, which is distributed at Easter and Christmas among orphans and widows, those of clergymen having the preference. The Fishermen’s hospital, of a quadrangular form, comprising twenty houses of two rooms each, for the accommodation of that number of fishermen and their wives, has an annual income of £160, paid by the treasury, originally as a reduction of the duty then levied upon all beer carried to sea; also an income of £56. 10. derived from various private benefactions. Seventy-eight houses in different parts of the town are occupied rent-free by paupers; and an annual sum of £62. 10. is distributed by trustees in money, bread, and coal, among the inmates. Besides the cell belonging to the Holy Trinity at Norwich, and the hospital of St. Mary, there were a cell of Augustine friars belonging to the priory of Gorleston, two lazar-houses, and houses of Black, Grey, and White friars, many fragments of which remain, as well as of the ancient town walls. Yarmouth gives the title of Earl to the Marquess of Hertford.

Source: A Topographical Dictionary of England by Samuel Lewis 1848

Parish Records


Use for:
England, Norfolk, Great Yarmouth
England, Norfolk, Yarmouth (Great)


England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Archives and libraries ( 1 )
Handlist of the archives of Great Yarmouth Corporation of date before 1835 preserved in the Town Clerk’s Department

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Archives and libraries – Inventories, registers, catalogs ( 1 )
Handlist of borough sessions records among the archives of Great Yarmouth corporation
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk, England). Archives

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Business records and commerce ( 1 )
Great Yarmouth assembly minutes, 1538-1545 : the Norwich accounts for the customs on strangers’ goods and merchandise, 1583-1610
Author: Rutledge, Paul; Richwood, D. L.

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Cemeteries ( 2 )
Sepulchral reminiscences of a market town : as afforded by a list of the interments within the walls of the parish church of St. Nicholas, Great Yarmouth
Author: Turner, Dawson, 1775-1858

Sepulchral reminscences of a market town : as afforded by a list of the interments within the walls of the parish church of St. Nicholas, Great Yarmouth, collected chiefly from monuments and gravestones still remaining, June, 1845
Author: Turner, Dawson

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Census ( 1 )
Census returns for Great Yarmouth, 1841-1891
Author: Great Britain. Census Office

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Census – 1871 – Indexes ( 1 )
Great Yarmouth, 1871 census index
Author: Edmonds, Jenifer A.

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Church history ( 3 )
A brief history of the Middlegate churches
Author: England, Leslie

Chronicles of the old Congregational Church at Great Yarmouth, 1642-1858

From hayloft to temple : the story of Primitive Methodism in Yarmouth
Author: Patterson, Arthur H.; Primitive Methodist Church (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Church records ( 22 )
Archdeacons transcripts, 1696-1812
Author: Church of England. Parish Church of Yarmouth (Norfolk); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

Baptisms and burials, 1706-1837
Author: Old Meeting (Yarmouth, Norfolk : Presbyterian)

Births and baptisms, 1795-1837
Author: Wesleyan Church (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Births and baptisms, 1828-1837
Author: Tabernacle (Yarmouth, Norfolk : Primitive Methodist)

Births, marriages, and burials, 1663-1836
Author: Society of Friends. Great Yarmouth Monthly Meeting (Norfolk)

Bishop’s transcripts for Yarmouth, 1773-1841
Author: Church of England. Parish Church of Yarmouth (Norfolk); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

Bishop’s transcripts for Yarmouth, 1837-1873
Author: Church of England. Parish Church of Yarmouth (Norfolk); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

Church rate books, 1752-1814
Author: Church of England. St. Nicholas’ Church (Yarmouth)

Church records for Middlegate Congregational Church, Great Yarmouth, 1643-1901
Author: Middlegate Chapel (Yarmouth, Norfolk : Congregational); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

Church records for the Great Yarmouth circuit, 1832-1893
Author: Great Yarmouth Circuit (Norfolk : Primitive Methodist)

Church records, Lammas Monthly Meeting, 1775-1861
Author: Society of Friends. Lammas Monthly Meeting (Norfolk); Society of Friends. Yarmouth Monthly Meeting (Norfolk); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

English Friends records, Norfolk and Norwich : marriages, births and burials, 1650-1725 with supplementary records
Author: Cope, Gilbert, 1840-1928

Extracts from assembly books, 1566-1707
Author: Church of England. St. Nicholas’ Church (Yarmouth)

Great Yarmouth, Old Meeting, Gaol Street Presbyterian, burials, 1800-1837
Author: Edmonds, Jenifer A.; Old Meeting (Yarmouth, Norfolk : Presbyterian)

Parish register transcripts, 1558-1864
Author: Church of England. Parish Church of Yarmouth (Norfolk)

Parish register transcripts, 1788
Author: Church of England. Parish Church of Yarmouth (Norfolk)

Parish registers for St. Nicholas’ Church, Yarmouth, 1558-1901
Author: Church of England. St. Nicholas’ Church (Yarmouth); Church of England. St. Peter’s Church (Yarmouth); Church of England. St. Andrew’s Church (Yarmouth); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

Parish registers for Yarmouth, 1894-1900
Author: Church of England. Parish Church of Yarmouth (Norfolk); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

Poor law records for Yarmouth, 1741-1844
Author: Church of England. Parish Church of Yarmouth (Norfolk)

Record of members, 1935-1947
Author: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Great Yarmouth Branch (Norfolk)

St. Nicholas Church, Great Yarmouth, marriage register, 1763-1767
Author: Jones, Honor; Church of England. St. Nicholas’ Church (Yarmouth)

St. Nicholas Church, Great Yarmouth, marriages, weekly register bills, 1810-1813
Author: Jones, Honor; Balls, R. W. (Ray W.); Church of England. St. Nicholas’ Church (Yarmouth)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Church records – Indexes ( 9 )
Computer printout of Great Yarmouth, Independent Church, Norfolk, England

Computer printout of Great Yarmouth, Norf., Eng

Computer printout of Great Yarmouth, Old Meeting Goal Street Presbyterian, Norf., Eng

Computer printout of Great Yarmouth, Tabernacle Primitive Methodist, Norf., Eng

Computer printout of Great Yarmouth, Wesleyan, Norf., Eng

Parish register printouts of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England (Presbyterian, the Old Meeting, Gaol Street) ; christenings, 1706-1836
Author: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Genealogical Department

Parish register printouts of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England (Primitive Methodist, Tabernacle) ; christenings, 1828-1837
Author: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Genealogical Department

Parish register printouts of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England (Wesleyan) ; christenings, 1795-1837
Author: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Genealogical Department

Parish register printouts of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England ; christenings, 1559-1689
Author: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Genealogical Department

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Court records ( 3 )
Borough court books, 1535-1851; draft sessions books, 1640-1644, 1676-1688; justice order books, 1715-1836; miscellaneous, 1710-1797; and leet books, 1691-1735, 1769-1834
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk : Borough). Court

Great Yarmouth, Norfolk sessions and waste sessions books, 1567-1864
Author: Great Britain. Court of Quarter Sessions of the Peace (Norfolk)

Session books of Great Yarmouth, 1568-1864
Author: Great Britain. Court of Quarter Sessions of the Peace (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Court records – Inventories, registers, catalogs ( 1 )
Handlist of borough sessions records among the archives of Great Yarmouth corporation
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk, England). Archives

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Directories ( 1 )
Morris & Co.’s commercial directory and gazetteer of Suffolk with Great Yarmouth and Newmarket

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Emigration and immigration ( 2 )
Transcript of three registers of passengers from Great Yarmouth to Holland and New England, 1637-1639
Author: Jewson, Charles Boardman

Transcript of three registers of passengers from Great Yarmouth to Holland and New England, 1637-1639
Author: Jewson, Charles Boardman

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Genealogy ( 1 )
Census extracts: N.E. Norfolk 1841-1881; Lying 1841; King’s Lynn 1841- 1871, and Yarmouth 1841-1871
Author: Murray, Sonia J. (Sonia Joy Bennett), 1936-

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – History ( 7 )
Chronological history of Yarmouth

Chronological retrospect of the history of Yarmouth, from A. D. 46 to 1877
Author: Finch-Crisp, William

Great Yarmouth : a second selection, with Gorleston and Caister
Author: Tooke, Colin

Great Yarmouth : history, herings and holidays
Author: Lewis, Charles

Great Yarmouth : the rows and the Old Town
Author: Tooke, Colin

Historical and topographical notices of Great Yarmouth, in Norfolk, and its environs : including the parishes and hamlets of the Half Hundred of Lothingland, in Suffolk
Author: Druery, John Henry

The History of Great Yarmouth : collected from ancient records and other authentic materials

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – History – Sources – Inventories, registers, catalogs ( 1 )
Guide to the Great Yarmouth borough records
Author: Rutledge, Paul

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Manors – Court records ( 1 )
Yarmouth manor court baron books, 1600-1903
Author: Manor of Yarmouth. Court (Norfolk)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Maps ( 1 )
A topographical map of the County of Norfolk
Author: Faden, William; Donald, Thomas

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Occupations ( 2 )
Apprenticeship registers for Great Yarmouth, 1662-1852
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk : Borough)

A calendar of Great Yarmouth enrolled apprenticeship indentures, 1563-1665
Author: Rutledge, Paul

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Occupations – Indexes ( 1 )
Freemen admitted and rejected indexes, 1680-1856
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk : Borough)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Poorhouses, poor law, etc. ( 1 )
Poor law records, 1741-1861
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Public records ( 1 )
Great Yarmouth assembly minutes, 1538-1545 : the Norwich accounts for the customs on strangers’ goods and merchandise, 1583-1610
Author: Rutledge, Paul; Richwood, D. L.

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Public records – Inventories, registers, catalogs ( 1 )
Handlist of the archives of Great Yarmouth corporations of date before 1835
Author: Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Schools ( 17 )
Admission registers for Great Yarmouth Grammar School, 1863-1926
Author: Great Yarmouth Grammar School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Admission registers for Great Yarmouth, Blue Coat Charity School, 1713-1889
Author: Great Yarmouth Grammar School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

The history of the Great Yarmouth Grammar School, 1551-1951 : with some account of the town
Author: Whitehead, John Benson

Log book for Great Yarmouth, St. John’s Girls’ and Infants’ School, 1896-1926
Author: St. John’s Girls’ and Infants’ School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log book for Great Yarmouth, Trafalgar Road Board School, 1877-1907
Author: Trafalgar Road Board School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission register for Great Yarmouth, Stradbroke Road School, 1875-1926
Author: Stradbroke Road School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, Church Road School, 1876-1926
Author: Church Road School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, Cobholm School, 1889-1926
Author: Cobholm School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, Edward Worlledge Senior School, 1906-1927
Author: Edward Worlledge Senior School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, Hospital School, 1878-1926
Author: Hospital School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, Nelson School, 1906-1927
Author: Nelson School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, Northgate School, 1880-1926
Author: Northgate School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, St. Andrews Infants’ School, 1871-1929
Author: St. Andrew’s Infants’ School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books and admission registers for Great Yarmouth, St. Nicholas’ (Priory) School, 1862-1926
Author: St. Nicholas’ School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books for Great Yarmouth, East Anglian Institution for blind and deaf children, 1912-1926
Author: East Anglian Institution for Blind and Deaf Children (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books for Great Yarmouth, St. George’s School, 1894-1929
Author: St. George’s School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

Log books for Great Yarmouth, St. Mary’s School, 1882-1926
Author: St. Mary’s School (Yarmouth, Norfolk)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Taxation ( 1 )
Highway rate books, 1760-1808; watch rate books, 1795-1808
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk : Borough)

England, Norfolk, Yarmouth – Voting registers ( 7 )
A calendar of the freemen of Great Yarmouth, 1492-1800

The poll for members of Parliament for the burgh of Great Yarmouth in the county of Norfolk : 1754, 1790, 1796, 1807, 1818, 1820, 1826, 1830, 1832, 1835, 1836, 1837, 1838, 1847, 1848, 1852, 1857, 1859, 1865, 1841

The Poll for two members to serve in Parliament for the borough of Great Yarmouth : taken on Saturday, the twenty-eighth day of March, 1857. Charles Cory Aldred, Esq. Mayor ; candidates. Sir E.H.K. Lacon ; the Hon. C.S. Vereker ; W.T. M’Cullagh ; W. Watkin

The poll for two members to serve in Parliament for the borough of Great Yarmouth taken on Friday and Saturday, 30th and 31st July, 1830
Author: Bateman, George

The poll for two members to serve in Parliament, for the borough of Great Yarmouth : taken on Tuesday and Wednesday, 6th and 7th January, 1835
Author: Preston, Isaac

The register of electors to vote in the choice of members to serve in parliament for the Borough of Great Yarmouth, 1832-1915
Author: Yarmouth (Norfolk : Borough); Norfolk and Norwich Record Office (Norwich, England)

Yarmouth Poll; The poll for two members to serve in parliament for the borough of Great Yarmouth … ; etc etc



Below is a list of people that were declared bankrupt between 1820 and 1843 extracted from The Bankrupt Directory; George Elwick; London; Simpkin, Marshall and Co.; 1843.

Agnew Alex., Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, draper and tailor, March 15, 1823.

Algar John, Great Yarmouth, fishing merchant, May 14, 1841.

Batley John, Great Yarmouth, grocer, Sept. 18, 1821.

Beart John, Great Yarmouth, money scrivener, March 27, 1829.

Blagg Edward, Yarmouth, grocer, March 21, 1826.

Bond James Garrett, Great Yarmouth, draper and mercer, Jan. 31, 1840.

Bradfield James Knight, Great Yarmouth, builder, Sept. 8, 1826.

Breeze Robert, jun., Great Yarmouth, ironmonger, Oct. 2, 1827.

Brooks James, Great Yarmouth, grocer, Dec. 25, 1835.

Brown John and Samuel, Yarmouth, Norfolk, maltsters, Nov. 3, 1829.

Bunn Thomas, Great Yarmouth, and South Town, corn dealer, Nov. 17, 1837.

Eabbage William Boutt, Yarmouth, mast and block maker, Aug. 23, 1831.

Ely Henry, Great Yarmouth, blacksmith and coach builder, June 15, 1830.


  • County: Norfolk
  • Civil Registration District: Yarmouth
  • Probate Court: Court of the Archdeaconry of Norwich
  • Diocese: Norwich
  • Rural Deanery: Flegg
  • Poor Law Union: Yarmouth
  • Hundred: Great Yarmouth Borough
  • Province: Canterbury

This article was updated on August 6, 2023