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Historic England grant will put Swaffham Buttercross landmark in the limelight

A £45,000 grant will be used to put a historic town monument “under the eye” of the public.

Swaffham Cultural Consortium has been awarded the funds by Historic England to help with a number of cultural development projects.

The cultural group, made up of volunteers - including representatives from Swaffham Museum - is now expanding its programme to celebrate the town’s bygone heritage.

The Buttercross in Swaffham
The Buttercross in Swaffham

Led by The Friends of Swaffham Heritage, they have changed the name of their project from Carter 22 to ‘Under The Eye of the Buttercross’- and throughout 2023, they will host a series of events to celebrate Swaffham’s historic focal point in the ancient marketplace.

These may include a community supper at the Buttercross for 1,000 people and the development of a digital library of past and present images of Swaffham.

A costumed trail of interesting town residents and a designated day for voluntary groups and organisations to showcase their work could also feature.

Sue Gattuso, chair of Friends of Swaffham Heritage and events lead of the consortium, said: “We have been very fortunate to have received the funding for these events. Our aim in everything we do is to bring the town together to celebrate our legacy, to get to know each other a little better and to enjoy.

“Swaffham is a rapidly expanding town with an illustrious history. Meshing the two is an important part of creating a thriving community in the 21st century.”

Tony Calladine, Historic England regional director for the East of England, added: “I’m looking forward to seeing this year’s programme of events come to life and for local people to discover more about the Buttercross, such an important landmark in Swaffham, and its enduring legacy of community spirit.”

Cllr Paul Claussen, executive member for economic development and growth from Breckland Council, said: “The consortium has been an integral part of making everyone in Swaffham aware of its rich history. I’m thrilled that the group has received further funding, ensuring residents will continue to benefit from their events, and learn more about Swaffham’s heritage.”

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