250 reasons why Norfolk is wonderful

The mediaeval Priory at Walsingham has a long history of religious pilgrimage and dates back to the

The mediaeval Priory at Walsingham has a long history of religious pilgrimage and dates back to the 11th century. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Archant

The February issue of Norfolk magazine celebrates its 250th edition with 250 reasons why Norfolk is wonderful

A bluebell woodland at Sotshole Broad next to Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden. Picture: James B

A bluebell woodland at Sotshole Broad next to Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden. Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016

From beaches to sport, history to festivals and food and drink to heroes and heroines it picks 250 reasons to be proud of Norfolk. For the full 250 suggestions pick up a copy of Norfolk magazine - launched more than 20 years ago and now a monthly treat celebrating some of the county's most beautiful places, fascinating people and exciting events.

Bur first see whether you agree with Norfolk magazine's 10 wildlife wonders, followed by 10 architectural masterpieces.

Common spotted orchid on Beeston Common

Common spotted orchid on Beeston Common - Credit: Archant © 2006


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WILDLIFE

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- Robert Marsham founded the science behind Springwatch by recording when trees budded and flowers bloomed on his estate at Stratton Strawless, near Aylsham, from 1736 into the 19th century.

Swallowtail butterfly photographs taken at RSPB Strumpshaw Fen Picture Andy Roberts iwitness24

Swallowtail butterfly photographs taken at RSPB Strumpshaw Fen Picture Andy Roberts iwitness24 - Credit: Andy Roberts

- See snowdrops throughout February at Walsingham Abbey.

- By April our ancient woods, such as those at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden in South Walsham, glow blue with bluebells.

The stunning Marble Hall in Aviva's Surrey House, created using 15 different types of marble. The 40

The stunning Marble Hall in Aviva's Surrey House, created using 15 different types of marble. The 40 columns are made from marble originally destined for Westminster Cathedral. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

- More than 20 types of orchid occur in Norfolk and the common spotted orchid is still widespread on commons and at the edge of fens.

- The only place in Britain to see swallowtail butterflies is the Norfolk Broads from May to July.

The Custom House, King's Lynn Picture: Chris Bishop

The Custom House, King's Lynn Picture: Chris Bishop - Credit: Archant

- See thousands of pink footed geese flying in V-shaped skeins at dawn and dusk in autumn and winter, along Norfolk's

west coast.

Norwich cathedral at twilight. Picture: Kate Wolstenholme

Norwich cathedral at twilight. Picture: Kate Wolstenholme - Credit: Kate Wolstenholme

- Take a boat from Morston or Blakeney to see the seals. Or walk from Winterton to Horsey to visit the colony which raises its young here every winter.

- Find Britain's biggest spider, the fen raft spider, near Diss.

Norwich Roman Catholic Cathedral, The Cathedral of St John the Baptist.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Norwich Roman Catholic Cathedral, The Cathedral of St John the Baptist.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

- Marvel at a murmuration of tens of thousands of crows at dusk at Buckenham.

- Hear a bittern boom across the marshes at Strumpshaw.

Sir Denis Lasdun's ziggurats at the University of East Anglia. Photo: Bill Smith

Sir Denis Lasdun's ziggurats at the University of East Anglia. Photo: Bill Smith - Credit: Archant © 2011

ARCHITECTURE

- Architect George Skipper was born in Dereham in 1856 and John Betjeman of him: "He was to Norwich what Gaudi was to Barcelona." His Norwich buildings include the Royal Arcade, Aviva's Marble Hall, Jarrold and the St Giles House Hotel.

Award winning community built on Goldsmith Street in Norwich.Byline: Sonya DuncanCopyright: Archant

Award winning community built on Goldsmith Street in Norwich.Byline: Sonya DuncanCopyright: Archant 2019 - Credit: Sonya Duncan

- More Skipper masterpieces in Cromer include the Hotel de Paris and Cliftonville Hotel.

- Victorian architect Edward Boardman was responsible for designing or restoring notable Norfolk buildings including the former Norfolk and Norwich Hospital.

Norfolk magazine's 250th issue, for February 2020, is on sale now

Norfolk magazine's 250th issue, for February 2020, is on sale now - Credit: Archant

- The 200-year-old Nelson Monument in Yarmouth, with its 217-step staircase to the top, where a statue of Britannia gazes out across Norfolk, was designed by William Wilkins who also designed the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square, London, where an even taller monument to Nelson was built 24 years later.

- 17th century King's Lynn Custom House was called: "One of the most perfect buildings ever built," by architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner

- King's Lynn Trinity Guildhall has a remarkable chequerboard knapped flint façade.

- Norwich's architectural highlight has to be the soaring cathedral, founded more than 900 years ago.

- The Roman Catholic cathedral of St John in Norwich is just over a century old and another magnificent gothic building.

- The ziggurats at the University of East Anglia are still used as student accommodation.

- The new council houses in Goldsmith Street, Norwich, have been named the best new building in the UK, winning the Stirling Prize for architecture.

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