If you're coming to Norwich for any number of fantastic events or just the culture, shopping and heritage, before you pack your bags to head up to our Fine City, here's the Visit Norfolk guide to city slebs…
Wolverine loves Canaries
You know Stephen Fry supports Norwich City Football Club, owned by TV’s head chef and National Treasure Delia Smith. But did you know Hollywood heartthrob, the ab-fab Hugh Jackman ALSO supports the Canaries? Given his biggest role, you'd think he'd support Wolverhampton Wanderers – the Wolves. (It's actually because his mum comes from Norfolk). To misquote Norfolk's great naval commander Nelson
, 'They are Canaries fans, and glory in being so'. The fan's song On The Ball, City
is regarded as the oldest in world football still in use.
Pimp my education
Pimp My Ride presenter Tim Westwood went to the independent Norwich School and also to local comp The Hewett School. (By the way, Westwood, as he's affectionately called, is the son of a former Bishop of Peterborough, in neighbouring Cambridgeshire). BT Sport top host Jake Humphreys also went to Hewett, where his mum was a teacher!
But does Partridge support Canaries?
Alan Partridge lives in the Linton Travel Tavern in Norwich FACT! He says things like: "I know lying is wrong, but if the elephant man came in now in a blouse with some make up on, and said 'How do I look?' Would you say, bearing in mind he's depressed and has respiratory problems, would you say 'Go and take that blusher off you mis-shapened elephant tranny'? No. You'd say 'You look nice... John'". We used that line because the man who played John Merrick in David Lynch's film The Elephant Man was screen legend John Hurt… who lives in north Norfolk. Partridge's Alpha Papa film was world premiered at Anglia Square in Norwich... that's right, it's Anglia Square NOT Leicester Square! You see what they did there?
NORFOLK ON THE BIG SCREEN
Myleene: a Klass apart
When not having Twitter storms with pushy mums, former Hear'Say singer Myleene Klass is proud of the fact she went to Notre Dame High School in Norwich, although she comes from just up the road in Gorleston-on-Sea
, as does S Club 7's Hannah Spearritt (currently getting the band back together for an arena reunion tour). Make-up and fashion vlogger Tanya Burr went to Notre Dame too, and had a stint on the beauty counter at Jarrold
City centre's little pop Puppet (Man)
Rock god the Puppet Man pumps out the bass to passers-by most days in Gentleman's Walk in the city centre. His karaoke machine and set of hand puppets are things of legend. Just don't ask for requests.
What Dr Who and King of Tonga have in common...
Big Weekender host Greg James went to the University of East Anglia in Norwich, where he presented on the student station Livewire. The Radio 1 event is on the university campus. (In fact, Controller of BBC One Jonathan Powell did too). Other famous UEA alumni include the King of Tonga (we're not making this up, you know), former Doctor Who Matt Smith (no relation to Delia that we know of), Pirates of the Caribbean's Jack Davenport, comedians Simon Day, Charlie Higson, Arthur Smith and Paul Whitehouse, politicians Douglas Carswell and Caroline Flint and Booker prize winning authors Ian McEwan, Kazuo Ishiguro and Anne Enright. Oh, and The Choirmaster himself, Gareth Malone OBE.
NORWICH CITY OF LITERATURE
No Norwich... No Sound of Music (kinda)
Oh, and we can't leave out Sir Thomas Erpingham
, who led the Welsh archers at Agincourt and is now immortalised in a statue about the main gate at Norwich Cathedral – he can lay claim to having a hand in the invention of the rude 'Vs-up' gesture; Bishop Matthew Parker
who was the original Nosey Parker; Pablo Fanque
, the first black British circus owner and famous for being immortalised in The Beatles' Being For The Benefit of Mr Kite on Sergeant Peppers; and Sarah Ann Glover
, who invented the Tonic Sol-fa method of singing. No Sarah Ann Glover, no Do, Re, Mi, Fa, So, La, Ti, ergo the hills wouldn't have been so alive with Julie Andrews' singing.
Student life in Norwich and Norfolk