Museum's 65-year mystery of 'missing' model finally solved

Richard Bultitude pictured with the model he made, now on display at Wymondham Heritage Museum.

Richard Bultitude pictured with the model he made, now on display at Wymondham Heritage Museum. - Credit: Wymondham Heritage Museum

The mystery of a 'missing model' at Wymondham Heritage Museum has been solved following a visit - from the person who made it 65 years ago.

On display among other artefacts showcasing the history of Wymondham's ancient Market Cross at Wymnondham Heritage Museum is a painted scale model made from balsa wood and 4,560 tiles.

But it was believed there were once two models, with the exhibit displaying two pieces of 'conflicting information.'

A Wymondham Market Cross model on display at Wymondham Heritage Museum.

A Wymondham Market Cross model on display at Wymondham Heritage Museum. - Credit: Wymondham Heritage Museum

One said the model on display was made by pupils at Browick Road School in 1955 and presented to the museum, and another showed a picture of two of the boys who worked on it, but said the model was missing and asked visitors if they knew where it was.

But following a visit from Wymondham resident David Levy, the mystery has since been solved after he recognised the name of one of the boys who made the model - Richard Bultitude.

Conflicting information on display at the Wymondham Heritage Museum about the model.

Conflicting information on display at the Wymondham Heritage Museum about the model. - Credit: Wymondham Heritage Museum


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Neil Haverson, publicity manager, said: "He knew Richard (Dick) and told him the model was on display and suggested he should visit the museum to renew acquaintances with his handiwork.

"So, for the first time in more than 65 years, Dick stood proudly beside the model he and his friend and fellow pupil, John Wiggett, had constructed.

Richard Bultitude and John Wiggett.

Brothers Richard and John Wiggett. - Credit: Wymondham Heritage Museum

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"He confirmed there never was another model. The one on display is the only one they made."

The museum said the information describing the exhibit is in the process of being updated.

Mr Haverson said: "Back in 1955, the students had taken the 11+ and there was not much for them to do before the end of term, so head teacher Mr Bradbury devised a project studying Wymondham.

Richard Bultitude pictured with the model he made, now on display at Wymondham Heritage Museum.

Richard Bultitude pictured with the model he made, now on display at Wymondham Heritage Museum. - Credit: Wymondham Heritage Museum

"Part of it was to create a model of the Market Cross. Overseen by the arts and crafts master, Mr Cushion, Dick Bultitude and John Wiggett were given the task of building it.

"The model was initially held by The Bridewell Museum in Norwich until Mr Cushion retrieved it. He restored it and presented it to Wymondham Heritage Museum."

Richard Bultitude after he moved to Thetford Grammar School.

Richard Bultitude after he moved to Thetford Grammar School. - Credit: Wymondham Heritage Museum

Mr Bultitude said he had not even thought about the model until Mr Levy got in touch.

He added: “It brought back my school days. It’s unnerving. That I did it and it’s still here."

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