The impressive ruins at Castle Acre can be clearly seen from the A1065. The village is set in a very rural landscape, a splendid and picturesque sight and reminiscent of a fortified French hill top town, that has emerged from the mists of time.
In 1971, Castle Acre was designated Norfolk's first Conservation Village. Despite its small size Castle Acre boasts a large Norman castle and earthworks, a fine bailey gate and extensive ruins of a Cluniac Priory.
The main entrance into this attractive little village is through a 13th century flint gateway, which would have also been the way the pilgrims used to enter hundreds of years ago. These pilgrims would have been on a pilgrimage to the shrine at Little Walsingham, which can be found in North East part of Norfolk.
The castle, now only ruins, are still impressive and have wide ranging views of the valley and the River Nar. In days past the River Nar was navigable all the way up to the Wash from Castle Acre.
The tree shaded village green planted with large lime trees is called Stocks Green and was probably used to house the 'towns stocks'. Running around its perimeter are small flint and cobble cottages as well as a handful of interesting shops. The village boast two inns The Ostrich and Albert Victor Inns and tearooms/restaurant as well as a local store.
As you walk around note some of the
street names such as Chimney Street and Cuckstool
Street. In the 1830s and 1840s the village became the
home of many displaced persons and by 1843 Castle Acre
was known as an unruly place and even Parliament
expressed concerns about the people "squatting within