April

Gunton Park, Hanworth

Gunton Park 
Mill limited opening in summer months. Church open throughout the year. 

Gunton park is the landscaped park surrounding Gunton Hall, a largely private estate. But the sawmill is open on the afternoon of the fourth Sunday of each month throughout the summer (but please check NIAS website before you go – details below) and the church, which is in the care of the Churches Conservation Trust, is accessible to the public during daylight hours throughout the year.

How to get there

By road: The Park is to the east of the A140 between Aylsham and Cromer along White Post Lane. Drive round the corner past the arched gateway and turn into the track on your left to the Sawmill car park.

Bus: service between Sheringham and Norwich stops at the Alby Horseshoes Pub on the A140. Sanders Coaches. Opposite the pub it’s possible to take the footpath and country lane to Gunton Park– circa 2km

Rail: Gunton Station is to the east of the park - hardly any distance from the Hall ‘as the crow flies’, but to get to the Sawmill, you have to go right round the private Park to the south – about 6km.

Bike: National cycle route 30 runs close to Gunton Station View local cycle routes

WHAT YOU CAN SEE THERE

Gunton Park Sawmill is a quaint thatched and timber mill dating from the early 19th century. It’s a rare survival of a water-powered sawmill which was nearly demolished in the 1970s. The mill was restored by the Norfolk Windmills Trust in partnership with the Norfolk Industrial Archaeology Society. Volunteers from NIAS work the sawmill regularly through the summer. Watching a whole tree trunk being sawn into planks by the frame saw is impressive! Check the NIAS website before visiting: 

The setting of the sawmill by the lake is idyllic.  It’s possible to walk or drive over the bridge at the end of the lake to visit the church – despite the ‘private’ signs –  as long as you keep to the estate road. Visiting the church gives you the opportunity to see more of the beautifully restored deer park. Just after the bridge keep to the right, continue passed the front of the hall, and then take the turning left towards the trees where the church is located - there is a small parking area. You should find the church open during daylight hours.

St Andrew’s is a rarity - an 18th-century rural church in the form of a Classical temple. The setting of the church with its Palladian portico through the trees is theatrical. It was designed by the leading Scottish architect of the 18th century, Robert Adam, whose designs were influential across the world. It’s Adam’s only complete church in England.

See Churches Conservation Trust website for more info: 

Cost: There is a nominal charge for visiting the mill. The church is FREE!

Refreshments: Horseshoes Pub on the A140 east of Erpingham; Alby Crafts Tea Rooms – next to the Horseshoes Pub on the A140

Loos: No public loos

Baconsthorpe

Baconsthorpe Castle 
Open throughout the year.

A small rural village with some nice old buildings about 4km west of Holt. Baconsthorpe Castleis managed by English Heritage and is situated just to the north of the village.

How to get there

By road: 3 miles E of Holt. 3⁄4 mile north of Baconsthorpe village along an unclassified road – look out for the Brown Tourism sign.

Bus: services to Baconsthorpe via Sheringham, Fakenham, Holt, and Cromer: Sanders Coaches

Rail: nearest is Sheringham 4 ½  miles north

Bike:National cycle route 30 runs just north of Baconsthorpe castle View local cycle routes

WHAT YOU CAN SEE THERE

Extensive ruins of Baconsthorpe Castle, a moated and fortified 15th century manor house. The ambitious Heydon family built, then enlarged, and finally abandoned this castle over a period of 200 years. The Elizabethan gatehouse  was inhabited until 1920. The castle is open all year round.

There’s loads of information on the English Heritage website about the history of the castle, plus an audio guide which you can download onto your iPod, mobile phone or mp3: 

Cost: Free!

Refreshments: Hare & Hounds pub in the village: Tel: 08714 329005

Loos: No public loos















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