The village sign of Woolpit in Suffolk hints towards one of the strangest tales to be told in the East. In the twelfth century two green children were discovered standing by one of the wolf pits the village was named for. The brother and sister spoke no English and initially would only eat raw broad beans.
Eventually they acclimatised to their surroundings, losing their green hue and expanding their diet, however the boy died shortly after the children were baptised. The girl grew-up and learned to speak English, allowing her to explain she’d come from St Martin’s Land, an underground world populated by green people. Rather prosaically, the tale ends with her marrying a man from Kings Lynn and living out her days in normality.
To read more about the tale of the green children, and other spooky tales, take a look here.
To see the spooky side of the county firsthand, plan a trip with Visit Suffolk.
Southwold Summer Theatre has been a tradition in the Suffolk seaside town for years. Between July and September the venue is host to five or six plays, ranging from broad farce to psychological thrillers.
It’s a tradition that delights locals and tourists alike, who return year after year to this small theatre just a short walk from the sea.
Find out what’s showing this year on their website.
In Guinea Pigs on Trial, Becca and Louise ask the questions, is guinea-pigging a good cure for an empty bank account? And what happens when profit takes priority in the creation of medicine?
Sh!t Theatre’s Guinea Pigs on Trial is an hour-long investigation into the pharmaceutical industry, which, frankly, most theatre audiences don’t know much about. It stems from the pair noticing that Job Centres were advertising medical trials alongside (or instead of) employment. So, of course, they enrolled.
The show picked up a series of glowing reviews at Edinburgh this year, and was part of Norwich Arts Centre’s [Live] Art Club – it’s Pay What You Can, allowing people to step outside their comfort zone and see new cutting-edge work.
By the late 1300s, English constructional and decorative carpentry had attained a level of sophistication which was unrivalled in Europe, and angel roofs are one of the most impressive and complex examples of this skill and the hammerbeam roof is another. These two structures are rarely combined, apart from in the East, where it is relatively common, with 59% of Britain’s angel roofs found in Norfolk and Suffolk.
Angel roofs are found in a range of structural patterns, but whatever the structural form, they are all, by definition, adorned with carved images of angels. Some are 8ft tall, others are half-body figures or low-relief carvings. Some roofs have a handful of angels, others scores, and a few have hundreds.
This angel, a hammer beam roof angel at St Mary’s in Bury St Edmunds, dates from c. 1445. The figure is an archangel, bearing a sceptre and wearing a diadem, and was (like the rest of the roof) paid for by wealthy cloth merchant John Baret.
Norfolk-based Michael Rimmer has spent the last five years documenting the angel roofs of East Anglia, and you can explore the collection in his book The Angel Roofs of East Anglia: Unseen Masterpieces of the Middle Ages.
Let’s take a look at another part of the Lynn Lumiere, which lit up King’s Lynn town centre throughout all of 2015, Night Sailor.
In celebration of King’s Lynn port, Julia Dantonnet used light and projection to create Night Sailor which highlighted one of King’s Lynn’s most iconic landmarks, the Custom House. Composed with archive images, geographical and stellar maps, Night Sailors drew on King’s Lynn’s role as a cradle of development for deep-sea navigation in the Middle Ages.
You can see a full video of Night Sailors here, and revisit another part of the Lynn Lumiere which we’ve also examined in Culture365, The Round of Clocks.
Is it possible to fit the entire BBC Symphony Orchestra in a phonebox?
The obvious answer would be no, but Aldeburgh Music have managed it. At the 2015 Aldeburgh Festival, audiences could step inside a traditional red phonebox, put on a virtual reality headset, and be transported inside a packed Snape Maltings Concert Hall for a special performance of Frank Bridge’s The Sea.
The headset gave the audience a 360 degree view of the concert hall, offering the chance to see the meticulous work of the orchestra up close, with a camera positioned three feet above conductor Martyn Brabbins’ head.
On 25th November 2015, Norwich Puppet Theatre hosted a very special fundraising event. The 35th Anniversary Celebrity Puppet Auction saw handmade puppets from a selection of artists, actors and writers auctioned to raise vital funds for the Puppet Theatre.
Puppets by former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen, actress Maureen Lipman and artist Maggi Hambling were all up for auction, with guests enjoying live music between the lots.
With Remembrance Day fresh in our minds, we look back to November 2015, when two new displays in Norwich uncovered the fascinating story of one man’s experience of the First World War and the important legacy he left the city.
One of the exhibitions, entitled Norwich and the First World War: Soldiers and Workers, Duty and Philanthropy opened at the Museum of Norwich at the Bridewell. At the same time, new permanent displays in the Royal Norfolk Regimental Museum at Norwich Castle brought the world of the trenches to life through the sketches and letters of a serving officer.
Both the exhibition and new displays were inspired by the life and legacy of local architect and soldier, Cecil Upcher. They formed part of a major First World War centenary programme by Norfolk Museums Service, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund.
A centuries-old staple for people living along the coast, in recent years its made its way onto the menus of London’s most exclusive restaurants as the capital’s bright and beautiful discover its subtle charms.
Samphire’s versatile too – try it on its own, steamed with a generous helping of butter, or as a complement to a main meal; it’s especially good with crab, salmon, or mussels.
Fancy harvesting your own samphire? Take a trip to the North Norfolk coast, one of the prime spots to discover it.
James Hollier and Ché Ballard have been fellow photographers since studying together at what is now the College of West Anglia – when hours were spent in the darkroom processing images from film in a magical alchemical process.
James gained inspiration for his black and white landscape photographs from his tutor, the late John Hansell and America photographer Ansell Adams, while Che is an observer of moments and emotions, whether it be at a gig, ringside at an MMA knockout or capturing closely observed insects.
In 2015, visitors to the Kings Lynn Arts Centre were able to catch a retrospective of their work at Kings Lynn Arts Centre. To find out what’s on year-round, visit Kings Lynn Arts Centre.
If you’re interested in exploring Kings Lynn and the surrounding area plan a trip with Visit West Norfolk.