THE COMMON is the glory of Mulbarton: over 45 acres of open land, mostly within a triangle of roads. One of these is the New Buckenham Turnpike, the B1113, which links Mulbarton to Norwich, five miles away to the north.
Today, the Common is a recreation area for the rapidly increasing number of people in the village - and their dogs. Its football pitches are used by all ages. Even in the 19th century, there were day-trips from Norwich to Mulbarton for games on the Common and liquid refreshment at the World's End. A move to enclose the Common aroused great opposition in 1865, and modern development on the perimeter has been resisted with partial success.
In earlier times, the Common must have been vital to the community: a place to graze the cattle and keep them from the surrounding open fields. The name Mulbarton is 'Mokebertuna' in the Domesday Book, and probably means 'an outliying dairy farm'. It is just possible to imagine that a clearing in the forest where the dairy cattle grazed has become our present Common.
(First published in the W.I. Gazette, August 1984)