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How well do you know your Breckland history? Project will encourage people to take a closer look

PUBLISHED: 13:55 19 January 2015 | UPDATED: 13:55 19 January 2015

Grime's Graves, English Heritage

Grime's Graves, English Heritage

Archant

From the mines of some of our earliest ancestors to castles and beautiful churches there is an abundance of history to be unearthed in Breckland.

How well do you know Breckland?

1) Rabbits used to be farmed for meat and fur and the district once had the largest number of warrens in Britain. During which century were the animals introduced to Breckland?

2) Grimes Graves has more than 400 mine shafts dating back to between 3000BC and 1900BC. What was mined there?

3) Which celebrated archaeologist, known for one of the greatest discoveries of the 20th century, spent much of his childhood in Swaffham?

4) Which King Henry stayed at Oxburgh Hall, the home of the Bedingfield family?

5) What is the name of the hill in Thetford where Boudicca is supposed to have left on her chariot to fight Roman rule?

6) Breckland has two priories built by the Normans following their conquest - Castle Acre and Thetford. What was the name of the order who called them home?

7) Thetford-born Thomas Paine is arguably one of the area’s most famous sons. What was the name of his best-selling revolutionary pamphlet published in 1776?

8) What was the name of the saint and Anglo Saxon princess whose tomb is at Dereham?

9.) In the late 18th century, Dereham church’s bell tower was put to an unusual use. What was it?

The district was once home to the Iceni queen Boudicca, the Norman noble William de Warenne and philosopher and revolutionary Thomas Paine.

Now budding historians have the chance to scratch the surface and find out more about the heritage that lies under their feet as part of a council run project.

Norfolk and Suffolk’s county councils have teamed up as part of the Heritage Lottery backed Breaking New Ground Project which aims to engage the community to discover the story of the Brecks.

An event will be held at Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse, near Dereham, on Saturday, with experts helping people explore archaeological techniques that can be used to investigate history.

Local historian Sue Walker White, who volunteers at Dereham’s Bishop Bonners Cottage museum, said: “We have a huge amount of history here.

“There is Grimes Graves and a whole range of wonderful sites.

“There are a number of sites in Thetford, there is Castle Acre and also history here in Dereham with St Withburga.

“Local history is something anybody can get involved with, there are things there for the whole family.”

The event requires pre-booking and this can be done by visiting http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/revealing-records-tickets-14161584681

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