History for Children in Norfolk


This spring, indulge curious young minds with tales, re-enactments, artefacts and stories from days gone by.

Luckily, Norfolk boasts an abundance of historical properties, museums and attractions that will have a gravitational pull on any young history hunter.

Read on to find out more about what Norfolk has to offer…



Living History In Norfolk

Being fully immersed in an historical setting actively captures a child’s imagination in a way that is both engrossing and educational.

Young visitors to the authentic re-created scenes at the Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse in Dereham (www.museums.norfolk.gov.uk –Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse) will be able to enjoy an enlightening time travellers experience by sitting in the 1950’s living room, by taking a cart ride through the wild-flower strewn fields and by watching the home cooking displays in the farmhouse kitchen.

Similarly, many National Trust properties across Norfolk such as the Blickling Estate host seasonal living history events where children can wear historical costumes and re-enact scenes from days gone by. Take a look at www.nationaltrust.org.

Evidence of living history can also be witnessed at the Muckleburgh Collection in Weybourne (www.muckleburgh.co.uk) which hosts tank demonstrations and vehicle rides during some of the school holidays. 


British History

From the Stone Age to the Iron Age, from the Anglo Saxons to the Vikings, to the impact that the Roman Empire had on Britain, children are already taught the fundamentals of British History at primary school.  To re-enforce this understanding of British history, parents can direct their children to view the website www.show.me.uk which is packed with games, collections, videos, stories and homework help from museums and galleries.



Fossil Hunting and Archaeology

The North Norfolk Coast is well-known for having a mixture of Cretaceous fossils and deposits yielding the bones of ice age mammals. Notably, the discovery in West Runton of the most complete Mammoth was really quite a find, making this a superb location for fossil hunters.

Similarly, the famous red and white chalk cliffs of Hunstanton are rich in fossils such as ammonites. The best fossils are often found during the spring and winter months due to the variable tides and scouring conditions. Discover more at www.ukfossils.co.uk/norfolk and don’t forget to follow the appropriate safety guidelines when fossil hunting.

The Young Archaeologists’ Club (YAC) is suitable for youngsters who are interested in archaeology. Across the UK there is a network of local clubs where 8–16 year olds can indulge in a spot of real archaeology. Find a Young Archaeologists Club at www.yac-uk.org



Local history

Everywhere you go in Norfolk, there’s physical evidence of a region shaped by its history.

Different venues dotted across the county skillfully tell the stories of years gone by. History enthusiasts will really to need to pay a visit to one of Norfolk’s Museums (www.museums.norfolk.gov.uk) which house permanent displays on the area’s rich history and a diverse range of temporary exhibits.

The Tide and Time Museum in Great Yarmouth highlights the significance of the herring industry in the area, the Tolhouse Gaol tells the story of crime and punishment, whilst the atmospheric crooked Ancient House Museum of Thetford Life is filled with up-to-date displays after a £1.6 million renovation. Norwich Castle Museum was built by the Normans as a Royal palace 900 years ago and is now filled with fine art, archaeology, natural history and Royal Norfolk Regimental Museum collections. 


Read more: Horrible Histories


History is never boring! In support of this statement and to demonstrate its sizable interest, the Horrible Histories compendium has flourished as the fascinating tales of wonderment and woe seemingly appeal to a child’s natural curiosity.

Children simply adore soaking up the dangerous and disgusting stories, about the foul food, the terrible toilets, the bloody battles and the fearsome fighters. It’s a great way to engage a child’s intellect in history. Read more at www.horrible-histories.co.uk



Visit world class Museums in London

The fervent history hunter will relish a day trip to the capital as there is so much on offer to appease a curious mind.

The British Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum of Childhood, the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum, the Bank of England Museum and Imperial War Museum, to name a few, are furnished with historical treasures and artefacts that are sure to engage a young history enthusiast’s attention.

Plus, the great news is that entry to these museums continues to be free of charge. Visit www.visitlondon.com




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