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Beetley was part of the Manor of Elmham, held by William Beaufoe, Bishop of Thetford, with the name deriving from the two Anglo Saxon words betel and bietel, both words applying to a clearing where wooden mallets are made. Beetley was then part of the Parish of Bittering Magna, however the Parish divided into Beetley and Gressenhall. Beetley was then combined together with the neighbouring parish of East Bilney in 1935. Between 1870 and 1872, an excerpt was written about the town
BEETLEY, a parish in Mitford district, Norfolk; 2 miles WSW of Elmham r. station, and 4 N by W of East Dereham. Post Town, Elmham, under Thetford. Acres, 1,770. Real property, £2,870. Pop., 363. Houses, 82. The property is divided among a few. The living is a rectory, annexed to the rectory of East Bilney, in the diocese of Norwich. The church is good.
The Parish Council of Beetley consists of 7 Councillors, who meet on the first Thursday of every month, except January and August in the village hall. The public are allowed to attend these meetings, and can provide their input certain moments during the meeting, with the local County and District Councillor attending the meetings.
The village is in Lincoln ward of the Breckland district of Norfolk, where the two District Councillors are Richard Duffield (Conservative) and Robert Richmond(Conservative). The former has held the position since 2011 and the latter, since 1999. Beetley is part of the Necton and Launditch Ward at County level, with the Ward Councillor being Mark Kiddle Morris (Conservative) who has held the role since 2009.
Necton and Launditch is a part of the Mid Norfolk parliamentary constituency. The MP who represents Mid Norfolk is George Freeman (Conservative), who has held the position since 2010. The constituency has been a strong Conservative area since it was re-established in 1983, with the lowest percentage of votes for the Conservative Party being at 39.6% in 1997, to the highest being 56.69% in 1987.
Geography and geology
- 27.35 km (17 miles) north west of Norwich
- 80 km (50 miles) north east of Peterborough
- 153 km (95 miles) north east of London
According to the BGS, Beetley has a superficial deposit of glacial sand and gravel, whilst the bedrock of Beetley and the surrounding area consists of sandstone and mudstone, with veins of white chalk running across Beetley.