History walk 12: The green lane known as Mill Lane from Somerton Road to Hemsby Road i.e. TG466193 to TG473178

Physical Character


The lane leaves Somerton Road at TG466193.  It is about nine feet wide.  The east side of the lane is the Martham Parish Boundary with Somerton.  At the beginning it has a line of mature trees – oak and ash and wild flowers - scabious, yarrow and knapweed on the east side and a lower hedge of similar plants on the west side.  The lane then becomes more open because the hedges have been removed.  It continues in a very straight line.   Eventually an electricity pole is reached with the information TG4705 1850 1885.


As the lane nears Hemsby Road it measures about 16 feet wide.  There are hedges each side which have at one time been carefully layered.  On the east side are hawthorn, sloe, elm, ivy, and privet.  On the west side the land is about six feet below the track.  The west hedge includes elm, hawthorn, ash, ivy, and elder.  Tansy and bracken were growing in the banks.


Historical Ecology


The name ‘Mill Lane’ is puzzling because there does not seem to have been a mill in the vicinity.  Perhaps Somerton did not have a mill and therefore their corn was taken to Martham Mill via this route.  This lane was the Private Road No.1 on the Enclosure Map of 1812.  Just to the east of where the track reaches Hemsby Road was the site of a gibbet.

1.  The beginning of Mill Lane at Somerton road TG466193

2.  Looking back at the above length of the lane

3.  Looking back from farther along the lane

4.  Looking south towards Hemsby Road from the above location

5.  Looking north from the junction of tracks at TG471185

6.  Looking south from the above spot

7.  Looking back along the lane just before it reaches Hemsby Road at TG473180

8. The green lane at the junction with Hemsby Road at TG473178

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