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Thetford
Thetford
is a market town and civil parish in the Breckland
Breckland
district of Norfolk, England. It is on the A11 road between Norwich
Norwich
and London, just south of Thetford
Thetford
Forest. After World War II
World War II
Thetford
Thetford
became an ‘overspill town’ taking people from London, as a result of which its population increased substantially.[1] The civil parish, covering an area of 29.55 km2 (11.41 sq mi), has a population of 24,340.[2]

Contents

1 History 2 Events and sports 3 Transport 4 Industry 5 Demography 6 Climate 7 Dad's Army 8 Twin towns 9 See also 10 References 11 External links

History[edit] The Iceni were a Celtic tribe living in Norfolk
Norfolk
and parts of Cambridgeshire. Archaeological evidence suggests that Thetford
Thetford
was an important tribal centre during the late Iron Age and early Roman period. A ceremonial 'grove' was uncovered there during excavations. In 1979, a hoard of Romano-British metalwork, known as the Thetford treasure was located just outside Thetford. Dating from the mid-4th century AD, this hoard is a collection of thirty three inscribed spoons, twenty gold finger rings, four pendants, several necklaces and a 2" gold buckle depicting a dancing satyr. They are currently on display and under curation at the British Museum. Thetford, an important crossing of the River Little Ouse, draws its name from the Anglo-Saxon Theodford or peoples ford. The nearby River Thet was later named after the town. On 20 November 869, Edmund the Martyr
Edmund the Martyr
– the last native King of the East Angles – was killed in East Anglia by Vikings. For a time Edmund was England’s patron saint.

Statue of Thomas Paine

The Domesday Book
Domesday Book
lists William of Bello Fargo as the Bishop of Thetford[3] in 1085. Castle Hill, to the south-east of the town centre, is a Norman motte though no trace remains of the castle which once surmounted it. The mound (motte) is open to the public, and provides excellent views of the town from its summit and extensive earthworks. It is in a public park, near the Three Nuns Bridges and close to the town centre overlooking the rivers.

Priory ruins

Thetford
Thetford
also contains the ruins of a 12th-century Cluniac priory. Thetford
Thetford
Priory, open to the public, was closed during the Reformation. Both the Priory and the Bell Inn, also in Thetford, were featured for their alleged hauntings on the television series Ghosthunters. The Black Horse public house dates from the mid 18th century, and is grade II listed.[4] The Norfolk
Norfolk
Lent Assizes were held at Thetford
Thetford
from 1264 because there was only one Assize for both Norfolk
Norfolk
and Suffolk. Thetford, being close to the border between the two, was convenient for both. However, after much pressure, an Act of Parliament was passed in 1832 to transfer them to Norwich. There had been pressure to do so for many years. In 1825 an MP, Mr John Buxton, told the House of Commons that prisoners had to be carried the 30 miles from Norwich
Norwich
Gaol in an open waggon and, on arrival at Thetford, were placed in a prison, which, "if he were to describe it, would shock and offend the House".[5][6][7] Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk
Norfolk
and other early Tudor dynasty officials were once buried in Thetford
Thetford
before removal to Framlingham. The Duke of Norfolk
Norfolk
died on 21 May 1524. His funeral and burial on 22 June at Thetford Priory
Thetford Priory
were said to have been 'spectacular and enormously expensive, costing over £1300 and including a procession of 400 hooded men bearing torches and an elaborate bier surmounted with 100 wax effigies and 700 candles', befitting the richest and most powerful peer in England.[8] After the dissolution of Thetford
Thetford
Priory, the Howard tombs were moved to the Church of St Michael the Archangel, Framlingham. Thetford
Thetford
was the birthplace of Thomas Paine
Thomas Paine
and his statue stands on King Street, holding a quill and his book Rights of Man, upside down. Paine attended Thetford
Thetford
Grammar School. Born in Thetford
Thetford
on 9 February 1737, Paine emigrated to the British American colonies in 1774 where he was to participate in the American Revolution. His principal contributions were the powerful, widely read pamphlet Common Sense
Common Sense
[9] (1776), advocating colonial America's independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain, and The American Crisis
The American Crisis
[10] (1776–1783), a pro-revolutionary pamphlet series. Dr Allan Glaisyer Minns, born in Inagua, the Bahamas, Mayor of Thetford
Thetford
in 1904, was the first black man to become a mayor in Britain.[11] His son Allan Noel Minns, also a doctor, was awarded the DSO and MC in the First World War. From the 1950s Thetford
Thetford
became a London
London
overspill town. In 1953 the Thetford
Thetford
Borough Council approached the London
London
County Council to become part of the town's expansion scheme. An agreement was signed in 1957 and work began on new housing estates to accommodate 5,000 Londoners. In 1960 another 5,000 Londoners moved to Thetford increasing the population to about 17,000 people. An additional 1,500 houses were built by 1965. Development then shifted to the Abbey Farm estate to the north of the river, construction of which started in 1967, with 1,000 houses, public open spaces and footpaths. By the late 1980s the population of Thetford
Thetford
had reached around 21,000 people, this enormous increase in population meant that Thetford
Thetford
grew faster than any other town in Norfolk, and indeed in the whole country.[12] The British Trust for Ornithology
British Trust for Ornithology
moved its headquarters into the former Nunnery, south of the town centre, in 1991.

Ancient House

The Ancient House Museum, situated on White Hart Street, is an oak-framed Tudor merchant's house. The museum holds replicas of the Thetford
Thetford
Treasure and has displays about flint knapping, rabbit warreners and wildlife in the brecks. You can also find out more about Thomas Paine
Thomas Paine
and the Maharajah Duleep Singh. The Ancient House was gifted to the town by Prince Frederick Duleep Singh. The surrounding Breckland
Breckland
has been largely replaced by the Thetford Forest, though Thetford
Thetford
Chase remains. Events and sports[edit] East Harling
East Harling
near Thetford
Thetford
hosts an annual Autumn Equinox
Autumn Equinox
Festival for astronomy. The town is also the site for the UK's Star Party, as it is centrally located in a rural area with dark night skies. An annual concert, STORM open air festival used to take place at the Castle Green. The local football club, Thetford
Thetford
Town F.C., plays in the Eastern Counties Football League. The Breckland
Breckland
& District Sunday Football League, encompasses teams from within a 20-mile (30 km) radius of Thetford. Thetford
Thetford
Cricket Club play their home games next to the football club on Mundford
Mundford
Road. They currently have 3 men's teams, 2 that play on Saturdays and 1 on Sundays. The club are represented in the Norfolk
Norfolk
Cricket Alliance Division 3 and Division 6 and the Mid- Norfolk
Norfolk
Sunday Cricket League Division 3. In summer, Castle Park is the Sunday meeting place of the non-professional and informal Castle Park Football Green. Thetford
Thetford
Rugby Union Football Club is based at two mile bottom on the Mundford
Mundford
road just outside Thetford. The club has two teams, the first team plays in the Greene King IPA Eastern Counties 1
Eastern Counties 1
and the second team plays in the Woodlands Norfolk
Norfolk
Merit League 3, with both teams playing on Saturdays. A swimming team called the Thetford
Thetford
Dolphins is based at Breckland Leisure Centre's Waterworld swimming pools. World champion triathlete Chrissie Wellington
Chrissie Wellington
is a former member of this swimming club.[13] High Lodge Forest Centre in Thetford Forest
Thetford Forest
attracts thousands of visitors every year. Events are held throughout the year including summer concerts and the Hallowe'en 'terror trail'. Transport[edit]

Thetford
Thetford
railway station

Thetford
Thetford
is just off the A11 road between Norwich
Norwich
(28 miles (45 km)) and London
London
(86 miles (138 km)). The A11 previously ran through the town but a bypass was constructed in the 1990s. In December 2014, a £102 million project to dual the A11 between Thetford
Thetford
and the Five Ways roundabout at Mildenhall was completed, meaning that the entire A11 is now dual carriageway from London
London
to Thetford, and beyond to Norwich.[14] It is served by Thetford
Thetford
railway station, with Abellio Greater Anglia running services between Norwich
Norwich
and Cambridge, and East Midlands Trains from Norwich
Norwich
to Liverpool Lime Street (via Nottingham, Sheffield and Manchester Piccadilly). From Cambridge, regular services run to London
London
King's Cross. A branch line to Bury St Edmunds was closed in the 1950s, well before Dr. Beeching. The remnants of Thetford Bridge railway station on the southern side of the town can still be seen. Thetford
Thetford
stands on River Little Ouse
River Little Ouse
which flows westward and is a tributary of the River Great Ouse, The Great Ouse finds its way to the sea via King's Lynn
King's Lynn
and The Wash. In its time, the Little Ouse has been navigable as far as here, though nowadays the head of navigation is Santon Downham
Santon Downham
bridge, 6 miles downstream. The National Cycle Route 13 links Thetford
Thetford
to Gateley, near Fakenham. Industry[edit]

Thetford
Thetford
market

Thetford
Thetford
was home to Tulip International, large-scale manufacturers of bacon, beef and pork. The factory opened its doors in 1966 and was one of the biggest bacon production factories in the UK. In 2007 the factory ceased production of fresh bacon, beef and pork with the loss of 350 jobs, although cooked bacon and fried products continued to be made until all production ceased in February 2009.[15] In February 2012 an application was submitted to Breckland
Breckland
District Council for the redevelopment of the former Tulip factory to provide a new 56,000 sq ft foodstore. Demography[edit] According to the 2001 UK Census, almost 22,000 people were residing in Thetford. Climate[edit] Thetford
Thetford
has a temperate marine climate, like much of the British Isles, with generally light precipitation throughout the year. The surrounding Breckland
Breckland
area is differentiated from much of Eastern England
England
due to the presence of sandy soils. This results in average minimum temperatures typically being around 1 degree lower than in surrounding areas, and on cold clear nights up to 5 to 10 Celsius lower.[citation needed] The nearest Met Office weather station is at Santon Downham
Santon Downham
4 miles (6 km) to the NW Dad's Army[edit]

Statue of Captain Mainwaring, Arthur Lowe's Dad’s Army character in Thetford.

The external scenes for the BBC1 TV series Dad's Army
Dad's Army
were filmed in and around the town with Thetford's flint buildings doubling for Walmington-on-Sea.[16] The Dad's Army
Dad's Army
Museum is located in the town's Guildhall building. In December 2007 it was announced that a statue of Arthur Lowe
Arthur Lowe
who played the leading character Captain Mainwaring
Captain Mainwaring
would be erected in the town.[17][18] The statue, depicting Captain Mainwaring sitting on a park bench, was unveiled next to the Little Ouse river on 19 June 2010.[19] This was preceded by a stage show re-enacting several Dad's Army
Dad's Army
episodes which was shown over the course of several nights, including The Godiva Affair. Jones' van which was used in the series is displayed at the nearby Charles Burrell Museum. Twin towns[edit] Thetford
Thetford
is twinned with the towns of:[20]

Hürth, near Cologne, Germany Skawina, near Kraków, Poland Nissewaard, near Rotterdam, Netherlands Les Ulis, near Paris, France

See also[edit]

The Thetford
Thetford
Academy, Norfolk

References[edit]

^ Dickinson, G. C. (April 1962). "Overspill and Town Development in England
England
and Wales, 1945-1971". Town Planning Review. 33 (1): 49.  access-date= requires url= (help) ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 October 2015. Retrieved 15 October 2014. / ^ "The Domesday Book
Domesday Book
Online - Landowners A-C".  ^ Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1297894)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 13 July 2015.  ^ "NORFOLK ASSIZES. (Hansard 24 February 1825)". Hansard 1803-2005. Retrieved 12 April 2016.  ^ "PLACE FOR HOLDING THE NORFOLK ASSIZES (Hansard, 3 April 1832)". Hansard 1803-2005. Retrieved 12 April 2016.  ^ White, William (1845). History, Gazetteer, and Directory of Norfolk. Sheffield. p. 91.  ^ Head 2008; Cokayne 1936 ^ Common Sense ^ The American Crisis ^ Month, Norfolk
Norfolk
Black History. "Dr. Allan Glaisyer Minns: Britain's First Black Mayor - Local Black History - History - Norfolk
Norfolk
Black History Month".  ^ "Town Expansion and Migration". Thetford's Great Heritage. Thetford Town Council. Retrieved 12 April 2016.  ^ "Wellington strides to top title". Watton & Swaffham
Swaffham
Times. 17 October 2007. Retrieved 2009-10-12. [permanent dead link] ^ "Dualled A11 between Thetford
Thetford
and the Fiveways roundabout to officially open this morning". Retrieved 2015-09-23.  ^ "Tulip moves fresh lines from Thetford". Grocer. March 2007. [dead link] ^ The Complete A-Z of Dad's Army
Dad's Army
Webber,R London, Orion, 2000 ISBN 0-7528-1838-4 ^ Article by Jan Moir in The Daily Telegraph
The Daily Telegraph
issue 47,433 dated 5 December 2007 ^ " Dad's Army
Dad's Army
tribute statue planned". BBC News. 2007-12-01. Retrieved 2010-05-25.  ^ "In pictures: Dad's Army
Dad's Army
Mainwaring statue in Thetford". BBC Norfolk. 2010-06-19. Retrieved 2016-04-26.  ^ About the Association, Thetford
Thetford
Twinning Association, retrieved 14 July 2010 

External links[edit]

Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Thetford.

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Thetford.

Information from Genuki Norfolk
Norfolk
on Thetford. Thetford
Thetford
Tourism website

v t e

Ceremonial county of Norfolk

Boroughs or districts

Breckland Broadland Great Yarmouth King's Lynn
King's Lynn
and West Norfolk North Norfolk Norwich South Norfolk

Major settlements

Acle Attleborough Aylsham Cromer Dereham Diss Downham Market Fakenham Gorleston Great Yarmouth Hingham Holt Hunstanton King's Lynn Loddon North Walsham Norwich Redenhall with Harleston Reepham Sheringham Sprowston Stalham Swaffham Thetford Thorpe St Andrew Watton Wells-next-the-Sea Wymondham See also: List of civil parishes in Norfolk

Topics

Parliamentary constituencies Places Population of major settlements SSSIs Country houses Grade I listed buildings Grade II* listed buildings History Lost settlements Lord Lieutenants High Sheriffs Schools Museums Windmills

v t e

Civil parishes of Breckland

Ashill Attleborough Banham Bawdeswell Beachamwell Beeston with Bittering Beetley Besthorpe Billingford Bintree Blo' Norton Bradenham Brettenham Bridgham Brisley Bylaugh Carbrooke Caston Cockley Cley Colkirk Cranwich Cranworth Croxton Didlington Dereham East Tuddenham Elsing Foulden Foxley Fransham Garboldisham Garvestone Gateley Gooderstone Great Cressingham Great Dunham Great Ellingham Gressenhall Griston Guist Hardingham Harling Hilborough Hockering Hockham Hoe Holme Hale Horningtoft Ickburgh Kempstone Kenninghall Kilverstone Lexham Litcham Little Cressingham Little Dunham Little Ellingham Longham Lynford Lyng Mattishall Merton Mileham Mundford Narborough Narford Necton New Buckenham Newton by Castle Acre North Elmham North Lopham North Pickenham North Tuddenham Old Buckenham Ovington Oxborough Quidenham Riddlesworth Rocklands Roudham and Larling Rougham Saham Toney Scarning Scoulton Shipdham Shropham Snetterton South Acre South Lopham South Pickenham Sparham Sporle with Palgrave Stanfield Stanford Stow Bedon Sturston Swaffham Swanton Morley Thetford Thompson Tittleshall Tottington Twyford Watton Weasenham All Saints Weasenham St Peter Weeting-with-Broomhill Wellingham Wendling Whinburgh and Westfield Whissonsett Wretham Yaxham

See also Broadland Great Yarmouth King's Lynn
King's Lynn
and West Norfolk North Nor

.