December 13 2013 Latest news:
Monday, September 30, 2013
More evidence of Norwich’s rich history was uncovered when the remains of a tower were found during work to restore a section of the city’s medieval walls.
It was discovered after the last buildings at the derelict Magpie Printer’s site in Magpie Road were demolished earlier this year.
The tower was in a very poor condition and the face had been almost completely stripped away, leaving the core open to more damage from the elements.
But following consultation between Norwich City Council and English Heritage, it was agreed to rebuild the tower staying true to its ruined appearance and to preserve it for generations to come.
A total of 80 tonnes of ﬂint, sand and lime went into reconstructing the remains, which now stand as a reminder of the city’s history in the north of Norwich.
Fifteen major sections of the medieval wall, which is a scheduled monument, survive above ground, including Cow Tower and the towers at Bull Close Road and St Stephen’s. The work on the Magpie Road old printer’s site was carried out alongside work on St Benedict’s Gate at the bottom of Grapes Hill.
General maintenance is also currently ongoing to the Boom Tower on the King Street side of the river and between King Street and Black Tower at the top of Carrow Hill.
Cabinet member and design and historic environment champion Mike Stonard said: “Our city walls are a major historical asset and an important part of Norwich’s landscape as it is today.
“The work means we can help preserve this wonderful scheduled monument to enjoy now and for generations to come.”
Medieval Norwich was defended on its north, west and south sides by a high ﬂint wall and a deep outer ditch. Evidence indicates the ﬂint wall was begun around 1294 and was completed by the middle of the 14th century. The defences of the city were maintained and occasionally modiﬁed until the late 18th century. At night the walls were shut, providing security for the citizens.
The heads of those executed at the city gallows were displayed on the gates of the city walls. Most of the gateways were demolished in 1793/4 and the last gate to survive was at Magdalen Street, which was removed in 1808.