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History of Norwich

History of Norwich
  • council: Norwich City Council
  • population: 132,000
  • phone code: 01603
  • postcode area: NR1-NR16
  • county: Norfolk
  • twin Towns: Novi Sad, Serbia - Rouen, France

Built around it's 900 year old Norman Castle, described as the 'most ambitious secular building of its generation anywhere in Europe', historic Norwich is the capital of East Anglia and a thriving and dynamic regional centre.

Enjoying good - and improving - road and rail links with London, Cambridge and the Midlands, Norwich enjoys an excellent quality of life, boasts one of the country's top ten shopping centres and is home to a range of major international commercial companies in areas including financial services, research and the media. It also has two cathedrals and the largest number of medieval churches north of the Alps.

In a recent survey, Norwich was rated as the UK's ninth most significant shopping location. The city is host to a wide range of national multiple retailers, including Marks and Spencer, John Lewis, Next, BHS and Mothercare as well as a rich diversity of small and independent shops, including the family run and owned Jarrolds department store, catering for all tastes and needs. The retail centre of the city is Gentleman's Walk, bordering Norwich market:; the country's only surviving permanent daily outdoor market. Castle Mall is a new and highly successful indoor shopping centre in the heart of the city and is complemented by many other shopping areas radiating from the city centre, including London Street, Historic Elm Hill, a 15th Century cobbled street full of mall shops, noted for its concentration of Tudor buildings, Magdalen Street and St. Stephens.

The retails centre of Norwich is soon to grow substancially with the construction on the former Nestle Rowntree site on Chaplefield of an ambitious 230m mixed leisure, the retail and housing development which is already drawing interest from some of the country's leading retailers.

Norwich is the home to several national and international companies, including Norwich Union, Virgin Direct, Marsh, Anglia Television, Eastern Counties Newspapers, Anglian Windows and many others. The world renowned Norwich Research Park is the UK's largest single concentration of research activity in food and health. Companies such as these benefit from multi-skilled and loyal labour force and with ample office space available within the City Centre , the development of major business parks on major trunk routes on the outskirts of the city, excellent communications with London, the Midlands and Northern Europe and an acclaimed quality of life, the city is an ideal location in which to do business.

Norwich international Airport is located a few minutes from the city centre. Routes include destinations all over the UK and Europe, including Schiphol with its global connections. Major trunk road link Norwich with the Midlands via the A14 and London via the A11, which is currently undergoing multi-million pound improvements. A direct rail service with London Liverpool Street means the capital can be reached in as little as one hour 40 minutes and a direct rail service operates to Peterborough for the East Coast Main Line and beyond. Nearby, proposals for the new 30 million East Port Great Yarmouth and ferry link with the Netherlands are progressing apace.

With a wealth of history and the proximity of the Norfolk Broads, Norwich is a popular tourist destination. The city also has a thriving nightlife where considerable recent investment has seen the opening of a huge new leisure related quarter, Riverside, which features a variety of restaurants, bars, clubs, a cnema, bowling alley and more. The recently opened 60m Forum is a landmark millennium development, described as 'a superb prototype of the 21st century public library'.

Cultural and Social
The Norfolk & Norwich annual international music and arts festival is the second oldest in the UK. The Theatre Royal, one of a number of theatre venues, is visited by major companies before opening in London. Art lovers are well catered for by galleries, including the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts at the University of East Anglia, and the Castle Museum with it's fine collection of paintings by members of the Norwich School of Painters.

The 229m, 63 acre Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, situated next to the University of East Anglia, is England's largest single build hospital and it's most modern - it was opened in November 2001.

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