Discover a different King’s Lynn…
Did you know? Captain George Vancouver, the naval explorer and namesake of the shopping centre; whose statue stands proudly at the King’s Lynn Custom House, (not more than 2 minutes from the Vancouver Quarter) was Captain of a British Expedition to the Northwest Pacific coast in 1792.
Captain Vancouver also sailed with the famous Captain Cook, and has both a city and an island named after him in Canada, where he surveyed the coastline from his ship HMS Discovery as he and his crew made detailed maps of the new lands.
In the name of exploration, we invite you to follow in Captain George’s footsteps, and explore the Vancouver Shopping centre and beyond! Get to know King’s Lynn, it’s interesting history, architecture and heritage. There’s lots to see and do for all ages, and in all seasons!
Venture a little further…
From the starting point of the golden globe in the centre of Vancouver Quarter, head south along Broad street, towards Costa Coffee. Turn right (due west) along New Conduit street. Vancouver ends at Wimpy on your left. Ahead of you, you’ll see Boots the Chemist, and if you keep heading west along Purfleet street, you’ll soon see the Custom House and Purfleet Quay ahead of you.
Outside the Custom House, (built in 1683 and now the toursist information centre) you’ll find the statue of Captain George, and the view to the River Great Ouse.
Just beyond the Vancouver Quarter, and at the end of the High Street, you’ll find the Tuesday Market place. This large open area still holds a regular market, on Tuesdays (funnily enough) and is surrounded by fabulous buildings, including the Corn Exchange, and many pubs and hotels dating back to the 14th century.
The market place was famous for a trial of an alledged witch, Margaret Read in 1590. Legend has it that her heart burst from her body as she was burnt at the stake, and it hit a nearby wall. The spot is marked with a commemorative brick in a diamond shape with an heart carved into the centre of it. Her ghost is said to haunt the Tudor Rose Hotel. Why not see if you can find the mark?!
A short walk across town to Tower Gardens you will find, Greyfriars Tower; an award winning grade one listed structure.
The Greyfriars Tower is the only remaining part of the Franciscan monastery, and one of only three surviving Franciscan monastery towers in England and is considered to be the finest.
The tower is thought to have been a useful seamark by sailors coming into port.
Adjacant to the tower and a little further along London Road, you will find Kings Lynn Library. Built in 1905 by philanthropist Andrew Carnegie, the Edwardian building still remains in use as the main library today.
Across the road lies the entrance to “The Walks”. This 17 hectare historic park recently benefitted from £4.3million Heritage Lottery Grant to restore the park to its former glory.
Featuring beautifully landscaped grounds, a cafe, toilets and childrens play area,. It is also home to The Red Mount.
The Red Mount originally served as a wayside shrine and restin for Pilgrims travelling across Europe to nearby Walsingham.
The historic structure is of cruciform plan with a panelled stone vault, two storeys tall and built on an existing mount, considered to be part of an old embankment to the Ouse.
Built in the reign of Richard III (1483-85) by Robert Curraunt, the mount benefitted from part of the Walks Lottery funding and in 2007 was repaired and tidied, opening again in 2008
The Grade 1 listed, Red Mount remains a key part of the town’s heritage.
You can find more information about the history of King’s Lynn here