The Norwich Society

Events

Winter Lecture: Healing Bodies and Curing Souls – the Great Hospital in the Middle Ages

  • Tue 26 Mar 2019
  • Open to all
  • The Music Room, The Assembly House
  • 7:00 pm
  • £5.00 non-members / Free (members)

Learn what life at the Great Hospital would have been like and how it might have differed from the experience of institutional care today.

Speaker: Carole Rawcliffe

The Great Hospital, known during the Middle Ages as the hospital of St Giles, is a place of real historical importance. It’s archives are now so valuable that in 2012 they were accorded UNESCO Memory of the World status. Learn what life at the Great Hospital would have been like and how it might have differed from the experience of institutional care today. Carole Rawcliffe is Professor of Medieval History at UEA.

Booking is recommended to ensure a place.

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Backstage Tour of the Theatre Royal

  • Fri 5 Apr 2019
  • Open to all
  • Meet in the Box Officer Foyer, The Theatre Royal, Theatre Street
  • 10:30 am
  • £13.00 non-members / £10.00 members

The Theatre Royal has its origins in the mid-18th century although today’s building is the third on the site and opened in 1935. This tour will take you back stage during the run of Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake and will reveal what it takes to deliver a major regional theatre programme.

The tour will take about an hour and will be followed by tea and cake in the restaurant.

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April Historians Talk

  • Thu 18 Apr 2019
  • Open to all
  • Vernon Castle Room, The Heritage Centre, Millennium Library, The Forum
  • 10:30 am
  • Free (non-members) / Free (members)

Norwich Castle: A GOOD AND SUFFICIENT PRISON?

Speaker: Nick Arber

Nick Arber has worked as a Museum exhibition designer for over forty years; initially for the Norfolk Museums Service, and latterly freelance. During his time based at Norwich Castle he researched the History of the buildings and their inmates. From 2000 – 2009 this research was formalised in a PhD dissertation on the prison buildings.

The medieval Castle Keep has been well researched and published, but the prison buildings on the mound have been largely ignored. These buildings have a context and history of their own. Emphasising the need for a ‘good and sufficient prison’ for Norfolk, in 1819 Edward Harbord and his fellow magistrates set in motion a bid to rebuild the Castle gaol, with William Wilkins jnr. as their architect. Much of that building still remains, thickly clothed by the present Museum. Using surviving documentation and extant structures, Nick will explore behind the museum facade to examine what remains of that early nineteenth century prison, and what it can tell us about its design and the intentions of its creators.

All Historians Group sessions start at 10:15am for tea, & coffee (£1 in the honesty box) and the talk will start at 10:30am. There will be an opportunity for further refreshments and a chat afterwards.

Free to attend but PLEASE BOOK to ensure a place.

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Norwich Society Annual General Meeting

  • Wed 24 Apr 2019
  • Open to all
  • The Music Room, the Assembly House
  • 7:00 pm
  • Free (non-members) / Free (members)

The AGM is arranged to conduct the formal business of receiving the annual report and accounts and electing the Executive Committee, it is also an opportunity for members to ask questions and raise issues about the Society and its activities. This year members will be asked to vote on a change to the constitution so it is particularly important that you attend.

After the meeting, guest speaker Dr Robin Hanley, Norfolk Museums Service, will update Members on the Castle Keep project.

Free to attend but please book a place to help us manage event numbers

See HERE for AGM papers

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Walking Tour: Norwich's Three Panoramas

  • Wed 8 May 2019
  • Open to all
  • Meet outside Café Britannia, Britannia Road, Norwich, NR1 4LU
  • 2:00 pm
  • £10.00 non-members / £7.00 members

John Trevelyan will lead a walk taking in Norwich’s three locations which give strategic views of the city centre, plus the newest and oldest bridges over the river. We start and finish at Café Britannia, and those that wish can stay on for afternoon tea.

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May Historians Talk

  • Thu 16 May 2019
  • Open to all
  • Vernon Castle Room, The Heritage Centre, Millennium Library, The Forum
  • 10:30 am
  • Free (non-members) / Free (members)

Samson and Hercules – an odd couple

Speakers: Dr Sheila Watson and Cathy Proudlove

Dr Sheila Watson and Cathy Proudlove will talk about their research into uncovering the story of the figures outside the building in Tombland which is known as the Samson and Hercules. Familiar characters to everyone who lives in or regularly visits Norwich, they have played a part in the city’s history for more than 350 years. However, their origins, purpose and significance over the years are shrouded in mystery. The original figures were removed from the site in 1993 and replaced with replicas.

Conservation work on the figures and further research have thrown light on some aspects of these characters but have also raised more questions about them. A research project led by Cathy Proudlove, assisted by Heather Guthrie and Dr Sheila Watson, is ongoing. While sharing their findings with the historians group, the speakers will ask if any historians, archivists, buildings experts and archaeologists among the group can help to unravel some of the existing puzzles.

Sheila Watson is Associate Professor of Museum Studies at the University of Leicester. Formerly she was Area Museums Manager for Great Yarmouth Museums and, with her team, was responsible for the Time and Tide Museum. Cathy Proudlove has an MA in conservation of easel paintings and was Head of Conservation for the Norfolk Museums Service for 20 years. She was responsible for the care of Samson & Hercules from the point when they were taken down until her retirement in 2009.

All Historian Group sessions start at 10:15am for tea, & coffee (£1 in the honesty box) and the talk will start at 10:30am. There will be an opportunity for further refreshments and a chat afterwards.

Free to attend but PLEASE BOOK to ensure a place.

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A Trip Out: Kirstead Hall

  • Tue 21 May 2019
  • Open to all
  • Kirstead, Norwich, NR15 1ER
  • 2:30 pm
  • £23.00 non-members / £20.00 members

Kirstead Hall is a fine Grade 1 listed Elizabethan Manor house begun in 1570. The gardens contain an important Grade 2* octagonal dovecote and next to the house stand two imposing Grade 1 listed Tudor barns. The east end room was used by Edward Seago (1910-74) as his first studio and the honeysuckle over the porch was there in his time. This is essentially a family house occupied by three generations exuding warmth and hospitality.

The tour, conducted by the owners will take about 2 hours, and covers the house, dovecote and antique furniture restoration studio, and includes tea/coffee, biscuits and cakes.

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A Trip Out: Aylsham

  • Sat 15 Jun 2019
  • Open to all
  • Meet and park at the Bure Valley Railway, Norwich Road, Aylsham, NR11 6BW
  • 2:00 pm
  • £13.00 non-members / £10.00 members

Take a guided walk through the centuries of Aylsham’s history. Starting from the relatively modern Bure Valley Railway, we’ll go along part of the original main road from Norwich to Cromer with its 17th, 18th and 19th century buildings, to the Market Place, through the churchyard, past the fourteenth century parish church, to the Heritage Centre for cake and a cuppa. Looking at some of the buildings en route will help unfold the story of the town, founded around 500 AD, that continues as a thriving market town in the 21st century.

Includes tea and cake.

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June Historians Talk

  • Thu 20 Jun 2019
  • Open to all
  • Vernon Castle Room, The Heritage Centre, Millennium Library, The Forum
  • 10:30 am
  • Free (non-members) / Free (members)

The story behind The Seventeenth Child: an oral history of a Norwich childhood 1914-34.

Speaker: Carole Blackwell

All Historian Group sessions start at 10:15am for tea, & coffee (£1 in the honesty box) and the talk will start at 10:30am. There will be an opportunity for further refreshments and a chat afterwards.

Free to attend but PLEASE BOOK to ensure a place.

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Cathedral Cities in Peril: the importance of place

  • Mon 24 Jun 2019
  • Open to all
  • Auditorium, the Forum, Millennium Plain
  • 6:00 am
  • Free (non-members) / Free (members)

Renowned speakers explore the unique issues affecting Cathedral Cities.

Spencer de Grey, Head of Design at Foster and Partners and lead author of the Cathedral Cities in Peril report.

Dr Steve Millington, Institute of Place Management and senior lecturer in Human Geography at Manchester Metropolitan University.

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Walking Tour: Beating the Bounds in Georgian Norwich

  • Tue 9 Jul 2019
  • Open to all
  • Meet on Millennium Plain outside the Forum
  • 5:30 pm
  • £10.00 non-members / £7.00 members

The practice of “beating the bounds” was kept up through the 18th and 19th centuries, a joyful procession with free food and drink thrown in. Dedicated researcher, David Berwick, will lead us on a tour of parish boundaries (sadly no free food or drink) giving an insight into Georgian Norwich.

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Visit to the Marble Hall

  • Tue 6 Aug 2019
  • Open to all
  • Meet in the Foyer, Aviva, 8 Surrey Street, Norwich, NR1 3NX
  • 4:00 pm
  • £10.00 non-members / £7.00 members

Built by George Skipper, beginning in 1900. The interior is a sumptuous homage to the English Renaissance fashioned from 15 kinds of marble which were destined for Westminster Cathedral. The cost proved too much for the Cathedral authorities, but Skipper persuaded Norwich Union to buy the entire consignment and he used it to stunning effect

Booking opens 6 May 2019


Walking Tour: Exploring Colegate and Norwich Over the Water

  • Wed 21 Aug 2019
  • Open to all
  • Meet at the foot of St. John Maddermarket churchyard
  • 10:00 am
  • £10.00 non-members / £7.00 members

Jan King will take us on a voyage of exploration around the area known traditionally as “Over the Water”, taking in several buildings that have been saved by the Norwich Preservation Trust, finishing at Fye Bridge.

Booking opens 20 May 2019

Walking Tour: "All around All Saints": a triangular tour around All Saints Green, Surrey Street and Ber Street

  • Tue 3 Sep 2019
  • Open to all
  • Meet at seat outside All Saint's Church, or inside if raining
  • 10:00 am
  • £10.00 non-members / £7.00 members

The tour will be lead by Jonathan Hooton

Booking opens 3 June 2019