Village signs come in all shapes and sizes. There are the ubiquitous simple road-side notices telling you the name of the community you are entering (not to be confused with boundary stones, being rarely on the actual boundary). And then there are the big round yellow signs put up by motoring organisations (mainly the AA) in village centres a century or so ago, many of which survive.
There is, however, a growing trend for local communities to show off their village with large attractive signs, illustrative of interesting or historical features of the place. “Village signs” is sometimes hardly an adequate term for what are often little works of art.
To promote and record these the Village Sign Society (www.villagesignsociety.org.uk) was founded in 1999. Perhaps originally an East Anglian phenomenon (Norfolk has the most), they have recorded over 5,000 across the country, and over 200 in Yorkshire.
The sign pictured here, at Millhouse Green, on the Barnsley-Manchester road near Penistone, is typical of recent, more elaborate signs. It was designed and made by local businessman Nigel Tyas and sculptor Jim Milner (www.jimmilnersculpture.co.uk), and unveiled at the village’s Jubilee Fete in 2012. Featuring a typical local scene it also has the logo of the village community association, designed by pupils of the village school.
RWH / Nov 2020