Hoe and Worthing Archive: Manor Farm 



The house

The farmyard & malthouse

The Norton family

A postcard of Hoe

The Bylaugh sale

The gravel pit

Frederick Baker

The turbine

Mr & Mrs WIlliam Lown

Herbert Jarvis

Mains water

Manor Farm Cottages
The house

Manor Farm house

The farmhouse in 2011. Behind the brick is a very old timber-framed building. Manor Farm belonged to the Bylaugh estate and the porch, double-flue chimneys and chamfered window frames are all characteristic of the work done by Norwich architect Thomas Jeckyll who was employed to improve farmhouses and farm buildings on the estate in the 1870s.

In 1693 the Manor of Hoe Harfords alias Colvilles was conveyed from William and Elizabeth Frith to Daniel Farrington. The land is itemised in the conveyance and is situated to the west of the Dereham-to-Holt road in the area known as Stanton Heath. Also described is a 'Freehold Dwelling House'. The manor was later acquired by the Lombe family who owned it at the time of the Inclosure. At the sale of the Lombe's Bylaugh estate, some of the same land was parcelled with Manor Farm, making it possible that the following description
in the 1693 conveyance relates to Manor Farm and tells us what the house was like then.


And also one Freehold Dwelling house in Hoe afsd. Containing in Length from the north to the south on the east side thereof 33 ffeet or thereabouts & on the west side thereof together with the scullery built at the North End thereof 38 ffeet 9 inches or thereabouts & in breadth 21 ffeet or thereabouts Containg One Low room called the Little Parlour with a chimney in it One other low room with a chimney in it called the Kitchen one other Low Room being the scullery One wainscott Room and closett called the Kitchen Chamber & Closett over the afsd Parlour Kitchen & Scullery and Two High Loft Chambers and one High Loft Closett over the same Kitchen Chamber & Closett 

[Courtesy of Norfolk Record Office EVL361/31/9]

The farmyard and malthouse

manor farm map

On the Enclosure map of 1814, the old course of the road is shown, running through what is now the farmyard. The
farmhouse is shown in pink and the long grey building next to plot 20 is described as a Malt Office. The large field to the right is called Malthouse Piece in the Tithe Assessment (1847). Breweries and malthouses were called 'offices' in contemporary advertisements. Another 'Malt Office' is marked at Hoe Lodge on this same map.

[Courtesy of Norfolk Record Office C/Sca/2/243]

tithe map

The tithe map surveyed in 1847 shows the road's present route as well as the path of the railway then being built (in pink), splitting Malthouse Piece in two. The Tithe Assessment describes Plot 51 as 'Farmhouse
Yards Gardens etc', making no reference to the malthouse building, which has been reduced; malting had ceased, presumably. The pond with its sluice and outlet, tailing off to the left to join the Wendling Beck, is another development made since 1814. See the Turbine lower down this page.

[Courtesy of Norfolk Record Office BR 276/1/119]

The Norton family

Norton 1851 census

In 1851, Samuel Norton was the farmer, having 400 acres and employing sixteen labourers and four boys.

Samuel Norton burial record

Samuel Norton died in 1855. His widow Maria continued at the farm, describing herself as a 'landed proprietor' in 1861. 

                            Noron 1861

Their son Samuel junior, meanwhile, was living somewhere near the church whilst running Manor Farm, taking on the

tenancy of Hoe Hall Farm when Thomas Byam Grounds stopped farming it himself.

Samuel Norton

norton sale
    In 1880, the farm stock, live and dead,
    was sold by 'the Trustees of Mr. S.J.
    Norton'. Samuel's will provided for his
    wife Maria to live on at the farm after
    his death (in 1855), so perhaps this
    sale was necessitated by her own
    death. The newspaper advertisement
    describes a well-equipped farm.

    Samuel (jr), his wife Emily and two
    adult children were living at Spring
    Farm in 1901.
    Norfolk Chronicle 25th September 1880

Hazel Norton

Hazel Fazzani (née Norton) whose ancestors lived at Manor Farm, with her son the Rev Keith Fazzani, outside Hoe Church 2012.

A postcard of Hoe

Manor Farm postcard

This lovely postcard shows Manor Farmhouse, the stackyard, and stables beyond. It looks as if the stacks are in the process of being built just after harvest with a laden wagon waiting to be emptied. The roads are not yet tarmaced. The card was posted on 30th August 1915 to London by Vernon Gladden, aged eleven, who was staying with relatives at the Angel pub just up the road.

So far, this is the only postcard of Hoe that has come to light. The car is a Humberette. J. J. Wrights, in Dereham, were Humber agents, as well as selling other makes including Quadcycle, one of which is thought to have been the first car owned in Hoe.

The Bylaugh sale

Sir John Lombe (1731-1817) was Lord of the Manor, lived at Great Melton Hall and owned a very large estate, later centred on Bylaugh Hall, including Manor Farm in Hoe and Home Farm in Worthing.

In 1917 when the Bylaugh estate was sold, the catalogue contained the following description: ‘It is rarely that an estate is met with, upon which the houses and buildings are of so universally an excellent and spacious a character. They are not of piecemeal construction, but each set has been designed and built as a whole and is complete with its enclosed yards, sheltered and open to the South, its stalls and feeding passages, and all implement and cart lodges open to the North.’

Manor Farm consisted then of 466 acres and four cottages as well as the large barn at Hoe Brick Kiln. At the auction it was withdrawn at £5,500 but sold later to the tenant, Henry Walter Fox. In the 1911 census Fox was the tenant. He was 37 years old and from Beetley. His wife Edith, from Dereham, was 29 and they had two young children, Dorothy, 2 years, and Edith, 9 months, both born in Hoe.

The gravel pit
Just to the north-west of Manor Farm house a field was already being dug for gravel in 1917, when the ‘approximate royalty from working … is £45 per annum’. In the 1946 RAF aerial photo below, the extent of the quarry can be seen – it eventually took in almost the whole of the striped field (called Hill Close on earlier maps).

quarry aerial

[Copyright Norfolk County Council; photo by RAF 31 January 1946]

There is a description of the pit in 'The Geology of the Country around East Dereham' in the Memoirs of the Geological Society published in 1888.

Hoe. –– A fine section, in a large gravel-pit on the northern side of the little valley, and west of the railway, nearly three quarters of a mile W.N.W. of the church, showed 21 feet of coarse, well rounded flint-gravel, continuous with, and clearly of the age of, that which overlies the Boulder Clay on the eastern side of the railway-cutting, itself excavated through the gravel. On the eastern side of the railway the gravel becomes less and less thick, until the Boulder Clay comes up to the surface. The gravel in the pit consisted of flints, mostly from 4 to 11 inches in diameter, thickly massed together in a matrix of reddish-brown sand containing some smaller flints. A few lenticular patches of stratified reddish-brown sand occurred in places, also six or seven more or less horizontal but impersistent lines of black manganese-staining; but the whole mass presented an unstratified appearance.

Frederick Baker

Baker funeral    The farm was bought by Frederick Baker in 1920 and
    following his death by
Peter and Alice Gow who lived
    there from

The turbine


The large pond at Manor Farm can be seen on the maps above. The head of water was used to power a horizontal turbine installed near the adjacent barns, driving grinding and chaff cutting machinery inside the buildings.

Mr & Mrs William Lown

WHLown    Mr William Lown, farm steward, 1946.


Mrs Emily Lown in the garden of Manor Farm cottages, 1946.   

Herbert Jarvis

Herbert Jarvis

Herbert Jarvis hedging at Manor Farm, 1954.

Mains water

water arrives

water text
    October 1969 brought piped water and
    champagne to Manor Farm.

Manor Farm cottages

aerial photo

Aerial view of Manor Farm cottages, Barkers Lane, in the dry summer of 1976. Stanley Mendham's glasshouses grew from a hobby to a nursery business on Swanton Road, Dereham. Sonny and Doris Brown's very productive vegetable garden was next door. The kitchen garden at the right was Mrs Gow's (Manor Farm).

Shown as three cottages on the Ordnance Survey 25" sheet of 1882, it is probable that the building is the same as the 'Town House' depicted on the 1773 estate map of Thomas Grounds. See Village page http://www.hoeandworthingarchive.org.uk/village.html Town House.

                                                        farm cottages

The roadside end of Manor Farm cottages. The changes in building materials suggest that they were originally single storey with a steeply pitched roof, perhaps thatched, and with a small window in the gable lighting an attic.

restoration of cottage

In 2021, following the death of Sonny Brown, the cottage was repaired and modernised.


Mod cons at Manor Farm cottages. They probably date from the 1870s when the Bylaugh estate renovated its farms. There would have been a central chimney serving both wash houses (visible in the photo of William Lown, above). The outer doors are to the closets – a small brick archway is visible at the back right-hand corner at ground level, presumably provided to enable the earth closets to be emptied.