In Domesday times (1086) the population was probably no more than 150. There would have been many fluctuations over the next 700 years (especially at the time of the Black Death which seems to have wiped out Kenningham), but during that time the population had grown to little more than three times that of Norman times. Census figurs show that from 1801 to 1951 the population stayed much the same - 582 people in 1841; 598 people in 1951. But since the 1950s, the population has grown by more than eight times!
Here is a brief summary of Mulbarton's growth:
- 150+ years - a small village of
around 500 people on the New Buckenham Turnpike. Most lived in the area between the Church, World's End and Paddock Farm. There were small clusters of houses near the Tradesman's Arms; near Mulbarton Hall and the Old Rectory; and in the Rosery.
- 1920s & '30s -
first Council Houses built in Long Lane, Cuckoofield Lane, Birchfield Lane and
St Omer Close to re-house local people
who were living in inadequate accommodation. This meant more people living south of the Common.
- 1950s - more Council Houses built in
Cuckoofield Lane and Birchfield Lane for local people and some of those housed
on the old Hethel USAAF airfield. The population rose slightly - with most newcomers south of the Common.
- 1960s - the planners allowed small
'infill' developments in the fields between the Common and the Council Houses
in Cuckoofield Lane + some 'infill' and 'ribbon development' along The Rosery. The centre of population had shifted to south of the Common.
- The photos below show one of the first post-war houses in Long Lane, between the Hall Cottages and the Council Houses. Built in 1960, they were surrounded by fields: behind this house is the field that will become Rosery Close, and the line of trees that once divided it from Lakes Avenue. The view across Long Lane from the front window (right) shows fields that will become Bluebell Road and roads off in 15 years time!