During the festival, there will be a rare chance to see inside the incomparable Elizabethan tower at Clifton House. The owners of this historic merchant’s house are opening the tower especially for the festival. A small fee is payable.
Hanse Walks will explore the fascinating history of King’s Lynn’s links with the Hanseatic ports. The walks will be led by Kings’ Lynn Town Guides, and will be an hour-long tour of the town’s key Hanseatic buildings. The walks are free to attend but must be pre-booked through the Tourist Information Centre. Both walks take place on Saturday 20 May.
The History and Archaeology Symposium comprises a lecture and a book launch at Marriott’s Warehouse. The Lecture by Robert Kenny shines a light on medieval ships and trade and in particular tells the fascinating story of the Newport ship. Tickets are £3 and must be booked from True’s Yard Fisherfolk Museum. After the lecture Cllr Nick Daubney will be launching a new book ‘Six Essays in Hanseatic History’. The book, published by Poppyland, is based on talks given by historians at previous Hanse Festivals.
Hanse Musik, an hour-long concert celebrating King’s Lynn’s Hanseatic, nautical and fishing heritage, takes place in All Saints Church at 5pm on 20 May.
On Saturday at 5pm, the focus of the festival moves to King’s Staithe Square, where an evening of live music begins. A line-up of international acts will perform until 10.00pm including Georgia Shackleton Trio, Victor Menace and Trad.Attack.
On the second day of the festival, Sunday 21 May the programme of events is even more extensive. There will be fun activities for children at the town hall. Children can make a cardboard Hanse ship (cog) with local Artist Emma Jarvis. Meet a medieval trader’s wife, and find out what was being traded from where, in the time of the Hanse. They will also be able to make a medieval circle braid to take home.
The ever-popular medieval dancing in the Stone Hall at the town hall will return – delighting audiences and getting everyone tapping their toes.
Live music will take place on Sunday in King’s Staithe Square from 1pm to 6pm. Local band the Fried Pirates will be first up, followed by Remi Harris Trio, Ruth Theodore and Band and Flats and Sharps.
Cllr Nick Daubney, English Commissioner for the Hanseatic League and borough council cabinet member, said: “Since we began holding a Hanse Festival, it has drawn attention to King’s Lynn’s rich Hanseatic heritage, and celebrated our links with the modern league. Historically the waterfront has been crucial to Lynn’s trade and the festival gets people into the area, to reflect on its past and think about its future. I hope this year, that many of our colleagues and acquaintances from the Hanse, who live here, will come and join the celebrations with us. I am delighted that we have been able to use our strong Hanseatic links to build effective business networks.”
Honorary Alderman and Local Historian Dr Paul Richards said: “The Hanse Festival celebrates Lynn’s maritime heritage and how it is alive today inspiring us to make the most of our exceptional port town for the future.”
Saturday May 20 – Timetable of events
11:00 to 15:00 Clifton Tower 17 Queen Street
From noon Skiff display and try rows King’s Staithe Square
12.00 and 20.00 tbc Medieval Market King’s Staithe Square
11:00 and 14:00 Hanse Walks & Talks Custom House & Marriott’s Warehouse
from noon Newport Ship King Staithe Square
15:00 to 22:00 BBQ & drinks King Staithe Square
15:00 to 22:00 Coffee & Cake King’s Staithe Square
17:00 to 18:00 Hanse Musik concert All Saints Church
18:00 to 22:30 Live music King’s Staithe Square
22.00 Fireworks King’s Staithe Square
Sunday May 21 – Timetable of events
10:00 to 16:00 Fun activities for children Stone Hall – King’s Lynn Town Hall
11:00 to 18:00 Medieval market King Staithe Square
11:00 to 15:00 Medieval dancing Stone Hall – King’s Lynn Town Hall
12:00 to 18:00 Live music King’s Staithe Square
14:00 to 16:00 Clifton Tower 17 Queen Street
from noon Newport Ship Exhibition King Staithe Square
12:00 to 18:00 BBQ & drinks King Staithe Square
10:30 to 13:00 & 13:00 – 16:00 Coffee & cake King’s Staithe Square
Road closure details
South Quay will be closed from 3pm until midnight on Saturday 20 May and from 11am until 7pm on Sunday 21 May.