The Alan Partridge guide to Norfolk
Go on your own Partridge-pilgrimage with our guide to the setting of Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa and the cult comedy series…
In the wake of newly-released feature film Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa, East Anglican local authorities are arming themselves for an expected influx of Partridge groupies.
The new movie sees Alan’s workplace – North Norfolk Digital – transformed into a soulless media conglomerate, which sacks Alan’s colleague DJ Pat Farrell. Pat comes back for revenge and Alan finds himself in the centre of a siege, as the chief negotiator.
The movie is chock full of true Partridge pandemonium, hilarious japes and a strong backdrop of Norwich sites.
Here are a just few places, in what Alan calls the "Wales of the East", to relive these comedy capers…
This is where BBC Radio Norfolk broadcasts from its custom-built radio studios. This is also where Partridge and DJ Pat Farrell slowly escape in the movie by way of a yellow Radio Norwich broadcast van.
Riverside Leisure Centre
In the words of Alan Partridge, it has “a controversial swooped roof”. This is where the radio presenter comes for a swim and the occasional spot of hydrotherapy. Other activities include body pump, zumba and indoor cycling.
In Alpha Papa, Alan flags down a car outside City Hall and asks to be driven to the nearest police station. This grand 1938 City Hall building, opened by King George VI, also featured in Alan’s Welcome to the Places of my Life and is where the “regional public administration runs our public services and doles out cash for the needy and greedy,” explains Alan. Here he refers to the wall of former Norwich Lord Mayors as “retired pirates”.
Apparently, there’s been a market here since the 1100s; however, Alan doesn’t come here for the history, he visits for the free samples. “The free samples are designed to guilt trip you in to a purchase,” explains Alan, “but hold your nerve and you can get the equivalent of a three course meal”.
Norwich Police Station
A confused motorist takes Partridge to the real Norwich police station in the film. Partridge enthusiasts are welcome to take photos, but please refrain from insulting the real Norwich police in true Partridge style.
St Michaels, Sheringham
Alan's mother is apparently buried in this gothic cemetery, and he was christened in the church. “It has always concerned me that Christians subject their babies to this gentle form of water boarding,” ponders Partridge, “but it’s one of God's rules.”