Edward Thomas Gaymer (1852-1921) was living in Flordon Long Lane in 1871 with his sisters Mary and Rebecca farming 126 acres of land between Long Lane and Greenways. It would appear this was what we now know as Orchard Farm. Edward was part of the Gaymer family of cider fame. He was the son of William Gaymer (1805-1884) and Rebecca nee Page (1813-1883) and it was his older brother William Stewart Gaymer (1842-1936) who was the real founder of the business, seeing cider-making as a commercial proposition. So was it Edward who planted an apple orchard here that gave the farm its name? The few gnarled trees that remain suggest they could be well over 100 years old....

An advert in the Norfolk Chronicle, 13 March 1875, states: 'To Let. Farmhouse and buildings... 124 acres arable and pasture, 5 acres orchard, now in the occupation of Mr. Gaymer.

By 1881, the census shows 'The Orchards' is inhabited by a 'retired book maker' (unclear whether that is books or bets!) and 'the Lodge to Orchards' by a farm bailiff. The Lodge is presumably the cottage by the Greenways entry that now has several post-war extensions. In May 1883 the farm was being advertised again as To Let. It was still 'The Orchards' in 1891, with George & Elizabeth Fordham in residence - though farm workers rather than farmers. By 1911, it is named Orchard Farm, with John W Palmer as the farmer. And in 1939 the Fincham family were living there.


Jean Cook worked for George Fincham at Orchard Farm, along with Joan Howell, Rene Drake, Gracie Fowler, and Phoebe Randle. He wanted to set up a small factory on his land off Greenways for processing sprouts. 'It's only 5 acres if sprouts' he said - but it became 46 acres as Rex Webster and Jim Gurney joined in the enterprise. The factory worked day and night and had to be kept supplied with cut sprout stems. Jean Cook worked there for 4 years in all weathers and often late at night, then moved to the (warmer) mushroom farm!