Neal relations at Cuckoos Cup, The Wrekin

Norwich and Norfolk East Anglian Roots


Norwich was home for the Cutlock, Cullum and Neal families, and for a while Howes too. Also Lake, Laddiman, Andrews, Crompton, Curtis, Dashwood, Gunton, Neve, Rallison and others.

My rough and ready attempt at showing distribution (concentration) of families in Norwich, 1901 census to about 1920 is on Google Maps.

St Augustines Norwich (residents association) Place Names page gives some helpful descriptions of roads or paths no longer in existence and also of Yards in the parish.

George Plunkett’s photographs of old Norwich, including by street.

Norwich Heritage website looks worth a visit too.

Norwich Yards

Norwich Courts and Yards: these were back alleys crammed with small homes and workshops (indeed combined home and workshop) which grew up in central Norwich. Most were swept away in city improvements but some evidence still exists.

Some yards occupied by those in the family tree:

  • Bixfields Buildings (Bishop)
  • Clarkes Building (Howes)
  • Cross Keys Yard (Andrews)
  • Crown Court Yard (Neal/Smith)
  • Duttons Court (Neal)
  • Globe Yard (Andrews)
  • Goldencross (Laddiman)
  • Ninham’s Court (Cutlock)
  • Norris Court (Neal)
  • Priory Yard (Crompton)
  • Red Lion Yard (Cutlock/Plunkett)
  • Rose Yard (Howes)
  • Sultzer’s Yard/Court (Sales)
  • Walkers Buildings? (Rallison)
  • Water Willow? – next to Fullers Hole (Futter/Crompton)

Find photos, descriptions and aural memories of some at Norwich Yards, or for a more complete list and locations see GenUKI website.

Other towns and villages


The Watts family was originally from Worstead, north east of Norwich. Worstead gave its name to a type of cloth produced there, and the size of the looms, usually installed at home prior to the industrial revolution, led to relatively large houses. With industrialisation the trade declined and the last weaver died in 1882, according to village history which was on the Worstead website.

Extract from National Gazetteer 1868:

Worstead 1868 gazetteer

Pigot’s 1830 directory also says:

Formerly a market was held here on Saturday; this has long since been discontinued; there is still an annual fair, which takes place on the 12th of May, for neat stock, horses, and sundries.
The parish contained, by the returns to parliament in
1821, 706 inhabitants.

This directory lists 2 blacksmiths and 2 wheelwrights in the village, 3 boot & shoe makers. Just the one miller, The New Inn and the White Horse pub. One of the two bricklayers is a William Watts. John Rooke is a collar maker and rope manufacturer.

Worstead population per 1861 census: 751.

Worstead St Mary baptism data (1813-1880) from Norfolk Baptism Project – do read the health warning. For more village history, see Norfolk Heritage Explorer page, or The White Lady pub’s page about Worstead.


There’s now a dedicated Besthorpe page, looking at a number of historic documents and various other sources. A key place for the Howes family – see Bottling it in Besthorpe for the line back to James Howes (about 1802 to 1857) in the village.


pronounced Haysbro. On the coast a few miles north east from Worstead and some of the Watts family lived here (some may still do!). 1861 population: 584.


Along with Lowestoft across the county border in Suffolk, a popular home for the nautical side of the family. See Entirely to the Water from Birth for the Harper Smith connection.

Time and Tide Museum (Yamourth Museums) has a photo feature for the historic Rows, where John Harper Smith lived later in life. Also see Great Yarmouth Preservation Trust and its Great Yarmouth Rows Project page, plus English Heritage Row Houses.

Yarmouth (town) population per 1861 census: 34,810.

Also see

  • Norfolk Museums.
  • Norman Foundation Founded on death of Alderman Norman, 1724, Norwich, for education of male descendants of close relatives. Some of our relatives by marriage attended the resulting school. Note the practice of ‘Norman’ appearing as a middle name, not just for male offspring, presumably to indicate the family connection and eligibility.
  • Norfolk Record Office.
  • White’s “history, gazetteer and directory” of Norfolk and Norwich for 1864 on
  • Norfolk Family History Society.
  • Norfolk Surnames List – surnames being researched and contact info for the researchers (last updated 2014?).
  • For parish records online, see the Norfolk Baptism project (1813-80). FamilySearch also has Norfolk parish register images from 1583 -1900, but you have to browse through by parish to find anything (no name index).
  • Norfolk Mills “a considerable amount of historical and genealogical data for well over 1,000 mills along with over 3,000 photographs”.

Howes family

Cutlock and Cullum

Neal family and Death of Laura Curtis.

Watts family


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