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Massive 136ft crane hoisted into place for Norwich Castle revamp

PUBLISHED: 15:09 30 September 2020 | UPDATED: 15:14 30 September 2020

A 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

A 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Archant 2020

Norwich Castle is one of the city’s most imposing landmarks, but it is being joined by a new addition to the skyline - a mammoth 136ft crane.

A 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMANA 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

The massive tower crane is being installed today (Wednesday, September 30), so the £13.5m revamp to recreate how the castle’s keep appeared in Norman times can take a major step forward.

The huge Jaso J160,10 saddle jib tower crane is being hoisted into place by a mobile crane which has been set up in an exclusion zone in the Castle Gardens.

That mobile crane has been lifting and placing the tower crane in sections, which are scheduled for delivery throughout the day, weather permitting.

Once completed the crane will help transport materials needed for the Royal Palace Reborn project, such as steel and glass.

A 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMANA 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Morgan Sindall Construction will also use it to make alterations to the roof which, once completed, will make the Castle battlements fully accessible to the public for the first time.

The installation of the crane is an important milestone in the National Lottery Heritage Fund supported Norwich Castle: Royal Palace Reborn project which will recreate the Norman layout of the keep, enabling visitors to experience Norwich Castle as it was in its medieval heyday.

Margaret Dewsbury, cabinet member for communities and partnerships at Norfolk County Council, said: “The original builders of the Norman castle used the most sophisticated methods of their day to construct what was one of the grandest buildings in medieval Europe.

“It’s wonderful to see this tradition of ingenuity and craftsmanship continuing in the 21st century as we begin the next exciting phase in the Castle’s evolution.”

A 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMANA 136ft crane is being put together on the Castle Mound for the Castle Keep project. Pictures: BRITTANY WOODMAN

Alister Broadberry, area director of Morgan Sindall, said: “The crane will ensure the bridge up to the castle and dungeons remain protected as materials are lifted across and into the castle where our craftspeople can do their best work.

“The crane will also have a large LED screen, which will display information about the project so that people passing by can learn about, and be inspired by, what is to come.”

The keep will be shut during the work, but museum bosses are hoping the rest of the castle can reopen to the general public soon.


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