Derek James

Peter Kent's Fatal Gates book. Picture: Peter Kent

A city history book with a difference

How to describe The Fatal Gates of Norwich is a challenge. It is a book like no other. It is unique, brilliant and the chances are it will make you laugh out loud as it blends fact and fiction in a glorious way.

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A very rare photograph of the unique Shell Garden, also known as The Fountain, with Robert and Elizabeth Frewer and their son William, in the rough and tumble St James Palace Yard in Norwich of the 1870s.

How Robert created a unique work of art in the heart of the city’s yards

It is a picture to saviour. A rare attraction and an astonishing work of art hidden in a yard which had a reputation as being one of the worst slums in Norwich more than a century ago.

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DJ feat pix 17/8/15

Entertainment boss last man to remember Kohima horrors

North Walsham born David Lowe, who went on to become known as “Mr Entertainment in Ipswich”, is thought to be the last man alive from the crack 2nd Battalion of the Royal Norfolk Regiment who took on the Japanese in one of the bloodiest battles of the war in the Far East...and won.

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Peter Cossey, owner of The Movie Shop in Norwich, has written a new book about Norwich cinemas.

Memories of cinemas and a lifelong love for our ‘Mr Movie’

The small boy was made to stand in front of the class while a red-faced and furious teacher shouted at him until he finally admitted how sinful he had been. Yes, he had been to the pictures on a Sunday.

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The Good Companions Club at Easton celebrating its 60th anniversary.

Sixty years young, it’s party time for club

Ladies and gentlemen join me in a toast... to the members of Easton Good Companions Club, a group which has just celebrated 60 glorious years.

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Cossey bakery, King Street, Norwich

Norwich family who really earned their crust

There was a time when the longest and oldest street in Norwich was one of the busiest – so many people lived, worked and played in historic King Street.

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'We'll miss you': An emotional farewell for Cawston College's headmistress Barbara Harrison in the 1999 speech day.

The day Kate Adie helped to say goodbye to closing Aylsham school

It was more than 15 years when the doors of one Norfolk school closed and the boys and girls left for the last time... this was Cawston College, near Aylsham.

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Children have fun at a 466th Bomb Group 100th mission party.

Wanted: Your memories of the Yanks’ friendly Norfolk invasion

From childhood memories of parties at American airbases across Norfolk to stories of enduring friendships created during the Second World War... recordings of memories make sure the momentous story of the “Friendly Invasion” will never be forgotten.

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Pupils in the Dining Hall at the Hewett School

 in December 1980.

It’s party time as city school prepares for get-together

It is the “Big Reunion” at the most talked-about school in Norwich and this is your invitation to attend... so step forward all you Hewett students and staff, past and present. It’s party time.

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Devastation caused at Boulton and Paul’s Riverside Works by a German bomber. Picture by Jack Fincham.

Deadly day the Luftwaffe gave Norwich a first taste of the war

For months the people of Norwich had been waiting for war. Public and private shelters were dug and put up, the air raid wardens took up their posts, sirens had sounded and then, on July 9, 1940, the Luftwaffe appeared over the city and life would never be the same again.

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A Hethel air crew from mid-1943

Film spotlight on the brave US air crews ‘over here’

One remarked: “In England the war stops for tea!” While another said: “The English know how to make tea, and we know how to make coffee.”

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The people who lived around Carrow Road during the Second World War gather on the Norwich City Football Club pitch to celebration victory in Europe.

Making a pitch for a special VE day party

We have been remembering the street parties in Norwich and across Norfolk which celebrated the end of the Second World War in Europe in 1945... but these are rare pictures of a pitch party, and not any old pitch.

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Celebrating the Silver Jubilee of George V in Rose Yard, Norwich, in May 1935.

Do you remember Norwich’s old courts and yards?

Imagine being part of a large family living in a tiny dark home without power or water supply where a communal tap and a lavatory were at the end of an often rat-infested yard with an exotic name in the heart of old Norwich.

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Allan Smethurst - the Singing Postman. Edp file pic form 1975.

Fifty years on, how ‘Hev Yew Gotta Light, Boy?’ lit up our lives

It was fifty years ago when a Norfolk postman delivered his last letter... and turned into a “pop star.” His name was Allan Smethurst and he was The Singing Postman.

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After the Blitz: The Boar's Head was gutted in the Baedecker raids.

How Hitler’s blitz robbed us of a city gem

It was another of the beautiful buildings in Norwich destroyed in the Blitz of 1942... one built way back in 1455 which became the first music hall in the city.

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A Frank Price workers' outing to Great Yarmouth in the 1950s.

Do you remember Norwich’s Frank Price department store?

This was the department store for the people were the price was always right... set up by Granny Price in 1885 it turned into one of the most popular and best-loved shops in Norwich.

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Rethatching theThatched Cinema (formerly The Thatcher Assembly Rooms) in All Saints' Green, Norwich. The building was destroyed - along with the original Bonds store next door, during the Norwich blitz in 1942.

Elegant venue was victim of city Blitz

It was a century ago when this wonderful and elegant thatched Norwich building opened its doors as a cinema like no other.

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Helping others. Back in the 1970s there three Norwich Brewery workers were out and about in the in the city raising more than £1,000 for the St Raphael Club They were, from the left: Julie Chambers, Jenny Campling and Jayne White.

Raise a glass to city’s brewing past and it’s fine ales of today

It was called Kett’s Finale. A beer brewed and bottled in Norwich 30 years ago to mark the end of an era. Another great city industry – which once employed generations of men and women – had gone.

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Trade and Industry -- Manufacturing

Rumsey Wells hat factory home of the world famous doggy cap Pictured left to right Mrs. M. Drane, cap finisher; Mr. A. Harris, cutter; Mrs. H. Stevenson, machinist
Uses ib

If the cap fits... Rumsey Wells was the man for the job

It was 200 years ago when an announcement appeared in the Norwich Mercury... which resulted, a century later, in the arrival of one of the most colourful and flamboyant shopkeepers Norwich has ever seen.

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Vernon dancing with Irene. Picture: Philip Yaxley Collection

New honour for Vernon - the Norwich dancer who inspired Fred Astaire

The superstar who time forgot - an American idol and a First World War hero - has finally been honoured in the city where he was born... Norwich.

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File picture dated 9/10/1968 of rock band The Who along with Eli, the baby elephant and models Nicola Austine (left) and Toni Lee on a ride on the Magic Bus from the BBCs Lime Grove studios. PA photo.

People tried to put them down... but the Mod generation of Who fans hit back

The Mods are on the march again... coming to the defence of their idols The Who when they almost lifted the roof off the old Industrial Club (now The Talk) in Norwich 50 years ago.

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mike and bernie winters

Comedy duo who went from city market to TV stardom

They were loved by millions. After Morecambe and Wise these boys were the top double act in the land... and to think were once selling clothes on Norwich Market.

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Eileen and Ernie Humphrey with Royal Marines bandsmen in 1989.

A message from ‘Humph’, from the heart

I have a message for the people of Norwich and Norfolk from a poorly patient at a hospital in Scotland... a special one which comes from the heart.

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The Who in 1970. Picture: PA.

When The Who failed to impress the crowd at The Talk in Norwich

Fifty years after The Who failed to impress the crowd at The Talk in Norwich, 60s favourites Eyes of Blond had them shouting for more when they reformed for a charity gig last weekend.

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Members of staff from Chamberlin's store.

Photo gallery: Famous city store that sold only the best

More than a couple of centuries ago isolated Norwich was in a poor way. The Mint has disappeared along with the famous old weavers and the textile trade. It was without railways, without penny postage, morning papers, matches, gas or electricity.

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Looking good! David Clayton (left) and Steve “Dr Vinyl” Burns in the 1970s with their Gemini Disco. They are back at The Talk for the Eyes of Blond reunion party on Saturday January 24.

David and Steve back behind the decks

Just look at those snazzy bow-ties being sported by two trendy disc-spinners back in Norfolk during the 1970s when flapping flares, frizzy perms and hot pants were fab gear for a generation of disco kings and queens.

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Author Paul Oxbury with his book The League of Forgotten Men, about the Norwich and District Thursday football League. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

The overwhelming response Paul Oxbury received for his book on Norwich and District Thursday League Football

Accountant Paul Oxbury has scored a winner with his new book telling the story and following the glorious history of the Norwich & District Thursday League Football League which attracted tens of thousands of players over its 109-year history.

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Soldiers at Lakenham hospital on City Road, Norwich, before it opened as a school. A new building now stands in its place. Picture: Submitted

Photo gallery: How EDP readers 100 years ago dug deep to help casualties of war

A century ago the full horror of war was starting to impact on the people of Norwich and Norfolk as the broken and bleeding men were returning home for treatment... but a crisis was looming. The hospital beds were filling up.

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Martin Peters

Martin Peters - The World Cup star who graced local football

The prisoners were on a run, the police copped it in a final, the Post Office stamped their authority on a season and there was Martin Peters who knew a thing or two about football... welcome to the wonderful world of the Thursday football league in Norfolk.

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St Augustine’s School Empire Day in 1933. That’s Hazel Betts on the front row representing South Africa.

Recalling those Empire Day happy times at St Augustine’s in Norwich

She was Miss South Africa in the glorious Empire Day celebrations at St Augustine’s in Norwich and more than 60 years later she was made an MBE – that’s little Hazel in the front row.

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Come on you Stars! A rare photograph of speedway supporters at The Firs Stadium in Holt Road, Norwich, which closed 50 years ago in 1964.

Photos: Mike Kemp Collection.

Shale and hearty, your memories of the stars and those great Firs nights out

It was more than just a race meeting... it was a reunion, a gathering of friends. Men, women and children from all walks of life coming together to enjoy the thrills and spills of speedway.

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The Bishop of Norwich Graham James, with from left, church warden Stephen Miles, Lay Preacher Amanda Sands and church warden Andrew Lee outside of Fulmondeston Parish Church. Picture: Matthew Usher.

The Bishop of Norwich reveals his inspiring people

We all have people who have inspired and encouraged us on our journey through life. Some are living and have become friends while others are from a time long ago and lived in a very different world to the one we inhabit.

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It's 1953, and time for the Ascension Day service for Cringleford School pupils

Double helping of school’s rich history from author Pat

The discovery of an old tin box, containing a treasure trove of rare information telling the story of one village school in Norfolk with a rich history and an exciting future, has resulted in not one, but two, fascinating books.

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Crunch Munch meals on sale at just £2 at the Artichoke in Norwich; Photo: Bill Smith; Copy: David Bale; For: EN LYL; Archant © 2009; 01603 772434

Family firm that built a legacy to admire

From the grand and the ornate to the sturdy and practical, J S Smith and his son Walter were men who helped to shape Norfolk of the 21st century... and yet they have been almost forgotten in the mists of time.

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American war memorial unveiled at Shipdham  pic taken 3rd sept 1983   m104843-27

Jim’s legacy to battles won and comrades lost

American airman Jim Wright only spent a few months in Norfolk during the Second World War but he never forgot the place and the people at a time of turmoil... and he has now left between $100,000 and $200,000 to the Second Air Division Memorial Library in Norwich in his will.

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Packing tomatoes at Adcocks

Our city’s Edwardian greats

Turn the pages of this “new” book and you will see photographs of mostly stern-looking gentlemen with moustaches and whiskers dressed in their best bib and tucker. You may recognise some of their names because they were the Men Who Have Made Norwich.

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A vintage view of St Stephen's corner and Rampant Horse Street, Norwich.

Ancient street with right royal stories to tell

It was the main entrance to the walled city of Norwich from London and in 1578 thousands lined the route cheering and clapping as Queen Elizabeth, riding side-saddle, arrived. She was followed in 1671 by Charles II and his much-loved Portuguese wife, Queen Catherine.

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Film star and USAAF war hero James Stewart on the control tower at either Tibbenham or Old Buckenham.

The Glenn Miller Story to show again to raise money for Wymondham Abbey

A classic film about a man who played his music in Norfolk, portrayed by an actor who served his country with distinction in the county, will be shown on Sunday to raise money for glorious Wymondham Abbey.

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Trevor Hedge: The 'quiet man of speedway'.

How Norwich’s legendary speedway rider ‘Hedgey’ rose to fame

He was the quiet and modest Norfolk skid-kid who rose to become an international speedway star winning, 45 years ago, the Wills Internationale – the most prestigious individual meeting outside the World Final itself.

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The Octagon Singers

Norwich Octagon congregation celebrate 30 years of singing together

Back in 1984 Octagon member Betty Rathbone contacted music teacher and singer Mary Rae and asked if she would organise some concerts at the beautiful and elegant Georgian chapel in historic Colegate – a building so much a part of Norwich’s history.

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Derek feat pix 3/11/14

Stuart John McLaren’s written record of lives and wartime in St Augustine’s

Across a darkly stained oak beam at the top of St Augustine’s war memorial in Norwich the words THEY ARE NOT DEAD WHO LIVE FOREVER IN OUR HEARTS have been carved and gilded on its east facing literary source for this phrase has been found.

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The Guildhall, Norwich.

The colourful criminal history of Norwich’s Guildhall

It is a building which is a glorious example of the flint work Norwich was so famous for...and one which is at long last opening its doors and welcoming back the people it has served in so many ways for centuries.

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Ove Fundin, 79 year old former world speedway champion and Norwich Stars rider, at Horham Community centre to support the bid to relaunch the Norwich Stars team.

Ove Fundin reveals his success in Norwich Stars Speedway

It was 60 years ago when a young unknown and shy Swedish speedway rider made his way to Norwich by train, pushing his bike, held together with bits of old wire and string, between stations.

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A scene from the 1984 film Laughterhouse

The film that starred Norfolk, and 350 geese

It was a film which was a celebration of Norfolk, was first shown in Norwich, starring no fewer than 350 geese... and now, 30 years after its release, is being shown again.

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Tony Blackburn spinning the disks on Radio Caroline. Famously, he would later go on to present the first show on BBC Radio One.

The era of Radio Caroline - when pop pirates ruled the East Anglian coast

It was half a century ago when life changed for thousands of pop pickers across Norfolk and Suffolk... at the flick of a switch.

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Robert Holly as a senior at Lowell High School, Indiana, 1941.

Author David Kohler to pay tribute to a US airman at Hethel Museum

A little museum with a unique collection of displays and material highlighting a time when Norfolk was ‘invaded’ by thousands of Americans will be open for the last time this year on Sunday.

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Norwich Guildhall is about to celebrate its 600th anniversary, having been built mostly between 1407 and 1413. Photo: Bill Smith.

Welcome bid to put extra HEART into Norwich’s Guildhall

Welcome to what was my parlour... and allow me to unlock a house of history in the heart of Norwich. One of the most important buildings of its kind not just in Norfolk but the whole of the country.

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Norfolk businessman Tim Hirst, who has made four unsuccessful attempts to climb Aconcagua mountain in the Argentinian Andes.

Try, try again Tim and his mountain of inspiration

Four times in ten years, determined Norfolk businessman Tim Hirst tried his best to conquer the highest mountain in the world outside the Himalayas.

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Scenes taken during the First World War, when Norwich engineering firm Mann Egerton turned its expertise over to building planes for the war effort.

Norfolk flies high to boost the efforts of World War One’s engineers

From boots to aeroplanes... A century ago the skilled men and women of Norfolk and Norwich were making a range of goods, equipment and machines for our forces in the First World War.

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New apprentices at Laurence, Scott Electromotors, Norwich, in a picture used in the Eastern Evening News on September 3 1973.

Bruce steps down after 44 busy years

It was a company which helped to put Norwich on the industrial map – a symbol of British workmanship at its very best.

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Stephen Ellingham, who is reinstating the passenger ferry service across the river Yare to Whitlingham Lane.
Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

Ferryboat-full of stories of larger-than-life ‘Nobby’ Clarke

Those who spend their working days on or around the water – the sea, the Broads and the rivers – tend to be larger-than-life characters. Folk with a dry wit and a head full of great yarns.

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Chairman Roy Woodhouse and chief constable, Simon Bailey, make a special presentation to former Norwich police officer Stan Limmer, and his wife Brenda, who is stepping down from running the Norwich City Police Association.
Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

“You are held in such high regard” - Former Norwich police offer honoured at the Oaklands Hotel

He was a man of the people, demonstrated through Army service with the Royal Engineers, an officer commanding Army cadets, and 30 years as a Norwich policeman.

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The Trafford Arms, Pub of the Week.; Landlord Chris Higgins.; Photo: Denise Bradley

Ready, take aim, and get ready to give Chris a good soaking

This is your chance to give one of the best-loved and most popular landlords in Norwich... a good soaking!

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Doris and Eddie Foy Jnr in The Pajama Game.

Jan’s cuppa - with Doris Day

Among the audience at a Wymondham film show and exhibition to pay tribute to Doris Day, now in her 90s, will be one of her biggest fans who has met the Hollywood star over tea and cakes at the Dorchester Hotel in London.

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Anne May, niece of Burston pupils' strike leader Violet Potter, outside the Strike School with the new book

Norfolk book honours memory of school’s justice fight

A new book on an extraordinary event which took place in a small Norfolk village 100 years ago will be launched at a unique rally which illustrates how a good and honest cause still deserves to be remembered in the 21st Century.

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