With less than two weeks to go, Norwich is gearing up for three days of summer carnival fun from July 7-9 when the Lord Mayor’s Weekend takes over the city.
The packed programme includes entertainment headlined by an historic procession through the streets featuring dancers, acrobats, bands and colourful walking groups; as well as exciting shows across stages in Chapelfield Gardens and outside City Hall presenting choirs, bands, poets, world champion beatboxers and the very best of local talents. There will also be a tempting array of food on offer from Norfolk’s finest producers.
Councillor Cate Oliver, cabinet member for wellbeing and culture at Norwich City Council, said: “We’re inviting all our residents and visitors alike to come along over the weekend and join us in celebrating the sights, sounds, voices and tastes of the city and the county. This weekend is a key part of our yearly programme of festive community events and we are proud to support the Lord Mayor and Sheriff’s civic charity appeal for 2023-2024, the Norfolk Community Foundation.”
Friday 7 July
Sounds of the City - Chapelfield Gardens
Mysabar opens 4pm - 9.45pm
Leon and Gav Play Records 4pm – 7pm
The Marvel Records 7pm – 9.45pm
Carnival dress-up photo booth 4pm – 9pm
Mini Tastes of the City (a selection of food vendors) 4pm - 9:45pm
Funfair 4pm – 10pm
Saturday 8 July
Lord Mayor’s Procession - Sights of the City - starting at 3pm and parading from Surrey Street to Norwich Cathedral. Grab a spot along the route to watch the fun unfold. Featuring lots of colour, a carnival atmosphere and community spirit with local organisations, community groups and businesses, alongside acrobats, samba dancers and tumblers.
City Hall Stage - Voices of the City
Toasties Family Poetry presenting:
- 1pm – 1.15pm Lewis Buxton
- 1.15pm – 1:40pm Poppy Stevens
- 1.40pm – 1:50pm Lewis Buxton
- 1.50pm – 2:15pm Ashley Hickson-Lovence
- 2.15pm – 2:25pm Lewis Buxton
- 2.25pm – 2:55pm Arji Manuelpillai
- 2.55pm – 3pm Lewis Buxton
Break for the Lord Mayor’s Procession.
Toast Live Poetry presenting:
- 5pm – 5.10pm Lewis Buxton
- 5.10pm – 5.25pm Young Emerging Artists
- 5.25pm – 5.45pm Daisy Henwood
- 5.45pm – 6.05pm Shannon Clinton-Copeland
- 6.05pm – 6.25pm Mathilda Arminger
- 6.25pm – 6.35pm Lewis Buxton
- 6.35pm – 7.00pm Jess Morgan
- Luke Wright (Poet) 7pm – 7.50pm
Lord Mayor’s Announcements 7.50pm – 8.05pm
Voices of Norwich Allstars featuring Beatbox Collective, Invidia Voices Choir, the Norwich Jnr MCs, compered by Robin Evans Esq. 8.05pm – 10pm
Chapelfield Gardens, Sounds of the City Stage and Bandstand
The Norwich City Community Showcase in collaboration with Young Norfolk Arts and The Garage presents a cabaret of performers, including dancers, singers, acrobats and more 12 noon – 5.45pm
Wild Paths Festival presents:
- New Movement Ensemble 6.30pm – 7.20pm
- The Nimbus Sextet 7.45pm – 8.35pm
- Oscar Jerome (Event Headliner) 9pm - 10.15pm
Family activities in the gardens during the day will include circus shows, make your own musical instruments, carnival dress up, funfair and much more from 11am onwards. Family funfair open 11am-10pm.
Chapelfield Gardens Tastes of the City food area
Open all day with an eclectic mix of food offerings:
- Burgersmith – Burgers
- Katsu Do - Katsu Curry
- Pomarola Pizza – Pizza
- Papi Churros – Churros
- Oishii – Asian style Chicken and loaded fries
- Bodega – Sandwiches/Snacks
- Namaste – Vegan Indian street food
- Phat Kao - Thai street food
- Thornham Oyster Company - Oyster dishes
- Danns Luxury Norfolk Ice Cream – Ice cream
Theatre Street Racing
Race against your friends in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe on Norwich Theatre Royal’s giant video screens. Up to 4 people can compete at the same time with a leader board recording the best lap times. Enter on the sign-up board on the day. 12pm - 3pm & 5pm - 8pm
The Garth (at The Halls, behind NUA) 6pm The Common Lot presents The Great Estate - 100 years of Mile Cross. (Also performing on Friday 7 July 7.30pm at Anglia Square and Sunday 9 July 3pm at Peterson Park, Mile Cross).
(Please note: all artists and timings are subject to change)
Sunday 9 July
Great Norwich Duck Race - River Wensum 2pm onwards
Organised by the 1st Norwich Sea Scout Volunteers in conjunction with the Lord Mayor’s Weekend. Funds raised go to participating scout groups and projects, with a donation to the Lord Mayor’s charity and East Anglia Children’s Hospices (EACH). Set-up for the race begins at The Queen of Iceni pub from 11am.
Norwich Lanes Fayre – 11am – 5pm
Run by the Norwich Lanes Association (NLA), there will be live music, pop up markets, DJ sets, street food courts, theatre, performance, workshops and more. Printed fayre guides, including a map, available on the day.
Chapelfield Gardens – Funfair 11am - 4pm
Facilites for people with access requirements
The Lord Mayor’s Procession: Accessible viewing area on Castle Meadow opposite the junction of Opie Street. Accessible and baby-changing toilet available for use.
Voices of the City Stage at City Hall: Accessible viewing area at the front of the stage, which can be accessed from the corner of City Hall at the Bethel Street end. Accessible and baby changing toilet available for use.
Sounds of the City Stage in Chapelfield Gardens: Accessible viewing area provided at the front of the stage, which can be accessed through the main entrance gate to the Sounds of the City Stage within the park. Accessible and baby changing toilets available throughout the park.
Mysabar in Chapelfield Gardens: Lowered accessible bar service point in the main bar tent in Chapelfield Gardens, and large print menus available. Bar staff will be able to assist those who require drinks to be carried for them.
There will also be more accessible toilets on the Bethel Street motorbike park near City Hall. A ‘changing places’ toilet is also available for use in the Forum.
Please note: All three accessible areas can be booked in advance. There will be signage at each point to show the accessible viewing area, and those who have booked can proceed to the signs where a steward can allow them access. Those who haven’t pre-booked are still welcome to come, but spare spaces will be offered on a first-come first-served basis until the area is full. Please email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 01603 989300 to book your space.
How to get there
Visitors coming into Norwich for the weekend celebrations are encouraged to use public transport wherever possible as traffic is likely to be very busy. On Saturday and Sunday, there will be some road closures, particularly during the Lord Mayor’s Procession. All of the festivities are within walking distance of the train and bus stations.
Park & Ride
Park & Ride will be running late buses until 10.45pm between the Airport and Thickthorn on Saturday 8 July – please check at www.konectbus.co.uk/norwich-park-ride for additional details.
All city centre car parks will be open as usual over the weekend, but users of Castle Quarter main car park will be instructed to exit the car park via the 'top exit'.
Buses & Trains
Bus operator services serving the city centre are:
- First – www.firstbus.co.uk/norfolk-suffolk
- Sanders – www.sanderscoaches.com/timetables
- Simonds - www.simonds.co.uk
- Our Bus - www.ourhire.co.uk/our-bus
- Konect Local Buses – www.konectbus.co.uk/services
All bus services will be operating a normal timetable for the day. During the procession, buses will be diverted away from Castle Meadow and the stops will be closed between 2pm and 6pm, and passengers will find their buses at either the Bus Station or their usual stop on St Stephens Street. Details will be on the screens and on posters at each bus stop. Please be aware that there may be some disruption to the timetable during the procession due to the diversions needed. Passengers should check with their operator for updates.
After 6pm all buses will return to their normal stops on Castle Meadow.
If you are travelling into Norwich via train, please see www.greateranglia.co.uk for details of services.
Vehicular access to some roads in the city centre will be restricted during the Lord Mayor’s Procession and at other times - please see www.norwich.gov.uk/lmw for a list of the roads concerned.