Literary Norfolk Header and Logo

Norfolk Deserted Villages


St Wrandregesilius, Bixley

A congregation
Of nettles now reclaim your
Broken, burnt-out frame.


No villagers now;
Only sheep moving like clouds
Over the earthworks.

Out there under the
Waves - with your cottages and
Sunken church tower.

Little Hautbois

That sense of something
Vanished - like ghost-light fleeing
In the Bure's mirror.
Stanford Church

Stranded now in the
Battle Zone - with your old graves
And your blast proof roof.



Among the shelling
And machine gun fire lie
Your unquiet dead.


You came back to life
As a training ground for street
Fighters and snipers.



Impermanent still:
Beach chalets and caravans
Wait to be reclaimed.

St Felix, Babingley

Suffocated by
Ivy - your vital signs grow
Weaker and weaker.



You were excluded
Permanently by Coke's
Six mile long wall.


Two churches ruined;
One church abandoned; one church
Alive on its hill.



Sir Clement Paston:
Outstretched and frozen now
In alabaster.

St Edmund, Egmere

They stripped out the bells
From your tower and pulled down
Your nave and chancel.


Your broken, sandy
Land reverted finally
To rabbit warrens.


Little Waxham

Rising out of the
Sea - the ghost voices of the
Old, dead villagers.

Ashby and Oby

Are gone now - like the
Horn-helmeted Norsemen who
Seeded your place names.


St Theobald, Great Hautbois

The Victorians
Removed your roof and let in
The beautiful light.


John Paston said that
'Raff Blaundrehassett wer a
Name to styrte an hare'.


St Mary, Cranwich

Inside, the plain white
Plasterwork. Outside, the old
Circular graveyard.

St Mary, Fishley

Seemingly dropped from
Heaven in fields between
Acle and Upton.


Leziate, Bawsey, Mintlyn

Your land was enclosed
And turned into pasture for
Thomas Thursby's sheep.


All Saints, Waterden

At the apex of
Your tiled roof - they built a
Small, wooden bell-cote.


Out beyond Loddon
Where occasional cars pass
Bound for the ferry.
East Somerton

No hymns; no sermons;
No voice of God; only the
Unbroken silence.

St Michael, Braydeston

Ages ago - you
Ran aground on this island
In a sea of fields.


Even the ancient
Meandering River Tas
Has forgotten you.
The Parishioners of Wolterton

When Walpole rebuilt
The hall - you were removed and
Never allowed back.


You lie under the
Roads and houses of Chapel
Break and Clover Hill.
St Andrew, Bickerston

You have slipped into
A coma now; your heart-beat

Pudding Norton

Your name means the place
Of dirty water by the
Northern enclosure.
West Harling

Thomas Nashe never
Forgot the 'fearefull croking cry'
Of the ravens here.




Supported by Norfolk County Council logoSupported by Norfolk Tourism


Home | About Us | Advertise on Literary Norfolk

©Cameron Self 2007-2014                                                                                                                Hosted by UK Web.Solutions Direct