A winter’s morning on Kett’s Heights

On Thursday, February `11, I visited Kett’s Heights for the first time since the start of the current lockdown. It was a beautiful morning, which added to the enjoyment of clambering through the snow to the viewpoint just before 9am.

Norwich looked magnificent, with the sun glinting off buildings like the Castle and the Cathedral, as the city snuggled under its blanket of snow. It was very quiet, which added to the magic of the moment, with little traffic on Kett’s Hill and Riverside.

Kett’s Heights definitely offers the best view of Norwich. You can also connect with Robert Kett, who enjoyed a mid 16th century version of the same view. He would have seen all the wonderful medieval churches, which you can enjoy spotting and naming during a visit.

Just one wall remains from the early 12th century St Michael’s Chapel. The chapel was built on this hillside overlooking the city by the first Norman Bishop of Norwich, Herbert de Losinga, after he had pulled down the main city church – St Michael’s – in Tombland.

St Michael’s was used by Robert Kett as his headquarters. So we can view the flint remains and ponder over the conversations that took place there during July and August 1549.

Kett’s Heights is owned by Norwich City Council and is open daily. There is a volunteer group, the Friends of Kett’s Heights, who look after the site with the Norwich Fringe Project. The Friends also run events and help to interpret both the historical and nature conservation importance of the area.

My Shardlake’s Norwich tour, which celebrates CJ Sansom’s best-selling novel Tombland, takes in Kett;s Heights and the wonderful view.

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