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Remarkable women from history celebrated in new blue plaque scheme

PUBLISHED: 11:46 16 January 2019 | UPDATED: 11:56 16 January 2019

Launch of the new Broadland District Council Blue Plaque Scheme at Hayman Lodge in Catton Park. Picture: Angela Sharpe Photography

Launch of the new Broadland District Council Blue Plaque Scheme at Hayman Lodge in Catton Park. Picture: Angela Sharpe Photography

Angela Sharpe Photography 2018

Pioneering women in Broadland who made valuable contributions to their community have been honoured at the launch of a council's first blue plaque scheme.

L-R, Jo Copplestone,  Judy Leggett,  Norwich North MP Chloe Smith and Karen Vincent. Picture: Angela Sharpe Photography.L-R, Jo Copplestone, Judy Leggett, Norwich North MP Chloe Smith and Karen Vincent. Picture: Angela Sharpe Photography.

Broadland District Council’s three plaques celebrating five women will be installed in early 2019 in the parishes that have relevance to the women being commemorated – Old Catton, Buxton and Aylsham.

The launch focused on celebrating the women’s achievements as a way of honouring the recent centenary celebrations of the first women to vote. Future plaques installed as part of the scheme will commemorate both men and women from the district.

The women honoured are Margaret Sewell and Anne Wright, who both helped to improve education for people.

Meanwhile, both Lucy Sewell and Mary Sewell, granddaughter and grandmother, cared and worked for the wellbeing of others.

The first three plaques were unveiled by Judy Leggett, Broadland DC Chairman (centre), Vice-Chairman and Member Champion for heritage Karen Vincent (R) and Portfolio Holder for Economic Development Jo Copplestone (L). Picture: Angela Sharpe PhotographyThe first three plaques were unveiled by Judy Leggett, Broadland DC Chairman (centre), Vice-Chairman and Member Champion for heritage Karen Vincent (R) and Portfolio Holder for Economic Development Jo Copplestone (L). Picture: Angela Sharpe Photography

And Alice Hoare was a councillor of the rural district of Aylsham and an advocate for local women and the poor.

The plaques were made by The Anglia Sign Casting Company in Horsford.

Council chairman Judy Leggett said: “This very special initiative commemorates notable people from all walks of life, who have made an important contribution to our district historically.

“With the first plaques we are installing, we hope we have created a fitting tribute to women who made an impact on the lives of others. They stand out in Broadland’s history for different reasons but they all shared a common desire to help those less fortunate in their communities.”

The council’s vice-chairman and member champion for heritage Karen Vincent added: “We are very grateful to the kind contributions of many of our local parish councils, the record office, volunteers, families of the women, and other organisations that helped us research the lives of the women.

“We’re looking forward to exploring the backgrounds of more people who served their communities throughout our district’s history and the panel is ready to welcome more submissions.”

Norwich North MP Chloe Smith MP attended the launch with relatives of Alice Hoare, children from Sewell Park Academy, local historians, and councillors.

to submit a nomination, call the council’s tourism officer on 01603 430496 or email chloe.griffin@broadland.gov.uk.

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