It all started in the year 2000 when electricians needed to move the safe in the vestry of Salthouse church and revealed a small mysterious iron chest which the safe had been standing upon. When it had been opened by a locksmith, the box was found to be full of calf-bound account books dating back to 1742 and exciting brown paper envelopes.

One of the best finds was the poor Prisoners' Petition, a pathetic handwritten letter made in 1815 by two Salthouse men who were in Norwich gaol for stealing wreckage off the beach. They were beseeching their Salthouse friends and relations to send them money to alleviate their grim suffering. read it

There was much more: the old records were so full of information and interest that it seemed important to make it all available, it was decided to have an Exhibition in the year 2003 which would celebrate the church's 500th anniversary of the rebuilding by Henry Heydon which he completed in 1503.

  Val was given the honour of sorting it all out on the slim strength of her having just done a two year course on church history at the UEA (and also, her having more time than anyone else in the village). Then - when the manuscript of an old history of the village turned up (researched by a Commander Stagg in the 1930s) the idea of getting it published was the start of putting a book together and adding not only the stuff found in the chest, but all sorts of wonderful contributions from local old-timers and Salthouse lovers.

Contact Val

The Local Heritage Initiative - a partnership between The Heritage Lottery Fund, The Nationwide Building Society and the Countryside Agency - www.lhi.org.uk made everything possible with a Grant.

Community Champions also
helped with a grant of 2000
towards the exhibition

As editor and gatherer of local history and stories, Val has no qualifications whatsoever other than having been to Norwich Art School half a century ago and then leaving it to get married instead of trying to get a diploma. She prefers to learn things from books at her own pace, and says "This history web site will be very on-going and probably changing everyday as people put me right where I was wrong. - I hope they will anyway!"

this is me looking at my new windows 7 screen 2010

me May 2012


me May 2010

  see my model railway when I was 60 click HERE to see it

© Val Fiddian 2016

This site was begun in 2004 and many pages have not been touched since then and should be.

salthousehistory.co.uk is very much my site and I am delightfully free in it - sponsored by nobody - but glad to please people with it where I can. An old age idiosyncrasy.



From the heath c.1820