‘Mini-renaissance’ continues in Norwich’s St Augustine’s Street

A 'mini-renaissance' is set to continue in one of Norwich's most historic streets after a community centre for the area was officially opened.

Several new businesses and enterprises have opened this year in St Augustine's, near Anglia Square.

For many years the area, located in the shadow of Anglia Square's derelict office blocks, was blighted by empty shops and businesses.

But its fortunes have been picking up since the opening of the one-way system and the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Norwich opened a new community resource in the street last weekend.

The Stage, St Augustine's Gateway Enterprise, is a community space housed in a former sandwich shop, Fran's Pantry, which had been empty and derelict for more than a decade.

It has been completely renovated by Broadland Housing Association and is run by a board of trustees drawn from the local community.

Stuart McLaren, secretary at the Stage, who is also secretary of St Augustine's Community Together Residents' Association, said: 'It provides a much needed venue for hire for local groups, clubs, charities and businesses to hold meetings, run training courses, outreach surgeries, workshops, etc. and can even be hired as an exhibition space. It is another example of the 'mini-renaissance' of the St Augustine's area.'

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Earlier this year, the musical instruments retailer PMT (Professional Music Technology) moved from Anglia Square into the former furniture showroom, Wallace Kings, at the corner of Botolph Street and St Augustine's Street, which closed last year.

A Facebook site – St Augustine's Directory – has been set up by Kate Webster, who runs Junk & Gems in the street, to highlight what's going on in the area.

For more information email info@stagenorwich.org.uk

Is your part of Norwich getting a makeover? Call reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email david.bale2@archant.co.uk.

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