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Colkirk is a village in the Breckland District of Norfolk. It has a pub ( The Crown ) and a Church ( St Mary’s ) which is normally open throughout the day. The Village Green is known as the Campyngland ( no, I haven’t misspelt it ) and Campyng was an early ball game (during the Napoleonic Wars the game may have changed its name to "Prisoners' Base") played by bare-foot or soft-shod peasants. The two "camps" were of unlimited number but of even strength and set at opposite ends of the field. From one end a "token" (traditionally a gauntlet but later a small hand ball) was flung with a shout of challenge into the opposing camp, whose objective was to field it as swiftly as possible and hurl it back because while the "token" remained in the enemy camp, the opposing side could rush across and drag back as many "prisoners" as they could lay hands upon before the ball was thrown back to reverse the challenge. The game continued until one side had captured all their opponents as prisoners. Later, when it was played in hard shoes with a larger ball, local political feeling ran high and the inter-county contests became serious. A tough old glove, or a soft shoe, made for a swifter game than did a ball, which takes too long to follow and retrieve. In the eighteenth century three hundred men took to the field on Diss Common, between Norfolk and Suffolk, and nine deaths ensued! Because most games wear out a field in patches, the encouragement of "campyng" is of interest. The game did not wear out any special portion of the field as the players stampeded evenly from end to end all over it, firming and levelling the land. THE CACHE IS NOT AT THE PUBLISHED COORDINATES AND IS A SMALL CONTAINER. You will need a pen/pencil to sign. Parking at the Village Sign is quite dangerous, so park at the Parish Hall and walk to the sign. To find the cache, you must solve the following: Count the number of legs ( both visible and obscured ) on the village sign First Coordinate is N52 48. (Legs x 8) - 4 There are two dates on a plaque beneath the sign …. ABCD – EFGH Second Coordinate is E000 50. ( B-C ) ( G-H ) ( A-E ) If anybody would like to expand the Village Sign Series, please do. I would ask that you let Smokeypugs know first at https://villagesignseries.co.uk so they can keep track of the Village Sign numbers and names to avoid duplication.
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