Trafalgar Road, Great Yarmouth
Trafalgar Road, Great Yarmouth is a lovely road linking King Street and St. George’s park to the seafront with grand Victorian houses to one side, a green area, former Art College along with flats on the opposite side. To walk along this road is a pleasure as the destinations at each end are worthy of the effort. The well-maintained houses and the green area add to the relaxing element of the journey you make from one end to the other.
Let us take a walk along Trafalgar Road from the seafront and get to know a little about the residents of those houses today in 2021 and then, out of curiosity, take a return walk from a different era.
Numbers 29 & 30 on the left comprise of flats and a chip shop called ‘Lion & Herring’, opposite those is a green, the other side of which is Trafalgar Square, (a small row of houses and a vacant Chinese restaurant). Walking past the chip shop I cross the road to join the row of grand houses I mentioned earlier. I turn to the right to join the first house in the row, number 28. I will start my walk from this house and work my way to the left, up to St. George’s park.
Number 28 is occupied by private owners as is number 27, the occupations of those I do not know. Following on from this I come to number 26, which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘Willows Guest House’, then on to numbers 25 & 24 which are as one and forms part of a chain of accommodations in the OYO group, the house is called ‘The Fjaerland’. Next to ‘The Fjaerland’ is number 23 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘The Courtyard Guest House’. Numbers 22, 21 & 20 are private apartments that are situated on the bend as Trafalgar Road dog legs to the right. Back on the straight after the bend in the road, I come to number 19 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘The Warren’, then on to number 18 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘Twin Palms Guest House’. Number 17 is next and is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘Sandcastles Guest House’, next door to this is number 16 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘Copperfields’ and next to that is number 15 which has just changed hands and is being converted from a B&B called ‘Trafalgar Lodge’ into holiday apartments. The next house, number 14, is on the corner of Trafalgar Road and Russell Road and is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘Kilbrannan Guest House’.
Crossing Russell Road, I continue along Trafalgar Road to number 13 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘Beacharbour’, next to this is number 12 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘The Marina Guest House’. Then I come to number 11 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘Tudor House’. Numbers 10 & 9 are as one and is being operated by a couple as a Guest House called ‘The Shrewsbury Guest House’. Next door we have number 8 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘The Marlborough Guest House’ and then number 7 which is being operated as a B&B called ‘Rembrandt Guest House’. Next one up is number 6 which is being operated by a couple as a B&B called ‘The Merivon Guest House’.
Number 5 to 1 are all privately owned houses, some of which show evidence of once being B&Bs.
I arrive at the end of the row of houses, and facing the beautiful St. George’s park, I consider how many of the houses I have just walked by form part of Great Yarmouth’s visitor accommodation. Starting from number 28 which as I have mentioned was the start of the row and finishing with number 1 there are 18 houses of the 28 in the row that are some form of visitor accommodation, that is 64%.
(You will notice I have not included the names of the occupants nor the occupations of the privately owned houses in this year).
Then I thought to myself, I wonder what the houses used to be. I know they are Victorian built houses and must have seen a few changes of ownerships. With this in mind, and with the help of the UK 1881 census, a little cross checking with the 1871 & 1891 census I wind back 140 years and walk again along Trafalgar Road, starting at number 1.
I will do this in list form.
Number 1: Widowed wife of a wine & spirit merchant, 2 daughters, 2 servants
Number 2: Widowed wife of a merchant, 1 son, 1 servant
Number 3: Timber merchant, wife, son, 2 daughters, 2 servants
Number 4: Merchant, wife, 1 servant
Number 5: Draper, Drapers wife, 2 daughters, 2 sons, 1 servant
Number 6: Draper, Drapers wife, 1 daughter, 2 sons, 2 servants
Number 7: Solicitor, Solicitors wife, 1 daughter, 1 visitor, 1 servant
Number 8: Widow and her daughter
Number 9: Wesleyan Minister, Ministers wife, 1 servant
Number 10: Retired solicitor, wife, 1 daughter, 1 son, 1 servant
Number 11: Widow, 1 visitor, 1 servant
Number 12: Uninhabited
Number 13: Outfitter (waterproofers), wife, 3 daughters, 1 son, 1 servant
Number 14: Fish Merchant, Fish Merchants wife, 4 sons, 2 servants
Number 15: Merchant, Merchants wife, Merchants sister, 1 servant
Number 16: Lodging House with 1 widowed keeper, her mother, 1 lodger, 1 servant
Number 17: Lady living by independent means, her sister, 1 servant
Number 18: Widowed merchant, 1 daughter, 1 servant
Number 19: Wife of a carpenter/joiner (the carpenter is lodging in London), 1 daughter, 1 son
Number 20: Uninhabited
Number 21: Brewery cashier, wife, 1 daughter, 3 sons, mother-in-law, 1 servant
Number 22: Lodging house run by a couple, 1 son, 1 niece, 1 servant
Number 23: Lodging House with 1 widowed keeper, 1 daughter, 1 son, 1 visitor, 1 servant
Number 24: Railway Guard, Guards wife, 1 visitor, 1 servant
Number 25: Lodging House with 1 widowed keeper, 3 daughters. (this house must have been split as it has another head as follows: Captain of Royal Surgeons, officers’ wife, 3 officers’ daughters, 1 officers’ son, 2 servants
Number 26: Lodging House with 1 widowed keeper, 1 servant
Number 27: Lodging House with 1 widowed keeper, 1 daughter, 1 son, 1 servant
Number 28: Housekeeper, 2 nieces, 1 nephew. (this house was also split as it has another head as follows: Carpenter and his wife).
Note: In 1881, many of these houses were owned by other people and were rented by its occupants. You will notice I have not included the names of the occupants for this year either but could have easily done so. If anyone would like to know any further details about the occupants of Trafalgar Road, Great Yarmouth in 1881 please just ask.
I find it interesting to see the variety of different occupations and how the households were occupied along the road in 1881 and the fact that most of the houses are now owned by its occupants.
I hope you enjoyed my stroll along the houses of Trafalgar Road.
Gary Smith, Kilbrannan Guest House, 14 Trafalgar Road, Great Yarmouth.