History of Tunstead

Unveiling Tunstead Village SignTunstead probably became a settlement in Anglo Saxon times, albeit a rather scattered one in clearings in the then extensive woodland. Its name derives from the Old English tun (meaning enclosure, settlement or farm) and stede (meaning place).

During late Saxon times the local administrative unit was the Hundred which comprised a number of contiguous parishes. Tunstead gave its name to the local Hundred, though unusually the Hundred’s meeting place was not in Tunstead itself but further north close to the boundaries of the North and South Erpingham hundreds. Tunstead was also central to the administration of the Poor Law Union, through the Tunstead & Happing Union between 1785 and 1869 following the enactment of the Poor Laws (see NRO)

Map showing Tunstead Registration District

Registration Districts of Norfolk in 1836 with maps & list of parishes. © Donovan J. Murrells

In terms of local Government, Hundreds were replaced by Registration Districts in 1836 and again Tunstead gave it’s name to the Registration District which formed the area of local government. The Registration District of Tunstead comprised 41 parishes, as can be seen in this map.

Nowadays the villages of Tunstead & Sco-Ruston come under the jurisdiction of North Norfolk District Council, with most of the parish located on Market Street, an additional 33 homes in Anchor Street  and 20 homes in Sco-Ruston.

Now step back in time to learn about the history of Tunstead through the following topics:-

Tunstead Through the Ages

Ancient Tunstead

A brief history of Tunstead from prehistoric times through the Middle Ages up to the 19th Century.

St. Mary’s Church

The Church has been an integral part of British life for over fifteen hundred years. The current church of St. Mary’s, Tunstead has been in existance since the 14th Century. Learn more about the history of St. Mary’s here.

Past & Present

A collection of old photographs celebrating times gone by and life in Tunstead over the last 100 years.

Tunstead Remembers

A series of articles and reminiscences from residents of Tunstead & Sco-Ruston looking back at life in the villages over the years.

If you have a story to tell and would like to contribute your own thoughts and recollections then do please contact Sue Badger on 01603 737275

Reviwed 27/1/17