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City and boroughs

City of Norwich (NCR, N)

Norwich was already a substantial borough containing 1,320 burgesses by the time of the Norman Conquest in 1066.

Richard I’s charter of 1194 refers to Norwich as a city, while a charter of Henry IV, dated 1404, made the City of Norwich a county in its own right. It took district council status on 1 April 1974.

The Municipal Corporations Act of 1835 reformed local government in cities and boroughs throughout the country.

The City of Norwich archive is therefore listed under the headings of the pre-reformed and reformed corporation (NCR and N respectively).

More information about the main series of pre-reformed records can be found in our summary of pre-1835 City of Norwich records.

For a brief history of the City of Norwich as a borough, see our separate guide.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council (Y)

King John granted the borough its first charter in 1208, including the right of toll (holding a market) and promising that Yarmouth “shall be a free borough forever”.

The borough was enlarged by Gorleston in 1835 and Runham Vauxhall in 1890. In that same year the whole borough was assigned to the county of Norfolk:

Southtown and Gorleston had in earlier centuries been part of Suffolk.

The archives begin in 1208 and more information about the main series of records can be found in our summary of the Great Yarmouth Borough Archives.

King's Lynn Borough Council (KL)

The borough consisted of the parish of St Margaret only until South Lynn was annexed to it in 1555.

For more information, see our guide to the King’s Lynn Borough Archives.

Thetford Borough Council (T)

Incorporated in 1574, it was a municipal borough between 1894 and 1974.

The borough archives begin in 1290 and include records of:

  • The governing body
  • The quarter sessions
  • The town clerk
  • The urban sanitary authority
  • The urban district council
  • The medical officer of health
  • The surveyor and sanitary inspector