Today (Friday 22 October) saw the official unveiling of Dereham’s wayfinding panels and finger posts that have been installed around the town to help bring its rich history to life and direct pedestrians to various points of interest.
The project was led by the aboutDereham Partnership and jointly funded by Breckland Council, Dereham Town Council and Norfolk County Council. The 14 information panels, designed in the main by local historian Sue Walker from Dereham Heritage Trust, contain lots of interesting facts, maps and old photos about the town’s past and its famous people. The panels guide visitors around the town to its main attractions and local landmarks such as Dereham Windmill, Bishop Bonner’s Cottage and the Mid-Norfolk Railway. The panels are complemented by new fingerpost direction signs around the town.
Once, if you were driving to Norwich or the Broads from the Midlands or the North you could not miss Dereham, in the dead centre of Norfolk. The A47 went straight through the middle of the place, and the chances were that you would be in a traffic jam and decide to take a break and explore this busy Georgian market town.
Now the probability is that you will pass it by, noticing perhaps just the sign to Dereham (also known as East Dereham) . Those who live there know it as Dereham, a reference to the fact that in bygone times deer roamed the nearby woods and forests.