Nelson & Norfolk


29 July 2017 – 1 October 2017 


Free with admission price


Disabled visitors / Blue Badge parking / Parking / Dogs / Multi-sensory / Virtual tours / Audio enscribed / Braille / Staff on hand

Opening times:

Mon – Sat: 10am – 5pm 
Sun: 1 – 5pm

Exhibition - Norwich Castle

Admiral Lord Nelson (1758 –1805) and his affection for his native county of Norfolk is the subject of the exhibition Nelson & Norfolk. The exhibition presents some of the most extraordinary and potent objects connected to Nelson, from his boyhood in Norfolk to his death at Trafalgar in 1805.

The centerpiece is the early French Tricolour - the monumental Ensign (or flag) of the French warship Le Généreux, which took part in the Battle of the Nile in 1798. A British victory, the battle sealed Nelson’s reputation as England’s greatest hero.

Although Le Généreux was one of two French ships to escape this historic battle, it was subsequently captured, on 18 February 1800 and its Ensign was despatched as a gift to the City of Norwich by Sir Edward Berry, Admiral Lord Nelson’s flag captain.

The huge Ensign of Le Généreux (it measures 16m x 8.3m – roughly the size of a tennis court) is one of the most iconic objects connected to Norfolk’s most famous son, Admiral Lord Nelson. This is the first time this historic object has been on public exhibition for more than a century.

Alongside Le Généreux’s Ensign, other objects on display include: the black velvet drape from Nelson’s funeral car; a uniform worn by a Greenwich Volunteer who guarded Nelson’s coffin; a model of the funeral barge; and extensive Nelson funeral memorabilia.

Particularly noteworthy is the sword surrendered to Nelson by the Spanish Admiral Xavier Winthuysen after the Battle of Cape St Vincent on 14 February 1797. The same sword is also featured in the large, iconic portrait in oils of Nelson by the artist William Beechey, commissioned by the City of Norwich and completed in 1801 and also included in the exhibition.

The exhibition is timely in that it coincides with the 200th anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone of the Nelson memorial in Great Yarmouth, the county’s most significant memorial to its local hero. It also follows on from the recent exhibition Emma Hamilton: Seduction & Celebrity at the National Maritime Museum Greenwich (November 2016 to 17 April, 2017).

Norfolk Now - Major new Lord Nelson exhibition
The Ensign of Le Généreux