Archive for the ‘History’ Category
A weekend of free talks, stalls and exhibitions will focus on the history of King’s Lynn, it’s Port and it’s Railways. The event takes place at Marriotts Warehouse, on the quayside, from Friday 25 April till Sunday 27 April.
Friday, 25 April
Memories of industrial archaeology: Lynn, the Port and Railways in the late 1980s. Dr. Clive J. Bond, Chairperson, West Norfolk and King’s Lynn Archaeological Society
Wine reception & Railway Memorabilia provided by the B17 Locomotive Trust & viewing of Trevor Nunn’s ‘East Lynn to Nunstanton’ model
Saturday, 26 April
Welcome and Introduction Dr. Paul Richards, Chairperson, Marriott’s Warehouse Trust.
Railways, Rivers and Ports: The Wash and Beyond, 1750-2014. Tony Kirby
The Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway and its interests in the town and Port of Lynn Circle, John Hobden,President M&GNR
Rail versus River: how this conflict helped shape transport in Wisbech in the 19th Century – Roger Powell
Victorian King’s Lynn and the coming of the Railways – Dr. Paul Richards
14:45-15:15 Coffee/Tea & Raffle
Replacing an Icon – Initial manufacture of a Class B17 Express Passenger Locomotive Brian Hall, Chairperson, B17 Locomotive Trust
King’s Lynn Station: a Heritage-led Regeneration Project – Larry Heyman, First Capital Connect
Discussion and Close Dr. Clive J. Bond and Dr. Paul Richards
Sunday, 27 April
Associated stalls and exhibitions continue into Sunday, 27 April,
● Trevor Nunn’s ‘East Lynn to Nunstanton’ model
● Stalls: B17 Locomotive Trust, with railway memorabilia;
● First Capital Connect;
● M&GNR Circle;
● Railway Touring Company;
● Fen Line Users Association
All events take place on the top floor of Marriots Warehouse, and are free.
We were one of the few visitors to an art exhibition by local artist Simon Warner on Friday, and thought it a real shame that people were missing out on this colourful and quirky collection of paintings and drawings.
We had some trouble finding the exhibition at Hanse House, due to poor signage, but finally found it hidden away on the 1st floor.
The pictures depicting London architecture, life drawing and cartoons were really impressive. Some of the cartoon-style paintings depict life in King’s Lynn and Downham Market, which we found really interesting.
We would recommend anyone to visit the free exhibition, which is showing until Wednesday 30 April at the historic Hanse House on the South Quay in King’s Lynn.
While you are there, it’s also well worth visiting the indoor market and tea room. Delicious food is also available at The Rathskeller in the same building.
On Wednesday evening King’s Lynn Town Guides presented the annual Diana Bullock Memorial Lecture at the Town Hall – King’s Lynn at War, From Zeppelins to Conkers.
Guest speaker Paul Coleman described how the first Zeppelin raid on Britain took place over East Anglia on the night of 19th January, 1915.
The L4 Zeppelin, under the command of Kapitanleutnant Count Magnus von Platen-Hallermund, flew along the Norfolk coast dropping bombs along the way at Sheringham, Brancaster, Heacham, Snettisham, Dersingham, Grimston and finally King’s Lynn.
The first bomb to land on Lynn fell in a field at the rear of Tennyson Avenue.
The next fell on allotments but the next one caused fatalities when it hit houses on Bentinck Road killing Percy Goate aged 14 and Alice Gazely aged 26. Both are reported to have died from shock.
L4 dropped another bomb on some terraced houses where it made a large hole and wrecked a blacksmiths but caused no fatalities. The fifth bomb to fall on King’s Lynn fell in a garden by the docks failing to explode the sixth destroyed an engine at Alexandra Dock.
The last two bombs fell at and around Cresswell Street where the family at No 63 had a lucky escape when an incendiary hit the house causing a fire which was extinguished by neighbours. This final bomb was placed in water by the police and taken into their care. In total the raid on King’s Lynn led to two fatalities and thirteen injured.
Paul Coleman went on to tell the amusing story of how Zeppelins flying over clouds would dangle a member of the crew on a rope, who would then use a telephone to let them know when to drop the bombs!
He also told the story of how school children and boy scouts from across the region collected tons of conkers to aid the war effort. Conkers contain acetone, a vital ingredient used in the production of cordite, a propellant in small arms ammunition and artillery.
By the dockside in King’s Lynn there was a factory producing as much as 90,000 gallons of acetone a year from maize and horse-chestnuts (conkers).
Voted as one of East Anglia’s favourite masterpieces, the King John Cup will return to the Town Hall this week, where it will once again be on show alongside King’s Lynn’s regalia and civic treasures.
The 15-inch silver gilt cup recently played a starring role in the Masterpieces: Art and East Anglia exhibition that attracted over 40,000 visitors at the Sainsbury Centre for the Visual Arts.
Believed to date to around 1340 and considered to be one of the most important secular standing cups of the period, the cup was voted second favourite of the 277 items on display by exhibition visitors, only being surpassed by John Atkinson Grimshaw’s painting, Silver Moonlight.
Now local people will have another opportunity to enjoy one of King’s Lynn’s most prized possessions as the King John Cup returns to its regular home at King’s Lynn Town Hall.
The cup is exquisitely decorated and rewards close inspection. 21 enamelled panels, showing hunting scenes, circle the delicate bowl of this stately piece. Hounds chase hares and a fox in the imagery that winds around the intricate, heavily decorated gilt foot.
The cup has a long association with King’s Lynn, being first mentioned in the Hall book of King’s Lynn in 1548, where it is listed as the first item in a list of plate delivered to the mayor.
People can see the King John Cup and explore other civic treasures, including the King John sword and King John charter at the Regalia Rooms, King’s Lynn Town Hall from Thursday 20 March. Whilst at the town hall, it’s worth visiting the Tales of the Old Gaol House exhibitions, where people can find out more about the town’s history – be prepared for tales of wealth, murder and witchcraft! The Regalia Rooms and Tales of the Old Gaol House are open Wednesday – Saturday, 10am – 4pm. It is free to view the regalia collection, but there is a small charge to enter the Tales of the Old Gaol House museum.
These are exciting times for the town hall. The borough council is awaiting the outcome of a bid for funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund. If the bid is successful, it could enable a £2.6 million enhancement project to begin. The aim of the ambitious project is to open up the magnificent town hall complex to a wider audience.
For more information about the King’s Lynn Town Hall please visit: www.kingslynntownhall.com
The latest book by local historian Bob Booth is due to hit local book stores soon.
King’s Lynn – an Illustrated Street Directory 1933 lists details of the streets and yards and principal inhabitants of the town 80 years ago, along with over 100 fascinating local pictures and adverts of the 1930s.
The book launch will take place on Saturday 26th October 2013 at Waterstones in Norfolk Street.
Bob will be signing copies between 11 am an 12.30 pm. Further details are available by phoning 01553 660111.
You can find out more about Bob and his books on his website at trickysampublishing.co.uk
People are being encouraged to take part in an online poll to select items from the King’s Lynn Town Hall’s collections that they feel encapsulate King’s Lynn and its rich history.
The Borough Council of King’s Lynn & West Norfolk, which owns the building, is currently in the process of seeking funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund to make the building and its collections more accessible to the public. Part of the project would involve the creation of a new trail, highlighting items from the extensive collection that are fundamental to the town’s past or have formed its distinctive character. The results of the online poll will be used to help curators develop this special trail.
Cllr Elizabeth Nockolds, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said, “The town hall is home to a wealth of treasures including the magnificent King John Cup, an excellent fine art collection, the borough archive, containing documents of international significance charting our Hanse heritage and dating back to the 1200s, and items which provide a window onto the social history of the town. Spanning such a breadth of history means there is much to explore here and we are keen to get local people’s opinions about what they feel are the items that really give an insight into our special town. The online poll is very easy to use, so I hope people will get involved.
“We know what a tremendous asset the town hall is for King’s Lynn. By improving access and making more of the collections, we hope to develop it as a tourist attraction – contributing to the local economy and encouraging people to visit other attractions in the town.”
As well as being home to exciting collections, the town hall building itself has been at the centre of town life for over 800 years and includes the Trinity Guildhall, dating back to the early 1400s and the magnificent Assembly Room of the 1700s. There is also an 18th-century Gaol House and a well-preserved Victorian courtroom.
If successful, the Heritage Lottery Funding bid would enable major improvements to the borough archives, a new permanent exhibition space and the creation of links to other heritage attractions in the town as well as the creation of the new trail.
‘The Lynn Vote’ will be open until 5pm on Sunday 27 October. After this deadline, one lucky participant will be chosen at random to receive a £50 voucher kindly donated by Market Bistro in King’s Lynn.
Take part in the online poll.
The latest in a series of miniature collectables depicting various local buildings will be available from Saturday 5 October.
Caithness Crystal have commissioned Lilliput Lane to produce this exclusive piece, the Greenland Fisheries, which will only be for sale via Caithness Crystal and will become part of the King’s Lynn and surrounding area collection, that already features, The Southgates, The Red Mount, Customs House, Greyfriars Tower, the Library, the Flying Scotsman at King’s Lynn Station, St Mary Magdalene Church at Sandringham and last years building the Wolferton Signal box.
Greenland Fisheries was built in 1605 by John Atkin, rope merchant and four times Mayor of Lynn. In the 18th century, the building became known as The Greenland Fishery, and was used by Lynn’s whaling fleet sailors.
The building is Grade II listed and is thought to be one of the last timber framed buildings to have been erected in King’s Lynn. The interior features an important series of Jacobean wall-paintings.
The Greenland Fisheries will be launched at a special Lilliput Lane event on Saturday 5th October at the Caithness Crystal Visitor Centre on the Hardwick Industrial Estate. Visitors to the event will be able to meet the artist Rozanne Robb between 10 – 2pm and have their Greenland Fisheries signed.
Every year Heritage Open Day celebrates the fantastic architecture and culture of King’s Lynn by offering free access to places that are usually closed to the public or normally charge for admission.
It’s a once-a-year chance to discover the hidden architectural treasures of Lynn that bring our local history and culture to life.
On a national level, Heritage Open Days are organised by a huge network of people who share a passion for places, history and culture. Locally, over 1,400 organisations and some 40,000 volunteers organise thousands of site openings and events, jointly attracting over 1 million visitors. They make Heritage Open Days England’s biggest voluntary cultural event.
This year the event takes place locally on Sunday 15th September, from 10 am – 4 pm.
To view the full 2013 brochure CLICK HERE
RAF Marham exercised its Freedom of the Borough on Wednesday morning by parading on the Tuesday Market Place in King’s Lynn with music provided by The Band of the Royal Air Force Regiment.
After the fly-past of a fighter plane from RAF Marham, the the Mayor Cllr Elizabeth Watson took the salute and inspected the parade, followed by speeches from the Mayor and Station Commander, Group Captain David Cooper ADC MA BEng.
The Mayor Cllr Elizabeth Watson said: “This momentous event was one of the highlights of my mayoral year, and gave me the opportunity to express my personal gratitude and that of the Borough for the contributions they all make in ensuring our nation’s continuing peace and security.”
An exciting and unique mobile cinema will be coming to Lynn to offer free screenings of local archive films from the last century aboard the 22 seater digital cinema.
The ‘Archive Alive’ mobile cinema tour will be visiting the Vancouver Quarter shopping area on Monday 10 June from 10.30am – 1pm. It will then visit the Green at Hunstanton from 3.30pm – 6.30pm.
Norwich’s Heritage Economic and Regeneration Trust (HEART) will be taking archive film on the road courtesy of a 1960s vintage mobile cinema to bring the archive alive to people throughout Essex, Cambridgeshire, Suffolk and Norfolk.
The Archive Alive tour will kick off on Sunday 2 June in Clacton-on-sea, Essex and will complete its journey in Hunstanton, Norfolk on Monday 10 June. The complete itinerary is as follows:
Sunday 2 June – CLACTON (9.30am – 12.30pm Town Square), COLCHESTER (3pm – 6pm Castle Park)
Monday 3 – HARLOW (10am – midday Market Place), HAVERHILL (3.30pm – 6.30pm Market Square)
Tuesday 4 – ELY (10am – 1pm The Maltings), CAMBRIDGE (3.30pm – 7pm Parker’s Piece)
Wednesday 5 – RAF LAKENHEATH (for airbase personnel only)
Thursday 6 – DISS (10am – 12.30pm Mere’s Mouth), BURY ST EDMUNDS (3pm – 6pm Cornhill)
Friday 7 – IPSWICH (10am – 12.30pm Lloyds Avenue), ALDEBURGH (3.30pm – 6.30pm Moot Hall)
Saturday 8 – LOWESTOFT (10am – 12.30 Royal Green), NORWICH (3.30pm – 7.30pm The Forum)
Sunday 9 – GRESSENHALL (10am – 1pm Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse), CROMER (4pm – 7pm The Pier)
Monday 10 – KING’S LYNN (10.30am – 1pm Vancouver Quarter shopping area), HUNSTANTON (3.30pm – 6.30pm The Green)
The archive film footage has been researched and selected for digitisation by HEART working closely with the UEA’s East Anglian Film Archive.
One of the aims of the Archive Alive tour is to promote the website www.archivealive.org which showcases hundreds of digitised archive films from across East Anglia. It also features a selection of archive films from Upper Normandy with the opportunity to compare and contrast our social history on both sides of the channel.
Jane Jarvis, Digital Heritage’s Project Manager said: “The ‘Archive Alive’ tour is a great way to help spread the word about what a fantastic resource archive film is. With more of these unique images now available online they can be viewed to enhance our learning and understanding of our region and the way we used to live.
“We are very much looking forward to setting off on the vintage mobile cinema to promote these great films and our new website archivealive.org via such a unique and authentic platform. We hope lots of people, of all ages, will come aboard and enjoy bringing the archive alive.”
For further information on the tour itinerary, locations and timings you can visit www.archivealive.org
Digital Heritage Project
The Digital Heritage Project is currently working with EAFA to digitise hundreds of archive films from Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex and Cambridgeshire from as far back as 1896. With an aim of bringing the archive alive, the Digital Heritage Project is working with two major film archives from both sides of the channel, EAFA and Rouen based, Pôle Image Haute-Normandie.
In October 2012, the Digital Heritage Project launched its new website which showcases a vast and impressive collection of East Anglian and French films which are an important part of our social history and heritage. This project is made possible via EU funding from the Interreg IVA Channel Programme within the scope of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
King’s Lynn will be celebrating International Hanse Day on Saturday 25 May with a packed programme of events and activities to showcase the Hanseatic links.
Events will include:
• Maritime Trail Procession
• A Guided Walk
• Specialised Food Market
• Free Hanseatic Nibbles
• Beer Festival
• A Medieval Banquet
• A Concert for String Orchestras
• Music by the King’s Lynn Waites
There are 182 cities in 16 countries which make up the modern Hanse. Each year, all member cities are encouraged to celebrate their Hhanseatic heritage and their involvement in the modern Hanse network.
By the 13th century King’s Lynn was one of England’s foremost ports. The commercial opportunities and rewards offered by the town attracted merchants from the Baltic, Hamburg and Lubeck. Trading privileges with the Hanse were confirmed by 1310. Hanseatic ships travelled together in convoys across The Wash for safety, especially against pirates.
This year’s Hanse Day celebration centres on Hanseatic food and culture. The day will begin with a Hanseatic Guided Walk which starts from the Custom House at 11am.
To celebrate the opening of the new Maritime Trail a procession led by Cllr Nick Daubney, Leader of the Borough Council, will follow much of the trail around the town.
At Marriott’s Warehouse and Hanse House, food and East European treats will be available between 12.00 noon and 4pm. This will be accompanied by performances of Medieval, Tudor and Renaissance music by the King’s Lynn Waites.
The Bank House will be running a beer festival from 12 noon until 4.00pm, serving bottled beers from Hanse Countries, including beers from the Netherlands, Germany, Latvia and Russia as well as Russian vodka and German Schnapps, all accompanied by free Hanseatic nibbles.
The Market Bistro is organising a small market with their suppliers and will be providing samples of the restaurant’s in-house cured and smoked produce, which will take place on Saturday Market Place between 12 noon and 4pm.
A concert with music for string orchestras and solos by J.S. Bach, Greig, Telemann, Holst and Vaughan Williams will take place at All Saints Church, starting at 5pm.
Denver Mills, based within the Hanse House, is organising a medieval banquet in the Merchant’s Bar at 7pm. The event is ticket only. Tickets must be purchased in advance.
The Hanse flag will be flown from King’s Court, the Custom House, Clifton House and King’s Lynn Town Hall. Sail flags, bearing the Hanse logo will also be displayed at key event locations including the Bank House, Marriott’s Warehouse and the Saturday Market Place.
Borough Council Leader Cllr Nick Daubney, who is the English Commissioner for the League, said: “It is important that we celebrate our Hanseatic links and recognise the important role the former league played within the town. International Hanse Day is a real opportunity to draw attention to King’s Lynn’s rich history and heritage.”
To find out more about International Hanse Day in King’s Lynn, visit the King’s Lynn Tourist Information Centre in the Custom House or call 01553 763044.
A brand new, self-guided walking tour focusing on King’s Lynn’s maritime heritage will be launched on International Hanse Day, Saturday 25 May.
The Maritime Trail guides people through King’s Lynn’s exceptional historic built environment. By incorporating the stories of the merchants, shipbuilders, sailors, fishermen, press gangs, porters and pubs, which have played key roles in the town’s history, the trail helps to bring the past to life.
The way-marked trail, which starts at True’s Yard Fisherfolk Museum and ends at Marriott’s Warehouse, features 27 bronze pavement plaques. There are four different designs to look out for, representing the four wards through which the trail passes.
The tour in brief:
North End Ward - portrayed by a ship’s anchor – tours the historic home of King’s Lynn’s fishing community at True’s Yard, as well as taking in St Nicholas’ Chapel, Common Staithe Quay, and the impressive Tuesday Market Place.
Trinity Ward – represented by a Kogge or merchant’s ship – covers King’s Staithe Square, the Bank House and the impressive merchant’s mansion and tower – Clifton House. The area was a key place for merchants to conduct their business in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Chequer Ward – depicted by a compass – takes in the iconic Custom House and the magnificent buildings on King Street, behind which was a world of warehouses, breweries and merchants’ yards.
Stonegate Ward – signified by the image of a whale – takes in locations such as Nelson Street, Greenland Fishery, Hanse House and Marriott’s Warehouse, and reflects the oldest part of the town, from which King’s Lynn developed to become one of England’s major ports .
To celebrate the opening of the trail a procession led by Cllr Nick Daubney, Leader of the Borough Council, Deputy Borough Mayor, Cllr Barry Ayres and Dr Paul Richards, will follow much of the trail on Saturday 25 May at 11 am.
Cllr Nick Daubney, one of the driving forces behind the development of this trail, said: “We are proud of Lynn’s maritime heritage and this new trail will help visitors to, and residents of, the town to find out more about the way the town grew from its position as a premier sea port. They will be able to see some of the town’s magnificent buildings and understand where they fit in Lynn’s fascinating history. We are extremely grateful to Dr Paul Richards for his invaluable assistance in helping to create this trail.”
It is hoped that the trail will encourage even more visitors to explore the town, as well as being enjoyed by local people, and will help raise awareness of King’s Lynn’s historic role as an important port and centre for trade.
Maritime Trail guide booklets will be available from King’s Lynn Tourist Information Centre, True’s Yard Fisherfolk Museum and Marriott’s Warehouse at a cost of just 50 pence. The trail takes a minimum of around 1 ½ hours to complete, but can be considerably longer depending on the amount of time taken to explore the various locations along the trail.
Two structures, which have lain hidden beneath the Tuesday Market Place in King’s Lynn, would have provided protection to people during the Second World War.
Whilst they have been undisturbed for years, recent survey work in preparation for the refurbishment of the town’s historic square, has drawn attention once again to the oft-forgotten air raid shelters, which are just feet below the surface of the Tuesday Market Place.
Believed to have been there since 1940-41, the two shelters are constructed from steel reinforced concrete. Each shelter is around 8′ to 10′ deep and together would have accommodated around 350 to 400 people.
Cllr Elizabeth Nockolds, Cabinet Member for Health & Wellbeing, said: “We knew the shelters were under the Tuesday Market Place, but they haven’t been accessible for years. When we carried out the core sampling in readiness for the refurbishment work we are doing to the Tuesday Market Place, we took the opportunity to put a camera down the holes to take a couple of snap shots.
“The real surprise was how close the shelters were to the surface of the market place and the fact that they appear to be in such good condition.”
At present there is no money in the council’s budget and no plans to do any further work on the shelters. The priority is to complete the work on the Tuesday Market Place.
Once that has been finished, the shelters may be explored further to see whether they could be made accessible or brought back into some sort of use.
Cllr Elizabeth Nockolds added: “It’s always interesting when you uncover something like this. If anyone has any photos or stories about time they may have spent in the shelters during the war, or any information they may have about the shelters since then, it would really help bring this piece of Lynn’s history to life.”
We’ve had a lot of comments about this article on Twitter. Here’s a selection:
HANSE HOUSE @HanseHousekl
I’ve lived here a while now but never knew about those, great story!
PETINA BLANDFORD @tonypetina7haj
they should be turned into a living museum
Karen Goult @karengoult
Maybe they could eventually make them open to the public on Heritage Days?
Katie Sutton @katiesutton56
wow great pictures!
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