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Norwich, England

The city of Norwich is the regional administrative centre and county town of the county of Norfolk, England.


A good history of Norwich can be found here (http://www.oldcity.demon.co.uk/norwich/historic/index). It describes how the the Iceni[?] and Romans, the Anglo-Saxons, the Vikings, the Late Saxons and the Normans shaped the city and the county.

Pictures of Norwich can be found here (http://www.oldcity.demon.co.uk/norwich/index).

The word Norwich appears on coins minted during the reign of King Athelstan (early 10th century AD). At the time of the Norman Conquest the city was one of the largest in England, and it continued to be a major centre for trade, especially wool. The River Wensum was a convenient exporting route to the sea.

There was a riot in 1272 when the citizens fought with the cathedral monks over the imposition of a toll on the annual fair[?].

Norwich has a Norman castle and Norman Cathedral, both around 900 years old and in very good condition. The castle was converted to a prison and then to a museum.

A university, the University of East Anglia was founded in Norwich in 1963.

There is an airport offering some scheduled international services and holiday charter flights, developed from the former RAF airfield at Horsham Saint Faith. This was once the home of Air UK which grew out of Air Anglia and eventually became part of the Dutch airline KLM.

Norwich has a football (soccer) team, Norwich City F.C. nicknamed "The Canaries". The team has a website which can be accessed here (http://www.canaries.premiumtv.co.uk/).

Satirical comedian Steve Coogan[?] located his fictional, unbearably vain, cheesy broadcaster "Alan Partridge" in Norfolk, specifically hosting the pre-breakfast show on the fictional independent station "Radio Norwich". It exploited the county's reputation as being somewhat detached from modern trends, past its prime, and rather peripheral to national life.

Other comic entertainers who have drawn comedy from that stereotype include The Singing Postman and The Kipper Family[?] lately represented by "son" Sid Kipper.

The ancient city of Norwich was already a thriving centre for trade and commerce in East Anglia when in 1004 A.D. Swein Forkbeard the Viking destroyed the City.

The wealth generated by the wool trade during the Middle Ages resulted in the construction of many fine Churches, and today Norwich has one of the highest number of splendid medieval churches in western Europe.

Norwich's relative geographical isolation in the east of England (until 1834 it was quicker and safer for a traveller to travel to Amsterdam than to London) has resulted in much misinformation about the city whose motto 'Do different' has been 'borrowed' by the University of East Anglia. However throughout its long history Norwich has been the home of various dissident minorities ,notably the French Huegenot and the Belgian Walloon communities in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Toleration, combined with a curious insulation,has resulted in the City appearing to be either out-of-step with national trends; the city being either the first place to embrace change, as in the experimental usage of post-codes, or the very last place in England to adapt.

Notable important figures who lived in Norwich include the medieval mystic Dame Julian, author of the first book by a woman in the English language 'The revelations of Divine Love'. Julian's writings are well-represented by the scholarly website http:\\www.umilta.net

The painters John Crome and Joseph Stannard were both born in Norwich. They along with Cotman established the first provincial art-movement outside of London. The Norwich school of painters were influenced by the achievements of the Dutch landscape painters and of the beauty of the rural hinterland surrounding Norwich.

Another famous name associated with Norwich is the philosopher and man of letters Sir Thomas Browne[?] (1605-82) who, although not born in the city spent the greater part of his life resident as a physician. The scholarship, stylistic purity and stupendous learning of Browne's writings,an amateur in numerous fields of learning including botany,archaelogy,Biblical scholarship and the esoteric can be explored at www.penelope.uchicago.edu

The prison reformer Elizabeth Fry is one of several philanthropists associated with the City (her portrait is currently upon the new Bank of England 5 notes).

Norwich remains a City still very much in social flux. Its population has throughout history has been heavily supplemented with relocating residents, primarily from London and the home counties, attracted to its relatively cheap housing market. Recent developments in Norwich include the new Norfolk and Norwich University hospital,the Millenium Libary complex 'the Forum', the Riverside complex, a planned new stadium for the football club, 'The Canaries', along with yet another large shopping mall. The influx of new residents to the City is partially due to the City's relatively low crime rate, its quality shopping and easy access to the 'bootiful'unspoilt Norfolk scenery. These factors, along with the thinning native population's slow but friendly absorption of newcomers, continues to make the City of Norwich a vibrant and popular place to live.

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