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Visiting the Town Hall, Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England: Queen Anne-style building by John B. Pearce, dating from 1882

Updated on March 14, 2013
Flag of England
Flag of England | Source
Great Yarmouth Town Hall and Broads Authority patrol launch Ant. Looking across the Yare River
Great Yarmouth Town Hall and Broads Authority patrol launch Ant. Looking across the Yare River | Source
Great Yarmouth Town Hall, Hall Quay, Great Yarmouth
Great Yarmouth Town Hall, Hall Quay, Great Yarmouth | Source
Map location of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk
Map location of Great Yarmouth, Norfolk | Source

Weathered but unbowed!

This fine civic building in Great Yarmouth dates from 1882. The structure was officially opened by the Prince of Wales (1).

Some history and features

It is executed in Mansfield sandstone with red brick facing. The architect responsible for the building was John B. Pearce.

Its foundation stone was laid in 1880.

Features of the building include its tower 38.1 metres tall, which as a landmark looms across the Yare River. Its very proximity to the River, in fact, gave the structure problems within the first few years of its existence, and a considerable amount of underpinning work had to be undertaken in order to render it safe.

The Town Hall replaced a previous structure, a Georgian building, which dated from the early 18th century, and demolished in the 19th century. Great Yarmouth has had civic privileges since Medieval times and a former municipal building, known as the Tollhouse, may still be seen in the town.

This East Anglian town is situated on the North Sea, which in winter can be associated with very rough and adverse weather conditions. Consequently, it emerged that the weathering to the Town Hall's external building materials had had a considerable effect, and a program of replacing deteriorated brick and stone work was undertaken in recent years. This problem was particularly severe on the western elevation of the building faces the Yare River, which, being estuarine, exuded salty air. A roof replacement scheme was also undertaken.

Guided tours are sometimes available to the Town Hall's Council Chamber, Assembly Room and Magistrates' Court, although because of the press of public business these need to be arranged in advance.

The Town Hall at Great Yarmouth, in England's Norfolk, is located at Hall Quay. Being also close to the Haven Bridge in the town, which connects its eastern and western sections divided by the Yare, this civic building is very strategically situated.

June 28, 2012


(1) Later King Edward VII, who reigned 1901-1910.

Also worth seeing

Other visitor attractions in Great Yarmouth include: the 13th century Toll House; the North-West Tower; St Nicholas's Church; the Anna Sewell House; the Britannia Monument, and others.

Burgh Castle (distance: approx. 6.8 kilometres), this ruined structure dates from Roman times.


How to get there: United Airlines flies to London Heathrow Airport, where car rental is available. Great Yarmouth is served by rail from London Liverpool Street Station. The town is 265 kilometers from Heathrow Airport. Some facilities may be withdrawn, without notice. Please check with the airline or your travel agent for up to date information.

MJFenn is an independent travel writer based in Ontario, Canada.


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