Leiston Abbey

Lazy Summer Sunday Afternoons

Out & About

Free outdoor entertainment on tap and afternoon tea in a secret garden. There’s so much to look forward to between now and September says Melanie Cook of  www.VisitNorwich.co.uk

There’s nothing like live street entertainment to add to a city’s ambience. So, it’s great news that this summer for its 9th year, Norwich Business Improvement District’s Head Out, Not Home free city programme of theatre, circus skills, music and more is back.

Taking place between 24 July and 4 September, for summer ’22 Head Out, Not Home presents a record number of acts from theatrical performance, and circus skills to harpists, jazz, rockabilly, world, and folk music. Each Sunday, across five out of six locations in Norwich city, make time to stop for a moment to be entertained. For free! And because the programming is staggered you can see more than one act on any given afternoon between 12.45pm and 4.45pm. 

With a high percentage of local performers, as well as national and international acts including Covent Garden entertainment, there’s lots to whet your appetite. Here’s a small selection of what we can all look forward to. 

Sunday 24 July

Be wowed and laugh out loud all at the same time with Corey Pickett, a Covent Garden Street entertainer. Hugely popular wherever he goes, Corey delivers a standout performance, often on one wheel with a one man show which includes circus, music and physical theatre. Whilst locals Nebula Sun (a 5-piece band from Norwich championed by BBC Introducing) play jazz, soul and hip hop as well as West Africa music, meaning they have quite the following locally.

Sunday 31 July

Limber up this weekend for an energetic performance from JS and the Lockerbillies. This group never fails to get everyone up and dancing. They rock, they roll, and the audience is there with them all the way!  Want to get involved? Then this is the man for you – Bumbulum the Fool has travelled the world putting smiles on the faces of all who come across him. His street theatre includes comedy, mayhem and gravity defying improvisation with lots of audience participation too.

Sunday 7th August

The Magpies are a relatively new band having formed in 2018. In 2020, their debut album The Tidings launched, with The Sunday Times saying “‘One of those effervescent albums you’d be happy to recommend to people who might not consider themselves folk fans”. Playing transatlantic neo-folk, this trio of Yorkshire women won’t leave you wanting. The High Points are another local band – a trio promising funky grooves, disco delights and everything else in between. Make sure you have your dancing shoes on!

Sunday 14th August

Winner of the UK Street Performer of the Year, and having appeared regularly on TV, Matt Barnard is an all-rounder. A compere, actor, musician and singer, Matt’s unique one-man show has travelled around the world, and now he’s here in Norwich. Whilst Gasper Nali has received millions of views playing his music on YouTube. From the small town of Nkhata Bay he creates the most amazing and danceable original Afro Beats possible. Again, another reason to dance.

Sunday 21 August

Having been compared to David Bowie, Rufus Wainwright, Damon Albarn, Philip Larkin – Dan Foden brings us Slow Business with a gospel-tinged chamber pop. And hailing from North Wales, Ben Robertson is a fingerstyle guitarist with a repertoire of Celtic and European guitar arrangements. Beautiful.

Sunday 28 August

The Bank Holiday weekend brings us an added day to relax – or perhaps get in some DIY. But whatever you’re up to make sure you get into Norwich to enjoy Strong Lady Productions with her powerful physical circus acts. Be prepared for some audience participation and quite a few lifts! Or how about some classic show medleys and swing with the – very well dressed – Episcanarius Brass Quintet?

Sunday 4 September

The final day of the programme and what better way to end than with a big dose of Ben Langley? A firm favourite with the Head Out, Not Home audience, Ben brings his own brand of hilarity to us once again. Then make sure you don’t go home until you’ve heard East Angles Brass Band. With their 6-piece band playing funky horn and percussion music, your spirits will be lifted for sure. As well as your toes. And your hands when you give them rapturous applause.

Before you go be sure to check who is playing where, by visiting to www.visitnorwich.co.uk. The stages are located in Millennium Plain, St Gregory’s Green, Gentleman’s Walk, Westlegate (deck chairs available), Tombland and Riverside.

I always think summer Sundays are rather special. And returning for another year I’m delighted the Plantation Garden has a host of outdoor music events and homemade afternoon teas. Running every Sunday from 19 June until 4 September, pop down for a very relaxing afternoon; a perfect way to spend some time with family and friends. Happy Sundays all! 

For more inspiration for wonderful things to see and do in Norwich and Norfolk as well as places to stay, eat and shop go to www.visitnorwich.co.uk