Hellesdon Station Platform Restoration
Hellesdon Station once stood proud just two miles from Norwich City Station, just on the other side of the river to Hellesdon itself. In 1952 the station closed to passenger traffic and by 1969 the line was closed entirely. In the years that followed, the track was lifted up, the station building was demolished and nature took back the site.
In autumn 2017, the Norfolk Trails team cleared back the trees and other plant growth on the platform to expose the wall and surface. Following this work, Norfolk Trails were then procured by the MWHT project to carry out further work to resurface the platform and improve access to the site. This work was done alongside work by a volunteer group and heritage bricklayer to re-lay and re-point the platform wall.
Click here for more information and pictures of this amazing piece of work!
This year has seen ongoing work with two high school nurture groups, who have worked extremely hard all year on everything from habitat management tasks to Geocaching trails. We are often told these days that children are becoming ever more insulated; staying indoors more than ever and amused only by technology. If anything has challenged that this year for me, it has been the endless capacity for play and exploration demonstrated by these year 7s on their visits to Marriott’s Way.
Pupils from primary schools around Norfolk have also travelled to Whitwell Station, for sessions on Victorian engineering, WW2, and poetry. As part of these days, children have the chance to ride in railway carriages or wave from the brake van; a definite highlight for many of them.
For other schools, walking to their nearby stretch of Marriott’s Way has enabled a greater understanding of the local area and provided inspiration for artwork, poetry and natural investigation. Whether using natural materials to create land art in Aylsham, performing railway poems on Anderson’s Meadow, or going pond dipping in Costessey, the path holds endless opportunities for creativity and scientific enquiry. Next academic year, we will be working with a final year Environmental Sciences student from UEA to deliver Field Studies Council-inspired day courses for schools across the county. The sessions on offer will include: team challenges, pond dipping, environmental art, minibeast investigation, shelter building and woodland tree ID.
Walking and Cycling Guide
Our brand new guide for walking and cycling is here! It's available in its physical format in various tourist information centres, cafés and village halls along the route.
Alternatively, if you would like to download it to print at home or just keep on your phone, take a look here to download the guide book as a PDF.
If you're a business along the route and would like a bundle of guide books to display and give out, send us an email and we'll try our best to get them out to you on our next run.
School made guide books
Some schools have worked to create heritage trails and guidebooks for their own local stretch of Marriott’s Way. After walking their proposed routes, researching historical and environmental information, and creating illustrations for their guides, we might just have found some future Norfolk Trails employees…
As part of the Marriott’s Way Heritage Trail Project six new circular walks and three new cycle loops have been created, and the signage has been installed over the spring and summer. The walks will improve access to the countryside and are now ready to be enjoyed by everyone.
Our first Events and Project Management trainee is moving on to another exciting railway based role. He will still be within the environment team but working on the Recycling the Railways project and we wish him the best of luck.