Norwich Castle's magnificent stone Keep is the centrepiece of the museum and art gallery complex. The Keep sits on top of a huge man-made Norman mound that dominates the city. In medieval times, Norwich Castle was one of the most elaborate and strategically important buildings in Europe. Many Norman features survive but remain largely hidden from visitors.
Gateway to Medieval England is a large four-year project, in excess of £9 million, that will reinstate the Norman floors and rooms in the Keep and, for the first time, enable access to five floor levels. The result will bring to life one of Europe's most important 12th century buildings right in the heart of Norwich, one of Europe's most complete medieval cities.
|EB and Project number
|Total Project Cost
|Wider Project Cost
|In excess of £9 million
LCF project objectives
The aim of the project is to support the wider, larger project by creating more inspiring, welcoming and family-friendly spaces.
The update includes the complete refurbishment of the main toilets and refreshed look for the Rotunda, which is a well used, multi purpose space at the heart of the museum. The work will result in a significant improvement in the quality and accessibility in key areas of the site.
Project details and outcomes
Landfill Communities Fund (LCF) funding through FCC Communities Foundation's Flagship Project Scheme, has enabled a major refurbishment of the public facilities, including the creation of a movable Early Years gallery and new public signage and displays.
The project also gave the main toilets, which had not been upgraded in nearly 20 years, a much needed uplift, including original artwork by Ben Hawkes on the corridor walls. Finally, home to the Castle cafe, the Rotunda has also been transformed with new furniture, plus new tables and benches for school group lunches. The Rotunda is a well used, multi purpose space in the heart of the museum, and the new furniture has updated the area whilst celebrating the Rotunda's unique 1960's architecture.
Hannah Jackson, project manager for the Gateway to Medieval England Project, Norwich Castle Museum said:
"The refurbishment of the public areas of the Castle was overdue, with the last major upgrade taking place back in 2001. The Rotunda is the hub of the museum and is so important to visitors' overall experience as, of course, are good toilets!
With the imminent transformation of the Keep back to its original layout as a Norman palace, it was important to ensure that these spaces live up to what will be an amazing new visitor experience. We are very grateful to FCC Communities Foundation for supporting our ambition with such a generous grant."