Village sign set to return

COPDOCK and Washbrook are set to display a new village sign after giving up hope of seeing the original again following a sighting at a car boot sale.The posts opposite the Brook Inn at Washbrook once proudly displayed the hand-carved wooden original sign, but have stood empty since it disappeared one night.

COPDOCK and Washbrook are set to display a new village sign after giving up hope of seeing the original again following a sighting at a car boot sale.

The posts opposite the Brook Inn at Washbrook once proudly displayed the hand-carved wooden original sign, but have stood empty since it disappeared one night.

After a year of absence a modern metal replacement will fill the void at a cost of more than £2000.

The original sign – which depicted the villages' two churches, a heron, a cricket scene, the mill and the bridge over the river – was thought to have blown down during particularly heavy winds in October last year. The parish council presumed someone had taken it in for safekeeping or perhaps it was broken when it fell and ended up on someone's bonfire.

However it never turned up and was spotted at a car boot sale in Ardleigh six months later.

Susan Tee, clerk of the parish council, said: "One of the village residents son's spotted the sign at a car boot sale and thought it would make a nice present for his mum. However, he thought it was too big to carry around and meant to return and get it later. But he forgot about it.

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"The original sign was part of the villages history. It was commissioned by the Women's Institute and carved by a local boy who was only 15. The sign played a significant part in the village and when it disappeared there was a lot of dismay and disappointment.

A metal replacement was chosen as it would need less maintenance than wooden one."

The new design is based on the original but a school bell has been added to recognise the school as the mainstay of the village.

An insurance claim covered only a few hundred pounds of the replacement's cost, the rest was met from a small grant and from the parish council funds.

The parish council would welcome any donations to help repair the dent in their finances.

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