Wednesday, April 14, 2010
An important town in medieval times, New Buckenham still retains much of its ancient charm.
Where is New Buckenham?
Surrounded by farmland, New Buckenham is about a mile from Old Buckenham on the B1113 Norwich road. It is 15 miles from Norwich, four from Attleborough and eight from Diss.
About New Buckenham
William dAlbini, a follower of William the Conqueror, moved a mile up the road from Old Buckenham and built a second castle for the area to the west of New Buckenham in 1145. Only the motte, bailey and ruined keep remain.
To service the castle and garrison, the settlement was built up around it to provide services and labour, and probably covered much the same area and grid layout as is seen today.
The ancient market cross, an open shelter with wooden pillars supporting an upper room (pictured above), was built in 1718. It is listed for its historic and archaeological interest. The central pillar is the old whipping post.
New Buckenham High Bailiffs Trust commissioned a replica of one of three decorative panels that once adorned the Market Cross, showing Buckenham Castle in its heyday, flanked by two harts.
Apart from Buckenham Castle, the earliest existing buildings are St Marys Chapel (early 13th century), and St Martins parish church (right), which dates from 1246.
Among the earliest existing houses are those on the west side of the Market Place which have their origins in the 15th century.
Also of interest is the common, to the east of the village, which has been grazed for at least 800 years and is largely unchanged in that time. It is designated as a conservation area.
Queen Elizabeth I awarded a Town Charter, allowing markets and fairs to be held, and the tradition lives on with the May Day Fair and August Bank Holiday fete held each year.