At the Heart of the City

Norwich, a Viking-Saxon foundation, has been a major trading centre at least since the reign of King Æthelstan (924-939).

Nch City2

The Guildhall, fronted by the permanent historic market: Photo 3rd May 2018

The marketplace we see today, with its former colourful canvas tilts now replaced in more durable materials, was moved to this site soon after 1066 to serve the newcomers from Normandy, Flanders, Brittany and France. Its predecessor had rooted itself in Tombland (the Empty Place) where the cathedral was soon to be built.

The Guildhall, England’s largest medieval civic building outside of London, was built in 1407, following the Charter that made Norwich self-governing in 1404. It remained the seat of city government until replaced by the City Hall in 1938. Even then it continued to serve as a courthouse, with holding cells, until the late 1970s. Behind it may be glimpsed a more modern trader: Tesco Metro.

#2018picoftheweek: City

About crispina kemp

Spinner of Asaric and Mythic tales
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12 Responses to At the Heart of the City

  1. Dale says:

    When I see pictures like this, with such history, I’m reminded once again of just how young Canada is!!
    Amazing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • crimsonprose says:

      I grew up in walking distance of this city. I’ve spent so much time here. I’ve a keen and lasting interest in its early history, and I love scouting out tiny remnants of its past. One time second only to London, it’s now a much overlooked and underrated city; Saved, I would say by its lack of powerful rivers, though it sits between two. The Industrial Revolution didn’t hit here until the advent of steam. Oh yay to the lack of rivers.! The city remains mostly unspoiled.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        That is so fantastic. I get all excited when I visit old Boucherville (my town) which is 350 years old… I would probably spend hours in your neck of the woods, exploring.
        Yay indeed to lack of rivers for the unspoiling of wonderful history.

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        Indeed. In fact the ‘major’ river that sweeps around the old Saxon/Viking city (the River Wensum) is noted for ite purity of water. While this is mostly due to its chalk bed, it also shows that the farms west of the city don’t go much on chemical farming.
        BTW: many of the photos that feature rivers on my blog are the said River Wensum.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        Fantastic! Would that more farms would go that route…
        Lovely…

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        Many (alas not all) of the farms around here are low-chemical or no chemical systems. Organic produce fetches high returns and ultimately are cheaper to produce. Animal stock too is more often seen grazing the fields, (or rooting in the case of pigs). There’s a lot of consumer pressure now on the chick-and-egg business to improve their methods, too. All this I see when walking the fields and the lanes.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dale says:

        I cannot wait for the world to turn around and make things right…
        I know, I probably won’t see it in my lifetime…

        Liked by 1 person

      • crimsonprose says:

        It’s beginning. There’s a thing about the ‘100 break’, in other words there’s a point when reached that suddenly escalates the whatever the action.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the colour against the building in the background. And what history! This is making me drool…

    Liked by 1 person

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