Depictions of buildings in wayside art seem to be mainly of churches, castles and
mills. Other buildings, such as schools, public libraries, factories or corn halls,
to mention a few, are rarely seen. Ordinary houses are also conspicuous in their
absence. It is probably their very ordinariness that makes them less likely to be
chosen as a subject. The buildings that are depicted are mostly to be found on village
signs. Buildings are therefore a relatively modern choice of subject. Below are
a few examples of the ones that don’t depict mainly a church, a castle or a mill.
Go to other pages for the common categories.
The building depicted on the village sign at Wortham in Suffolk represents the three
arches that are attached to the nearby school. The function of the arches is to
divide the children into orderly lines as they enter the building, one arch for the
girls, one for the boys and the third for the teachers and other adults. The arches
have the words faith, hope and charity carved above them. The sign was erected in
The simple buildings depicted on the village sign at West Stow with its wrought iron
scrolling represent Anglo-Saxon halls. The sign was designed and painted by members
of nearby Culford School.
The town sign at Wickham Market in Suffolk is one of only a few that depicts local
industries. Made of wrought iron, it was designed by Percy Mason and made by Richard
The village sign (above) at Saxmundham in Suffolk, erected in 1997, depicts the Market
Hall as well as the church. The Hall, built between 1842 and 1846, was a gift to
the town of the Long family. The sign was designed by Jenny Toombs of Benhall who
based it on ideas submitted by children from local primary and middle schools. The
sign is made of cast aluminium and black wrought iron. It was made by Mary Moore
and Hector Moore of Brandeston Forge, Terry Pearce of Bredfield Forge, and Roger
Peace of Jays Foundry in Norwich.
The most likely place to find a motif of a house is on a house name plaque, like
this one on a house in Loddon in Norfolk.
There was an Anglo-Saxon settlement at West Stow between 420 and 650 AD. West Stow
Country Park was opened in 1979 as an educational centre and has several reconstructions
of Anglo-Saxon-style buildings in authentic materials.
AN INTRODUCTION TO BUILDINGS
TO INTRODUCTION TO ANIMALS
TO INTRODUCTION TO LINES
The village sign at Westwick in Norfolk depicts an arch that used to span the main
road here until it was demolished in 1981. Behind the arch is a representation of
an eighteenth-century obelisk which, although it still exists, is without its original
roof and without the conservatory that was once perched on the top.