FANN, the Festival of Architecture Norwich and Norfolk, is back for 2023, after a four-year hiatus due to Covid. Chair of the Royal Institute of British Architects in Norfolk, Charlotte Dunne explains why it is great to be shouting about Norfolk’s architectural scene once again
A festival celebrating the architectural past, present and future of Norwich and Norfolk that has been on hold since the pandemic, is back for 2023. The Festival of Architecture Norwich and Norfolk (FANN) returns for its seventh year this Autumn since its last event in 2019, with a theme of reflection. FANN is organised by volunteers from the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Norfolk and celebrates Norfolk’s unique history, architecture, and culture.
This year, the festival will host a range of events including talks, walking tours, exhibitions and a photography competition for professional architects, historians, design enthusiasts, students and families alike.
Charlotte Dunne, Chair of RIBA Norfolk, says: ‘It’s so great to be shouting about Norfolk’s architectural scene again after nearly four years of being away. We normally host the festival every two years, but because of Covid, we have had to wait until this year to get it back on the map.
‘We hope to stimulate interest, raise awareness and start conversations. We want to say a huge thank you to all our supporters and volunteers who make this festival possible.’
The festival is supported by RIBA East and will host an architectural exhibition showing up-and-coming projects taking place across the county at The Forum in Norwich from the October 10 to 19.
Talks will cover 2023 Norwich Lecture by Niall McLaughlin – this year at the Norwich University of the Arts, Common Ground; A Shared Future in Norfolk and the East by Saul Humphrey and Hudson Architects, and Collaborative Placemaking by Meredith Bowles from Mole Architects.
The festival includes tours such as Boardman and Skipper walking tours in Norwich and Cromer and the Great Yarmouth Medieval Town Wall and Towers walking tour will also be taking place.
Past Chair, Jerene Irwin adds: ‘As well as the tours and exhibitions there will be a hard hat tour of Great Yarmouth’s Winter Gardens, Design and Craftmanship Awards to be held at The Assembly House, and an update on the work at Norwich Castle, plus many more events to be announced. It is set to be a vibrant celebration of all things Norfolk architecture and we hope people of all ages will come along to see what the festival has to offer.’
RIBA Norfolk is also launching a photographic competition asking people to submit a photograph of their favourite contemporary building in Norfolk. The winner will receive £200.
FANN 23 takes place at various venues in Norfolk from Friday September 29 (with a Walking Tour: George Skipper in Cromer, with Paul Dickson) to November 29 (Talk: 2023 Norwich Lecture, with Niall McLaughlin of Niall McLaughlin Architects at Norwich University of the Arts). All events, and details of the Photographic Competition, can be found here: FANN2023.org.uk. The deadline for the Photography Competition is November 29, 2023; winner announced 13 December 13, 2023.
Featured image: Charlotte Dunne (left), Chair of RIBA Norfolk