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What are your picks? The Seven Wonders of Wymondham - councillor celebrates town by choosing top highlights

PUBLISHED: 07:00 18 March 2015 | UPDATED: 09:19 18 March 2015

Joe Mooney outside one of the seven wonders of Wymondham, The Abbey.
Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

Joe Mooney outside one of the seven wonders of Wymondham, The Abbey. Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

Archant Norfolk.

For many, wonders of the world might conjure up images of Egypt’s colossal pyramids, or the romantic tale behind India’s striking Taj Mahal.

But when Wymondham councillor Joseph Mooney began thinking of ways of celebrate his favourite town, he decided to draw up a list of heritage gems closer to home.

Posted on Twitter over the past two weeks, Mr Mooney, who is county and district councillor for the town, picked the historic Wymondham Abbey, 17th century Market Cross and wildlife haven Tolls Meadow as highlights worthy of a place on his Seven Wonders of Wymondham list.

Mr Mooney, who has lived in the town for 32 years, said that he wanted to celebrate “delightful Wymondham”.

He said: “It is a wonderful market town to live in and I am trying to get more footfall into it so people can appreciate it.

 
	The huge Wymondham Abbey is the towns parish church and was constructed in the 12th century, its two towers are a landmark for miles around 
The huge Wymondham Abbey is the towns parish church and was constructed in the 12th century, its two towers are a landmark for miles around

“We have got some great attractions here and I would love for people to come and see them.”

The town’s train station, heritage museum, Becket’s Chapel and two war memorials also made it onto the list.

We’re looking for the wonders of the Norfolk towns you live in - email lauren.cope@archant.co.uk with your suggestions.

The top seven

1. Wymondham Abbey

The 900-year-old Abbey is a historic gem in Wymondham, providing a stunning backdrop for the town and welcoming around 20,000 visitors each year.

It was founded in 1107 by William d’Albini and dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary and St Alban.

The ongoing Abbey Experience project, which was given a £1.5m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund, is aiming to make the building more available to the public, by adding two new extensions and forging links with schools and businesses.

2. Market Cross

The 17th century octagonal structure at the heart of the town was built in 1617 - the cost of £25 - to signal its market square.

The unique building now serves as the town’s tourist information centre.

3. Wymondham Heritage Museum

The Wymondham Bridewell served as a prison from as early as 1619 until 1878. Since then it has been used as a police station and a courthouse.

Now, the main part of the building houses the museum, which opened for its 2015 season at the start of March.

4. War memorials

The war memorial on Town Green and another to Far Eastern Prisoners of War at the Roman Catholic Church on Norwich Road pay tribute to dozens of men affected by combat.

A commemorative stone to Harry Daniels, the first Norfolk man to be given the Victoria Cross, was unveiled at the Town Green memorial last week.

5. Lizard walk and Tolls Meadow

Tolls Meadow is a 4.5-acre expanse of wet meadow and woodland which plays home to a range of wildlife. It is located either side of the River Tiffey and is designated as a nature reserve.

You can often spot kingfishers, herons, muntjack and roe deer, small birds and water voles.

6. Becket’s Chapel

Becket’s Chapel is the second oldest surviving building in the town, after the Abbey.

Wymondham Arts Forum leased the building from the Trustees of the Old Grammar School Foundation in 2008 and now use it as a gallery.

The Grade 1 listed building was founded as a chantry in 1174 by William D’Albini, the son of the William D’Albini who founded the Abbey.

During the 19th century it was used for a variety of functions, including as a lock-up and a home for the town’s fire engine.

Norfolk Library Service occupied the building from 1949 to 2008.

7. Wymondham rail station

The train station was opened on July 30, 1845 and today serves more than 150,000 people a year.

It was named Small Station of the Year in the 2006 National Rail Awards.

It is now home to the award-winning Station Bistro restaurant.

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