Sprowston, White Woman Lane - Sprowston Heritage Embroideries Group

Panel 3 of the Sprowston Heritage Embroideries Group embroidery.

Panel Three of Threads of Time. (© Sprowston Heritage Embroideries Group.)

These images are taken from Threads of Time, a community tapestry comprised of four panels created by Sprowston residents depicting the history of the area.


This era opens with the May, a thorny hedging tree, and ends with the newly introduced parkland larch. The spelling is taken from the chalice, which has both Sprvstone and Sprowsone! There seems more prosperity, though still few people. Common land gets nibbled away. Overworn tracks like North Walsham Road have to be improved at the cost of travellers with animals and carts. Brick is more frequent, and wind power is better used; as the century advances steam would be harnessed. In 1839 Independents have a chapel and school. No more weavers are recorded here after the 1820s - the north captures the trade with new machines. Science has arrived!


The heiress of Catton Hall died on her wedding night, and they say the corn waved and cattle cavorted as her ghost walked the path to marry her lord. Elizabethan brides wore a wreath of herbs, long free hair, and carried a nosegay on a ribbon.

May blossom on hawthorn is still for some considered unlucky if it's brought in the house. The yew tree is a new type which was being imported in the 1600s, and forms the present avenue in the parish churchyard. 

The herb garden would be typical of her old home where there would be plants for medicine and cooking, maybe strawberries, and box hedging neatly clipped in a pattern. Front gardens along Magdalen and Sprowston Roads were still like this when we arrived in the nineneen fifties.

White Woman Lane's cornfields are lost under housing now. 

Detail of panel 3 of the Sprowston Heritage Embroideries Group embroidery.

Detail of Panel Three of Threads of Time depicting the legend of White Woman Lane.

 (© Sprowston Heritage Embroideries Group.)

The tapestry also features a Bronze Age cemetery, St Mary and St Margaret's Church, Sprowston Mill, St Cuthbert's Church, Sprowston Hall and Mousehold Heath aerodrome.

For more details of this project or to purchase Threads Of Time a booklet that accompanies the tapestry please contact:


White Woman Lane, Sprowston - NHER 8134

Norfolk County Council logo Heritage Lottery Fund logo

Powered by HBSMR-web and the HBSMR Gateway from exeGesIS SDM Ltd, and mojoPortal CMS
© 2007 - 2024 Norfolk Historic Environment Service