A Weekend Diary

…words and images from England's green and pleasant land…

Archive for the category “Norfolk”

A few days in Norfolk – Day Four

My final day in Norfolk for this summer saw me spending a couple of hours in Wymondham (pronounced Windum), which is a twelve minute journey on the Cambridge/Ely line from Norwich…

Arrived here around five to  ten in the morning...

Arrived here around five to ten in the morning…

I took a left turn out of the station, which isn’t advisible if you want the shortest walk to the town centre (use Station Road!), and I found myself taking a long wander along Cemetery Lane, and approaching the town centre via Whitehorse Street and Damgate Street. Mind you, that did take me past this terraced house in Damgate Street that rather appealed to me…

Is this a former butcher's shop, converted to a residential dwelling? Well, who knows...

Is this a former butcher’s shop, converted to a residential dwelling? Well, who knows…

Here is Market Cross, which serves as a Tourist Information Centre, and has a street market adjacent (which is to the left of here)...

Here is Market Cross, which serves as a Tourist Information Centre, and has a street market adjacent (which is to the left of here)…

The town sign, with the Green Dragon pub beyond...

The town sign, with the Green Dragon pub beyond…

A closer view of the Green Dragon...

A closer view of the Green Dragon…

Wymondham is famed for its Abbey, so here are a few pictures of the same…

Wymondham Abbey from the front...

Wymondham Abbey from the front…

And side-on in moody mono...

And side-on in moody mono…

And inside, its glorious nave...

And inside, its glorious nave…

With the town’s main tourist sights now seen, I headed back to the railway station (via Station Road!), arriving there shortly before midday. The 12:14 train back to Norwich was delayed by ten or fifteen minutes, so I had plenty of time to nip into the Station Bistro to buy a very nice cheese scone, and tin of cola…

The Station Bistro at Wymondham railway station...

The Station Bistro at Wymondham railway station…

Back in Norwich, my train to Liverpool Street wasn’t due until half-four, so I wandered around the city, having a lunchtime pint in The Mischief pub, and taking a few final photos of this trip to the city…

St Saviour church, in Magdalene Street...

St Saviour church, in Magdalene Street…

Kate had given birth to George on the afternoon of my arrival in Norwich, and the event was celebrated in the window of the Save The Children charity shop in Magdalen Street...

Kate had given birth to George on the afternoon of my arrival in Norwich, and the event was celebrated in the window of the Save The Children charity shop in Magdalen Street…

A valedictory view of Norwich, the River Wensum, with my B & B, The Station Hotel in Riverside Road, just visible behind the back of the double-decker bus...

A valedictory view of Norwich, the River Wensum, with my B & B, The Station Hotel in Riverside Road, just visible behind the back of the double-decker bus…

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A few days in Norfolk – Day Three

Day the third saw us heading to the north Norfolk coast, and again the weather was fine, sunny and (sometimes very) warm, despite a forecast of rain, which never materialised in any meaningful way. I’d caught the 09.45 Sheringham train from Norwich, on the Bittern Line, and had been joined in the front carriage at North Walsham station, by my old friend (who happens to live in North Walsham).

We alighted at Gunton, the next station on the line, after a short journey, and began our ramble towards the village of South Repps, on the way to which we passed this abandoned pub. Boarded-up pubs have been an all too common feature of the English landscape in the past few decades…

The Suffield Arms at Gunton...

The Suffield Arms at Gunton…

On we wandered to our first destination, the village of South Repps, and we lingered a while at the church, St. James, which is well-maintained, and much used, and seems to play a significant role in the social life of the village.

St. James Church, South Repps  (or Southrepps)...

St. James Church, South Repps (or Southrepps)…

Along the road to our next destination, St Mary’s Church at North Repps, we passed a field containing these two equine characters; the white horse turned out to be a lot less shy than the Shetland Pony…

By now it was warming up, and this horse was getting thirsty...

By now it was warming up, and this horse was getting thirsty…

This one kept its distance...

This one kept its distance…

By the time we reached St Mary’s Church, we were feeling in need of a rest and some refreshment, so we sat on a bench and relaxed in the churchyard for a while…

St. Mary, North Repps (or Northrepps)...

St. Mary, North Repps (or Northrepps)…

Unlike at St. James at South Repps, there was no one around at St Mary’s Church other than ourselves, but when I went inside, I took a liking to a couple of the windows…

NorthReppsStainedGlassWindow

NorthReppsWindowView

And here’s the village sign…

Presumably celebrating the Queen's Silver Jubilee...

Presumably celebrating the Queen’s Silver Jubilee…

We were now heading for Overstrand on the coast, by way of this long wooded pathway, and I couldn’t help thinking of a line of Wilfred Owen’s poem ‘Strange Meeting’, something about a ‘profound dull tunnel’ ;).

Or maybe 'Alice in Wonderland'...

Or maybe ‘Alice in Wonderland’…

Nearing Overstrand, we passed this rapacious looking Beetle…

Yes, don't you mess with me... ;)

Yes, don’t you mess with me… 😉

And here we are in Overstrand…

Crabs, boats and beaches...

Crabs, boats and beaches…

Now we really were near the seafront, and here are three views from the clifftop…

ClifftopViewOverstrand

ClifftopFlower

OverstrandBeachView

We then went down to nearer beach level, and I was rather taken with the zig-zagging nature of this breakwater…

There are numerous breakwaters between Overstrand and Cromer, but this one seems to be unique in design...

There are numerous breakwaters between Overstrand and Cromer, but this one seems to be unique in design…

We then rambled the couple of miles westward to Cromer along the beaches, and arrived there in due course…

Despite the appearance of the clouds, the rain kept away...

Despite the appearance of the clouds, the rain kept away…

Cromer's pier...

Cromer’s pier…

Heading along the pier to the Pavilion Theatre, and the Lifeboat Museum beyond...

Heading along the pier to the Pavilion Theatre, and the Lifeboat Museum beyond…

Stained glass window in Cromer Lifeboat Museum...

Stained glass window in Cromer Lifeboat Museum…

A view from Cromer Pier back towards Overstrand...

A view from Cromer Pier back towards Overstrand…

Cromer Pier from above...

Cromer Pier from above…

We then ascended into the town itself…

A framed seaview from the town...

A framed seaview from the town…

Jetty Street sign...

Jetty Street sign…

By now it was late afternoon, and we were feeling the need of a pint, so we repaired to the Red Lion, and some Aspall cider…

And very welcome it was... ;)

And very welcome it was… 😉

Another view through the Red Lion's window...

Another view through the Red Lion’s window…

We had a train to catch at Cromer railway station around sixish, so we made our way there via Mary Jane’s Fish and Chip Shop, where we bought some chips to eat on the way to the station. It would have been a veggie burger too, had they not told us they cooked it in beef dripping… 😉

A Morrison’s supermarket was built in the old Goods Yard at the station, and here are two murals nearby…

Here's one of them...

Here’s one of them…

And here's the other...

And here’s the other…

Yes, two weary ramblers, but a great day out nonetheless… 🙂

A few days in Norfolk – Day Two

So, on my second day in Norfolk, we decided to head to the south-west of the county, buying day-return train tickets to Brandon, and intending to take a scenic walk from there to Thetford, from where we’d ultimately return to Norwich once the day’s rambling was done.

We began by taking a walk from Brandon railway station to the end of the High Street...

We began by taking a walk from Brandon railway station to the end of the High Street…

It seemed like a good idea at the time to ramble on to Thetford by way of a two and three-quarter mile riverside footpath to Santon Downham, a village en route, and so we duly set off, past a sign that jokingly suggested a machete might be found to be useful along the way. We laughed at this, of course, but sure enough, the further we got into the route, we found ourselves battling along an ill-defined footpath in the midst of five-foot tall stinging nettles, wet undergrowth, midges, damsel flies and sundry other insect life, a couple of example photographs of which I include below ;)…

The first photograph here portrays a somewhat idyllic journey, although even this photo gives hints of the task ahead of us…

The river here is the Little Ouse...

The river here is the Little Ouse…

I tried in vain to capture an image of some yellow butterflies, but they proved to be far more elusive than was this snail ;)...

I tried in vain to capture an image of some yellow butterflies, but they proved to be far more elusive than was this snail ;)…

Well, life goes on...;)

Yes, well, life goes on…;)

We eventually reached our first destination, a bridge at Santon Downham, and after a rest and some refreshment, we continued on to All Saints’, Santon, along pathways a lot kinder to us than the one on the earlier Little Ouse ramble had been…

This plant is apparently called Black Mullein...

This plant is apparently called Black Mullein…

This is evidently a thistle...

This is evidently a thistle…

Ah, definitely a poppy (which are prolific in some parts of Norfolk)...

Ah, definitely a poppy (which are prolific in some parts of Norfolk)…

We made a slight diversion on the walk down to Thetford, by visiting the small church of All Saints’ Santon…

All Saints' Church, Santon

All Saints’ Church, Santon

The interior of the church...

The interior of the church…

And its small but beautiful 'Agnus Dei' stained glass window...

And its small but beautiful ‘Agnus Dei’ stained glass window…

On we traipsed past a field with a number of horses, two of which provided a wholly unexpected and bemusing spectacle in the hot early afternoon sun. Yes, they really were be-hooded, and wearing coats, as shown in the two following photographs. Some googling later suggested that both the ‘fly-masks’ and ‘fly-rugs’ being worn, were to afford some protection from horse-flies. Apparently, the horses can actually see through the hoods, but to be sure, it was something that I had never seen before, and it was an extraordinary sight…

It was a hot day, so goodness knows how this horse coped with it all ;)

It was a hot day, so goodness knows how this horse coped with it all 😉

A white horse c/w fly mask and fly rug...

A white horse c/w fly mask and fly rug…

Although we were now deep in countryside, there was no escape from occasional overflights of military aircraft…

Jet fighters in flight...

Jet fighters in flight…

Thetford Forest has plenty of beautiful pine trees…

Thetford Forest pine trees...

Thetford Forest pine trees…

As we headed on towards Thetford town, we rejoined a footpath alongside the Little Ouse, a river where swans were much in evidence…

Little Ouse swans feeding methinks...

Little Ouse swans feeding methinks…

A sedate swan and its reflection...

A sedate swan and its reflection…

At last, after some ten miles of walking, we neared Thetford town centre…

Town Bridge, Thetford, built in 1829...

Town Bridge, Thetford, built in 1829…

Welcome to Thetford sign

Welcome to Thetford sign

Close by Town Bridge is this gentleman sat on a bench ;). The long-running BBC comedy series ‘Dad’s Army’ was mostly filmed in and around Thetford…

Captain Mainwaring, looking thoughtful ;)

Captain Mainwaring, looking thoughtful 😉

Dad's Army Museum, Thetford

Dad’s Army Museum, Thetford

After a welcome pint in The Green Dragon, we made our way to Thetford Railway Station, via the Medieval ruin of Thetford Priory…

Thetford Priory, a ruin, albeit a rather beautiful one...

Thetford Priory, a ruin, albeit a rather beautiful one…

Another part of the Priory ruins...

Another part of the Priory ruins…

Once back in Norwich, we said our farewells for the day, and I repaired to the ‘Compleat Angler’ for some food and drink…

The Compleat Angler, a riverside pub near Norwich Railway Station...

The Compleat Angler, a riverside pub near Norwich Railway Station…

When I’d visited the pub on my arrival in Norwich the previous day, and being a long time vegetarian, I had been intrigued by an item on the pub menu, namely ‘Vegetarian ‘Fish’ and Chips’, described thus:

‘Hand-battered Halloumi cheese in coriander & lemon marinade, served with chips, a choice of mushy or garden peas, tartare sauce and a wedge of lemon’…and all for £5.99…

How could I resist…;)

Yes, Vegetarian 'Fish' and Chips, with a pint of Cola and ice...

Yes, Vegetarian ‘Fish’ and Chips, with a pint of Cola and ice…

A few days in Norfolk – Day One

It’s all too easy to lose contact with workmates when they move on to other jobs or retire, so I arranged to spend a few days in Norwich last week, to catch up with one such old friend now living in Norfolk. On the internet, I duly bought myself a return train fare from London’s Liverpool Street station, and made my way there intending to catch the midday train to Norwich, on which I had a reserved seat…

The Bishopsgate entrance to Liverpool Street station...

The Bishopsgate entrance to Liverpool Street station…

Things didn’t begin too well, however…;)

Yes, that's my train, the 12:00 to Norwich...

Yes, that’s my train, the 12:00 to Norwich…

A quick chat with a Customer Services representative on the station concourse, and an over-stamping of my ticket, resulted in my catching the 12.30 pm train, and I arrived at Norwich Railway Station around two hours later…

The first of many Gorillas I encountered in Norwich during the next few days...

The first of many gorillas I encountered in Norwich during the next few days…

I soon found myself taking refuge from the sultry weather in a pub not far from the station, called the Compleat Angler, where I stayed long enough to down a pint of lager, before booking into my B & B hotel for the next three nights, which was perfectly placed in Riverside Road, not far from the railway station. Once I had settled into the hotel, in the evening I set off for a long ramble around the City, and these are some of the resulting pictures…rather a lot of gorillas I’m afraid…;)

...this one in Castle Meadow..

…this one in Castle Meadow..

...and one in front of Castle Mall...

…and one in front of Castle Mall…

Not sure of the street I'm standing in here, but the yonder church is St. Michael-at-Plea...

Not sure of the street I’m standing in here, but the yonder church is St. Michael-at-Plea…

I do know the name of this street however; it's called Quay Side...

I do know the name of this street however; it’s called Quay Side…

This one is on Fye Bridge...

This one is on Fye Bridge…

...and this natty dresser is in St. George's Green...

…and this natty dresser is in St. George’s Green…

By now, dusk was approaching, so I headed back towards my hotel via Novi Sad Bridge and a walk along the riverside…

View from Novi Sad Bridge...

View from Novi Sad Bridge…

Nearing the hotel, a view from Riverside Walk...

Nearing the hotel, a view from Riverside Walk…

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