Record Details

NHER Number:45467
Type of record:Building
Name:Anglia Square and cinema


Anglia Square is a central square of shops approached from the surrounding streets by a series of tunnel-like passages. The main part of this complex was built in 1971 by Alan Cooke Associates, and may represent Britain's first mega-structure.

The Square itself was intially designed with a canopy over the central courtyard, which originally had red tiles over the white concrete structure. Both the canopy and most of the tiling have been removed. Towering above the square are a multi-storey car-park and a cinema, reached by a curving service road and all in grey concrete. The vast area of the main auditorium of the cinema seats over a thousand people on a steeper slope than normal, and opened in 1971.

The square itself was designed as part of the regeneration of this part of Norwich, though like many similar projects across the country has not been completely successful. The future of Anglia Square may be in doubt as further regeneration work is proposed.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TG 23073 09371
Map Sheet:TG20NW

Full description

Anglia Square Shopping precinct and offices.

Includes Anne’s walk, Odeon (Now Hollywood) cinema and Sovereign House.
Sovereign House (HMSO building) at southwest corner 1966-8 by Alan Cooke Associates, glazed building with circular stair turrets at corners. Main complex 1971, red tiles on white concrete, with central square approached by tunnel-like walks from Magdalen Street. Odeon (now Hollywood) Cinema, on concrete columns to raise it to the upper, service road, level, 1971 also by Alan Cooke. Multi-storey car park to north. Since altered by removal of most of the tiles, canopy over central square. Acclaimed by the late Reyner Banham, Norwich-born architectural writer, as Britain’s first megastructure.
Threatened with partial destruction in 2006.
E. Rose (NLA), 8 August 2006.

Monument Types

  • SHOPPING PRECINCT (Mid 20th Century to 21st Century - 1966 AD to 2100 AD)
  • CINEMA (Late 20th Century to 21st Century - 1971 AD to 2100 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---Newspaper Article: Eastern Daily Press. 2010. Ghostly reminders of the past in city's forgotten buildings. 31 December.

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