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Visit our historic Rows

Until the 19th century, building was only permitted within the Medieval town walls. The limited space dictated that houses were built as closely together as possible, which led to the development of The Rows.

Unique to Great Yarmouth, the Rows were a network of 145 very narrow streets which ran parallel to each other.

They were so narrow that a special 'Troll Cart' was developed to transport goods along them. There's a pub named after this unusually shaped cart, and you can see the real thing at the Time and Tide Museum.

Charles Dickens (1812-1870) said of them: "A Row is a long, narrow lane or alley quite straight, or as nearly as maybe, with houses on each side, both of which you can sometimes touch at once with the finger tips of each hand, by stretching out your arms to their full extent."

The Rows took up most of the land inside the town walls. At first both rich and poor people lived there together. The wealthier people gradually moved out and their houses were divided up into smaller properties. This left a fantastic range of architecture. Grand merchant houses stood next to tiny dwellings which were built back-to-back with the houses in the next row.

The number of rows changed as some were blocked up and new ones created. The Rows were all given names derived from local characters or prominent buildings. 'Kitty Witches' which ran from King Street to Middlegate Street, was the narrowest row at just 27 inches (68.5cm) wide in some parts. Some rows had more than three names. In 1804 it was decided to make things easier and give each row a number.

Today you can visit real Row houses at Great Yarmouth Row Houses where Row 111 and The Old Merchants House show two different ideas of what life was like when the Rows were inhabited. Alternatively, an increadibly realistic Row with inhabitants throughout the ages has been recreated at Time and Tide. Broad Row and Market Row are also well worth a look, both run from the Market Place to Hall Quay and today are packed with shops.

Few people now live in The Rows, however, a lot of evidence of this unique way of life survives. Row numbers are still painted on walls at the ends of passageways as you walk around Great Yarmouth and if you happen to see Ernie at Great Yarmouth Painting & Craft, he might be persuaded to recount some Yarmouth folk lore about life in the Rows.

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Walks in the borough of Great Yarmouth

Runham Walk

Runham

Great Yarmouth

Runham Walk is a 2.2 mile (3.5 kilometre) circular walk starting at Runham village green in Runham near Great Yarmouth.

Great Yarmouth Town Wall Walk

Great Yarmouths Medieval Town Wall

Great Yarmouth

Great Yarmouths Town Wall walk is a circular walk of less than 1 mile (1.6 kilometres) starting at Great Yarmouth's Vauxhall Railway Station.

Burgh Castle

Burgh Castle to Fritton

Great Yarmouth

This Burgh Castle to Fritton walk is part of the Angle Way and is a 4.5 mile (7.25 kilometre) walk starting at Burgh Castle Roman Fort car park in Burgh Castle near Great Yarmouth

Ormesby St Margaret Walk

Ormesby St Margaret Village

Great Yarmouth

Ormesby St Margaret Village Walk is a 1.5 mile (2.4 kilometre) circular walk starting at the footpath sign on the Memorial Green in Ormesby St Margaret near Great Yarmouth.

Martham Low Road Walk

Martham Low Road

Great Yarmouth

Martham Low Road Walk is a 2.5 mile (4 kilometre) circular walk starting at Repps Road in the village of Martham near Great Yarmouth.

Beacon Park Woodland Walk

Beacon Park Woodland

Gorleston-on-Sea

Beacon Park Woodland Walk is a 1.8 mile (2.89 kilometre) circular walk starting at the west side of the Beacon Innovation Centre on the outskirts of Gorleston-on-Sea near Great Yarmouth.

Stokesby Walk

Stokesby

Great Yarmouth

Stokesby Walk is a 4.25 mile (6.75 kilometre) circular walk starting at the riverside car park located 100 metres from the Ferry Inn at Stokesby village near Great Yarmouth.

Views of Thurne

Ashby with Oby

Great Yarmouth

Ashby with Oby Walk is a 3.36 mile (5.4 kilometre) circular walk starting at the lay-by car park on Hall Lane in Oby near Great Yarmouth.

Repps Riverside Walk

Repps Riverside

Great Yarmouth

Repps Riverside Walk is a 2.5 mile (4 kilometre) circular walk starting at the fish & chip restaurant at Heigham Bridge in Potter Heigham near Great Yarmouth.

Halvergate to Great Yarmouth

Halvergate to Great Yarmouth

Norwich

The Halvergate to Great Yarmouth Walk is an 8 mile (12.9 kilometre) walk starting at the village sign on The Street in Halvergate, on the outskirts of Great Yarmouth.

Herbert Barnes Park Walk

Herbert Barnes Park

Great Yarmouth

Herbert Barnes Park Walk is a walk of less than 1 mile, starting at Broadland Rugby Club in Great Yarmouth.

Gorleston Promenade

Gorleston Promenade/ExerciseTrail

Gorleston-on-Sea

Gorleston Promenade & Exercise Trail Walk is a 2.1mile (3.4 kilometre) circular walk starting at the promenade beside the Pier Hotel at the harbour mouth in Gorleston-on-Sea near Great Yarmouth.

Burgh Castle

Burgh Castle to Great Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth

Burgh Castle to Great Yarmouth along the Angles Way is a 4.5 mile (7.25 kilometre) walk starting at Burgh Castle Roman Fort car park in Burgh Castle near Great Yarmouth.

Hemsby Walk

Hemsby Walk

Hemsby

Hemsby Walk is a 3.4 mile (5.5 kilometre) circular walk starting at the Lacon Arms public house in Hemsby near Great Yarmouth.

Great Yarmouth Historic Town Walk 20

Great Yarmouth Historic Town

Great Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth Historic Town Walk is a 1.9 mile (3 kilometre) circular walk starting at Hall Quay in Great Yarmouth.

Great Yarmouth Minster

Great Yarmouth Sports Walk

Great Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth Sports Walk is a 3.9 mile circular walk starting at Great Yarmouth Minster in the town centre.

Great Yarmouth to Mautby Walk

Great Yarmouth to Mautby

Great Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth to Mautby Walk is a 6 mile (9.66 kilometre) circular walk starting at Bure Park on the outskirts of Great Yarmouth.

Ormesby

Ormesby St Margaret to Hemsby

Great Yarmouth

Ormesby St Margaret to Hemsby Walk is a 6 mile (9.66 kilometre) walk starting at the footpath sign on the Memorial Green in Ormesby St Margaret near Great Yarmouth.

Tourist Information Walk 4

Bradwell

Great Yarmouth

Bradwell Walk is a 6 mile (9.66 kilometre) circular walk starting at Green Lane Playing Field in Bradwell near Great Yarmouth.

Filby Mill Walk

Filby Mill

Great Yarmouth

Filby Mill Walk is a 2.9 mile (4.8 kilometre) circular walk starting at Filby Bridge in the village of Filby near Great Yarmouth.

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