Norfolk town preserves its heritage, thanks to old guidebook
PUBLISHED: 09:48 15 March 2019 | UPDATED: 10:01 15 March 2019
It’s a part of a Norfolk town’s heritage that might have been lost for good, if not for an old guidebook.
The inscription on the side of the Clock Tower in the Market Square, North Walsham, dates back to the 1930s, and is slowly wearing away.
North Walsham Town Council wanted to erect a lectern to replace it, using the same words.
However, it was crumbling so badly that some of the wording was illegible.
Luckily, the wording was mentioned in an old town guide belonging to town councillor Dave Turner, who informed stonemason, Nick Hindle, and the work was completed.
The latest addition to Market Street has now been unveiled, preserving it for posterity.
The new plinth is in front of the water fountain, which itself dates back to 1911, and has also been moved around the town a few times.
Mr Turner said: “We had been looking at replacing the historic stone on the cross for about nine years.
“When we put the Christmas lights up, we get holiday-makers asking us what the words are, as some of them have faded away. Luckily, an old town guide that I found had the wording in it.”
The words on the inscription are, “North Walsham Market Cross, 1549 built by Bishop Thirlby, 1600 damaged by fire repaired by Bishop Redman,
“1897 thoroughly restored as a permanent memorial of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, 1914 Conveyed to the town by ecclesiastical commissioners, 1930 included by the commissioners of works in the list of ancient monuments, the preservation of which is of national importance”.
Town Mayor Barry Hester said the authority’s next project was to clean up the water fountain, which was once used by horses.
“We will be putting a solar-panelled light on it as well,” he added.
Mr Hindle, based in The Avenue, Wroxham, said: “The stone was deteriorating so much there was nothing they could do to put it right.
“The same words are on the new lectern as on the old one. It’s a Karin granite lectern. North Walsham’s my home town so it was lovely to be involved in it.”