Surprise as original 100-year-old signs revealed in Norwich Lanes

Nelle Sibley of Elm in Lower Goat Lane with the 100-year-old sign, unveiled on Thursday, June 9

Nelle Sibley of Elm in Lower Goat Lane with the 100-year-old sign, unveiled on Thursday, June 9 - Credit: Maya Derrick

Shop signs dating back to the 1920s have been uncovered in the historic city lanes - much to the surprise of business owners and passers-by.

Ivan Adcock of Trafford Road was passing Elm in Lower Goat Lane - which is currently under renovation to strip out rotting wood from its frontage - on Thursday, June 9.

There he spotted workmen taking down the current building front to reveal original signs - one metal and one wooden - of almost 100 years old underneath.

The signs are for Walter Little and Sons which were gentleman's outfitters.

The metal sign has been taken down for safe keeping

The metal sign has been taken down for safe keeping - Credit: Ivan Adcock

Ivan posted a video and photo to Twitter in the hope that historians may get in touch with suggestions of what the business could do.

The 60-year-old said: "My first thought was how beautiful and classic the signs look.

"I was hoping someone would get there and know how to preserve it in some capacity.

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"Luckily the people on Twitter tagged the right people."

Ivan Adcock shared snaps of the sign on Twitter in a bid to preserve it in some way

Ivan Adcock shared snaps of the sign on Twitter in a bid to preserve it in some way - Credit: Supplied by Ivan Adcock

Ivan's tweet prompted action from the Museum of Norwich and Norwich City Council.

"I had enough time to realise that it may be an import piece of Norwich history.

"I’d love to think that the sign will be kept and displayed.

The Walter Little and Sons signs are thought to date back to the 1920s

The Walter Little and Sons signs are thought to date back to the 1920s - Credit: Owen Sennitt

"People love the nostalgia of it. It would be brilliant to show it off and display it so everyone can go and take a photo of it," he added.

Nelle Sibley, a member of staff at Elm, said: "Nobody had any idea what was under our sign.

"It was all an exciting twist to a quiet Thursday.

Nelle Sibley of Elm in Lower Goat Lane with the 100-year-old sign, unveiled on Thursday, June 9

Nelle Sibley of Elm in Lower Goat Lane with the 100-year-old sign, unveiled on Thursday, June 9 - Credit: Maya Derrick

"It was really cool seeing it for the first time. People were talking about it all day and have been since.

"They've been taking pictures, even offering to buy it.

"The metal sign is currently upstairs. I believe our landlord gets to deicide what happens to it.

"There may be talks of donating it to somewhere."

The metal sign has been taken down for safe keeping, with the wooden version still in situ

The metal sign has been taken down for safe keeping, with the wooden version still in situ - Credit: Maya Derrick

In nearby St Augustines Street, two shops have kept their historic signs in situ - one with a plaque explaining the history behind it

"If the wood wasn't rotten and needed replacing I think we would've been interested in keeping it where it was," Nelle added.

"We're proud to be a part of Lower Goat Lane's rich history."