Ten of Norwich's best 21st Century buildings: Which is your favourite?

Pablo Fanque House, Norwich. Picture: Jamie Honeywood

Pablo Fanque House. - Credit: Archant

Norwich is renowned for its medieval heritage, famed for its glorious churches and the likes of picture-postcard Elm Hill.

But, in a vibrant city, time does not stand still. Newer buildings now rub shoulders with buildings which are centuries old.

A new publication 'Norwich in the Twenty-First Century', written by Jon Boon from civic watchdog The Norwich Society, celebrates the post-millennial buildings which have become a part of the city.

Here are some of the examples highlighted in that book, which shows how Norwich's rich heritage continues to evolve:

Goldsmith Street

Goldsmith Street in Norwich. Pic: Tim Crocker.

Goldsmith Street in Norwich. Pic: Tim Crocker. - Credit: Tim Crocker

From a scandal-hit site to a development deemed so good that it won the 2019 Stirling Prize, it was quite the journey for this Norwich City Council scheme.


You may also want to watch:


The £17m project was described as "a modest masterpiece" and "an outstanding contribution to British architecture" by judges in the Royal Institute of British Architects contest.

The homes - a mix of 45 one-bedroom flats, 40 two-bedroom houses, three two-bedroom flats and five four-bedroom flats - were built by RG Carter and designed by architects Mikhail Riches and Cathy Hawley.

Most Read

It was quite a turnaround from when the site made national headlines in 2008 because city council officers had moved into homes vacated by pensioners, contrary to City Hall policy.

Pablo Fanque House

Pablo Fanque House in Norwich. Picture: Jamie Honeywood

Pablo Fanque House in Norwich. Picture: Jamie Honeywood - Credit: Archant

One of the tallest buildings in the city, this student flat complex was built where Mecca Bingo used to be.

Alumno Developments were behind the 2018 building, which is home to 244 students at the University of East Anglia.

The All Saints Green building reaches as high as 14 storeys in sections, but Mr Boon praised the way the bulk of it is broken up by having varying heights.

The Forum

The Forum in Norwich.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

The Forum in Norwich. - Credit: Archant

Built in 2001, The Forum rose from the ashes of the old Norwich Central Library, following the fire of 1994.

Designed by award-winning architect Sir Michael Hopkins, Mr Boon said it is "probably the single building which has had the greatest impact on the city centre".

Rose Lane Car Park

Norwich's new Rose Lane multi-storey car park in Mountergate. But how well do you know the city's ca

Rose Lane Car Park. - Credit: Steve Adams

The £7m Norwich City Council car park was named the country's best new car park in the British Parking Awards in 2017.

Designed and built by Huber, the five-storey car park features a distinctive perforated steel facade.

Mr Boon said it proves "car parks do not need to be dull".

Norwich Bus Station

Norwich Bus Station.PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Norwich Bus Station. - Credit: © ARCHANT NORFOLK PHOTOGRAPHIC

A world away from the city's old, brick, bus station, the 2005 building transformed the experience of travel in Norwich.

Mr Boon said: "Sitting just behind the hexagonal tensile fabric lightwell in the roof, the travel centre has a glazed facade to benefit from the natural light."

Norwich Cathedral Refectory

The Refectory at Norwich Cathedral. Photo: Paul Tyagi

The Refectory at Norwich Cathedral - Credit: Paul Tyagi

Hopkins Architects were behind the design of the hostry and the refectory at Norwich Cathedral.

The refectory, built in 2009, recreates a medieval hall and combines medieval and modern architecture for a unique cafe experience.

Chantry Place

Chantry Place, formerly Chapelfield shopping centre, has announced which shops are remaining open du

Chantry Place, formerly Chapelfield shopping centre, has announced which shops are remaining open during lockdown. Pic: supplied - Credit: Archant

Built on the site of the former Rowntree Mackintosh chocolate factory, the former Chapelfield shopping centre opened in 2005.

Mr Boon said: "Despite the size of Chantry Place, it knits well into its surroundings through the use of strikingly contrasted facades to suit the very character of their locations."

The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital

Latest NHS figures show there were 45 people with Covid-19 occupying beds at Norfolk and Norwich Uni

The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital. - Credit: Evening News © 2009

Opened in 2001, there was controversy over the decision to relocate the N&N from the city centre to Colney.

Designed by healthcare specialist architects Anshen & Allen, Mr Boon said: "The main entrances are impressive, with their atrium design and full-height glazed curtain walls".

Creative Arts Building, City College Norwich

City College Norwich's creative arts building, to which the new Digi-Tech Factory will be a sister b

City College Norwich's Creative Arts Building. - Credit: Archant

The £4.6m building at City College Norwich's Ipswich Road site was designed by architects BDP and was completed in 2013.

Mr Boon said: "The design draws on the black massing and visible roof volumes of traditional Norfolk barns combined with the highly glazed west walls of Norfolk churches."

Boardman House

Boardman House at the Norwich University of the Arts (NUA). PIcture: Hudson Architects

Boardman House at the Norwich University of the Arts (NUA). PIcture: Hudson Architects - Credit: Archant

The Princes Street building was original built as a Sunday School in 1879 - designed by city architect Edward Boardman.

After being bought by the Norwich University of the Arts, it was converted by Hudson Architects.

Mr Boon said the building, which opened in 2015, has been "sensitively restored, including the fine atrium... which has been enhanced with a striking new staircase."

'Norwich In The Twenty-First Century' is available from Jarrold's and City Bookshop.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus