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Welcome to King's Lynn
Kings Lynn in General
Member Name: rachelkanga
Kings Lynn in General
Date: 07/03/05, updated on 15/03/05 (611 review reads)
Advantages: Plenty to see and do within town and surrounding areas
Disadvantages: Can get very busy on Market Days
Everywhere you walk within Kings Lynn you are reminded of the former history that surrounds this former Hanseatic Port when it was used as a major port for shipping and receiving goods from Europe.
If arriving in the town by car you will pass through the South Gate, part of the original town fortifications which acted as a place of entry to the town and could be manned. Built in the 15th Century the stone structure immediately makes you aware of the importance that buildings such as this have on the town.
Following on through as you head towards the car parks you will pass the Greyfriars Tower the last significant remaining part of a friary established in the 1230's by a group of Franciscan Friars (followers of St Francis of Assisi). Greyfriars Tower was recently a finalist in the first series of the BBC2 programme Restoration.
Every Tuesday and Friday you can visit the Tuesday Market Place for the weekly markets dating back centuries on the same site. This Market Place itself has seen much history over the years , it was previously used for public executions, but now more commonly for parking, markets, live outdoor concerts and the Mart which opens every Valentine's Day, as it has for many centuries now. This is the oldest fair in the country.
Around the Market Place are many buildings themselves steeped in history. The Corn Exchange (a grade II listed building) houses everything from concerts to Broadway musicals and children only shows and it is usually packed. The public house The Olde Mayden's Heade takes its name from an incident during an an execution of an accused witch. Even Barclays Bank was previously a Merchant's House.
From Tuesday Market Place you can walk along King Street past The Custom House (built in 1683 by Henry Bell) which has been turned into a small museum showing its importance in the early days of shipping on the upper floor and houses the Tourist Board on the ground floor.
King Street boasts many old houses and this part of the town has also been transformed on many occasions easily into period backdrops as many buildings are originals for films including Revolution.
Arriving at Saturday Market place where the Saturday market takes place outside the magnificent 12th century church of St. Margaret you will see the Trinity Guildhall now used mainly for ceremonial purposes - it is the Town Hall, it has itself had a long history as the Courthouse prior to the new one being built.
Next to the Town Hall is the Old Gaol House now a museum recreating prison life years ago and telling the stories of some of Lynn's more infamous characters in the original cells of the town gaol. Also housed here is the Regalia collection, whose exhibits feature a series of facsimile royal charters and the priceless King John Cup. Another of the towns museums is the other side of the Guildhall and this houses
Town House museum recreating life in Lynn in Tudor, Stuart and Georgian displays, a Victorian Kitchen and a 1950's sitting room.
Another museum is situated near to the Bus Station and here you can see the paw print of a Roman dog, antique fairground horses, and a special collection of Nelson memorabilia.
North of Tuesday Market Place is St. Anne's Street where you will find True's Yard museum, a museum of the fishing community that lived in the town, behind the main museum are two tiny cottages which once housed complete families of those who belonged in this community.
The local park boasts shaded avenues to walk through, a stream (with plenty of ducks to feed!). and there is a decently sized play area for children, with swings, slide, climbing frame and other activities. The park itself houses more history with small parts of the original Town walls still standing as does the Red Mount Chapel, which has been used for many purposes over the centuries including smuggling, and is occasionally open to the public.
Families who enjoy sport are well served, Lynnsport is the biggest sporting and leisure complex in East Anglia. The King's Lynn Sports Centre has facilities like a climbing wall, squash courts and a multi-purpose sports hall where everything from Gymnastics to trampolining take place. Outside sports including Rugby, Cricket and Football also take place, and the Town is home to the Linnets Dr. Martens League Football Side. There is also a 25m swimming pool within the town and a speedway stadium.
Kings Lynn is easily reached by bus or train from London and other areas. There is plenty of parking however very little is free and free spaces are only available for a limited period of time usually 30 mins.
Shopping is ok. The main shopping area in the town centre is pedestrianized and has a varied selection of stores including Mothercare, Boot's The Chemist, Littlewoods, however the town centre is currently undergoing millions of pounds of work to improve the service to residents and tourists alike and hopefully all new traders will be in place by the Autumn of 2005.
There are plenty of Supermarkets with Sainsbury's in Town and 2 Tesco's on the outskirts of town, as well as a newly opened Morrisons.
The Industrial Estates house the larger electrical stores such as Comet and Curry's as well as a drive thru McDonalds and Pizza Hut and the D-I-Y heavens of MFI, Do-It-All and Sainsbury's Homebase. Here too, is one of the industrial areas, home to Campbell's Soups and Masterfoods.
There is a thriving club scene in Lynn, with places catering for most tastes in music. Likewise, the local eateries span all tastes and continents. Fish and chips, Chinese, Italian, Indian, Greek, and plenty of kebab shops. So whatever your taste in music or food, King's Lynn will cater for you.
There's a lot to see in King's Lynn, and the tourists seem to like it. Stop by and visit the next time you're in the area .