Hotels and Holiday Cottages in Wymondham

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Tourist information

The quiet image of present-day Wymondham belies its chequered history, surviving both religious and civil unrest, and devastation by fire. Positioned just south of Norwich, on the route of the A11 road to London, Wymondham presents an attractive face to the world, its 900-year old abbey, built in 1107 as a priory of the great Benedictine Monastery of St. Albans, casting a spooky shadow over the Tiffey valley. The hammer-beamed roof of the Abbey is carved with 200 angels, and protects an 18th-century church organ.

Wymondham continues to promote the ambience of a small, but perfectly formed market town, with a successful farmers market taking place on the third Saturday of each month, by the Market Cross. Built in 1618, following the destruction of its predecessor in the town fire three years earlier, and restored in 1989, the Cross now houses the local tourist information centre. Like many towns in Norfolk, wool was central to the local economy, although the manufacture of small wooden objects, including spoons, was also a recognised local trade.

Wymondham's most infamous inhabitant was Robert Kett, who led a peasant's rebellion against the King in 1549. Ketts Oak, a local landmark on the route of the old A11 road between Wymondham and Hethersett, was where the rebels stopped on their march to Norwich, to swear an oath to reform the Church and the State. Despite initial success, encamped on Mousehold Heath, Kett and his men were eventually defeated; Kett was finally tried in London, convicted of high treason and hanged at Norwich Castle.

Wymondham Heritage Museum is housed in the former Bridewell, a building which has, in its past, served as a house of correction, a prison, a police station and a magistrates court. The local railway station (with its 'Brief Encounter' restaurant, rail museum, gift shop, piano showrooms and nail bar), has won awards for its innovative restoration, and still provides a link to Cambridge, Norwich and beyond. A mile down the road from the main line station, Wymondham Abbey Station serves the Mid-Norfolk Railway (MNR) which runs a local heritage service to East Dereham.

Wymondham College, half way between the town and neighbouring Attleborough, offers state and boarding school facilities to pupils from both the UK and overseas.

American travel writer Bill Bryson has recently returned to Britain, and now lives near to Wymondham.

The new headquarters of Norfolk Constabulary are located in Wymondham, and the luxury sports and racing car manufacturer, Lotus, also has its offices just outside the town, at Hethel.

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