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Town Sign sited
on the Green
in Hunstanton



Influential Owners of Blickling Hall
The manor of Blickling is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1066. Influential owners have included Sir Geoffrey Boleyn (1406-1463), grandfather of Anne Boleyn, the ill-fated wife of Henry VIII. The Tudor house that once stood at Blickling is believed to be the birthplace of Anne Boleyn. The present red-brick mansion was built in 1616 by Sir Henry Hobart 1st Baronet Lord Chief Justice to James 1st, on the same site as Sir Geoffrey Boleyn's older house. The moat still remains from Tudor times, as Sir Henry used this as a perimeter in order to control his budget.
In the Second World War, when Lord Lothian owned the estate, RAF aircrew were billeted at Blickling Hall.
The House
Enjoy the magnificence of the Great Hall and marvel at the amazing Gainsborough paintings and the 18c Long Gallery Library with over 12,500 books – the largest and finest book collection in the care of the National Trust. Climb the grand staircase (or take the lift to the first floor) and find out who graces the 23 paintings on display! Visit Lord Lothian’s old bedroom and study.
You can also explore and get a feel for life ‘below stairs’. Visit the old kitchen and you may even find the cook recreating recipes from the 1930’s, and get a taster!
The Garden Tour
Guided garden tours lasting up to two hours are available for £5pp. The Hall’s formal garden is the result of four centuries of good husbandry and inspired planting which make it one of the greatest in England. Visit the newly restored walled garden, and maybe take home some seasonal produce (subject to availability).
The RAF Oulton Museum
RAF Oulton was a bomber base created on the Blickling estate in 1939. The station was instrumental in winning the war, as documented by the Luftwaffe themselves. A visit to the RAF Museum on the estate is a moving and memorable experience – not to be missed.
Other Areas
Free access is available to the shops, cafés, RAF Oulton Museum, plant centre, second-hand bookshop and Loft Gallery exhibitions. The entire estate covers 4,600 acres, including 950 acres of wood and parkland. Visitors have free access to much of this land, and there are four way-marked walking routes of between 2 and 5 miles.

Booking @ Blickling Hall - Christmas Events 2021
Unfortunately, Blickling Hall National Trust are not able to accommodate any group visits during their annual Christmas events which will be happening between 29th November and 19th December 2021.
However, their booking system during this period will accept a reservation from H&DCS for 15 separate tickets for individuals who will be free to wander all areas of the Hall; but there will be no ‘guided tour’ per se. Staff will of course be available to answer questions from Visitors.
No coach parking can be accommodated and H&DCS members will need to make their own transport arrangements during the day.
A Christmas Morning at Blickling (running from 10am until 2pm).
Come and enjoy a Christmas morning.
Get in the festive mood with a visit to the house, a spot of shopping, sweet treats and also a winter adventure with Percy the Park Keeper and friends if you wish. All tickets are pre-booked only.
Christmas Morning Blickling Hall Admission Prices
All tickets, including National Trust members and non-members, must be pre-booked as there won't be any tickets available on the day. Your ticket includes parking in our main car park.
• National Trust members – free of charge
• Non-members - Adult £10, child £6, Family (2 adults) £26, Family (1 adult) £16.50, Carer ticket £0.00
Percy the Park Keeper's winter wander trail price: £2 per trail. All revenue from the sales of trail packs will remain at Blickling Estate and help conserve this beautiful estate.
Christmas Garden of Lights (running from 3.30 – 8pm daily)
If you wish to come along to the Blickling 'Garden of Lights' you will need to book a separate ticket.
Christmas Garden of Lights ticket prices
• National Trust members - free of charge
• Non-members - Adult £10.00, child (5 to 17) £6.00, Under 5’s free, Family (1 adult & 2 children) £16.50, Carer ticket £0.00


Our outing to RAF Bircham Newton on Sunday 31st October 2021

The former RAF station of Bircham Newton started life in 1918, during the First World War. The first flying unit to use the airfield was No. 3 Fighting School, which trained pilots and observers who were going to join the war in the skies over France. During the 1920s and most of the 1930s, Bircham operated as a peacetime bomber base. Many famous squadrons spent periods on the station, and its bumpy grass airfield became familiar to hundreds of RAF pilots. A large variety of different aircraft were seen in the skies over Bircham Newton during this period, including the Vickers Vimy, DH9A, Vickers Virginia, Boulton and Paul Sidestrand, Fairey IIIA, Fairey Gordon, Hawker Hart, and Hawker Hind.
By the time of WW2, Bircham had established itself as one of the most important Coastal Command stations on the East Coast, performing a variety of critical Coastal Command operations, including photographic and meteorological reconnaissance, mine laying, antishipping strikes and air-sea rescue. The Anson squadron that was resident at the beginning of WW2, No. 206 Squadron, was soon re-equipped with the American manufactured Lockheed Hudson, and many other units arrived flying a variety of aircraft types, including, initially, the Bristol Blenheim and Hudson, and later with the Vickers Wellington. Even Fleet Air Arm squadrons used the airfield, flying the Fairey Swordfish aircraft nicknamed 'Stringbags'.
After WW2, in new jet age, there was little use for grass airfields like Bircham Newton and its days as a flying station were numbered. A Chipmunk aircraft was used at Bircham for flying experience. HRH The Duke of Edinburgh also made several landings at Bircham Newton in Chipmunk aircraft during the course of his flying training in 1952 and 1953, maintaining the long-standing royal links with the station due to its proximity to the royal estate at Sandringham.
Bircham Newton finally closed in December 1962, ending a long and distinguished RAF service of more than 44 years involving more than 80 flying units. Flying briefly returned to Bircham Newton in 1965, when the Tripartite Evaluation Squadron of the Central Fighter Establishment at West Raynham used the former airfield as a landing ground while evaluating the Hawker Siddeley Kestrel V/STOL aircraft.
The Heritage Centre at Bircham has a unique collection of memorabilia from the former RAF station’s past. On display are photographs and personal memories of servicemen who have served there, and related items from its fascinating history.
Entrance and parking are both free of charge. Tea, coffee and biscuits; available at cost.

You can download a copy of the booking form by clicking HERE


Trips were being considered visiting North Norfolk Railway at Sheringham, Hoste Arms Cinema Experience in Burnham Market, St Botolph's Church in Boston (known as the Boston Stump) and the Industrial Steam Museum at Forncett St Mary to the south of Norwich.


OXBURGH HALL - 24th September 2020

A final visit for this year was arranged for Oxburgh Hall on Tuesday, 24th September.
Here are some of us having just enjoyed the tour round.

We visited the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire.
A very knowledgeable guide welcomed 12 of us and gave us a brief history of the BBMF before commencing a tour of the hanger. Once inside, we were given detailed histories of the Spitfires, Hurricanes and the Dakota - and stories of those who flew them. We then moved outside the hanger to view their most famous aircraft - the Lancaster. The mission of the RAF BBMF is to maintain the priceless artefacts of our national heritage in airworthy condition in order to commemorate those who have fallen in the service of this country, to promote the modern day Air Force and to inspire future generations.


Our trip to Langham Dome near Sculthorpe and Wells Maltings took place on 16th May 2019.
Langham Dome
North Norfolk Historic Buildings Trust, owners of Langham Dome, had created a Visitor Centre inside this intriguing building, telling the amazing story of the Dome and RAF Langham.
We had a half hour talk by a member of the Friends of Langham Dome on the genesis and history of the Dome and RAF Langham, with its interactive training guns, puzzles and atmospheric lighting followed by three 10 minute films, narrated by Stephen Fry, which told the story of the invention of the “Dome Trainer”, how it worked, interviews of personnel who actually trained and operated the Dome; and also about the squadrons which were stationed at Langham, as well as personal stories from some of those servicemen and women who served here, and the sort of operations which they undertook.
This was followed with time to look around the Dome and the facilities.
After coffe at the Langham Blue Bell in the village, we transfered to Wells Harbour.
Wells Maltings Trust
Wells Maltings Trust is an integrated and sustainable heritage, arts and community facility. It has moved from a traditional museum layout in favour of a creative, engaging community hub with a Heritage & Learning Centre alongside a café, shop and theatre.
Following our arrival at the Wells Maltings Trust and a bite to eat in the Maltings café, we enjoyed a talk by Simon Daykin, the Managing Director, in the Maltings Auditorium followed bya guided tour of the Maltings.
This ended a wonderful enjoying just some of the amazing attractions we have almost on our doorstep.

VISIT TO ELY CATHEDRAL - 27th March 2019

Our visit to Ely Cathedral took place on Wednesday, 27th March. It proved to be a great success and judging by the favourable comments that were received after our return, everyone seemed to agree that it was very enjoyable and we all learned a lot from it. The Archivist at the Cathedral, Elizabeth Stazicker, made the arrangements and a number of Cathedral staff showed us around the various parts of the Cathedral including the main body of the Cathedral, the Octagon (the wooden tower suspended above the central part of the building, the Stained Glass Museum (we learnt that most stained glass is not actually stained but painted!), the Archives Room, some records relating directly to Henry Le Strange and the painted ceiling of the Nave and one fit lady actually tackled the 288 steps up the West Tower which she described as being simply awe inspiring!
Here is a photo of many who made the journey:


A report is included on the 'Twinning' page above (under 'Events and Activities') but here are another couple of photos of our day at R.A.F. Mildenhall.


We had a wonderful outing to Wisbech organised by Margi Blunden which offerred much in the way of history, fascinating people who have lived there and literary associations.

We visited the Wisbech Museum and had a very interesting guided tour.
Lunch was at the Rose and Crown Hotel.
The afternoon we visited the Octavia Hill Birthplace House and including a tour and tea.
We also took in the Thomas Clarkson Memorial.

Here are a few photos taken during the day:
The first was beside the Clarkson Memorial, the second having our lunch and the third was of a plaque we found in the garden of Octavia Hill House. The final one was in the Wisbech Museum.


A trip took place by the Civic Society on 15 July 2015.
This was designed around William Butterfield who was a friend of Henry Le Strange. Together they planned the layout of Hunstanton with its several greens. It is probable that Butterfield designed The Golden Lion Hotel. He then went on to design the row of houses in St Edmunds Terrace.
This renowned Victorian architect was responsible for many buildings but church architecture was his forte. We went to see St Alban the Martyr, Holborn and All Saints, Margaret Street London.

All Saints, Margaret Street (below)

St Albyn the Martyr, Holborn (above)