10 reasons why we’re backing Norwich in the Great British High Street awards

Just some of the reasons The Great British High Street judges should be impressed by Norwich. Pictur

Just some of the reasons The Great British High Street judges should be impressed by Norwich. Picture Archant - Credit: Archant

Norwich could take a step closer to winning its second Great British High Street award in just a couple of years today when judges descend on the city to find out what makes it a contender. And just in case they are in need of an idea of what to look out for, this paper has put together a list of some of the biggest attractions that can be found in the district, which include:

Shopping in Royal Arcade and Back of the Inns, Norwich.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Shopping in Royal Arcade and Back of the Inns, Norwich.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

1. Norwich Castle and Castle Museum

It is one of Norwich's most famous landmarks which was built by the Normans as a royal palace 900 years ago. Judges will be able to explore the castle's history as a palace and later as a prison. The museum has fabulous collections of fine art, archaeology and natural history and together with the castle is to undergo a major revamp as the castle keep is transformed as part of the Norwich Castle: Gateway to Medieval England project.

Norwich Castle. Picture: SOPHIE WYLLIE

Norwich Castle. Picture: SOPHIE WYLLIE - Credit: Archant

2. Castle Mall

Norwich is more than just a historical destination – over recent years it has become a permanent fixture in the country's top 10 shopping destinations and the Castle Mall, which is currently undergoing a major makeover, is a key part of that retail success.

Castle Mall's facade at the entrance. Photo : Steve Adams

Castle Mall's facade at the entrance. Photo : Steve Adams - Credit: Steve Adams

3. Royal Arcade

Opened in 1899, the historic art nouveau 247 foot-long covered avenue which was designed and built by Dereham-born architect George Skipper houses a wonderful range of independent, boutique shops and restaurants.

Shopping in Royal Arcade, Norwich.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Shopping in Royal Arcade, Norwich.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

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4. Colman's Mustard shop

The arcade is also home the world's only mustard museum which tells the story of world famous Norwich-based Colman's Mustard.

Colman's Mustard Shop. Pic: Norwich HEART.

Colman's Mustard Shop. Pic: Norwich HEART. - Credit: Submitted

5. Langleys Toys

The shop has been part of Norwich life since 1883. Initially on Prince of Wales Road, original owner James Langley moved to the Royal Arcade after buying out competitor Galpins Toyshop in the Victorian Row, which inhabited the space which is now Jamie's Italian. The shop moved to its present location in 1985.

Langleys toy shop in the Royal Arcade. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Langleys toy shop in the Royal Arcade. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2015

6. The ice rink

Judges won't be able to get their skates on just yet, but the Archant-backed Norwich Ice Rink will be back for a second year. Nestling in the shadow of the castle the magical winter wonderland is now a major part of Norwich's Christmas.

Fun on the ice rink in the Castle Mall gardens, next to Norwich Castle. Picture: Denise Bradley

Fun on the ice rink in the Castle Mall gardens, next to Norwich Castle. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: copyright: Archant 2013

7. Warings furniture and café

Situated on Cattle Market Street is housed in a Grade II listed building with views overlooking Norwich Castle and Gardens. Originally built as a showroom for Holmes and Sons who manufactured and sold agricultural machinery, the Crystal House is a well-known building in the heart of Norwich.

The Warings store on Cattle Market Street is on the move. Picture Google

The Warings store on Cattle Market Street is on the move. Picture Google - Credit: Google

8. Timberhill

It is a busy city thoroughfare and one of the oldest recorded city streets which pre-dates Elm Hill.

People shopping on Timberhill; Picture: James Bass

People shopping on Timberhill; Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2007

9. The Walnut Tree Shades

Judges looking for some liquid refreshment are spoilt for choice in a city with such a great pub and brewing heritage, with this hidden gem but one example of this fine tradition.

Walnut Tree Shades. Picture Archant.

Walnut Tree Shades. Picture Archant. - Credit: Archant

10. Alan Partridge

The fictional DJ has strong links to this part of Norwich. Alan Partridge walking tours took in the areas around Castle Street and Back Of The Inns, with the man himself appearing in Waterstones when he published his autobiography I, Partridge.

 Alan Partridge at Waterstones Norwich to promote his autobiography " I Partridge " with a reading a

Alan Partridge at Waterstones Norwich to promote his autobiography " I Partridge " with a reading and signing for hundreds of adoring fans of the comedian and actor Steve Coogan's alter ego. Photo : Steve Adams

The Castle/Arcade District of Norwich is up against Derby's Cathedral Quarter and Bristol in the city category of the competition which was won by Norwich Lanes in 2014.

Rankings released by the Great British High Street Competition have revealed that the Norwich entry has fallen into a very close second place behind Derby in the public vote, which closes on November 18.

Stefan Gurney, executive director of Norwich BID, said: 'We hope the Castle/Arcade district will be recognized for its uniqueness; including the innovative events, marketing campaigns and technology used to make a positive impact to the area.'

• Visit www.thegreatbritishhighstreet.co.uk to cast your vote.

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