Making a move to . . .
PUBLISHED: 06:26 06 October 2014 | UPDATED: 07:20 06 October 2014
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The A140 corridor south of Norwich has many attractive options for house-hunters.
Best of both worlds – it’s a much-used phrase in property language but for the villages south of Norwich, which flank the busy city to Ipswich A140 route, it is very apt.
Ideally placed for those requiring easy access into Norwich whether for work, education or leisure, yet nestling in rich, agricultural land and gentle, wooded countryside, this is a much sought-after area of Norfolk’s housing market. Of course, there is also ease of travel south to Diss, Stowmarket, Ipswich and onwards, as well as being a helpful point from which to cross the county to Thetford, Attleborough, Wymondham and east to Harleston, Loddon, Bungay, Beccles and Lowestoft.
Long Stratton is the largest village in the area, with a population approaching 4,500. Its leisure centre, shops and other amenities such as Long Stratton High School make for a busy, friendly centre.
Increasingly popular, and understandably so, are the Pulhams – the delightful villages of Pulham Market and Pulham St Mary – where farmhouses and converted farm buildings, traditional family homes, newer builds and those iconic thatched cottages around the village green make for stable communities.
The award-winning Pennoyer Centre is a fascinating hub of these communities too – named after the benefactor William Pennoyer, who left money in his will in 1670 to pay for the education of children from Pulham St Mary and the surrounding villages. The chapel, which had been built in 1401 by the village hat-makers’ guild, became a school that continued to teach the local children until 1988. It is now a very contemporary centre that marries a new steel and glass atrium with its historic architecture.
Follow the rural road on to the lovely little village of Starston in the Waveney Valley, and just a few miles further to Harleston, which sits just beside the Suffolk border and is always a treat to visit. Its independent stores, busy high street and fine Georgian architecture makes for an enjoyable shopping experience.
Perhaps the best way to sample this area for yourself is to on foot, with five long distance walks crossing the south Norfolk area, including Boudicca Way which takes you on a wonderful exploration of the countryside between Norwich to Diss. Of course, there are plenty of country pubs and welcome eateries around the area too – including Relish Restaurant and Bar at Newton Flotman and the newly-opened Sugar Beat Eating House at Swainsthorpe. Don’t miss the excellent selections of Norfolk produce available at Goodies Food Hall in Pulham Market and at The Paddocks Butchery and Deli in Mulbarton too.
And for places to visit, this section of the county has some surprising gems such as the Norfolk Tank Museum at Forncett St Peter; it has open days this month on September 7 and 21. For those who prefer a loftier view, the Norfolk Gliding Club is based at the former Second World War airfield at Tibenham!