Coordinates: 52°45′19″N 1°01′16″E / 52.755412°N 1.021042°E / 52.755412; 1.021042
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

St Thomas's Church, Foxley
Foxley is located in Norfolk
Location within Norfolk
Area6.66 km2 (2.57 sq mi)
Population285 2011
• Density43/km2 (110/sq mi)
OS grid referenceTG039218
• London98 miles (158 km)
Civil parish
  • Foxley
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townDEREHAM
Postcode districtNR20
Dialling code01362
AmbulanceEast of England
UK Parliament
List of places
52°45′19″N 1°01′16″E / 52.755412°N 1.021042°E / 52.755412; 1.021042

Foxley is a village and civil parish in Norfolk, England. The village is 6 miles (10 km) north-east of Dereham and 15 miles (24 km) north-west of Norwich, along the A1067 between Fakenham and Norwich.


Foxley's name is of Anglo-Saxon origin and derives from the Old English for fox's forest clearing or glade.[1]

Norfolk Heritage discusses the archaeology of the parish and states that there is evidence of a settlement here in the Saxon period. "The earliest prehistoric finds date to the Neolithic Era there was activity in the parish from much earlier than the Saxon period". The oldest building is the former Chequers Pub (NHER 19249) from the 1700s but a survey found carpenters' marks in the interior from 1624.[2]

In the Domesday Book, Foxley is listed as a settlement of 12 households in the hundred of Eynesford. In 1086, the village was part of the East Anglian estates of Alan of Brittany.[3]

Foxley Mill was built in 1845 by the miller, William Elvin, using a wind-powered mechanism. By the 1980s, the mill fell out of use and was subsequently used as an art gallery until 1990 when it was turned into a private residence.[4]

In July 1944, two B-24 Liberators of the 392nd Bomb Group, USAAF, based at RAF Wendling, crashed in the parish after a mid-air collision. The crash site was a field to the west of the Old Rectory and fragments from the crashes are regularly ploughed up by local farmers.[5]


According to the 2011 Census, Foxley has a population of 285 residents living in 133 households, within a parish area of 2.57 square miles (6.7 km2).[6]

Foxley falls within the constituency of Broadland and is represented at Parliament by Jerome Mayhew MP of the Conservative Party. For the purposes of local government, the parish falls within the Upper Wensum Ward of district of Breckland and the Elmham and Mattishall Division of Norfolk County Council.


The three Grade II listed buildings within the Foxley are the Church of St Thomas, Foxley Lodge, and the War Memorial

The parish church, dedicated to Saint Thomas, was first built in the 1100s, probably on the site of a previous church from the Saxon period.[7] The structure was extensively modified through the 1400s; some additional work was carried out in the 1600s and in the early 1800s. In the Listing Report of 1960, the church was described as "Flint with ashlar and some brick dressings. Slate and pantile roofs". The interior includes a 14th-century font and a dado, depicting Saint Ambrose, Saint Gregory, Saint Jerome and Saint Augustine, which dates from 1472 and was paid for by John and Agnes Baymont.[8][9] In 2018, the Church of England was hoping that the care of this church would be accepted by The Diocesan Churches Trust.[10][11]

Foxley Lodge is a former rectory constructed in the early 1840s. The style of the Lodge is Georgian, described in 1984 as "brick with slate roofs. Roughly square in plan. 2 storeys. 3 bays to each of 3 facades".[12] The manor was restored in the 1930s; the property was operated as a dairy farm until some time before 2017. The property includes the seven bedroom manor, outbuildsings, orchards, and three gardens which were planned by Verity Hanson-Smith.[13][14]

Foxley war memorial, at the junction of the A1067 and Old Fakenham Road, takes the form of a stone obelisk on a trapezoid base. Listed as First World War dead are Cpl. James O. Armiger (d.1918), 2nd Bn., Royal Irish Rifles; Pvt. Daniel W. Parfitt (1897-1917), 1/4th Bn., Royal Norfolk Regiment; and Rfn. Edward Chaplain (1897-1916), 21st (Surrey Rifles) Bn., London Regiment. Listed for the Second World War is LAC Angus Ross (d.1943), Royal Air Force[15][16]

Foxley Wood is a site of special scientific interest and the largest remaining area of ancient woodland in Norfolk, England. Operated by the Norfolk Wildlife Trust,[17] parts of the 123 hectare (300 acre) reserve are thought to be over 6000 years old, dating from the end of the last ice age.[18] The reserve is a Nature Conservation Review site and a National Nature Reserve.


  1. ^ "Key to English Place-names". Retrieved 11 March 2024.
  2. ^ "Parish-Summary-Foxley-(Parish-Summary) - Norfolk Heritage Explorer". Retrieved 11 March 2024.
  3. ^ Domesday Book. (1086). Retrieved January 04, 2023.
  4. ^ Neville, J. (2005). Retrieved January 04, 2023.
  5. ^ Rose, E. (1984). Retrieved January 04, 2023.
  6. ^ Office for National Statistics. (2011). Retrieved January 04, 2023.
  7. ^ Parish Summary: Foxley
  9. ^ St Thomas' church
  10. ^ Church of England, Diocese of Norwich, Foxley, St Thomas
  11. ^ Knott, S. (2022). Retrieved January 04, 2023.
  12. ^ Foxley Lodge, Other nearby listed buildings
  13. ^ The country home of Percy Bysshe Shelley and his family comes up for sale, along with 111 rolling acres of Sussex
  14. ^ See inside this period rectory for sale for £1.195m
  15. ^ Historic England. Retrieved January 04, 2023.
  16. ^ Foxley War Memorial
  17. ^ Visit Foxley Wood
  18. ^ "Foxley Wood National Nature Reserve" (PDF). Natural England. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 January 2011. Retrieved 31 December 2010.

External links[edit]

Media related to Foxley at Wikimedia Commons