North Walsham High Street Heritage Action Zone

The communities of North Walsham will feel a genuine sense of pride and ownership in the North Walsham High Street Heritage Action Zone as a place to live, learn, work and visit. Skills, knowledge and investment will ensure the long term sustainability and resilience of the High Street Heritage Action Zone.

It will serve as a catalyst for further regeneration and will stimulate a renewed interest and sense of pride. The town will not only become visually more attractive and better showcase its historic character but the refreshed centre will provide the platform to stage social and cultural activities, supporting the local economy through increased footfall and dwell time as well as improving wellbeing and offering a higher quality of life.

North Walsham has a rich medieval history, Georgian architecture and associations with Nelson and the Paston family. The Grade II listed Paston College was founded 400 years ago and has famous alumni including Admiral Horatio Nelson and Stephen Fry.

North Walsham was awarded the right to hold a weekly market in the mid-13th century and the High Street Heritage Action Zone is focused around the medieval market place and the Grade I listed Market Cross. Radiating from the main street are many side streets and yards all with interesting shops, pubs and cafes. There are  period buildings, including some with Dutch gables.

A key challenge for the project is repairing and restoring the Cedars building. It is a large building at the entrance to the High Street. Finding viable and sustainable new uses for this large building will be key in restoring vitality to the High Street.

Another challenge will be reducing traffic and improving the public realm on the High Street and surrounding area while still maintaining good public access and successful businesses.

How the North Walsham High Street Heritage Action Zone will help

Community consultation and engagement workshops will ensure a community ownership of the North Walsham High Street Heritage Action Zone. A Building Improvement Scheme will support the repair and restoration of buildings, seeking to support new businesses and bringing unused floor space back into use. The Cedars, a key heritage site and gateway building to the town centre's commercial market place, will be restored and brought into public use once more. Improvement to the centrally-located market place will attract new businesses and uses to the town and will encourage pedestrian usage and dwell time. Improvements to public realm spaces will restitch the town's historic core and restore key gateways into the town centre.

Stay up to date

Below you can find just some of the progress being made in the North Walsham High Street Heritage Action Zone. For more, follow us on Twitter @HistoricEngland.

  • Forum events in the summer and autumn canvased community feedback. Residents support making the High Street Heritage Action Zone a more safe and accessible place while local business owners want to increase footfall and custom on the high street.
  • As well as restoring The Cedars, improvements to the marketplace are in development, with aims to regenerate the weekly and monthly markets reflecting North Walsham’s origins as a market town.
  • Other plans include widening footpaths, introducing seating, more disabled parking, enhanced pedestrian access, and new public gardens and landscaped spaces at Black Swan Loke and The Shambles.
  • New research from Historic England gives fascinating insights into the history of North Walsham.

Improvements to public spaces

Public spaces are benefitting from the building improvement scheme

Working in partnership with

  • North Norfolk District Council

High Streets