Wroxham and Hoveton are two of the villages in Broadland which have undergone some of the most dramatic changes over the years. The first four photos here really show how the area has been developed since the birth of the hire industry up to the present day and all show the same view, looking downstream on the River Bure from the road bridge. The first picture dates from around 1900 and shows a pleasure wherry being quanted away from the Norfolk Broads Yachting Company yard, the boatsheds of which can just be seen on the left. A steamer makes it’s way down the Bure up ahead and, just beyond the bend on the right, is the boatyard of Robert Collins & Sons. We move on to the 1930s in the second picture and can see that the riverside has now been heavily developed as the tourist industry started to boom, bringing more and more visitors to the area. Robert Collins sons had, by now, set up their own boatyards with the large sheds of Alfred Collins on the left and Ernest on the original Collins site at the end of Staitheway Road on the right.
We move forward another 30 years with this postcard which was produced in the 1960s. Ernest Collins yard has survived but Jack Powles name now adorns the boatsheds once owned by Alfred along with the large, white sheds on the left in the foreground. Motor cruisers now significantly outnumber the sailing cruisers which were predominant in the earlier images. The bottom photograph was taken in June 2008, the Hotel Wroxham which was built in the 1970s is just out of view to the left, the blue building in the background is “The Sail Loft” which is part of the Barnes Brinkcraft yard and residential housing and holiday homes have been built on the right hand bank.
The photograph at the top was taken by Keith Gingell in 1966, looking upstream towards the bridge with Powles yard on the right. The comparison photo was taken in July 2008, The Hotel Wroxham now occupies the space where Powles boat sheds once stood and a large development of modern housing can be seen on the left hand side of the bridge.
The site of John Loynes boatyard at Wroxham c1920s and 2013. The boatyard was first established here by John Loynes in the 1880s. The Loynes name lives on with the Faircraft Loynes boatyard which is part of the Norfolk Broads Direct group, along with Broads Tours, which still operate from the same site. The riverside boatsheds are now long gone, replaced by modern apartments, offices and a restaurant. Their day boat fleet can be seen lined up along the riverfront.
Granary Staithe at Wroxham/ Hoveton c1910 and 2013. The building on the left in the 1910 image was the granary itself, whist the boat sheds on the right belonged to the Wroxham branch of the Norfolk Broads Yachting Company. The modern photograph shows a very different scene, dominated by the Hotel Wroxham which was built in the early 1970s.
Another view from Wroxham Bridge, this time looking upstream. The first picture was taken by Ray Walker in 1965, Kings Head Wharf is on the right. The bottom photograph is of the same scene in June 2008, the boat sheds are long gone and housing now occupies the land on the left of the river.
Roys of Wroxham food hall 1930s and 2013. Both scenes are busy in their own way, but modern traffic levels (and an awkwardly placed lampost) made this a rather difficult shot to recreate. The original food hall was built by Roys in the late 1920s, with it's wonderful art deco entrance. It was rebuilt and modernized in the 1980s. The building in the centre of the photograph was Roys haberdashery and clothing department in the 1930s but now houses the toy shop.
Hoveton village centre c1949 and 2013. This is the view looking across from the entrance to Roys food hall towards the Kings Head pub and Barclay's Bank. The range of buildings on the left remains largely unchanged, but the bank was rebuilt (and the road presumably widened) in the mid 1990s.