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See the timeline below showing how we have developed over the years.

  • St Martins House opens

    Through the generous donations from the public, St Martins was able to open a 23 bed hostel on Thorpe Road in December of 2023. This is second stage housing where residents are able to stay for up to two years and receive varying degrees of support to enable them to move on to their own tenancies.

  • Somewhere Safe to Stay Hub opens

    An assessment centre providing accommodation for up to 15 people who would otherwise be sleeping rough opens on Recorder Road in Norwich.

  • Bishopbridge House extended

    Public generosity following a fundraising campaign enabled the building of an emergency extension to the hostel. An extra ten beds were made available to deal with the huge rise in the number of rough sleepers in Norwich.

  • Webster Court officially opens

    Located in Lakenham, Webster Court provides semi-independent living for older people who have experienced or are facing homelessness. The building comprises 33 apartments each with their own bathroom and kitchen. Staff provide care and support according to the needs of each resident, which might include dementia and mobility problems. The building is named after St Martins founder, the late Alan Webster and was opened on June 23rd 2015.

  • Under 1 Roof opens

    Making use of a redundant building next door to Highwater House, St Martins, in partnership with NHS Norfolk, created a fit for purpose resource centre. The ground floor is home to the Vulnerable Adult Service, a team of health professionals providing primary health care services to homeless people and other vulnerable adults. On the first floor St Martins provides people with access to informal learning and work opportunities.

  • St Martins House becomes Highwater House

    On 8 May 2008 Highwater House officially opened. Highwater House is the only residential resource in Norfolk dedicated to meeting the needs of people who have experienced homelessness as well as mental health issues and substance abuse. Nominations into placements at the home are made from across the county by health and social care professionals.

  • Work starts on St Martins House conversion

    By 2007 St Martins House was no longer adhering to minimum space standards for residents, so work started on converting the building into a registered care home with adequate facilities for the people living there. A deal was struck with Norwich City Council to buy the part of the site next to the existing St Martins House, required for the 22 bed home.

  • Purpose-built direct access hostel built

    In April 2002 the Night Shelter was replaced by Bishopbridge House, a new purpose-built direct access hostel on Gas Hill, off Riverside Road in Norwich. It was opened by Prince Edward on June 27th.

  • St Martins House opened

    St Martins started to respond to and address the complex needs of homeless people. It became clear that some individuals who came to the Night Shelter needed supported care. St Martins House on Westwick Street opened in 1990 as a 33 bed (single and double rooms) for people with mental health problems.

  • Night Shelter relocated to St Martin at Oak

    Despite very basic amenities, the Night Shelter was in ever increasing demand, and within a few years new premises were needed to cope with the swelling number of users. In 1976, the Shelter relocated to St Martin at Oak, a redundant church on Oak Street.

  • St Martins founded

    In 1970 Alan Webster was Dean of Norwich Cathedral. A meeting gathered in his office to hear Revd Colin Slee’s report “Bedlessness.” Within a week the Dean’s own garage was available as emergency accommodation for those sleeping rough. Within a year the first Night Shelter opened in the redundant church of St James (now the Norwich Puppet Theatre) in Barrack Street, staffed by volunteers. This became an 18 bed night shelter offering basic accommodation for people sleeping rough in Norwich.