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“Lemony lemony lemony mustard.”
Rosie Jones, 2021
Recently, Norwich was paid a visit by comedian Rosie Jones, for her Channel 4 travel show: ‘Trip Hazard’. Accompanied by Jamali Maddix, the pair spent their time visiting some of our city’s best known landmarks, bars, and teeny tiny trains.
If anyone’s seen the show, you’ll know it was a whirlwind trip. We’ve seen a lot of travel shows here at VisitNorwich, but I have to say we’ve never seen any featuring knitted breasts and wrestling within 20 minutes.
You’ll definitely need longer than 20 minutes to make the most of the city, so we’re here to help you see all the sights like Rosie and Jamali. Below you’ll find a sort-of itinerary of their trip, so you too can drink a 600 year old cocktail before heading home with a stuffed squirrel, and sense of sporting achievement.
Elm Hill and Quayside
We meet Rosie and Jamali on Elm Hill, which is one of the most beautiful (and Instagrammed) streets in Norwich. It’s also one of the most complete medieval streets in the UK although it almost didn’t survive: a major fire destroyed almost everything in 1507, and the properties had to be rebuilt.
Today, you’ll find an array of independent shops, cafes and a barber. Its charming feel makes it a film favourite: it recently featured in Netflix’s ‘Jingle Jangle’; a Christmas musical extravaganza produced by John Legend. If you’re visiting the city, you really can’t miss it. Stroll down this cobbled street with coffee in hand, sturdy shoes on foot (and not too many glasses of wine into your evening).
Not far from Elm Hill is Quayside, where in ‘Trip Hazard’ we are introduced to the ‘Molly Dancers’. Molly dancing is a form of English Morris dance, traditionally done by out-of-work ploughboys in midwinter in the 19th century. Reminiscent of the very English panto dame tradition, these Molly Dancers get up close and personal with Rosie and Jamali, showing off their traditional wardrobe – and more contemporary knitted anatomy.
Chet and Waveney Valley Vineyard
As you’ll know from the show, Norwich once boasted a pub for every day of the year, so it’s the perfect place for a pub crawl, but if you’re looking for something more-grapes-less-hops, then we do recommend a visit to Chet Valley vineyard.
About 20 minute south of Norwich in the gorgeous Norfolk countryside, Chet Valley is the passion project of the Hemmant family, who have held the land since the beginning of the century. Visit for tours, shopping – you can even stay on the vineyard to make the most of the night. Want to get the ‘Trip Hazard’ experience from home? Book onto one of their virtual wine tastings – the next one’s on the 8th of May.
You can also pick up a bottle of local wine in Jarrold’s famous deli – which is well worth a visit if you like fine cheese, local produce and exquisite packaging.
Our beloved landmark sits proudly – and pointily – in the middle of the city. Estimated to be about 900 years old, Norwich Cathedral has seen its fair share of history. In fact, it was the site of enormous tumult in the 13th Century when – after a riot between the religious men of the cathedral and the citizens of Norwich – the entire city was excommunicated by the pope and ordered to pay for the repairs to the Cathedral and its gates.
Fast forward 800 years and you’ll find this a space for the community – locals and visitors, of all faiths and none. Regular services are still held here, as well as special events: a Helter Skelter appeared in the Vestry in 2019. There are two amazing events happening this summer: the Shakespeare festival in July will see Macbeth performed in the magnificent cloisters, and from June to October, Dippy the Diplodocus will be on loan from the National History Museum, and installed in the soaring Nave.
Wroxham Miniature Worlds and Fransham Forge
The home of tiny trains and little landscapes, Wroxham Miniature Worlds is the largest indoor modelling attraction in the UK. It’s been in development since early 2011 and has taken a small team over three years of hard work. The attraction is spread over nearly 15,000 square feet (that’s almost 1/3 of an acre) includes up to 20 miles of wire for the layouts, and took over 50,000 man hours to build. It’s really quite a feat!
At Fransham Forge you’ll find a museum, showroom, workshop and garden for exhibiting sculptures. As with all attractions at the moment, check ahead if you fancy a visit, but do visit the forge’s website where you can browse some of the impressive ironwork on offer. You can even pick up a sculptural firepit perfect for outdoor entertaining.
We’re not going to tell you where Arboretum is. It’s a secret (like an underground speakeasy!) but – handily – it’s not far from the VisitNorwich office. It’s exactly as you see on the TV: dimly lit, mysterious, exciting. All their drinks are rooted in history, served with a story by knowledgeable staff, and everything you see in the shop can be bought… if you know the right price.
Fans of history, fans of cocktails, and those seeking a unique experience will not want to pass this by. Arboretum have also just secured a space outside, so expect street parties aplenty this Summer!
I mean, there isn’t one. But – fun fact – Norwich was once famous for its magnificent shawls, which were the envy of high-society ladies everywhere in the 19th Century. Find out about these – and more (including dragons, chocolate, and why people in Norwich have been giving each other writing desks in secret) at the Museum of Norwich at the Bridewell.