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Art & Culture
There are some wonderful art and craft galleries within a few miles of Walsingham — not surprising since Norfolk has one of the highest concentrations of artists in the UK.
Check out some of these:
- Great Walsingham Barns has resident artist Sarah Caswell with her giant floral canvases.
- The School House gallery in Wighton (just two miles away on the road to Wells) features top notch contemporary art and a neat link to one of the 20th century’s foremost sculptors. In 1922 Mary Moore, sister of Henry, was appointed headmistress and moved her parents and younger brother with her. Henry carved some of his earliest sculptures in the garden here.
- Gallery Plus next door is a new contemporary gallery with paintings, prints, etchings, lithographs and ceramics.
- Bringing the Outside In at Holkham features work by local landscape photographer Martin Billing plus coastal crafts.
- Pinkfoot Gallery in Cley-next-the-Sea shows exquisite contemporary work by some of the UK’s leading artists — 01263 740 947.
- Made In Cley along the coast from Wells, is a group of eight potters and a goldsmith displaying a wide range of work.
- St Jude’s Gallery is worth the drive to Itteringham if you like the wonderful prints and fabrics of Angie Lewin and friends.
- Both Holt and Burnham Market are worth a visit for their many galleries and craft shops.
Or check out the wonders of the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Art on the campus of the University of East Anglia in Norwich. This beautiful building houses Robert and Lisa Sainsbury’s collection of stunning work from around the globe, spanning 5,000 years of human creativity. There is also the Anderson Collection of Art Nouveau and the university’s collection of Abstract and Constructivist Art, Architecture and Design. Check out their website for special exhibitions and regular classes and children’s club — www.scva.org.uk.
Stephen Parry is one of the UK’s leading wood-firing potters. His Ryburgh pottery is open daily but he advises you to ring before making a special journey (01328 829543).
Norfolk and Norwich Open Studios
For sixteen days every May, artists across Norfolk open their homes and studios to the public — your chance to soak up the atmosphere of the places where some of our best artists create their work. There are plenty within striking distance of Walsingham. Check out those that appeal to you at nnopenstudios.org.uk.
Salthouse Sculpture Trail
The first pieces of sculpture, all created by local artists, were installed along the route in July 2008. Each year more are added, some permanent and some just for the summer months.
The ten-mile trail takes you on an exciting journey exploring coastal views, countryside, woodland, heathland and town. You can begin the trail at any point and follow it in any direction with waymarkers guiding your way. Explore the whole trail in one go, or in shorter sections for a more leisurely stroll.
Visit us in September and you can take your pick from the best of the classical North Norfolk Music Festival, held in South Creake and Burnham Norton just four miles away — www.northnorfolkmusicfestival.com.
The Yorke Trust in South Creake offers music students and children the chance to study and perform opera and music-theatre in the idyllic atmosphere of the North Norfolk countryside, away from the competitive environment of university and school. Through the summer they stage regular public performances in their converted chapel and in nearby churches and grand houses. Or check out their Music & Dining Club for a perfect night out — www.yorketrust.org.
These excellent arts centres don’t just offer a wide range of performances, many also run a rich programme of excellent workshops, courses and exhibitions.
- Wells Maltings has just had a major grant funded refurbishment, now offering theatre, cinema and exhibitions. Wells-next-the-Sea (01328 710193)
- Cromer Pier Pavilion Theatre
- Sheringham Little Theatre
- Norfolk Youth Music Theatre (01263 825718)
- The Auden Theatre at Gresham’s School in Holt (01263 713444)
- Norwich Puppet Theatre
- Theatre Royal in Norwich
- Norwich Playhouse
- Maddermarket Theatre in Norwich
- West Acre Theatre in Kings Lynn (01760 755007)
- The world-renowned Christmas Spectacular at Thursford (just two miles away) is a huge, £3m budget show running through November and December, which draws people from all over the country. Tickets are often sold out by the previous February!
If you fancy a nostalgic trip to the movies, take in a first-run film at the Central Cinema in Fakenham — outing to the flicks as it used to be.
Or join us at one of our monthly movie screenings in the Parish Hall on the High Street (next to Walsingham Village Stores). Check out the Walsingham Picture Palace programme to see if it coincides with your visit and come along on the night.