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New apps showcase the best in West Norfolk

Stow Bridge Heritage Explore West Norfolk Photo: Tim Baldwin

Stow Bridge Heritage Explore West Norfolk Photo: Tim Baldwin

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Three new apps have been launched to showcase the best of west Norfolk's heritage.

Downham Town Square Heritage Explore West Norfolk Photo: Tim BaldwinDownham Town Square Heritage Explore West Norfolk Photo: Tim Baldwin

You can download them to your mobile to guide you along trails of historic churches, glorious countryside or the region's rivers.

Route One takes you through historic Lynn and out to Castle Rising. One of the most famous 12th century castles in England. The stone keep, built in 1140 AD, is one of the finest surviving examples of its kind.

In its time Rising has served as a hunting lodge, royal residence and, for a brief time.

The Norfolk Coast cycleway bike route then leads up to Sandringham House, museum and gardens. Following the route on the app would takes you through the estate villages of West Newton and Anmer.

Sandringham Trials Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim BaldwinSandringham Trials Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim Baldwin

You can also head onto the Ingoldisthorpe Explorer cycling route, which allows you to stop off at Bircham Windmill for tea. Now fully restored you can climb to the top of the windmill and go out on the fan deck.

Also on the list to explore is the area of outstanding natural beauty including Holme Dunes, where the Wash meets the North Sea, the golden sands of Brancaster Beach, all the way along to Holkham Park. Lord Nelson spent many of his younger days exploring this stretch of coast.

A Churches and Religion app features the history, architecture and stories of the communities and groups who have built and worshipped in them for more than 1,000 years.

Denver Sluice Complex Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim BaldwinDenver Sluice Complex Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim Baldwin

The app categorizes the area's churches into the various types including angel roof, great marshland, historic, monastic, pilgrimage and round tower churches.

There are many named after the Virgin Mary, including Snettisham with its 175ft spire, a landmark for mariners navigating The Wash.

The stone spire is a rarity in Norfolk, only the cathedral and three other churches have one, which are described as “God's rocket to Heaven”. This 14th century church has been described as the most exciting in Norfolk.

Also included are St Mary's in Heacham is known for its connection to Pocahontas, the American Indian princess and St Mary's Church in Burnham Deepdale, with its 950-year-old round tower and collection of medieval glass.

Magdalen Village Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim BaldwinMagdalen Village Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim Baldwin

Round towers are unique to East Anglia, 175 remain in the area from the Saxon and Norman periods.

In Burnham Norton you can discover what is thought to be the first Carmelite Friary established in Norfolk.

Heading inland, North Creake and South Creake both boast of St Mary's Churches. Trade merchants, wealthy from the wool trade, poured money into their local parish churches.

Although fire gutted the Church of St Mary and All Saints in Little Walsingham in 1961, the church has been sheeted with copper, with new window frames and glazing.

Castle Rising Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim BaldwinCastle Rising Exlpore West Norfolk Photo: Tim Baldwin

Walsingham Abbey has been a place of pilgrimage since the 11th Century. Visitors can enjoy the tranquil gardens and, over the ancient packhorse bridge, the river and woodland walks lead into unspoilt woods and parkland.

The Fen Rivers Way runs for nearly 50 miles between King's Lynn and Cambridge. The Walk West Norfolk app guides you from Lynn to Denver Sluice, the heart of the Fens' maze of waterways.

It takes you through St Germans and Magdalen, where tidal bores or waves can sometimes form on the river, as water from the Wash funnels into the river Great Ouse and forms waves as the river narrows.

Next stops are Stow Bridge and Wimbotsham before Downham Market, one of Norfolk's oldest market towns. Dating back to Saxon times.

The train station is close to the river, with its Grade II listed buildings and signal box.

Heading towards Salters Lode, the walk ends at Denver Sluice. The complex manages the confluence of five watercourses, protecting thousands of homes and businesses from flooding.

It plays a key role in river navigation, conservation, water abstraction, agricultural, land drainage and fisheries.

For more information visit explorewestnorfolk.co.uk or download the apps available on IOS, Android and Google.



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