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2ND World War Memorial Cottages (Europe, Bates, Gristock, Knowland, Randle and Asia) Including the Front Garden Walls, the War Memorial and the Walls and Gatepiers to Mousehold Lane

A Grade II Listed Building in Sprowston, Norfolk

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Latitude: 52.6466 / 52°38'47"N

Longitude: 1.3209 / 1°19'15"E

OS Eastings: 624750

OS Northings: 310610

OS Grid: TG247106

Mapcode National: GBR WF8.PB

Mapcode Global: WHMTG.8Q7W

Plus Code: 9F43J8WC+M8

Entry Name: 2ND World War Memorial Cottages (Europe, Bates, Gristock, Knowland, Randle and Asia) Including the Front Garden Walls, the War Memorial and the Walls and Gatepiers to Mousehold Lane

Listing Date: 9 June 2006

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1393425

English Heritage Legacy ID: 501182

Location: Sprowston, Broadland, Norfolk, NR7

County: Norfolk

District: Broadland

Civil Parish: Sprowston

Built-Up Area: Norwich

Traditional County: Norfolk

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Norfolk

Church of England Parish: Sprowston St Mary and St Margaret

Church of England Diocese: Norwich

Tagged with: War memorial Cottage

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e, Bates, Gristock, Knowland, Randle a
nd Asia) including the front garden wa
lls, the war memorial and the walls an
d gatepiers to Mousehold Lane

Set of 6 almshouses built as a 2nd World War Memorial. 1948-50. By Cecil Upcher for the Royal Norfolk Regiment Memorial Trust. Red brick with plain-tile roof and ornamental brick stacks with grouped flues. Vernacular Baroque style with curving Dutch gables. Plan of a quarter-circle terrace. Single storey. 12-window range of upvc windows to the original design. Symmetrical SW elevation with 6 shaped gables arranged as single gables to the ends of the facade and 2 paired gables in the centre. Each gable has a Venetian window and has rusticated corners and dentil cornices. In the gable head of each is an oval plaque with keyblocks to the quadrant points, bearing the names of the houses, except the northern ones where the plaques 'Europe 1939-45' and 'Asia 1942-45' are on the pedimented main gable ends. Between the paired shaped gables are rusticated entrances to passageways to the rear. The façade otherwise has 4 half-glazed entrance doors set within recesses and 6 sash-type windows with external shutters. Dentil eaves cornice. North and south returns are treated as large pedimented gables and have a recessed half-glazed doorway within a rusticated arched opening and one casement. On each end of the façade and set back is a garage in similar style linked by an archway.
Rear elevation has 4 service blocks projecting at right angles.
INTERIOR. Each house is similar except for the plan of the end houses to accommodate the side entry. Wedge-shaped T-plan entrance halls with curving passage end. 4-panel doors. Simple timber fire surrounds.
Low front garden walls project forward from the façade and reflect the curve of the houses in their front walls. In the centre is a miniature cenotaph which is the Royal Norfolk Regiment war memorial.
Fronting Mousehold Lane are further low brick walls curving inwards to a central carriage entrance. Either side of the gatepiers are plaques recording the presentation of the site by the Norwich Home Guard and naming the group as the Regiment's war memorial.
HISTORY. These cottages were intended for war veterans from the Royal Norfolk regiment, the members of which won 5 Victoria crosses in the 2nd World war, the greatest number for any British division in the conflict. The site was donated by the Norwich Home Guard. The houses named 'Europe' and 'Asia' refer to the theatres of war in which the regiment fought, the other four names being those of 4 of the holders of the Victoria Cross. The fifth, Capt. Jamieson, was commemorated at a house in King's Lynn (demolished).
This was the first essay in mass concrete walling clad in brick undertaken by Cecil Upcher, which was required by the shortage of building materials in the period following the 2nd World War. The scarcity of materials is also shown by the bricks used on the rear being of lower quality than those fine quality ones used on the front.
Considering the scarcity of materials the quality of these cottages is remarkably high with carefully and richly detailed brickwork on the facade in a timeless and characteristic local Vernacular Baroque style including 'Dutch' gables. The terrace curves round to protect the Regimental memorial in the centre in front. Almshouses of the second half of the C20 are unusual especially in a style well-known in Norfolk, and there appear to be only one other group of 2nd World War memorial cottages in England, those in Bournemouth. In Scotland there is a listed set of 2nd World War memorial cottages at Craigmillar near Edinburgh called the Thistle Foundation Estate and in part dedicated to the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. Certainly cottages named after specific winners of the Victoria Cross are otherwise unknown. All those commemorated have died, the last in 2001.
The central Regimental memorial and walls to the road complete this very fine memorial group.

This List entry has been amended to add the source for War Memorials Register. This source was not used in the compilation of this List entry but is added here as a guide for further reading, 16 August 2017.

Reasons for Listing

DCMS agree Yes List

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