The Village Sign
By the railings, in High Street, is the Village Sign which was unveiled in 1985. The winning design, by local builder Ivan Newton, was chosen from several entries in a competition in 1983.
The sign bears the name of the village as it appears in the Domesday Book ‘Witcingheseta’ which either means the settlement of the Witcing tribe or a place of watery meadows. The village is in a valley on a tributary of the River Wensum with many wells and springs so ‘watery meadows’ describes it very well.
The background of the sign shows the Celtic Cross a reminder of the Saxon settlement here. Between the arms of the cross are the stocks, which stood on Stock’s Hill until the early 1900s, one of the two windmills in Mill Lane, a Norfolk Royal apple representing the orchards at Hamrow and the Spring well which for centuries provided the main source of drinking water for much of the village. It is still here and has never run dry.
The two military figures in the centre of the sign are Lieut-Col. Derek Seagrim V.C, and Major Hugh Seagrim G.C. sons of a former rector of Whissonsett Rev.Charles Seagrim. Their heroic story is told HERE.
The small plaque in front of the sign was presented to the village in memory of Hugh Seagrim by the Karen community. (www.karenhilltribes.org.uk).
Best Kept Village Plaque
In 1996 Whissonsett gained first place for villages with under 500 population in the Best Kept Village Competition. The village was also successful for several years in Anglia in Bloom. The awards and montages of pictures of the village gardens are on display in the village hall.
On the wall behind the village sign is the village tourist map. This was designed in 1995 by Ann English as part of the Whissonsett Development Project and shows footpaths, places of interest and tells some of the history of the village.
More information about Whissonsett is shown on the large Parish Map in the village hall. This was also designed by Ann English who did most of the artwork. Tapestry panels around the central map were worked by representatives of the village organisations. It took two years to complete and was sponsored by the Norfolk Rural Community Council.