DERSINGHAM HISTORY
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Dersingham Folk
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Site by Mike Strange
1883 White's History, Gazetteer & Directory of Norfolk
Transcription by Mike Strange ©
DERSINGHAM is a large well-built village on the Hunstanton road, having a station on the Lynn and Hunstanton Railway, and lies 8½ miles N.N.E. of Lynn, sheltered on the north and east by rising and well-cultivated fields, and bounded on the south by a sandy heath and rabbit warren, of 1,900 acres of land, of which 1,500 acres are in Wolferton, and the rest in Sandringham, West Newton, and Dersingham. It is in Docking union, Freebridge Lynn petty sessional division and hundred, Lynn county court district and bankruptcy district, Lynn (Norfolk) rural deanery, and Norfolk archdeaconry. The parish is increasing every year, partly from its contiguity to Sandringham, and partly from its healthy position, the valley having on its north and east sides ranges of chalk hills, which afford excellent building sites and lovely views over the sea and Lincolnshire coast. The parish contained, in 1881, 1,014 inhabitants (and is still increasing), and comprises 3,472 acres of land, extending two miles westward to Lynn Deeps, and three miles eastward to Ling House. The rateable value being £5,262. At the enclosure in 1779, 160 acres were allotted in lieu of the vicarial tithes, and 457 acres were enclosed within a ring fence for the use of the parish, viz., 329 acres of marsh as a stinted common, and 128 acres of heath, and are let, the rentals of which are divided in coals, &c., to the poor. There are five manors, of which H.R.H. the Prince of Wales and the Rev. J. Bellamy, D.D., are lords; these, with the trustees of the late J. B. Goggs, Esq., are the principal landowners.

The CHURCH is a grand structure, principally of the commencement of the fourteenth century, but it is evident that a much more ancient church stood on the same site, as the re-working in of Norman mouldings and enrichments prove. It consists of a nave of six bays, aisles with clerestory, large chancel, and a fine massive and lofty western tower containing six bells. The total length inside is 155 feet, width 52 feet; of this the chancel takes 50 feet by 23 feet. In the east wall is an aumbry, over the altar table, divided in the centre by a shelf. There is a curious leper window on the south side. At the eastern end of the south aisle, formerly a chantry, is a fine piscina and a curious hagioscope, or squint, giving persons in that aisle a view of the high altar. On the south side of the chancel is an exquisitely designed recess combining under one hood-moulded tripple sedilia and piscina. The font is a simple and massive one of the fourteenth century. The rood-screen, fifteenth century, was a very elaborate one, the whole was richly painted and gilt, and on the north side the panels contain well-executed but much defaced paintings of saints. At the east end of the south aisle is a fine tomb, having a black marble slab on the top, with incised figures of John Pell, mayor of Lynn, and his wife, and on the sides are representations of their six sons and three daughters. There are many slabs to the Pell family, and mural tablets of the Postlethwaite, Hodson, and Kerrich families. The whole of the building and fittings were thoroughly restored in 1876-7 at a cost of £6,000, of which sum the President of St. John's College, Oxford, the Rev. James Bellamy, D.D., who is patron of the living, contributed £4,000; the Ecclesiastical Commissioners, £1,200, and the parishioners
and other contributors the remainder. In 1885 a new organ, by Messrs. Foster and Andrews, was erected at a cost of £250 by the parishioners; and the church was relighted throughout in 1887, by handsome brass coronas, the cost being £90. The registers date from 1719. The living is a Vicarage held by the Rev. Edward W. Penny, M.A., of the annual value of £380, and he has a handsome residence near the church, built in 1877.

The WESLEYANS and the PRIMITIVE METHODISTS have chapels in the village. The PARISH SCHOOLS have been enlarged at the cost of the Rev. J. Bellamy, and are now conducted on the voluntary principle; average attendance 182. The poor parishioners have the following yearly doles:- £5 from 2a. 8p. of land at Snettisham, left by Jeffery Bummer in 1689; 10s.left by Nicholas Ground, out of land occupied by Mr. Jackson; and £24 as the rent of 13a. 2r. 22p., allotted at the enclosure, in lieu of land purchased with £100 left by Elizabeth Pell, in 1730.

POST, MONEY ORDER, and TELEGRAPH OFFICE and SAVINGS BANK at Mr. Enoch Beckett's. Letters arrive at 5.30 a.m. and 1 p.m., and are despatched at 2.15 and 6.30 p.m., via Lynn. WALL LETTER BOX at the station is cleared at 5.45 p.m., and that near the Feathers Hotel at 6.5 p.m., week days only.  Marked (•) letters via Flitcham.

Asker J. furniture broker & hawker
Balding Robert. Farmer& cattledealer
Balding Thomas.farmer& cattledealer
Beckett Enoch, postmaster
Bird Frederick James, butcher
Boothby Alfred, coal dealer, assistant.overseer and tax collector
Boothby Mrs Hannah, dressmaker
Bunn James, farmer and coal agent
Bussey Miss Maria, farmer
Chambers G. bricklayer and builder
Chambers William, bricklayer and builder
Coe Mr Christopher James Rose cottage
Collier R. & Son, coal merchants; and Norwich; James Bunn, agent
Cross Arthur Harry organist & teacher of music
Culyer Mr Robert
Daniel Benjamin, fisherman
Daniel James, fisherman
Daw Robert, shopkeeper
Dodman John Valentine. Blacksmith & machinist
Earl Robert horse dealer
Firth Alfred, schoolmaster
Fitt Matthew corn miller, baker, farmer and tax collector
Flegg Martin wheelwright
Flegg Robert wheelwright
Flegg William, carrier, secondhand clothes, furniture and hardware dealer and hawker
Forester James Joseph, carpenter and builder
Freeman Joshua, farmer
Frost Mrs Amelia
Gamble Mr John
Goggs Edward Harry, farmer. The Hall
Goggs Mr John Baylis, The Hall
Green Thomas, carter
Howes Herbert, baker & confectioner
Jackson James, farmer
Jannoch Theodor, nurseryman and floral artist
Jarvis James William baker and farmer
Lines Miles, farm baliff
Lines Benjamin, parish clerk
Mann George, farmer
Melton Edward beerhouse
Mitchell Henry and William, hurdle makers
Parker John William grocer and drapers
Patrick Mrs Hannah dressmaker
Penny Rev Edward William M.A., vicar, The Vicarage
Potter Henry, blacksmith
Rands Francis butcher
Reynolds David coal dealer
Reynolds Miss Elizabeth, shopkeeper and dressmaker
Riches James, carpenter & wheelwright
Senter Francis, gardener
Smith Mrs Jane Elizabeth, victualler Alexandra Hotel
Smith John, victualler, Dun Cow
Smith William Henry, victualler White Horse
Stanton R & R, farmers
Stanton Richard William (R & R)
Stanton Robert Wright (R &R.)
Steele George, farmer
Taylor Enoch, victualler Feathers hotel and farmer
Taylor Thomas victualler Coach & Horses
Terrington Frederick, butcher
Terrington Henry, bootmaker
Terrington John, bootmaker
Twaits Mr Samuel

CARRIERS to Lynn, Abraham Davis Tuesday and Saturday
William Flegg, Tues, Thursday & Saturday