Hungate is a centre for exhibitions and events; it is run by a dedicated charity, Hungate Medieval Art.
Hungate Medieval Art aims to promote Norfolk’s medieval heritage. In particular, the charity is concerned with the medieval art hidden in the county’s parish churches. Operating from the redundant church of St Peter Hungate, Hungate Medieval Art is also committed to raising awareness of this church, allowing public access to the building and forging links with the local community.
Hungate Medieval Art is a registered charity managed by a body of trustees.
The chairman of the trustees is Brian Ayers, former Norfolk County Archaeologist. Other trustees include local residents and representatives of the Norfolk Churches Trust, Norwich HEART, and the University of East Anglia.
Hungate Medieval Art’s patrons are Henry Cator, Caroline Egerton, Richard Halsey, Sandy Heslop, David King, Canon Jeremy Haselock, and Gavin Stamp.
The project was conceived by Anthony Barnes and Kate Weaver in 2007. At this time St Peter Hungate was closed to the public but it was held in affection by local residents and when the public were allowed entry, such as on the city’s Heritage Open Days, the church was well attended.
Kate Weaver and Anthony Barnes recognised the interest in the building and looked to reopen it to the public. Having secured a lease from Norwich Historic Churches Trust, extensive fundraising was undertaken to allow the necessary conservation work to take place.
The idea of using the building as an interpretation centre for Norfolk’s medieval heritage was conceived from conversations with the eminent Cambridge Medievalist, Paul Binski, who has a house on the same street as the church. In 2008 Hungate Medieval Art was formed to this end.
Hungate Medieval Art received a substantial grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and others for the first two years of its operation. During this time the centre focused on medieval stained glass.
Medieval Stained Glass
In the first two years of its operation Hungate Medieval Art was committed to:
• Making known the work of the stained glass artists of medieval Norwich through a major exhibition in the centre. Curated by Dr Clare Daunton with photography by Mike Dixon this exhibition highlighted medieval glass from across the county.
• Telling people where medieval stained glass can be found across the county and providing interpretation.
• Publicising the research of academic David King on the Norwich style of glass as one of the three distinctive provincial schools of the period.
• Establishing links with the community, schools and other learning groups and developing a volunteer body.
Hungate Medieval Art has now begun to engage with other art forms through a series of public events and temporary exhibitions. This work will continue.
Hungate Medieval Art's initial stained glass exhibition went on tour in 2012. We hope that this will set a president for future touring of our medieval exhibitions. Our contemporary exhibitions are not usually suitable for turning.
Hungate Medieval Art gratefully acknowledges funding from; Heritage Lottery Fund, The Pilgrim Trust, The Norwich Town Close Estate Charity, Mike Dixon (photographs), Biffaward, WREN, The H & G de Freitas Charitable Trust, The Veneziana Fund, The Skinners' Company Lady Neville Charity, Anonymous Donors, The John Jarrold Trust, Gonville & Caius College Cambridge, Norwich HEART, Devlin Plummer Stained Glass.