Parish Summary: Twyford

This Parish Summary is an overview of the large amount of information held for the parish, and only selected examples of sites and finds in each period are given. It has been beyond the scope of the project to carry out detailed research into the historical background, documents, maps or other sources, but we hope that the Parish Summaries will encourage users to refer to the detailed records, and to consult the bibliographical sources referred to below.  Feedback and any corrections are welcomed by email to

Twyford is a small parish situated some 12km southeast of Fakenham, in the Breckland Local Government District. It is a predominantly agricultural area, with 26 residents in 2001. Only 10 sites have been recorded in the parish, probably the smallest number for any parish in Norfolk!

The earliest recorded objects are a number of Neolithic flints (NHER 7185) known to have been recovered from the parish, probably during the late 19th or early 20th century. The earliest recorded monument is a possible Bronze Age round barrow (NHER 7209) situated in the western part of the parish.

There is no evidence for the Roman or Saxon periods, and there is no mention of the parish in the Domesday Book of 1086. However, the name ‘Twyford’ is thought to derive from the Old English for double ford, so a settlement of some kind may have been present here in the Saxon period. 

Photograph of St Nicholas' Church, Twyford. Photograph from

St Nicholas' Church, Twyford. Photograph from (© S. Knott.)

A medieval lava quern stone has been recovered (NHER 7186) from this area, but the most substantial medieval feature is the parish church of St Nicholas (NHER 7217). The nave of the church dates to the Norman period, and there is a 13th century chancel in the Early English style.

A small number of post medieval buildings of architectural interest survive, the grandest of which is Twyford Hall (NHER 20418), with its associated icehouse (NHER 7218). The Hall itself is a stately farmhouse of the 17th century with a 17th century two-storey porch and an 18th century addition.

Other buildings of interest are Twyford House (NHER 46531), a gault brick house of around 1840 with a Roman Doric porch, and Twyford Farmhouse (NHER 16980), a good 18th century brick and pantiled house.

From more recent times, the line of the East Norfolk Railway (NHER 13587) runs through this parish. When it was in service the line joined up services from County School east to Aylsham and Wroxham. The line was opened in sections from 1878 to 1882, and closed to passengers in 1952. 

Ruth Fillery-Travis (NLA), 18 June 2007


Further Reading

Knott, S., July 2006. ‘St Nicholas, Twyford’. Available: Accessed: 18 June 2007

Morris, J. (General Editor), 1984. Domesday Book, 33 Norfolk, Part I and Part II (Chichester, Phillimore & Co)

Pevsner, N., 1997. The buildings of England: Norfolk 1: Norwich and the North-east (London, Penguin Books)

Rye, J., 1991. A Popular Guide to Norfolk Place Names (Dereham, The Larks Press)

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