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Buckenham Ferry

The Beauchamp Arms, Buckenham Ferry 1904 The Beauchamp Arms, Buckenham Ferry 2010

The photograph of the Beauchamp Arms (then known as the Ferry House) was taken by Donald Shields and dates from 1904, the modern comparison beneath it was taken in May 2010. A chain ferry operated on this site until 1938, connecting the villages of Claxton and Carleton St. Peter south of the river to Buckenham on the north. The modern photograph shows that the structure of the pub has changed very little in the last 100 years.

The Beauchamp Arms, Buckenham Ferry c1953 The Beauchamp Arms, Buckenham Ferry 2010

Another view of the Beauchamp Arms/ Buckenham Ferry Inn, pictured in a postcard on the left dating from 1953 and on the right in May 2010. It illustrates once again just how little the pub has changed over the years.

Burgh St Peter

Waveney River Centre, Burgh St Peter 1970s The Waveney River Centre, Burgh St Peter 2010

The Waveney River Centre at Burgh St. Peter. The postcard dates from the 1970s, whilst the photograph below it was taken in May 2010. The marina and campsite have been developed extensively over recent years and the photograph above shows the swimming pool/ leisure complex on the right and the new shower and toilet block to the right of the Waveney Inn.

The Waveney Hotel, Burgh St Peter c1970 The Waveney Inn, Burgh St Peter 2010

The Waveney Inn pictured c1970 and in May 2010. The Waveney Hotel, as it was know then, was owned by the Watney Mann group at this time. Between 1904 and 1914 the then licensee, Francis Edwin Rice, ran his Zoological Gardens here which were a popular attraction with day trippers and holidaymakers. Maps from the 19th century show that a foot ferry crossed the Waveney at this point. The modern photograph shows that the boat dyke has been widened which made getting a comparison shot very difficult. The large boat crane behind the dyke dominates the scene.


Cantley Red House 1960s The former Red House at Cantley 2010

The Reedcutters at Cantley. Originally known as the Red House, the name was changed in 2004. The old postcard dates from the 1960s whilst the bottom photograph was taken in May 2010 and, apart from the change of colour, shows that very little else has altered. The row of garages seen to the right of the pub were converted and a small shop operated from there until recently.


Rising Sun Coltishall 1960s Rising Sun Coltishall 2010

Comparing these two photographs you can see that very little has changed at Coltishall other than the quay heading. The top picture of the Rising Sun submitted by Iain Gray and was taken in the 1960s,  the one beneath it was taken in February 2006. The pub was originally part of a large maltings complex which, I believe, was once owned by the Coltishall Brewery.

Coltishall Lock c1909 Coltishall Lock 2013

The top image shows Coltishall Lock c1909. At this time it was possible to navigate the Upper Bure all the way to Aylsham via further locks at the mills at Buxton, Oxnead, Burgh and then Aylsham itself. The upper Bure beyond Coltishall was made navigable after an act of parliament authorised the deepening of the river up to Aylsham in 1773. Work commenced in the following year and it was opened in October 1779. The devastating floods which hit the region on the 26th August 1912 severely damaged the locks and were deemed to be beyond economical repair  and the navigation was closed, although it was not officially abandoned until 1928. The bottom photograph shows the lock in 2013. Many plans have been mooted over the years to restore this section of waterway but it's unlikely to happen any time soon.

The Anchor Hotel Coltishall 1920s The former Anchor Hotel Coltishall 2013

The Anchor Hotel at Coltishall pictured in the 1920s and in October 2013. The Anchior was a popular watering hole for many years and, although it closed its doors in the mid 1980s, the moorings here are still a favourite for boaters.

Church Street Coltishall c1910 Church Street Coltishall 2013

Church Street in Coltishall c1910 and 2013- a view which hasn’t changed a great deal in the last 100 years, although the road is considerably busier.

Church Street Coltishall c1910 Church Street Coltishall 2013

Another view of Church Street in Coltishall c1910 and 2013 with St John the Baptist Church on the right, looking down towards the Red Lion pub on the left. Another area of the village which has changed little.

The Street, Coltishall c1910 The Street, Coltishall 2013

The Street at Coltishall c1910 and 2013. The original postcard shows Roys’ Grocery and Drapery store on the right which was established here in 1895 by brothers Alfred and Arnold Roy. In 1899, the brothers opened a second store in Hoveton and the famous “Roys’ of Wroxham” came into being. The shop is now part of Coltishall Pharmacy. You can just make out a pub sign in the background on the left - Ithis was the Cabinetmakers Arms.

The Street, Coltishall c1935 The Street, Coltishall 2013

Another Then & Now of The Street at Coltishall c1935 and 2013. This shows the view at the corner of Church Street, Norwich Road, looking up towards the High street. The confectionery shop on the left is now the site of the petrol station whilst the shop in the foreground on the right has also disappeared, replaced by a modern Londis store which is set further back from the road.


Geldeston Locks Inn 1961 Geldeston Locks Inn 2008

The Locks Inn at Geldeston pictured in a 1961 photograph submitted to the archive by Ron Harrison. Thought to have been built in the 16th century as a house for the mill keeper, it later became the lock keepers cottage and was granted a public house license in the 17th century.  In 1961 the landlady was Susan Ellis, a renowned Broadland character and after her death in the early 1970s it was taken over by Walter Coe. He sold the Locks Inn in the early 1980s and it was the new owners who were then granted planning permission to add the large extensions which you see today in the picture at the bottom was taken in March 2008.

Geldeston Locks Inn 1957 Geldeston Locks Inn 2008

The top picture is an interior shot of the Locks Inn taken in 1957 by Ron Harrison showing Susan Ellis with her notepad in hand, taking down the drinks orders. There was, and still is, no mains electricity at The Locks and lighting was supplied by gas wall lights and dozens of candles spread around the pub. The bottom picture taken in March 2008, shows that much of the plaster work has been stripped back to expose the original brickwork and the fireplace has been opened up and lost it’s mantle surround. A generator has now been installed at the inn, but the tradition of lighting the place with candles in the evenings still continues today.

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The Norfolk Broads Then & Now

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Buckenham Ferry

Burgh St Peter




Great Yarmouth





Oulton Broad

Potter Heigham


Rockland St Mary

St Olaves




Thorpe St Andrew

West Somerton


Wherry Inn Geldeston c1906 Wherry Inn Geldeston 2015 The Post Office at Geldeston c1910 The Old Post Office Geldeston 2015

The Wherry Inn at Geldeston pictured in 1906 and in December 2015. Now owned by the Adnams Brewery, the Wherry Inn was mentioned in a Norwich Mercury notice of sale in January 1776 as part of a large estate which incorporated Geldeston Staithe and its associated warehouses, granaries, maltings, offices and other ancillary buildings along with a number of dwelling houses, various parcels of land, three wherries and two pleasure boats. It was bought by Benjamin Utting Dowson whose descendants continued to trade in the village for many years. Whites 1854 directory listed Henry Gibson Dowson as a Maltster, Brewer and spirit merchant in the village - Geldeston Brewery operated between 1828 and c1858 and at one time owned over 30 pubs in the area. A second maltings complex was situated alongside the Wherry which is where, I presume, Henry conducted his business from. The full Norwich Mercury transcript and a bit more about the Dowson family can be found in The Sale of Geldeston Staithe 1776 Broadland Memories blog post from 2013.

The old Post Office at Geldeston, pictured c1910 and in December 2015. The most obvious change here, apart from the fact it no longer operates as a post office and shop, is that the building is missing a huge chunk off the back. When you view what remains of the wall of the building, it bears all the characteristics of a maltings. The cottage itself is believed to have been built c1820s by Henry Gibson Dowson as part of the Geldeston Brewery. The brewery was sold in 1858 and this cottage became a shop and a Post Office. I’m not sure when the back of the building was demolished but looking at the rendering on the rear of the cottage, it looks as though it may not have been too many years after the first photograph was taken.  The Post Office closed in 2005 and the house is now available for holiday rental..