"Britain's 0ldest Capital City" Thetford by arturowan

Thetford Travel Guide: 22 reviews and 28 photos

Thetford Capital...

Thetford was the neolithic capital of Britain - & for a simple reason - its sandy soil is easily tilled, so ancient man was able to farm it with only rudimentary tools. Even so, stone age farmers had a precarious life, because whenever when the wind blows, as it often does, bone-chilling & unchecked from the flat coastland, the topsoil literally scatters for miles. An unfortunate effect of this natural erosion, has been that little archeological evidence remains of these early sttlers, & though a Viking style burial mound was constructed at Blood Hill, today it's as flat as its surroundings. The obvious remains of stone age man in this region, will pass many by, but it's reflected in the extent of heathland in the area, because heath is in fact, despite its protected status, not 'natural', but the fallow remnant of what was once woodland, before the ancient farmers practised 'slash & burn' agriculture. The Brecks are these remnants of once sandy cropland, now grassed over, & returning to woodland, if not managed by the full-time conservation activity throughout Norfolk.

Thetford Forest...

Much as Thetford town appeals to me, its real attraction will always be its magnificent forest. There is nowhere else I know where a short trip along the riverbank, takes the traveller away from the main road flyovers, & within a matter of minutes, sets you in such a dramatically different landscape. Thetford forest is vast, & it's easy to become disoriented, once within, yet there are 3 main roads running through it, & the explorer is never more than a mile from a way out. Thetford Forest is home to 3 species of deer - the tiny Muntjac; Bambi-like Fallow; & the majestic Red. It's possible to see all species in a single visit, but sometimes, the vastness of the forest swallows up its wildlife, & there are no sightings, but I suspect that the deer have seen you, from the seclusion of its shadows...

Thetford Rivers...

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Not 'tarted-up' like many UK towns; the riverside walks, & of course, the great forest...
  • Cons:Confusingly signposted; NO bus station; & blighted by the A11
  • In a nutshell:A proper English town, that still hasn't been ruined by motorists & so-called 'developers'...
  • Last visit to Thetford: May 2013
  • Intro Updated May 24, 2013
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