A Warm Welcome from Norwich: Reflections on My Week at My UK Partner Placement (Buket Babataş Aydın, ITP 2019, Turkey)

Written by Buket Babataş Aydın, Independent researcher and PhD candidate (ITP 2019, Turkey)

Hi everyone I’m Buket. I have been in Norwich for 10 days and I am writing about my fifth day here. On Monday, all ITP participants and I left London for 10 days and came to our partner museums. Balqees, Abdulrahman, the senior fellow Mohamed and I came to Norwich and the Norfolk Museums Service.

Norwich: a compact medieval city built on a river. A city packed with stories, from the winding Tudor streets of Elm Hill, to the peaceful cathedral and through to the bustling market alive with bright colours and delicious smells. This vibrant and beautiful city is the beating heart of the east of England.  The houses all around here are just so beautiful but the crowning gem here has got to be its impressive Cathedral. 

Our partner museum Norfolk Museums Service is a museum complex, composed of 10 different museums from all over Norwich. They are :

  • Norwich Castle
  • Time & Tide
  • Gressenhall Farm & Workhouse
  • Museum of Norwich
  • Elizabethan House
  • Strangers’ Hall (Norwich)
  • Lynn Museum
  • Cromer Museum
  • Tolhouse Gaol (Great Yarmouth)
  • Ancient House

We are now based on the Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery at the centre of Norwich. Sarah Gore (Teaching Museum Manager) welcomed us here and told us about the history of Norwich and the castle. Norwich is an ancient city. It was the Anglo Saxons who first made their homes beside the river Wensum, and it was from one of these settlements, which bore the name Northwic. Norwich Castle was designed to be a royal palace rather than a fortification. However, no Norman kings ever lived in it. From the 14th century the keep was used as a county gaol. In 1894 Norwich Castle opened as a museum. It displayed the collections of the earlier Norfolk and Norwich Museum, which had occupied various sites in the city since 1825.

Our programme is very busy here and also it includes some dirty work as well. Every day we try to explore the city and also another museum in Norfolk. From the first day to today we have some workshops and talks. I would like to say that this experience is quite mind-opening and instructive. And also had the chance to be on BBC Radio! We made a short live broadcast there. Briefly, this partner museum trip provided us with a different perspective. I’m still curious about what’s going to happen in our other 5 days here. Thank you for everything.