The Angel Roof

It is thought that the new clerestory was completed in the late 1440s with its magnificent angel roof. Indeed most examples of angel roofs in East Anglia were built in the 1400s. Richard II (1367-1400) commissioned the first known angel roof for Westminster Hall now in the Houses of Parliament and built by Hugh Herland, his master craftsman. It also forms one of the earliest hammer beam roofs. This was completed by 1398 and within twenty years similar roofs were being built across the county. Considered to be an East Anglian phenomenon through the connection of Hugh Herland with Great Yarmouth and East Anglian wealth provided the money and expertise to construct them across the region. It is likely that the roof has survived destruction because the angels are difficult to access and often form part of the roof supports, but the paint has been removed almost entirely.