Appealing courthouse granted reprieve

Part of an historic building in the heart of Blofield has recently been restored, thanks to a £5,000 Heritage at Risk grant from Broadland District Council. 

The grant was used to restore the leaking and rotting cupola on the roof of the grade II listed Blofield Courthouse. An important architectural feature of the building, the cupola needed to be removed from the site to be fully repaired. 

Broadland District Council’s Deputy Leader, Cllr Natasha Harpley, said: “I am delighted to see this historically significant building restored to its former glory. It’s vital we retain our heritage for future generations to enjoy and this building can now continue to be at the heart of village life for many years to come.”  

The cupola is a roof top feature on the courthouse which helped provide ventilation and extract the smoke when people (including the judge) smoked in the courtroom and is a key feature of the building.

The Courthouse was built in 1905 in the Baroque style by the county surveyor as the courthouse for the Blofield Hundred. The Hundreds were the historic administrative districts thought to be based on the area needed to muster 100 fighting men. The building was in use as a courthouse until 1975 and still retains its original cells, waiting rooms with benches and the magistrate’s room.

The building, owned by the Parish Council, is now in use for community activities, such as fitness classes and film screenings and rooms are available to hire. 

Parish Clerk Sarah Osbaldeston said: “On behalf of the Parish Council and village may we give a big thanks to Broadland District Council for the grant, it has been a great help and as you can see well spent in improving an asset in the parish well into the future.”

Broadland District Council grant aids a small number of projects every year. Organisations with a listed building or structure in need of repair and considered ‘at risk’ that could benefit from a grant should contact Chris Bennett on 01508 533828 or email