VILLAGERS cheered as a long-awaited sign marking out their community was finally unveiled - 11 years after it was first conceived.

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Limpenhoe residents smiled and clapped as guest of honour and neighbour Angela Kennedy - editor of Norfolk magazine - revealed the sign in pride of place next to the village hall yesterday (Saturday).

The marker, made up of four panels and designed by local artist Sue McNeil, depicts the seasons and life in the village.

It was first conceived by a group of Girl Guide Rangers in 2001 after they received funding for a local project, as a result of which a children’s play area was established.

The sign scheme was put on hold while the play equipment was installed and suffered further delays over problems with a land swap that was meant to accommodate the marker.

After four years of waiting however, residents changed tack and instead decided to install the sign at the village hall and finally reward their long-running efforts.

Pat Bennett, chairman of the village hall committee, rejuvenated the sign project and went on a “one man mission of fundraising” to draw in the cash needed to complete the scheme.

She said it was important for Limpenhoe to have a sign to put the village firmly on visitors’ maps.

“Nobody knows where it is and when they get here they don’t know they’re here, they all think they’re in Cantley,” she added. “It’s an absolutely beautiful sign, I don’t think you’ll see another one like it.

“And it’s also nice that we managed to do it within the village. It’s been a real village effort and everybody was involved.”

The whole project cost around £3,500 to complete and Mrs Bennett wished to thank all who had helped including Thurton Foundries who cast the sign head and staff from British Sugar Cantley who funded the base and erection costs.

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