On the 28 September, UEA will welcome current staff, students, alumni and the local community to a day-long festival to mark its 50th Anniversary.

sports day at ziggurats 1970s

Proceedings will erupt with a firework volcano, made by UEA researchers and academics, imitating Mount Merapi in Indonesia. The volcano will become active at 6:30pm on Waveney Mound. Not just a physical wonder, educational information about volcanoes will be available throughout the day from Norfolk Firework Volcano Team.

Throughout the day there will be interactive activities intended to give insight to the University’s broad spectrum of academic subjects. There will also be family-oriented activities at the Little Big Top, where puppet workshops and campus challenges are some events on offer. For home-bred talent the Fringe Festival will be showcasing comedy and drama performed and scripted by UEA students and alumni.

Notable comedian Eddie Izzard, who was made an honourary graduate in 2003 will deliver his acclaimed show Stripped: Tout en Français.

Alongside him on the line-up is UEA alumnus and winner of the 2013 Foster’s Edinburgh Best Newcomer Award, John Kearns. The climax of the event is the Big Top Party, held at 7pm between Norfolk and Suffolk Terraces. Performers will include legendary eighties funk band Kid Creole and the Coconuts and Fun Lovin’ Criminals frontman and BBC 6 Music Presenter DJ Huey Morgan.

There will be on-going events that will carry on past the festival. Exhibitions of East Anglian art at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts as well as a display of artwork by former UEA professor Howard Temperley at Norwich Cathedral will complement the celebrations. Other prominent events marking the University’s anniversary include a series of concerts by the university’s choirs and orchestras, and an exhibition at the Forum showcasing the university’s areas of excellence and its impact on local communities.

Vice-Chancellor Edward Acton describes the event as a way to say “thank you”, acknowledging that “without the vision and fierce commitment of our earliest supporters, golfers might still be marvelling at the undulations of the old course of which much of the university now stands.”