North Norfolk

North Norfolk is a local government district in Norfolk, England. Its council is based in Cromer. The population at the 2011 Census was 101,149.[1]

Fakenham, best known for Fakenham Racecourse and is the third-largest settlement

North Norfolk District
Cromer, the administrative centre of North Norfolk and the second-largest settlement
Shown within Norfolk
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Constituent countryEngland
RegionEast of England
Administrative countyNorfolk
Formed1 April 1974
Local Government Act 1972
Admin. HQCromer
  TypeNorth Norfolk District Council
  Leadership:Leader & Cabinet
  Executive:Liberal Democrats
  MPs:Duncan Baker (C)
Jerome Mayhew (C)
  Total371.6 sq mi (962.5 km2)
  RankRanked 234th
  Density280/sq mi (110/km2)
Time zoneUTC+0 (Greenwich Mean Time)
  Summer (DST)UTC+1 (British Summer Time)
ONS code33UF (ONS)
E07000147 (GSS)
Ethnicity99.2% White
North Walsham, the largest settlement in the district


The district was formed on 1 April 1974, under the Local Government Act 1972. It was a merger of Cromer Urban District, North Walsham Urban District, Sheringham Urban District, Wells-next-the-Sea Urban District, Erpingham Rural District, Smallburgh Rural District, and Walsingham Rural District. The 2021 census results found that the local authority area had one of the highest proportions of population over 65 in the England and Wales, at 33.5%.[2]

Wells-next-the-Sea, one of the many coastal towns in the county

The district was originally to be called Pastonacres, but changed its name by resolution of the council and permission of the Secretary of State for Environment before it formally came into existence on 1 April 1974.[3]

Holt, the fourth-largest town in the district


Elections to the district council are held every four years, with all of the seats on the council up for election every fourth year. The council was run by a Conservative administration, the Conservative party having gained a majority of 8 seats at the 2011 elections, which they increased to 18 at the 2015 elections. However, a series of subsequent by-elections[4] and defections[5] has put the council under No overall control. The council had previously been under Liberal Democrat control from 2003.

In the 2015 elections, the Conservatives won a second successive term after more than doubling their majority to 18. The district is run using the Leader and Cabinet model used by the majority of councils in England and Wales, with the current leader Sarah Bütikofer of the Liberal Democrats having taken over in November, 2018.[6]

Historical composition

ElectionConservativeLiberal DemocratLabourUKIPOther Total







The district is entirely parished, and is made up of 121 civil parishes. At the time of the 2001 census, the district had an area of 994 square kilometres (384 sq mi), with a population of 98,382 in 43,502 households.[7]

The district contains the following civil parishes:


Almost £389,000 was given to the council's "joint head of paid services", Nick Baker, in the form of an "exit package", reported Private Eye in October 2020. This was £89,000 more than the council had spent purchasing dwellings to support homeless people in 2019/20, the Eastern Daily Press reported. The council's opposition leader, Christopher Cushing, was quoted describing the payment to Baker as "extraordinary". The Press also reported the total cost of so-called "golden goodbyes" for senior council staff had risen to £1.8 million.[8][9]

Cultural references

The 2013 movie Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa was filmed in the area.

The World of Darkness Parody, Hunter: The Parenting is set in the area.


  1. "Local Authority District population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 26 July 2016.
  2. "Age - Census Maps, ONS". Retrieved 6 January 2023.
  3. Councils want their names changed. The Times, 13 August 1973.
  4. North Norfolk DC [@NorthNorfolkDC] (9 February 2017). "Waterside by election result. Tony Lumbard (Con) 410, Marion Millership (Lib Dem) 649, David Russell (Lab) 41, Barry Whitehouse (UKIP) 77" (Tweet) via Twitter.
  5. Pringle, Eleanor. "Conservatives lose North Norfolk majority as eighth councillor resigns". Eastern Daily Press.
  6. "New Leader at North Norfolk District Council". Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  7. Office for National Statistics & Norfolk County Council (2001). Census population and household counts for unparished urban areas and all parishes Archived 11 February 2017 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 2 December 2005.
  8. Private Eye, Issue 1532, p.21
  9. "Eastern Daily Press".

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