Baconsthorpe Castle. © D. Yaxley.
Baconsthorpe is one of my favourite ruins - remote, atmospheric,and uncluttered. It has a fascinating history. It was built by the nouveau-riche
and aggressive Heydon family in the 15th century, used as a wool-processing plant for their immense flocks of sheep in the early 16th century, reverted to the role of their main house in the reign of Elizabeth, and demolished and robbed for building materials when the family fortunes declined in the first half of the 17th century.
David Yaxley was born in Mundesley, brought up in Paston, and educated at The Paston Grammar School, North Walsham. After National Service in Egypt he took a degree in History at University College London. He has written and lectured on local history, art history, and architecture for the W.E.A. since 1964. His wife Susan, also an historian and writer, and his elder son Thomas run The Larks Press, which has now produced a hundred and thirty-five titles - history, memoirs, biography, natural history, maps, reference, quizzes, fiction - all connected with Norfolk by author or subject. David Yaxley has been painting seriously for over thirty years, and has had solo exhibitions of watercolours and drawings at Holkham, Hales Hall, Burnham Market, Litcham, Cley, Sheringham, The Crome Gallery and The Assembly House, Norwich. He is a regular exhibitor at The Royal Norfolk Show, and has contributed to many other exhibitions around the county. He has been Archivist at Houghton Hall since 1971.
DAVID YAXLEY Ordnance Farm, Guist Bottom, DEREHAM, Norfolk NR20 5PF
Tel: 01328 829207
Baconsthorpe Castle, NHER 6561