5 Cultural Experiences in Norwich & Norfolk

14 October 2021

5 Cultural Experiences in Norwich and Norfolk this Autumn and Winter

If you’re a lover of culture, Norwich is the perfect place to be. There’s always lots to discover, from art shows to historical exhibitions. And if you’re looking to enjoy a cultural city break this winter, you’re in luck, as there’s some incredible experiences in Norwich and Norfolk!

Norwich Cathedral, Dippy Farewell Week

Since the summer, the Natural History Museum’s iconic Diplodocus cast, Dippy, has been enjoying its new home in the Norwich Cathedral nave. Only there until the end of October, and as the last stop on its UK tour, it really is your last chance to get a glimpse of this magnificent piece of history!

And to send Dippy off in truly spectacular fashion, you can now see Dippy at Night! The much-loved dinosaur will be lit up in an entirely new way, so you can experience a different side to Dippy in the final days of the tour. Dippy at Night will be open to the public for five nights only – 25 – 26 and 28 – 30 October. And during this last week, you’ll also be able to enjoy the return of the 21 GoGoDiscover T.rex sculptures that decorated Norwich’s streets this summer! The T.rexes will be on display under the stars in the Cathedral Cloister for Break charity’s Farewell for Now event. This will also be open during the Dippy daytime opening hours. Free entry.

Dippy at Norwich Cathedral

Dippy at Norwich Cathedral

Sainsbury Centre for the Visual Arts, Norwich

The Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts is always a great day out, but with three new exhibitions and a new addition to the Sculpture Park, there’s never been a better time to visit!

Housed in the gorgeous grounds, the Sculpture Park is free to explore. So get your winter coats and scarves and get walking. On your adventure around the park, you won’t be able to miss the new sculpture by Anthony Caro, the Goodwood Steps – a monumental piece spanning over 35 metres in length.

Heading inside the centre, you can pay a visit to Leiko Ikemura: Usagi in Wonderland. A showcase of work exploring the connectivity of all aspects of nature, you’ll be wowed by the mix of textures and soft colour palettes. Tickets only £8, on show until 12 December.

If you like your art to be a bit bolder, you’ll certainly want to spend some time at Grayson Perry: The Pre-Therapy Years. Focusing on the formative years of one of Britain’s most recognisable artists, this exhibition reveals the early development of Perry’s distinctive voice. Often challenging and explicit, the works address the themes of gender, identity, fetishism and his home county of Essex. A truly exciting collection of pots, plates and sculptures, this should be on any art fans must-see list. Tickets £12, on show until 30 January.

There’s also a host of fantastic things to see for free. The permanent collection at the Sainsbury Centre is filled with treasures. And there’s a new free exhibition that’s been curated from that collection. Rhythm and Geometry: Constructivist art in Britain since 1951 celebrates abstract and constructed art and includes 120 objects, from sculptures to paintings and drawings. Entry is free, although tickets must be pre-booked before arrival. You can also take advantage of a free daily tour Tuesday – Sunday at 11.30am. Limited spaces available – reserve yours at the front desk.

Grayson Perry: The Pre-Therapy Years

Check out the Grayson Perry: The Pre-Therapy Years exhibition on at the Sainsbury Centre this autumn in Norwich

St Peter Mancroft, Gaia

This installation is absolutely stunning. On show until the 30 October, the surrounds of the 600-year-old Church St Peter Mancroft make for a beautiful setting for the piece. 6 metres in diameter and created by artist Luke Jarrem, Gaia depicts our planet using NASA imagery, giving you the opportunity to see the planet from a very different perspective. While you wander the church taking in its beauty, you’ll also be treated to a surround sound composition, written by BAFTA award winning composer Dan Jones. Not only does this make the experience more special, but it will truly transport you. And perhaps the best part? It’s free to see!

You can also experience planet earth from above when booking a tower tour. Climb up a narrow, stone spiral staircase to the infinity ringing chamber to see the planet like never before. Tickets £10, various dates available.

There’s also a host of talks and events to accompany Gaia at the church. Delve a little deeper and gain a new perspective by attending one of their talks looking at the climate crisis from the perspective of both faith and science. Or perhaps you’d enjoy seeing Gaia with the addition of a choral concert? Ticket prices vary, see online for more information.

Gaia at St Peter Mancroft

Gaia at St Peter Mancroft

Norwich Cathedral, Hostry Festival

Billed as the ‘Autumn Festival of Norfolk’, the Hostry Festival is an exciting programme of high-profile guest speakers, concerts, poetry readings, drama, dance and art displays. And this year it’s also celebrating its 10-year anniversary.

Set in the stunning surrounds of Norwich Cathedral’s Hostry building (alongside a few other venues as well), you won’t want to miss some of the stunning events on offer. How about a one-woman show by MoCo Theatre, Who the Who, Who. An honest and intimate show about family, grief and loss. 28 – 30 October, tickets £12. Or is an art exhibition more your speed? Why not check out an exhibition by Norfolk sculptor Rachael Long, inspired by the story of Beethoven’s Tenth by Sir Peter Ustinov. 22 – 30 October, free. There’s events throughout October and into November, so check out the website and start planning what to see!

Houghton Hall, Norfolk

Contemporary British artist Chris Levine is set to transform the gorgeous Houghton Hall and its grounds with his major solo exhibition 528 Hz Love Frequency. Marking the inaugural winter show in the historic grounds of this prestigious art venue, the exhibition will feature a series of new holographic artworks, print works, and large immersive laser and LED installations. If that doesn’t get you excited we don’t know what will! This is a body of new work created specifically for the unique setting of the house and grounds, and is running from 22 October – 23 December. Tickets are only £18 including parking.

Chris Levine at Houghton Hall

Chris Levine at Houghton Hall