Amusement arcade in Scratby could be demolished and six homes built in its place

PUBLISHED: 09:44 02 February 2017 | UPDATED: 09:55 02 February 2017

California Amusements in Scratby. Photo: Gary Skipper (Norwich Retro Gamers)

California Amusements in Scratby. Photo: Gary Skipper (Norwich Retro Gamers)


An amusement arcade could be demolished and six new homes built in its place.

The owners’s of California Amusements in Scratby said it had not been a viable business for a long time and now they wanted to build a permanent home for their family.

Plans have been submitted to Great Yarmouth Borough Council to raze the existing structure in California Road and build six semi-detached first time buyer’s homes.

The buildings would have three-bedrooms with two off-street parking spaces each and gardens.

In planning documents submitted to the council, agents for Mr and Mrs Oakey said the couple have been the site’s owners since 2011 and they live in a static caravan behind the arcade.

The applicant’s agent, Gabi Feingold-West of Yarmouth-based Terra Firma Architecture, said: “Mr and Mrs Oakey have been managing the arcade for over five years. Unfortunately their accounts show a consistent loss at the end of every tax year. The arcade has not been a viable business for a long time.

“Due to the nature of the local seasonal trade, alternative commercial use of the building has been deemed unrealistic,” she added.

“They have tried for more than five years to develop the arcade business from a commercial point of view but, unfortunately have not been successful. They are hoping, through this submission, to at least gain a permanent home for themselves and their family.”

Although the previous owners of the site gained planning approval for two four-bedroom flats above the existing structure, these were never constructed.

Gary Skipper from Norwich Retro Gamers said: “It’s sad to hear that another of our coastal amusement arcades is going to close, they are becoming a dying breed in all but the largest towns in Norfolk.”

The site is designated a ‘Prime Commercial Holiday Area’ and it is not within Scratby’s current development boundaries.

Mrs Feingold-West added the immediate neighbourhood would substantially benefit from an aesthetic improvement.”

She also noted that although the area to the north and west of the site houses a large holiday site, the immediate neighbours to the east and south are private homes.

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