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Buxton

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Buxton is a village in Norfolk, located between Norwich and Aylsham. The village is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1085. Buxton is adjacent to the village of Lamas. The two villages are separated by the River Bure at Buxton Mill but are otherwise indistinguishable. Together they form the civil parish of Buxton with Lamas.OverviewBuxton's main claim to fame is as the home village and burial place of Anna Sewell, author of Black Beauty. These claims are a little exaggerated. She is in fact is buried at the former Quaker Meeting-House in the village of Lamas, just over the river, and is more properly associated with the village of Old Catton, now a suburb of Norwich.The Sewell family, and their predecessors, the Wrights dwelt at Dudwick Park, a mansion in a private park on one side of the village. This was bought by John Wright (1728-1798), a wealthy Quaker Banker. His endowments founded the present school, as well as the Red House, an institution for young offenders which stood where the Rowan House complex now stands. These were erected by his grandson and heir, the second John Wright (1794-1871). He married a member of the Harford family, also Quakers, but died without issue, the property passing in 1856 to his sister's eldest son, Phillip Sewell, another Quaker banker. Phillip Sewell, the brother of Anna Sewell, was a major local benefactor, and enlarged the local school, a fact still recorded on a memorial plaque on the old buildings. The Sewells, like many Quaker landlords, were philanthropists, and gave the village a Reading Room, as well as supporting a school and reformatory. Their last gift to the community was the Village Hall, built 1927 and since extended. The Sewell connection ended in 1937, when P. E. Sewell, a Ceylon Tea-planter, died, leaving Dudwick Park to Percy Briscoe, a friend from Ceylon. The house was entirely rebuilt in the early part of the twentieth century, and, externally, no trace remains of the house which Anna Sewell would have known.
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