“A Hidden Story in the City of Stories”



Not many people in Norfolk have heard of Richard Caister. The hope is that this will change dramatically in 2020, six hundred years after his death, with a year long celebration of his life and times called “Grant Me Grace— The Richard Caister Project”, organised by St Stephens Church in Norwich.

A series of talks from local historians starts on 19th February with Sally-Anne Lomas from Rockland St Mary, well-known freelance television producer, laying a strong foundation with a look at medieval Norwich. This will be followed at roughly monthly intervals with seven further talks, the second on 26th March by the local historian Frank Meeres on “Richard Caister – His life and Times”.

So who was this relatively unknown contempory of Mother Julian of Norwich: someone else whose importance was only realised fairly recently? Known during his lifetime as the Good Vyker of St Stephens in Norwich, Richard Caister was both priest and poet. All that is left of his many writings are his will and a 14 stanza metrical prayer. What can be
gleaned from these is that he was a man of and for the people. In the spring half-term on 19th February, there will be a workshop for children on medieval life in Norwich with the opportunity to dress up in medieval clothes, handle artefacts that are hundreds of years old and learn what life was like in fifteenth century Norwich. A second workshop will be held on the summer half-term on 27th May, enabling children to make their own pilgrim badges and to find out more about the medieval
phenomenon of pilgrimage. Both workshops will be staffed by people from the Castle Museum and run from 10.00 am to 3.30 pm at St. Stephens.

As well as an exhibition in the church, there will also be the inauguration of a two hour medieval pilgrimage path around the city, starting and ending at St Stephens.

Have a look at the website for the full programme. The Richard Caister Project is sure to cement Norwich as one of the most important medieval cities in Northern Europe. Come and find out why!!


The good Vykker of St. Stephens, Richard Caistor, died in 1420

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