Graphic: The must-do family events in Norwich this summer

PUBLISHED: 12:10 09 May 2014 | UPDATED: 14:16 09 May 2014

Lord Mayor's Celebration 2013 parade.

Lord Mayor's Celebration 2013 parade. PHOTO BY SIMON FINLAY

Archant Norfolk

A bumper line-up of family events has been unveiled for Norwich this summer. Reporter Kim Briscoe looks at some of the highlights of Norwich City Council’s events programme for 2014.

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Best for book worms

Bestselling author Kate Mosse, best known for her book Labyrinth, will deliver the second annual Harriet Martineau Lecture as part of the Norfolk and Norwich Festival 2014.

Gas Hill Gasp takes a break

While many favourite events are returning for 2014, the popular Gas Hill Gasp won’t be taking place due to a clash in cycling events.

The daunting cycle race was re-launched in 2011 as part of the annual Lord Mayor’s Celebrations, around 20 years since the previous Gasp was held.

The race sees cyclists battle a 20pc incline for around 200m up Gas Hill, off Bishops Bridge Road.

Helen Selleck, culture and events manager at Norwich City Council, said: “Many of the Lord Mayors Celebrations events are delivered in partnership with community and cultural organisations, and The Gas Hill Gasp is one of these. It is popular because of the high standard of riders who race up the hill at unbelievable speeds.

“It was felt by organisers that due to a Tour De France event being staged in York on the same weekend, participants and spectators may choose to attend the tour rather than be in Norwich. We hope to see the Gas Hill Gasp return next year.”

The lecture is inspired by the extraordinary life of Martineau, a social theorist and writer.

Thursday, May 22, 7.30pm at Norwich Playhouse, tickets are £12.

Best for history fans

The opening of the Battle of Britain Week will be marked with a parade and a flypast (weather permitting).

Monday, September 15, from 11.30am, at City Hall War Memorial.

Best for lazy afternoons in the park

Free bandstand concerts every Sunday from June to August with a host of bands appearing at several city parks. Most concerts start at 3pm.

Norwich Accordion Band will be making an appearance at Waterloo Park on Sunday, July 6.

Best event that could happen on your own doorstep

Why not close the road, string up the bunting, put out the tables and chairs, organise a picnic, play games and dance with your neighbours on your street?

Hundreds of street parties will be held across the country on Sunday, June 1, as part of The Big Lunch.

To close your road for a street party, you will need to apply for a road closure from Norwich City Council at least three weeks in advance.

More information at, or

Best for foodies

The Great Norwich Nosh-Up, a celebration of food and drink, will be held at Chapelfield Gardens from Thursday, June 12 to Sunday, June 15.

Organised by the Market Square Group, tickets range from £2.50 for entry to the festival arena, to £3 for entry to the tasting arena, £5 for a cookery demonstration with celebrity chef Jean Christophe Novelli, and £10 for an outdoor cinema experience.

Best weekend

There’s so much happening for the Lord Mayor’s Celebration from Thursday, July 3, to Sunday, July 6, that it would take pages to list it all.

While the procession is a clear highlight for many, other family favourites include the Great Norwich Duck Race, the fireworks at Norwich Castle and a host of street performances.

Best for children

A series of play days will be taking place at play areas and community centres across Norwich from Monday, July 28 to Thursday, August 28.

The free fun will include Punch and Judy shows, hunting for treasure, giant games, sports day races, face painting, flag-making and circus skills.

Best for spooky scares

Okay, so it’s not strictly summer by Halloween, but we love the sound of dressing to impress and joining all the other witches, wizards, ghouls and ghosts on a Spooky City Parade at 6.30pm on Friday, October 31. But expect the unexpected....

All line-ups are subject to change, but up-to-date information is available at, at the Norwich City Council events page on Facebook, or by following @EventsNorwich or @NorwichCC on Twitter. Copies of the events guide are available from City Hall or the Tourist Information Centre in the Forum.

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