The Holt Society
Pictures of Holt

Georgian Holt

A Sense of Place

On 1st May 1708 Holt was largely destroyed by a raging fire. But in one of those strange twists of fate, tragedy eventually turned into triumph. Holt literally arose from the ashes, through the sheer determination of the community and the builders and craftspeople who created the attractive Georgian market town we know today. Stone by stone, they built the many little alleyways and passages, the brick and flint walls, the carved details on doorways and window frames - all of which give Holt such a unique sense of place.

The materials were local. The blue-grey coloured flints were literally dug out of the surrounding fields and the soft apricot/red bricks were made locally too. It is therefore no accident that these blended colours and rich textured surfaces work so well with the surrounding landscape and Norfolk skies.

The beauty of Holt also lies in the grouping of its small buildings. The first impression is one of attractive balance and harmony of proportion. The Georgian builders of Holt understood instinctively that every design detail is visually related to everything around it - the proportion of a doorway to a window, the pitch of a roof, and the importance of decorative details such as fluted columns, sash windows and fan lights which enlivened the building.

Like other Georgian market towns, we wish to celebrate the quality of our architectural inheritance. Not by preserving the town in aspic, but by encouraging good design and smart thinking to integrate the old with the new.