Welborne is a small village in mid-Norfolk with the village hall (the old School Room) and church very much at the centre of village life.
Most of mid-Norfolk’s scattered settlements are small, yet in times past the chances are they were relatively self contained with a smithy, wheelwright, school, pub or two, shop, post office – maybe even their own railway station.
Tiny Welborne, tucked away off the road to sprawling Mattishall, and with just 90-odd households and a few hundred inhabitants, would have had most of these things in the past (trains apart) but divested itself of them one by one through the 20th century.
What it hasn’t lost in the process is its soul, thanks largely to the village committees who make things happen and to many other willing hands who pitch in when they do.
Welborne’s flint faced village hall has served Welborne since it was built in 1845 by public subscription for the village poor. Step through the porch, with its ecclesiastical features borrowed from a much older building, and there’s the faintest hint of the schoolroom it once was, though the cosily painted wood-panelled walls and manorial fire place give it a less institutional feel.
There is enormous goodwill to do things in Welborne and it must be emphasised that what is undertaken is not about and never has been about, individual personalities. There are lots of people involved in many ways. Community spirit is all about inclusion – a feeling that you belong to a place no matter how small that dot on the map might be. The Welborne philosophy is that if the hall doesn’t exist and isn’t active, if the church doesn’t exist and isn’t active, the place just becomes a conglomeration of houses where people happen to live. We believe in community here in Welborne.
Administratively, Welborne comes under the jurisdiction of Brandon Parva, Coston, Runhall & Welborne Parish Council, and falls within the parliamentary constituency of Mid Norfolk. The current sitting MP is George Freeman who can be contacted by E-mail at: George Freeman
“A Place of No Importance – A History of Welborne”
A very thorough and detailed history of Welborne, written by Joy Esebury and Brenda Baxter (two former village residents), is a must have book for all residents and those interested in the history of Welborne. Copies are available from Andrew Egerton-Smith so if you are interested in purchasing a copy please contact Andrew for further information. E-mail: Andrew Egerton-Smith