North Cove

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North Cove
North Cove is located in Suffolk
North Cove
North Cove
Location within Suffolk
Population449 (2011)[1]
OS grid referenceTM467894
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townBeccles
Postcode districtNR34
Dialling code01502
EU ParliamentEast of England
UK Parliament
List of places
52°26′49″N 1°37′44″E / 52.447°N 1.629°E / 52.447; 1.629Coordinates: 52°26′49″N 1°37′44″E / 52.447°N 1.629°E / 52.447; 1.629

North Cove is a village and civil parish in the East Suffolk district in the north of the English county of Suffolk. The village is on the A146 around 3 miles (4.8 km) east of Beccles and 5 miles (8.0 km) west of Lowestoft. It merges with the village of Barnby although the two parishes retain separate parish councils.

The village is on the edge of the Broads and to the south of the River Waveney. The East Suffolk Line runs on the northern edge of the village, although the nearest station is at Beccles. Bus routes include X2, SJL5 and BR001


North Cove is not mentioned in the Domesday Book, although Barnby is described as a medium-sized village at this time, and it is likely that the parish was part of Worlingham at this time.[2] The name probably refers to a creek from the then tidal estuary of the River Waveney and the village first appears in its own right in documents in 1204.[2] Archaeological remains suggest that there was Romano-British habitation in the area in the 2nd to 4th century.[2][3]

The parish church dates from the 12th century, and Wade Hall is a moated manorial site on the edge of the marshes to the north of the village which dates from the medieval period.[4] This includes a mound which was possibly a tower platform. The manor, which was sometimes called Wathe, is recorded as being held by Robert Watheby of Cumberland in the 12th century.[4] Wade Hall itself dates from the 17th century and is a listed building.[5] North Cove Hall, on the western edge of the village, dates from the 17th century and is a Grade II* listed building.[6]

In 1848 North Cove is recorded as having a population of 219 with the parish having annexed that of Willingham St Mary to the south.[7]

Within the parish is the site of the lost village of Worlingham Parva which was recorded in the Domesday survey.[2][3][8] This village had a round tower Saxon church dating from about 950 and dedicated to St Peter.[3][9] Remains of the church and cemetery, including burials, were discovered in 1980 when a bypass was built around Beccles.[3][8][9] The church is known to have still been in use in 1474.[2]

Church of St Botolph[edit]

The parish church is dedicated to St. Boltoph and contains medieval wall paintings and a thatched roof.[10][11] It dates from the 12th century and has a number of medieval features including doorways and windows and a 15th-century square tower.[12] It is a Grade I listed building which was rebuilt in parts in the 19th century.[10][12]

The wall paintings are thought to be 14th century in origin and have been judged to be "some of the finest surviving medieval wall-paintings in all East Anglia".[11] The paintings depict the Passion of Christ and judgement day.[11] They were painted over in the later medieval period, restored in the 19th century and then in the 1990s to return them to their original condition.[11]

Culture and community[edit]

Barnby and North Cove Primary School educates around 45 children aged 4 to 11.[13] It is federated with Southwold primary school, sharing a headteacher.[14] At age 11 children transfer to Sir John Leman High School in Beccles.

The village also contains a public house, The Three Horseshoes, which dates from the 17th century.[15]

Barnby Broad and Marshes SSSI[edit]

Barnby Broad and Marshes is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest. It covers an area of 189.6 hectares (469 acres) of grazing marsh, carr woodland and fen running from the village to the banks of the River Waveney to the north.[16] A range of natural and semi-natural habitats are present in the area which is an important bird nesting site and Suffolk Wildlife Trust maintains two nature reserves on the area.[16]


  1. ^ Civil Parish population 2011, Neighbourhood statistics. Retrieved 2015-07-07.
  2. ^ a b c d e Scarfe.N (1981) 'Notes by Norman Scarfe on Domesday Book's evidence touching Worlingham, North Cove and their early churches', Annual Report, vol. 13, 1980-81, pp.7-9, Lowestoft Archaeological Society (available online). Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  3. ^ a b c d Carr.R.D (1981) 'The excavation at St Peter’s Church, Worlingham Parva' Annual Report, vol. 13, 1980-81, pp.1-7, Lowestoft Archaeological Society (available online). Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  4. ^ a b Wade Hall, English Heritage. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  5. ^ Wade Hall, North Cove, Suffolk, British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  6. ^ North Cove Hall, North Cove, British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  7. ^ Lewis.S (ed) (1848) 'Courage - Cowfold', A Topographical Dictionary of England, pp. 702-710. (available online) Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  8. ^ a b St Peters Church, English Heritage. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  9. ^ a b St Peters Church, English Heritage. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  10. ^ a b Church of St Botolph, English Heritage. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  11. ^ a b c d St. Boltoph, Suffolk Churches website. 2013-01-25.
  12. ^ a b Church of St Botolph, North Cove, British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  13. ^ Barnby and North Cove Community Primary School, Department for Education Edubase. Retrieved 2013-01-23.
  14. ^ Two Suffolk schools to share headteacher, Beccles and Bungay Journal, 2011-06-11. Retrieved 2013-01-04.
  15. ^ Three Horse Shoes, North Cove, British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 2013-01-25.
  16. ^ a b Barnby Broad and Marshes, SSSI citation, Natural England. Retrieved 2013-01-23.