Hunstanton & local areas gallery photography, North Norfolk UK - Katey Jane Photography

Hunstanton & local area's North Norfolk

Hunstanton is a 19th-century resort town, initially known as New Hunstanton to distinguish it from the adjacent old village from which it took its name. see See Hunstanton website The new town soon exceeded the village in scale and population. The original settlement of Hunstanton, now known as Old Hunstanton, probably gained its name from the River Hun, which runs to the coast just to the east of Old Hunstanton. It has also been opined that the name Hunstanton originated from the word "Honeystone", a reference to the local red carr stone. The river begins in the grounds of Old Hunstanton Park which surrounds the old moated hall, the ancestral home of the Le Strange family. Old Hunstanton village is of prehistoric origin and lies near to the head of Peddars Way. In 1970, evidence of Neolithic settlement was found. The quiet character of the village remains distinct from its busy sibling and complements it with clifftop walks past a privately owned redundant lighthouse and the ruins of St Edmund's Chapel, built in 1272.

In 1846, Henry Styleman Le Strange (1815–1862), decided to develop the area south of Old Hunstanton as a sea-bathing resort. He persuaded a group of like-minded investors to fund the construction of a railway line from King's Lynn to the town, to bring tourists and visitors. This was a great success – the Lynn & Hunstanton Railway became one of the most consistently profitable railway companies in the country. In 1861, Le Strange, as principal landowner, became a director of the railway company and by 1862 the line had been built. Hunstanton was ready to take off commercially. However, Le Strange died in the same year at the age of 47 and it was left to his son Hamon to reap the rewards of his efforts.

As a mark of his intentions, Le Strange had moved the ancient village cross from Old Hunstanton to the new site in 1846, and in 1848 the first building was erected. This was the Royal Hotel (now the Golden Lion), the work of the renowned Victorian architect, William Butterfield, a friend of Le Strange. Overlooking a sloping green and the sea, and for several years standing alone, it earned the nickname "Le Strange's Folly". In 1850 Le Strange, an amateur architect and painter, appointed a land agent to survey the site and prepare a plan, while he himself drew and painted a map and a perspective of the scheme, showing shops, a station and a church. He consulted William Butterfield on the design of the development plan. Their shared passion was for the "Old English" style of architecture for domestic buildings. This owed much to medieval precedent and to the earnestness of the Victorian Gothic Revival. Hunstanton is the exemplar of a model 19th-century estate seaside town. Most of the fabric and character of that original development survives. For more info about Hunstanton Click here for tourist info

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