Please, forgive the alliteration.
I’m very aware that this is the time of year when A-level students around the country begin to take stock of their university choices; you may have applied somewhere but it’s only once the offers start rolling in that it really sinks in that you’re going to have to choose, very shortly, where you want to live for the next three/four years. So for those considering UEA I am, hopefully, going to compile a couple of posts about Norwich itself – places I like to go, good places for a night out, maybe a little bit of Norwich’s history (used to be the second most important city in England don’t you know…).
My list will by no means be conclusive but hopefully it will give prospective students, and maybe even current UEA students, some info about our fair city.
Favourite Coffee shop/ Tea Rooms:
Norwich is teeming with delightful cafés and I have barely begun to chip away at the plethora on offer, but so far the stand out from the crowd is Biddy’s.
The range of cakes is usually vast and sometimes baffling, and they don’t skimp on portions – when I went a few weeks ago with a friend we had to wrap our Rocky Road up in napkins to save for later. They also let you blend you own tea, my personal recommendation is Earl Grey with Lavender.
Biddy’s is the graphic definition of hipster so if eccentric décor and people aren’t your cup of tea then steer clear, but if you like tea and cake, and enjoy consuming them in a very unique establishment, then Biddy’s is the place for you.
You will soon learn that as a student you can seldom afford to buy your books from an actual bookshop, the lure of Amazon and Wordery are just too strong, but certain independent book stores should still be supported. The best that Norwich has to offer, in my humble opinion, is The Book Hive. In 2011 it won The Daily Telegraph’s Best Small Bookshop in Britain, a title it well deserves.
All of the books are personally chosen and fall into five main categories; Fiction, Poetry, Art & Design, Children’s Books and Cookery. Because of the personal touch you will often come across titles that you’ve never heard of or are unlikely to stumble across in a chain bookshop.
The shop itself is beautiful but a great deal of effort is put into celebrating and showing off the beauty of the texts themselves. Well worth a perusal.
Favourite (not really sure what to call this one…):
St. Gregory’s is a 14th century church in the heart of Norwich which has been turned into the mother of all bric-a-brac shops, it’s partly what I imagine the room of requirement to look like in Harry Potter. Having a look around is an adventure in itself as you never know what you may find.
Next week I’ll be back with even more of the delights of Norwich, but in the mean time I’d love to hear what you think of these places, and if you have any recommendations.