Swaffham

POP­U­LA­TION: 7,500

EDP Norfolk - - Inside -

SWAFFHAM’S large mar­ket place is still the fo­cus of the town. The lovely But­ter­cross was built in 1783 and topped with a statue of Ceres - the Ro­man god­dess of farm­ing and fer­til­ity. To­day the open space is ringed with Ge­or­gian build­ings, along­side more mod­ern ad­di­tions to this thriv­ing town.

Nor­folk hero Lord Nel­son is said to have loved Swaffham and in the late 18th cen­tury the town was a high so­ci­ety hub with dances, horse rac­ing, theatre and sport. It was also known for its ex­pert clock­mak­ers, but the pretty town does not rest on its his­toric ac­co­lades. To­day it has a stel­lar rep­u­ta­tion for food, with ev­ery­thing from a com­mu­nity café to a bou­tique ho­tel sourc­ing lo­cal in­gre­di­ents wher­ever pos­si­ble, and the an­nual Brecks Food and Drink Fes­ti­val fea­tur­ing many Swaffham-based events.

NAT­U­RAL BEAUTY

Visit the Green Bri­tain Cen­tre by the huge wind tur­bine on the edge of town – and climb its 300 steps to en­joy views as far as Ely Cathe­dral. It’s the world’s only tur­bine open to the pub­lic. There are also or­ganic gar­dens and an or­chard, plus a cinema, theatre, café and shop full of lo­cal, fairly traded and sus­tain­ably sourced pro­duce.

WON­DER­FUL THINGS

Howard Carter, the first man to see the in­side of Tu­tankhamun’s tomb in more than 3,000 years, grew up in Swaffham, and some of his trea­sures can still be seen in the town mu­seum. Howard Carter was the ar­chae­ol­o­gist who found “won­der­ful things,” gold and much more, in Egypt’s Val­ley of the Kings.

DID YOU KNOW. . .

Swaffham has its own fairy story about a man who left the town to seek his for­tune but re­alised that the real trea­sure he was seek­ing was back at home in Nor­folk. He re­turned to un­earth buried trea­sure.

DON’T MISS. . .

An­gels float out from a mag­nif­i­cent dou­ble ham­mer­beam an­gel roof in beau­ti­ful St Peter and St Paul Church. It stands in a church­yard sur­rounded by a tree-stud­ded, meadow-like open space.

The But­ter­cross in Swaffham

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