An Insider Norfolk Guide to What's on 2020
Anish Kapoor at Houghton Hall is opening on the 12th July and runs through until the 1st November 2020.
The Houghton Hall exhibition of the internationally acclaimed artist and 1991 Turner Prize winner Anish Kapoor. Kapoor is regarded as one of the most influential and pioneering sculptors of his generation and is celebrated for works which enter into a profound spiritual engagement with the viewer.
The Houghton exhibition will feature 21 sculptures as well as a selection of drawings and smaller works representative of Kapoor’s groundbreaking body of work created over the past 40 years. Presented together, this series of works will challenge the classical architecture of the house and the idyllic beauty of the grounds, whilst being in continuous dialogue and engagement with Houghton’s history.
Curated by Mario Codognato, the exhibition at Houghton will feature some of Kapoor’s major works in mirror and stone, including Sky Mirror (2018) – a 5-metre diameter mirror of stainless steel that reflects and transforms the space around it, turning the world upside down – and a series of carved marble sculptures created in 2001 – 2003 which will be displayed across the grounds. A number of works will also be shown inside the house, including a series of dramatic sandstone sculptures which will be presented in the gallery spaces.
Presented together, this series of work will challenge the classical architecture of the house and idyllic beauty of the grounds, whilst being in continuous dialogue and engagement with Houghton's history.
Kapoor is one of the most influential sculptors working today, known for creating ambitious public sculptures adventurous in both form and engineering across vastly different scales and materials.
If Houghton Hall opens later this year, "A Fine Balance" will appear alongside the exhibition by Anish Kapoor. The pop-up exhibition explores narratives original to natural life forms and processes that distinguish different aspects of our environment. They reveal the fragility of unusual topographies and celebrate the cyclical process of a coastal landscape alternating between erosion and renewal. You can see an online preview of a Fine Balance featuring almost 50 artists from across the region here
“Anish Kapoor is a magician.” Lord Cholmondeley, Houghton Hall
Sandringham Norfolk PE35 6ENSat05Sep2020Sun06Sep2020
Sandringham Country Fair on the 5th and 6th September 2020. The fair showcases a range of crafts and food stalls as well as many outdoor demonstrations of country sports and activities.
Three main arenas, including the Countryside Arena and World of Dogs, displaying the best in exciting equine sports, country pursuits and the wonderful world of dogs; a huge steam and vintage area, have a go falconry, fishing, fieldsports and more. A great countryside day out for the whole family.
There is also food arena, children's activities, a shooting village, falconry arena and lots to eat!
9:00 amThursford Collection, Thursford, Fakenham NR21 0ASSat26Sep2020
In 2019 over 400 riders took part in this cycling event based loosely on the previous haunts of the legendary black shuck hound. There are three routes of approx 28 - 30 miles each + a family friendly up to 10 mile route to get the under 16's and their families out on their bikes. The family route has been designed to have low traffic, not too many hills and also be rewarding. The routes have a very good mix of beautiful countryside rolling hills and unspoilt views.
5:00 amLenwade, Norwich NR9 5JWFri09Oct2020Sat31Oct2020
PrimEvil, Norfolk's biggest scare experience, returns to the dinosaur park Norwich on the 9th October 2020 with fun, entertainment and screams as the doors to five haunted mazes open, filled with a host of characters and scares. This is certainly not for the faint of heart!
From clowns to the dark, small spaces to spiders, there is something to spook everyone at Prime Evil and it is no surprise that is attracts tens of thousands of thrill seekers young and old every Halloween. Enjoy a cabaret of forgotten circus and ghost stories, gallows humour and lost souls, set to devastating beats and mesmerising tunes to make you dance till you drop.
Also new this year is PrimEvil Extreme, two nights dedicated to those over the age of 18, with a firework display, heightened haunts and an exclusive, exciting, immersive experience.
With online ticket prices ranging from £19.95 and the additional option of upgrading to a Fast Track or VIP, this has to be the year that you re-visit. In April offering 25% off 'All Haunts' tickets for a limited time.
9:00 amHolkham Hall Estate NR23 1ABFri16Oct2020Sun18Oct2020
The Holkham Hall Antiques Fair is Norfolk's most prestigious antiques fair with 30 of the U.K's top dealers offering an eclectic mix of items at prices suited to both new and more established collectors. The Holkham fair contain a fascinating mix of fine and country furniture, English silver, fine porcelain and art as well as arms and armour, figurines, bronzes and more. The fair will be staged in the magnificent Lady Elizabeth Wing which is the new “state of the art” event facility in the heart of the Holkham Hall estate. There should be plenty to tempt you with a chance to pick up something a little different.
The Holkham Hall Antiques Fair on the 16th - 18th October 2020 is a great opportunity for residents and visitors to this beautiful area of North Norfolk to meet some of the U.K.’s most prominent dealers and hopefully find something special amongst the antiques on offer. The Courtyard Cafe adjacent to the fair is a perfect place to relax and chat.
Free tickets to the fair are available to download Lomax Fairs site, please note these do not cover the small parking charge (£3/car) which gives the whole family access to the grounds of this wonderful stately home which covers over 3000 acres of deer park, lake, forest and conservation area.
Norfolk Restaurant Week 2020. This is Norfolk’s largest dining event, a culinary celebration of our vibrant restaurant scene, fine food, and the people who produce it. This year the events kicks off on the 31st October 2020.
It is the opportunity to sample those restaurants you have always wanted to try, or revisit existing favourites, all at unmissable prices. Every restaurant who takes part will offer their usual high standard of food but at an incredibly tempting price.
Last year saw hungry diners making the most 40 unmissable priced menus at some of North Norfolk’s best restaurants. “The event has become hugely popular over the last five years, and menus, which are now available to view online, are much anticipated. The most popular places fill up quickly, which is why we always encourage people to book well in advance,” confirms founder and organiser Martin Billing
Snettisham Nature ReserveSun01Nov2020Sun31Jan2021
The dawn flight of up to 40,000 pink-footed geese that make their way from Iceland and Greenland to gather on the The Wash in one of the best nature spectacles in Europe..
The arrival of the Pink-footed Geese in Snettisham has come to herald the start of the Autumn and Winter season for many bird-watchers and nature lovers.
Every year this unique bird visits our shores in greater numbers with thousand blackening the winter sky as they head to their night roost. Their numbers increase steadily throughout October, and by the end of November most of the geese will have arrived. The Pink-footed Goose is not only attracted to Norfolk for the Brancaster mussels or Cromer crabs, but for a rather less well known delicacy - the sugar beet. By February most will be returning home to their breeding ground in Spitsbergen, Iceland and Greenland. The sight of tens of thousands of geese taking off and landing en-masse at the Snettisham reserve is one of Norfolk's natural wonders.
Bonfire 6pm F/W 7.30pHunstanton Norfolk CoastSat07Nov2020
Hunstanton Cliffs is the perfect spot for a Guy Fawkes night celebration and the fireworks are big, loud and go on and on and on! They say that nowhere are the skies bigger than in Norfolk but these fireworks do a great job at filling it. Doors open at 5.30pm on Saturday 7th November 2020 and the giant bonfire before is lit at 6pm.
Wrap up warm for this amazing bonfire, laser and fireworks spectacle. Previous displays have combined fireworks with a laser show and pounding atmospheric music to thrill the many people who attend the Cliff Firework Extravaganza. The video below gives a little insight into the thrills that you can expect on the night.
The main firework display kicks off just after 7.30pm but we recommend getting there at least an hour in advance.
Food stalls, a fairground, children's entertainment and a bonfire will accompany the fireworks display. If you are looking to book a meal afterwards then reserve early.
Checkout Love Norfolk's Good Food Guide for good local places to book.
Sandringham Estate NorfolkFri20Nov2020Sun22Nov2020
This popular Christmas Craft Show held on the 20th-22nd November 2020 at Sandringham, bringing the opportunity to shop in comfort for all your Christmas food and gifts. New attractions include an Ice Skating Ring (synthetic) for the more energetic visitor and the Alternative Cabaret Tent with a varied bill of Magic & Illusion, Comedy and Balloon Science Show by Balloonatic.
Be met at the gate with a warming glass of seasonal punch, and stroll in comfort around the show.
Live music, excellent craft demonstrators, food halls and Christmas presents. Santa’s owl show, live reindeer and so much more.
Adults £9, Seniors £8, Children £3 and a Family Ticket which includes 2 Adults and 3 Children £24. Advance tickets and further information
10 am - 7pmBurnham Market, NorfolkSat21Nov2020
The annual Christmas lights switch on is accompanied by a Christmas market with artisan stalls that spread the whole way through the centre of this well-known Norfolk village. This year will be held on Saturday the 21st November 2020.
There is also live entertainment, food stalls and all the local businesses join in the fun. Opens from 10am with the lights being switched on a couple of hours after dark,
4.30pm -7.30pmSheringham Station, Norfolk NR26 8RASat21Nov2020Thu31Dec2020
The North Norfolk Railway will be transformed into The Norfolk Lights Express on selected evenings during November and December. The railway version of the Northern Lights will see trains decorated with multi-coloured lights gliding through the winter darkness from Saturday 21st November 2020.
From the comfort of vintage carriages, passengers will be able to watch a light show of illuminated festive scenes alongside the rails, and at the railway stations at Sheringham, Weybourne and Holt. The trains' external lights create technicolour effects for the passengers as they pass through the cuttings along the route.Sheringham, under the cover of darkness, The Norfolk Lights Express, fully decorated with multi-coloured lights, will steam it’s way through the countryside between Sheringham and Holt.
A complete range of refreshments including a licensed bar will be available on board.
10am - 5pmBurnham Deepdale PE31 8DDSat28Nov2020Sun29Nov2020
The Burnham Deepdale Christmas Fair returns for the 12th year and can get very busy indeed. Look out for tasty treats, wreaths, cheese, penguin pictures, soaps, homewares, biscuits, chutneys, jewellery, accessories, toys, books, salamis, tea, beer, cordials, glass, bags, photographs ... Something for every budget, every present list, and every taste.
This year there will be lots more food. Deepdale Cafe, pizzas, pies, crepes, duck wraps, mulled wine, hot chocolate, burgers, real ales, sloe gin, Christmas punch, brownies ... You definitely won’t go hungry or thirsty, plenty of places to refuel to continue with the Christmas shopping.
10am - 8pmWells-Next-Sea, NorfolkSat28Nov2020
Wells Christmas Tide Festival is traditionally held over a weekend, the first week in December each year, but depends on the Tides and this year will be on Saturday 28th November 2020.
Wells Christmas Tide Festival regularly pulls in thousands of families lured by the unique prospect of seeing Santa Claus arrive in Norfolk from the North Pole by sea.
The town’s main shopping street will then remain the focus of the festive fun as a whole host of acts keep visitors entertained from 10.30am to 8pm. A fair will be operating on The Quay from 10am onwards and the annual Christmas Tree Festival will take place in the Congregational Hall in Clubbs Lane from 10am to 4pm.
Christmas lights switch on is at 4.45pm. Santa is due to arrive on the Quay at around 6.15pm before heading for his grotto at Playland amusements to see children from around 7pm onwards.
The crowds will then be further entertained by a spectacular fireworks display over the Wells Marshes.The Quay will be closed to all traffic from 4.30pm to 8pm.
Holkham Hall, NorfolkSun29Nov2020Thu31Dec2020
Celebrate the magic of Christmas at Holkham from the end of November with a Candlelight Tour of the Hall and Christmas Fair. See each stateroom beautifully adorned with sweet-scented pine trees, greenery, sparkling decorations, and twinkling lights. Each room will have its own theme and your guide will tell you all about the inspiration behind each magical setting.
Make your visit extra special with a Champagne, Candlelight, and Creators of Christmas tour - your unique chance to meet the faces behind Christmas at Holkham. How about extending the Christmas magic by joining us in the beautiful Chapel in Holkham Hall between Christmas and New Year for a Candlelight Experience with ‘Nativity’: a moving-image artwork by Martha Fiennes.
Have they been naughty or nice? Treat the children to our sell-out event, An Audience with Father Christmas, where they will meet our singing band of Ukulele Elves before sitting down for stories and surprises with Father and Mother Christmas.
There is also the annual Holkham Festive Food Fair. The fair showcases the best of local and regional food and drink, and a live cookery theatre will feature demonstrations from renowned local chefs. The Holkham Christmas Food fair also features numerous stalls with great gift ideas from local producers.
11am - ParadeHunstanton Central Prom, Norfolk CoastFri25Dec2020
The Hunstanton Christmas Day Swim has been staged from the main beach for over 50 years and draws over a hundred swimmers and many hundreds of spectators who cheer on the very game participants. Many swimmers not only brave the icy water but also fancy dress to raise money for charity. The swimmers will parade into the sea at 11am. Refreshments available from the Waterside Bar on Hunstanton Central Prom. The event raises money for the Round Table. For a registration form, visit Hunstanton Round Table Christmas Day Swim. Present the registration form at the Oasis Leisure Centre at 10.30am on Christmas Day.