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Everything You Need to Know for this year’s Lord Mayor’s Weekend 2024, 13 and 14 July

Entrants in the procession at the Lord Mayor's Weekend 2023. Published on Wednesday, 3rd July 2024

Norwich is set for lots of summer fun when the annual Lord Mayor’s Procession takes to the streets on Saturday 13 July with all the colour, noise and fun of the carnival.

Norwich is set for lots of summer fun when the annual Lord Mayor’s Procession takes to the streets on Saturday 13 July with all the colour, noise and fun of the carnival.

Part of The Lord Mayor’s Weekend, the procession will include the city’s civic dignitaries in colourful historic costumes, marching musical bands, acrobats, giant puppets, carnival flags and feathers, with schools, community groups, charities and businesses taking part.  

The parade’s theme for 2024 is ‘Norwich Loves You’, which draws on the city’s renown as a place where all feel safe and welcomed, whichever community they come from. 

The entertainment continues in Chapelfield Gardens with a day of family activities, followed by a free-to-attend evening programme of live music headlined by the UK Foo Fighters

The weekend is rounded off on Sunday with the Great Norwich Duck Race along the River Wensum. 

All activities are FREE to attend. 

Saturday 13 July

Lord Mayor’s Procession starting at 3pm 

Following a new carnival route from Norwich Cathedral via Tombland, Queen Street, St Andrews Street, Exchange Street, Gentleman’s Walk past Norwich Market, Haymarket, Brigg Street and Theatre Street, the parade will make its way to Chapelfield Gardens where a full programme of family-friendly activities will be in swing. 

Grab a spot along the route to watch the fun unfold. Pre-bookable spaces are available for those with access requirements on Brigg Street (near the former Debenhams store). See www.norwich.gov.uk/lmw for details.

Chapelfield Gardens – all day

The entertainment in Chapelfield Gardens will include live music and dance acts, stalls and games, a bar area and a food arena with delicious food and drinks treats from across Norfolk; plus carnival headdress-making fun, dance workshops, comedy shows and more.

Chapelfield Bandstand stage will be running a full programme from 12.15pm onwards, curated by The Garage and Young Norfolk Arts (YNA) and featuring emerging and established talent from the cream of Norfolk’s Young Artists.

The entertainment during the afternoon will include a flashmob performance, taking place at 5.30pm. Members of the public who would like to join in can learn the routine in advance of the event or on the day at a workshop.

Live music lined up to entertain in Chapelfield Gardens from 12 noon through the afternoon and into the early evening includes a showcase of some of the best bands from Norwich’s thriving music scene, curated in partnership with Voodoo Daddy’s Showroom music venue in London Street and including indie/alternative singer-songwriter Gabby Rivers

Local blue grass skiffle band The Misfit Collective and local music charity The Black Dog Music Project (which works with people with mental health issues or other disabilities to help build confidence through music) will also be performing.

Beatbox Collective, the 2015 world beatbox champions who delighted audiences at last year’s Lord Mayor’s Weekend, make a return and will perform alongside five-piece brass band Fat Brass and the female string duo Ayoub Sisters. 

A variety of fun workshops will be running through the afternoon – from theatre to street music and musicals - and there will be a Family Entertainment Area with everything from facepainting, sports and crafts, to comedy and bubble shows.

At Millenium Plain, outside The Forum, Norfolk Museums will present two performances of a specially-commissioned outdoor family-friendly play by writer Shey Hargreaves and theatre company Quill & Inkling. Titled From Norwich with Love. The play is FREE to attend and tells the history of Norwich focusing on some of the key figures from the city’s history. Performances are at 12.30pm and 2pm with a running time of 30 minutes.

The evening’s music programme will be headlined by the UK Foo Fighters, who have been acknowledged by Dave Grohl of the American rock legends Foo Fighters as ‘England’s premier Foo Fighters tribute band’. UK Foo Fighters lead singer Jay Apperley has sung on stage with the real band at one of their gigs.

Programme:

Open Air Stage

  • 12 noon & 12.35 Black Dog Music
  • 1.20pm Misfit Collective
  • 2.15pm Mama Oh No
  • 3.10pm Punching
  • 4.05pm Gabby Rivers
  • 5pm Invidia Voices Choir
  • 5.45pm Juliet
  • 6.40pm Beatbox Collective, Fat Brass & Ayoub Sisters
  • 8.45pm UK Foo Fighters
  • 10.15pm Finale 

Bandstand Stage Area

Chapelfield Bandstand stage will be running from 12 noon until 6pm, curated by The Garage (www.TheGarage.org.uk) and Young Norfolk Arts (www.YoungNorfolkArts.org.uk). Featuring emerging and established talent from the cream of Norfolk’s Young Artists. The Flashmob will take place at 5.30pm.

Workshop area

  • 12 noon My First Workshop
  • 1.15pm Theatre Workshop
  • 2.15pm Flashmob Workshop
  • 3.15pm Street Workshop
  • 4.30pm Musical Theatre 

(Workshops run for 30 minutes and are organised by The Garage)

Family Area Entertainment

Running throughout the day from 12 noon to 6pm: 

  • Sports: Streetwise Soccer, Norfolk Active Kidz, Riverside
  • Crafts: Creative Planet, Creation Station, Fairyland Trust
  • Family: Crazy Skins Facepainting, Library Service, Balloon Modelling

30-minute shows:

  • 12.45pm & 16.45 Bubble Inc Display (Family)
  • 1.15, 3.30 & 5.15pm Dressed for Dinner (Comedy)
  • 2pm & 4.15pm Bingo Bango Bongo (Comedy) 

Please note: Artists and timings may be subject to change.

Charity Appeal

Collections taken during the day will go towards the Civic Charity Appeal 2024-25, chosen by the Lord Mayor Cllr Vivien Thomas and Sheriff Sirajul Islam, which is The Benjamin Foundation's BOOM! Young Carers.

Over the last 30 years, The Benjamin Foundation has worked with children, young people and families across Norfolk and Suffolk, delivering a range of services focused on tackling homelessness, supporting emotional and mental wellbeing, and youth and community support projects. 

BOOM! Young Carers delivers regular positive activities for young people in Norwich. The staff team works closely with local community groups and organisations to provide young people with access to opportunities they would otherwise not have, giving them the chance to take a break from the day-to-day demands of being a young carer and helping them on their own journey to independence.

Sunday 14 July 

Great Norwich Duck Race - River Wensum 2.30pm onwards 

In the afternoon from 2.30pm, The Great Norwich Duck Race will be the big attraction on Riverside as crowds gather to watch ducks racing from Lady Julian Bridge down the Wensum.

The charity fundraising event is organised by the 1st Norwich Sea Scouts in association with Norwich City Council and a total of £1000 is offered in prizes to the winning duck owners. Ducks can be purchased from the Great Norwich Duck Race website

Proceeds will go towards participating scout groups and projects, with donations given to East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) and the Lord Mayor’s chosen charity, The Benjamin Foundation’s BOOM! Young Carers service.

How to get there and where to park

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 13 July, 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. 

With a change in the procession route this year, most bus services on Castle Meadow and St Stephens will not be affected by road closures.  

Between 2pm and 5pm, buses will not be able to serve Tombland and Anglia Square. Services on Rampant Horse Street will serve Castle Meadow ONLY for the whole day.

Information will be available in the News section on the Travel Norfolk website. Printed information on any service changes will be available on the stop on the day. 

Buses and trains

All bus operators are running normal timetables during the event, with those buses affected by any road closures using diversions to serve their other usual stops in Norwich city centre or at the bus station.  Access to the bus station will be unaffected, with National Express coach services operating as usual. 

Norfolk County Council will display advance signs at the bus stops to advise passengers of the correct embarkation and disembarking areas. Details will also be on bus screens.

Evening services on all routes will also operate as normal, with an enhanced level of evening services on many routes thanks to funding from the county’s BSIP (Bus Service Improvement Plan initiative funded by the UK Government to strengthen regional bus services).

Bus operator services serving the city centre are:  

If you are travelling into Norwich via train, see the Greater Anglia website for details of services.

Visit Travel Norfolk to help you plan your journey.

Taxis

The taxi rank, usually based at the bottom of Guildhall Hill, will be relocated to St Giles Street loading bays outside City Hall on St Peters Street.

Park & Ride

Park and Ride sites at Thickthorn, Harford, Norwich Airport, Sprowston and Postwick will be open for their usual operating times. Between 2pm and 5pm, Park and Ride passengers should use the bus station only for their return journeys. Route 8, which serves Thickthorn, will run all evening with the last bus at 11:30pm.  

(Passengers at the Airport Park and Ride can use Sanders X55 evening services to Cromer Road after 6:36pm – an additional fare will be payable). 

Please visit Konectbus website for Park & Ride service details.

Car parks

All city centre car parks will be open as usual during the weekend.

Blue badge on-street parking bays

The disabled parking bays on Gentleman’s Walk, Exchange Street, Brigg Street, Theatre Street and London Street will be closed from 10.30pm on Friday 12 July to 1am on Sunday 14 July.

The bays on Opie Street will not be accessible between 2pm to 4pm on Saturday 13 July.

All other Blue badge bays will be available.

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