2000 Years in one amazing visit
© Ancient House Museum, Norfolk Museums and Archaeology Service

Town Expansion and Migration

From the 1950’s Thetford became an ‘overspill town’ taking new populations from London and grew at a faster rate than any other English town.


During the last fifty years Thetford has undergone more radical change than perhaps at any other point in its history. After World War Two the size of the town grew enormously, including development on the south bank of the river on the location of the Late Saxon town.

Key events

The Town Expansion Scheme – housing
The Newtown estate, built in the 1920s, was expanded after the Second World War and in 1946 building work started on the St Mary’s Estate. These were small in comparison to the Town Expansion Scheme in Thetford which allowed families from large cities to move into smaller country towns. In 1953 the Borough Council approached London County Council to become part of the scheme, and Thetford may have been the first town to do so.
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Thetford Today

Just as in previous ages, 21st century Thetford has seen an increase in migrants from other areas and countries. Russian, Polish, Slovak, Spanish and Portuguese families have settled in the..
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