Old Dereham in photos

From where we live in Beetley, the nearest town containing shops, banks, and a Post Office is Dereham. Officially it is East Dereham, but it is known to everyone just as Dereham. It is the fifth largest town in the county of Norfolk, and right in the centre of that county too. Only three miles from Beetley to the south, it takes just five minutes to get there by car.

Continuing my search for old images, I found some of that town, taken between 1880 and 1901. It is amazing how little it has changed in that time.

The Corn Exchange. This is now the local cinema, called The Hollywood. The facade was preserved by law.

Church Street. The shops on the left are still trading, albeit selling different things.

The High Street. These shops still exist today. Some are Estate Agents, and others have different uses.

The Market Place. There is no longer a livestock market in the town. But The Market Place has hardly changed, and still holds a general market on Tuesdays and Fridays.

These three ancient cottages date from the 16th century. (1502)

They were later converted into the town museum.

Here is a photo I took of that same building more recently.

I think if you brought someone back from 1899, they would find this town completely familiar.

50 thoughts on “Old Dereham in photos

    1. No relation, Elizabeth. Dereham is 220 miles south-east of Durham, which is a lovely cathedral city in the north of England, quite close to Scotland.

      Dereham was actually named for Deer-hunting, due to the proliferation of those game animals.

      Durham is a Viking name, meaning ‘Island on a dun hill’. People with the surname Durham generally came from that area. Here’s a history of your grandmother’s name.

      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Well, another really great post! I definitely love these old photographs, and it will probably not be a surprise that my favorite is the building that is now The Hollywood. Saw the picture of how it looks now you sent in reply to Fraggle. It really looks like one heck of cozy cinema. Thanks for sharing all these 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Michel. It has three screens, and is struggling, with small audience figures. It almost closed down, but was bought out by an individual. Sadly for me, it generally only shows ‘family’ films, and mainstream blockbusters.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. They like to call it a ‘Market Town’ here, Susanne. It has a population close to 15,000 now. πŸ™‚
      By comparison, Beetley is a ‘village’, with a population of under 1,500.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It is our local town for shopping, Ami. My wife used to work at Natwest Bank, in Market Place, but was made redundant in 2018.
      I go to Tesco in Dereham every Monday, for the ‘big shop’, and we frequently eat out at places in the town too.
      Best wishes, Pete.


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