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King's Lynn and West Norfolk History Week tells story of past

The King’s Lynn and West Norfolk History Festival is to be held over the half-term holiday (October 22-November 1).

A mixture of digital and physical events celebrating the remarkable history of the area. There will be crafts, talks, walks, seminars and more.

Elizabeth Nockolds, deputy leader and cabinet member for culture, heritage and health at West Norfolk Council, said: “Some events are virtual and can be enjoyed at home.

King's Lynn and the River Great Ouse seen from the West Lynn ferry steps...Looking through to King Staithe Square, Bank House and King's Lynn Minster
King's Lynn and the River Great Ouse seen from the West Lynn ferry steps...Looking through to King Staithe Square, Bank House and King's Lynn Minster

“Others involve a trip out, please look online as most of these need to be pre-booked and have limited numbers to adhere to social distancing and government guidelines. People can enjoy the festival either at home or in Covid-secure environments at venues across King’s Lynn.”

True’s Yard Fisherfolk Museum, Stories of Lynn, St Nicholas’ Chapel, Lynn Museum, King’s Lynn Minster, GroundWork Gallery and Historic England Heritage Schools are involved.

True’s Yard will be offering a variety of activities all themed around Weird History. Launching on October 22 will be an exhibition celebrating the Weird History of the King’s Lynn-Witch Hunters, Miracles and Mayhem.

True's Yard Fisherfolk Museum
True's Yard Fisherfolk Museum

October 22, at 11am on Facebook Live and later on YouTube– Sausage Saints, Wizards and Witches by curator Lindsey Bavin. Lindsey will be doing a Q&A on Zoom on October 23, at noon, email info@truesyard.co.uk for details.

On October 24, there is Weird Medicine. One-hour craft sessions will be limited and pre-booking will be required – the activity sessions are free for museum admission fee-paying children (£1.50) Make a mouse necklace and learn about medieval medicine from our in-house plague doctor!

Ghost Tours will also be available email info@truesyard.co.uk for details.

At Stories of Lynn activities are around Nelson, in celebration of Trafalgar Day (October 21). Sessions will be limited and pre-booking will be required – the activity sessions are free for museum admission fee paying children (£1.95).

Stories of Lynn
Stories of Lynn

The themes are: Monday, October 26 – maps; Tuesday, October27 – Nelson’s portrait; Wednesday, October 28 – sailor hats; Thursday, October 29 – ships at sea; Friday, October 30 – ship biscuit. To book call 01553 774297.

At King’s Lynn Borough Archives there will be an Archive Ambulation following the early cinema history of Lynn. A narrated video will be available on the King’s Lynn and West Norfolk History Festival YouTube page.

Through building control plans and photographs you learn about eight of the early cinemas that were designed and built between 1911 and 1938 at five locations through the town. An accompanying blog is available on https://norfolkrecordofficeblog.org/.

King’s Lynn Museum will be offering a series of digital events linked to artist Laura Wilson’s new work, Deepening, Art work and the Bronze Age.

On Saturday, October 24, at 7pm, Deepening Art Work and Artist Talk. The event is free but tickets for this Zoom event to be booked via Art Tickets https://norfolk-museums.arttickets.org.uk/lynn-museum

Artist Laura Wilson, in conversation with archaeologist Maisie Taylor, discusses her newly-commissioned film Deepening (2020) inspired by her exploration of the renowned Bronze Age site at Must Farm near Peterborough with archaeologist Maisie Taylor. Join us for a special screening of the film and conversation, followed by a live Q&A with the artist.

Laura Wilson was commissioned by Norwich Castle Museum &and Art Gallery as part of New Geographies, a three-year project funded by the National Lottery through Arts Council England Ambition for Excellence.

On Tuesday, October 27, at 4pm, there is Seahenge then and now: the changing landscape of Holme-next-the-Sea Virtual Tour. Join the staff at Lynn Museum to explore the changing landscape around Seahenge.

Lynn Museum logo
Lynn Museum logo

They will first look at the marshland where the timber circle was built 4000 years ago. Archaeologists studying Seahenge have been able to uncover examples of the plants and animals of the marshland and some were used in the building of the monument.

They will then take a virtual visit to the Holme Dunes nature reserve where Seahenge was discovered in 1998 and look at the important habitats its coastal landscape provides. The evening will consist of a video screening and a Q&A session afterwards.

On Wednesday, October 28, at 2.20pm is The Story of Seahenge, an illustrated talk by Oliver Bone, curator to explain the constructions and discovery of Seahenge.

Friday, October 30, at 4pm is an Earthworks Art Session with artist Liz Ballad in a practical session to produce your own work in response to Laura Wilson’s Deepening. A list of required materials will be sent in advance (these materials are likely to be found in the home). Suitable for 13 years and older.

Sunday, November 1, at 2.30pm, is a Bronze Age Axe Casting Demonstration and Q&A.

Join James Dilley, an archaeologist and craftsman who specialises in prehistoric technologies to discover how some of the earliest metal tools were produced in prehistory.

James will demonstrate preparing the mould, working the leather bellows on the charcoal-fuelled furnace to melt copper and tin and then producing a replica early bronze age axe head.

All the events will be run via Zoom Webinar and advance booking is essential. Book your tickets here https://norfolk-museums.arttickets.org.uk/lynn-museum

At Historic England Heritage Schools, Kate Argyle will be running two digital sessions. The first on the King’s Lynn Scroll an exciting project about Lynn’s history brought to life by artist Nicola Murray Woods.

It was created in partnership of the Heritage Learning Forum and Heritage Education Network.

The other digital session is on How to Discover Your Local Heritage.

These will be available on the King’s Lynn and West Norfolk History Festival YouTube page.

King’s Lynn Minster will be opening its doors to visitors both in real life and virtually. Visitors will be able to enjoy a self-guided trail around the outside, spotting gargoyles and looking for signs of the church’s history.

A trail sheet will be published on its social media on Friday, October 23.

On Wednesday,10am-5pm and Saturday, 10am-2pm, families and art lovers are invited inside the Minster to learn about the Green Man.

The Green Man is a sculpture commonly found in churches and he takes fantastical shapes and forms.

These pre-booked family sessions will include a craft pack to allow visitors to create their own Green Man to take home.

Although the Minster has been closed to visitors, it has been able to capture hidden areas of the church on film. They will be included in a virtual tour of the Minster and its rich history on Thursday, October 29, at 6pm, on Zoom.

King's Lynn Minster
King's Lynn Minster

All sign-up links and information will be published on the Minster Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/KingsLynnMinster/ and on Twitter @KingsLynnMinstr.

You can also find out more and sign up for the activities by emailing activities@stmargaretskingslynn.org.uk or calling the Minster office on 01553 772858.

St Nicholas’ Chapel is offering online activities for both adults and children: Adults/all ages: Discover 800 years of history through our virtual tour of St Nicholas Chapel. Children: Bizarre Beasts - create your own mischievous mask or cheeky creature.

GroundWork Gallery has published a self-guiding #doorstepenvironment environmental trail for Lynn. It is full of local features to find and identify, some historic, some natural, some industrial.

On one side there is a simple quiz-trail to follow and on the other a blank template so you can do your own version.

It is suitable for those from eight upwards. Pick up a free copy from the gallery during opening hours, Wednesday to Saturday 11-4.

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