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Lynn's guildhall must continue as an arts venue, Lynn News letters

By Lynn News Reporter

I have been involved with St George’s Guildhall over many years in connection with Lynn Festival as this was very much its home several years ago and still serves as its headquarters. Just after the last war there was an eagerness to rebuild and the guildhall nearly became one of those buildings for demolition and to become a new garage.

King's Lynn Arts Centre - St George's Guildhall (6468321)
King's Lynn Arts Centre - St George's Guildhall (6468321)

Firstly, thanks are due to Alexander Penrose who saved the building from the fate of demolition. And, secondly, to Lady Fermoy who saw the potential of the building and promoted its use to bring classical music and much more to the old borough in those early days.

A Festival of arts is about to celebrate its 69th year and we are looking forward to celebrating the 70th.

Now we are in great discussions about what might be the future for the building for which a trust fund has been established. The town and borough should be proud that it has not one, but two medieval guildhalls. Some years ago when I was involved in conducting historic tours in connection with the Festival, the tour included both guildhalls and I made positive reference to the fact that we had two medieval examples.

Visitors during those visits made the comparison between the two saying the Trinity Guildhall didn’t look like a medieval building with its barrel roof installed by the Victorians. Later the council managed to convince English Heritage that the Victorian internal roof should be removed and now have the building restored to its original medieval roof. Now to join St George’s looking like a medieval building.

We must make every effort to retain St George’s Guildhall to continue its life as a theatre and a venue for local arts and the like kind. More power ladies and gentlemen to your elbows.

Bryan Howling

Terrington St Clement

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