Mosaics and mosaic making information from The joy of shards Mosaics Resource

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norman ship mosaic

The Riverside Norman mosaic

Possibly the most recent mosaic in Norwich is at the Riverside development. It is a floor mosaic in an open space to the south of the Big W store, close to the footbridge which crosses the River Wensum to King Street.

Its subject is the influence of the Norman conquest on the appearance of Norwich today, and it shows a boat carrying a cargo of stone (and a horse). The wording at the top reads "The Normans sailed up the Wensum with stone to build Norwich Castle and Cathedral".

The design is inspired by the Bayeux Tapestry, which tells the story of the events leading to the battle of Hastings in 1066. The boat in this mosaic is based on two of the ships that appear in the scene where the Normans land at Pevensey.

detail of prow

stern of boat



The helmsman of the Norman boat, controlling the rudder with one hand and the sail with his other.


Close up of the horse. Notice how the bridle is formed by the grout rather than from the tiles themselves. The outline of the mane is also made more lively by the shape of the grout spaces.

more pictures

horse mosaic

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