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Big turnout in little Bessingham as its first village sign is unveiled

17:20 01 September 2012

Organiser Irene I

Organiser Irene I'Anson pictured with woodcarver Luke Chapman and, left, Megan Rounce, nine, and Anwyn Chapman, nine, who helped unveil the Bessingham village sign. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

© ARCHANT NORFOLK 2012

A tiny north Norfolk community came together for a landmark day on Saturday - as its first ever village sign was unveiled.

After four years of fundraising, Bessingham now has its own sign - and its inaugural appearance is signalling a new era of community spirit.

For the drive to raise money for the sign saw the formation of Bessingham Society, which is set to add impetus to fundraising and events for years to come.

The sign, which is next to the village’s bus stop, was the idea initially of Irene I’Anson and the handiwork of local craftsman Luke Chapman.

Mrs I’Anson said: “We decided that we needed a village sign because we are not on many maps really. We are a small, although very pretty, rural village and we don’t have a village hall or a WI hall.

“We’ve just got our lovely church and 40 homes. We thought that a lovely village sign would enhance our lovely village.”

Mrs I’Anson said that in 2008 she began to seek funding.

And, after an unsuccessful bid to Awards for All, she was able to get money from Poppyland Partnership and the Arts Project Fund.

She added: “Other money came from a quiz evening, while lovely people gave me donations.”

The sign, which cost £3,000 in total, depicts St Mary’s Church, a barn owl and two oak trees.

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