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Letters, June 22, 2012

PUBLISHED: 16:44 21 June 2012

Elderly don’t

want to move

PITY the poor souls who live at Clere House, Ormesby who have voted three to one against moving to a super-duper dementia centre in Gorleston - and these residents are not dementia patients. Norse Care have ignored the views of these local residents, many who have lived in Ormesby all of their lives. Let them move to Stalham, Gorleston or Brundall, say Norse Care, as reported, in the Mercury, June 8.

Clere House may not be the most suitable for en-suite enhancement, but I would not be surprised to see an application for housing development, and not for social housing, but unrealistic high cost housing on an unsuitable site.

And what do our borough and county councils ward councillors think? By the way, who owns Norse Care: Norfolk County Council.

Did Gorleston people ask to have a 88-bed super care home? Were they consulted, what consultation took place to site an 88-bed “super care home” next to Peterhouse Primary School? It seems to be a case of we will do as we want to, until it’s election time.

PETER KIRKPATRICK

Ormesby St Margaret

No bonus for

doing my job

FURTHER to Peter Hardy’s £25,000 bonus: As someone who worked in the Town Hall for 17 years, I can honestly say I was never given a bonus, or indeed expected one for doing what I was being paid to do already. But then I wasn’t being paid £75,000 per annum!

PAULINE LYNCH

Bradwell

Why cut down

beautiful trees

I WOULD like to express my extreme anger regarding the cutting down of the trees on the green at Avocet Way Bradwell.

There used to be some lovely trees on the green outside where I live, then one day last week I came home from work and found that four of these trees had been cut down by council workman.

The blossom on these trees was stunning each year and although it was for only two weeks each spring I and my family used to look forward to it. Who gave the instructions to cut these trees down, and more importantly what right do they think they have to order something which does not affect them, just the local residents?

The residents should have been approached for their views before any decision to cut down any of these trees was made. How is it that an autocratic council employee believes they have been given the God-given right to make decisions that affect other peoples lives without any discussion or input from those affected.

GARY BAKER

Avocet Way

Bradwell

45hr week too

long for a child

I AM writing to express my concerns about Greenacre Primary School being turned into an Academy, well more about the point of it becoming a 45-hour week for the pupils, which in my opinion is far too long.

My grandson goes to this school and I spend at least three days a week after school with him, where he comes to mine, has his tea and and we spend quality time together.

I would like to know what gives the new headmaster the right to dictate how much quality time I and his family spend with him. If he is not coming home until 5pm and later 6pm, he will just about have time to gulp down his evening meal then bath and time for bed, as he is tired by 7pm already.

Why is the headmaster the one to say which extra-curricular activities he should do, and not his parents, I understand it’s a good idea to offer these activities within the school, but surely they should be optional not compulsory?

I also object to the underhand way in which this all came about, as none of the parents were consulted, and they found out by letter on June 13, which then made it too late for parents to organise changing schools for their children as the summer break starts in a matter of weeks and they will have missed the deadline to do this.

Ms J PARTRIDGE

Email

When will we

get family time?

MY daughter goes to Greenacre and in September she will be in year 5, which means as of September 10 she would be expected to stay until 6pm. I can understand it being good for some children and for some parents, but speaking on a personal level I think it should be optional and a decision the children and parents make together.

I mean when are we suppose to have family time, and catch up with other family members who visit after school; and when are families supposed to have their evening meal, which most families have together? And when are the children supposed to be able to play? I’m not against the academy, I think it’s a good idea, it’s just the extended hours that are being made compulsory I don’t agree with.

JULIE HIGGINS

Email

Stop speedsters

through village

HAVING lived in Fritton for about 30 years, it was very welcome to see the speed limit through this village reduced to 30mph quite recently. But hang on a moment, surely 30mph means 30 miles per hour, or so I was led to understand. So how come now the speed of about 80pc of the traffic has increased?

Most of the through traffic now goes in excess of 60mph. and some even more. The worst times seem to be the early hours of the morning when the road is relatively quiet, as most cars, vans, lorries and motorcycles are definitely going through at double the limit.

Only last week a motorcycle went through and I swear it was almost 90mph, unbelievable.

Also last week a Suffolk constabulary police car went through in excess of 40mph in a line of traffic no less.

So what would be the use of reporting this to the police if their own people cannot bide by the limit, or are they exempt? They had no lights or siren on so they were not on an emergency.

Entering the village from the Yarmouth side there is a flashing 30mph sign to let drivers know they are exceeding 30mph, another complete waste of time as this sign seems to be on permanently due to the speed limit being broken.

We have had police with speed guns; another complete and utter waste of time, as they were in plain sight and people slow down as soon as the see them. So what is the answer, do we wait until there is a fatality before any action is taken against these mindless imbeciles or what?

On another note, I am disgusted with the way people park on grass verges and pavements. It seems to be common practice to park anywhere people like. I always thought it was an offence to park on pavements, as pavements were for walking on and roads were made for motor vehicles. Once again the police seem to turn a blind eye to this practice. Why?

The grass verges in and around Gorleston are in a sorry state due to parked cars on the verges so why not get rid of the verges and make them into lay-bys.

Also a lot of people have gardens that are not in the best of conditions, so why not enforce these gardens being made into driveways, If people can afford to have a car or several cars as many cases are, they should be made to have a driveway to get a lot of cars off the roads.

I certainly hope someone from the police department reads this and cares to comment.

M HARMAN

New Road

Fritton

Anna Sewell

house plaque

COULD anyone through your letters page tell me why Anna Sewell House has not got a blue plaque? Apart from wondering this myself, I have been asked this very question by several visitors to the town. I am sure anybody reading this letter will agree a blue plaque is long overdue.

SHEILA WILKINSON

email

Parents should

get a choice

I AM writing in relation to Greenacre School being changed into an academy. I am appalled that children of seven years of age are going to be expected to go to school longer than a average person works. Children will collapse with exhaustion. Although I appreciate the headmaster is trying to upgrade and reach a better Ofsted, expecting children to do those hours will not achieve anything as their brains won’t learn anything - they will be too tired. And what about the homework brought home, more schooling, and eating late at night which is bad for adults let alone the children. The letters about the decision were handed to the parents a day before the last day to oppose it. That’s clever. We should give parents a choice.

JULIE HUNT

email

Villagers’ views

not supported

HOW disappointing that a majority of Hopton Parish Council failed at the council meeting on June 11 to deliver their election manifesto promise to “Listen to your Views” and “Supporting a pharmacy at a suitable location in the village”. They had the opportunity to support the concerned residents of Imperial Mews and the 90-strong petition opposing a pharmacy in a “garage” in Lowestoft Road. This has already been rejected by GYBC’s planning committee but there has now been an appeal lodged against this decision. Parish councillors were aware of the resident’s vehment protest against this at the time of the planning application but decided not to change their original decision which was to not object.

RON BROWN & MARY BAKER

Sea View Rise

Hopton on Sea

School hours will

cause problems

I LIVE in the town centre and it costs me enough to travel to Greenacre school without the new proposed opening times. I leave my house at 8am to get my children to school. After 6pm the buses only run hourly from the Barrack Estate, which would mean my son won’t get home until about 7pm.

I will be collecting one child at 3.30pm another at 5pm, then last collection at 6pm, although Mr Holledge has offered child care for the youngest child this would only be until 5pm which means I would still have two pick-up times.

What happens in the winter? Children will be returning from school in the dark.

We often sit down as a family for meals so we will not be able to do this until 7.30pm.

These times should not be compulsory but optional.

It isn’t about education when our children will be doing activities or homework. Parents have a choice on what their children do after school and most parents sit down and do their home work with them. People need to think of the effect this going to have on our children not just on health but also on their social and family skills.

L HART

email

Farm Open Day

was fantastic

I WOULD like to thank all the staff at Charles Wharton Farms, Stokesby for participating in the Open Farm Day on Sunday. I believe it is the first time the farm has participated in the project and they provided a fantastic experience, catering for all ages.

My dad, my seven year old daughter and myself all learned a tremendous amount about farming at our own level during the farm tour; and informative and interesting talks were given at different points along the route by employees, who clearly have a passion for what they do. The conflict between quality and quantity demanded by suppliers was made very evident and the farm and its partners obviously work very hard to supply the high standard and volume of produce required.

In the yard, we were able to explore the different machinery used and no question was too much trouble. My daughter came away after three hours wanting to go back next year and “inspired to be a scientist on a farm”! My dad left with a huge smile on his face having sat in the cab of the latest sugar beet harvester!

Thank you all for a great afternoon- we will definitely continue to support local produce!

LIZ NEWMAN

Caister

Broads dredging

is postponed

I AM intrigued to find out where our local angling expert in the EDP and Mercury obtains his facts from. Last week he wrote it was inaccurate to blame the Broads Authority for the “relatively” small death toll of mainly spawning perch from a prymnesium outbreak. It was the EDP which published the stories about the environment agency attempting to save fish in the area as an estimated 200,000 fish died. I wouldn’t class this as relatively small.

The environment agency also spent thousands of pounds relocating dying fish from the area along with running pumps to increase oxygen levels. Yes, the area indeed suffered from decreased oxygen levels and there was increased prymnesium counts. This naturally occurring organism blooms when disturbed in the correct condition.

The authority has been dredging in the area at Duck Broad, but have now listened to the advice of the Environment Agency, Natural England, Angling Trust and the Pike Anglers Club of Great Britain. They have postponed dredging until the colder months when a bloom is less likely.

I would suggest the angling expert speaks to the people who have experience and knowledge about the subject, prior to using conjecture and speculation. And on the subject of misinforming the readers, the writer also said that the Eels Foot Inn hires boats out. It has been closed since March and not due to reopen until spring 2013. If you are going to publish - get it right.

MICKEY COX

Norfolk Pike Angling Club

Bradwell

French do indeed

respect royalty

REPLYING to John and Dorothy McCabe’s letter, the French do indeed respect us. Early on the day of Princess Diana’s death, I travelled to France and was touched to see how many of our flags were already flying at half mast.

RITA FARMER

St Edmunds Residential Home

Gorleston

Change is not

always positive

I WRITE to voice my concerns regarding changing Greenacre into an academy. I firstly believe that to make children attend school for longer hours than an adult is expected to work is a ludicrous proposal.

I had my children because I wanted them, they are not an inconvenience and I thoroughly enjoy spending time together as a family and as a working family our time is precious, the proposal would kill this and I strongly believe impact negatively upon my children’s mental and emotional well being. It would also mean they could no longer enjoy their after-school activities which provides them with an opportunity to build upon their social interaction skills and their physical health as the activities are swimming, karate and football.

Evidence states that Greenacre has been a failing school for many years, this I find difficult to believe. As a former pupil myself I have successfully carved a career for myself within the care sector and it was my many years at Greenacre that provided the foundation for this.

Learning needs to be supported by the parents, they too have a responsibility for their children’s education and feel it would be more beneficial to have support groups to promote this, perhaps these can take place between the hours of 3.30pm and 6pm, and if as everybody seems to be stating “their children’s education is the most important thing to them” the head teacher will be inundated with interest from parents!

I have many more concerns regarding the proposed changes such as how can Mr Holledge guarantee the financial security of the school? With recent changes to the staffing groups (dismissals) and morale clearly very low how can he ensure the few familiar faces within his staffing structure will stay?

Change is not always a positive when it impacts upon the continuity for the children, particularly as the children of Greenacre have already undergone many changes, such as pupils as young as four years old no longer allowed to be escorted in to their classrooms by their parents, and their school day extended from 3pm to 3.30pm and now this! It beggars belief.

The head teacher should take on board the view of the community and leave the name untouched and make the extended school day voluntary and not compulsory.

S MORRIS

Email

Why is our bus

cancelled?

USERS of the First Bus No 2, 8.12am from the James Paget Hospital would be grateful if First Bus could inform us as to why they have frequently been cancelling this service, resulting in making many of us late for work. Given that the fares are not exactly cheap, surely a decent, efficiently run service is the least we should expect.

N S WILLIAMSON

Parkland Drive

Bradwell

No evidence yet for broads bloom

I FOUND your angling correspondent’s column regarding the Prymnesium bloom offensive. He has no way of knowing that the Broads Authority dredging had nothing to do with the bloom. He has no way of knowing how many fish were killed. Why does he think Natural England asked the authority to stop the dredging?

He suggests people who blamed the authority for the bloom should eat humble pie as there is an abundance of fish in the Thurne system. The Environment Agency and Natural England have been given information from various experts from around the world stating their current method of using Prymnesium cell counts as a safety procedure is not safe. The governing bodies are investigating this information.

JOHN CURRIE

Regional organiser,

The Pike Anglers Club of Great Britain

We disabled

suffered abuse

THREE of us are disabled and I am in a wheelchair; my two friends are on crutches and the other uses two sticks. A young man working in an amusement arcade on the seafront was rude to us all, using a lot of abusive insults regarding our disabilities, such as “peg leg,” “one leg”, “hoppy” and a “load of cripples”. We all left and agreed to never use this particular place again. I can only say the experience was a disgrace. If we had been holidaymakers, what an impression of Great Yarmouth we would have taken back with us. I feel sorry for disabled visitors who receive this treatment.

E GREEN

Nelson Road

Great Yarmouth

Is our church

the largest?

SOME months ago I visited Kingston-upon-Hull, and went to the Tourist Information Office. While in conversation with one of the staff, she suggested I visited the largest parish church in England. Having believed what I had always been told, that St Nicholas in Great Yarmouth was the largest, I took issue with her.

This she certainly did not like and insisted Holy Trinity, was the largest. Recently I did actually visit the church and outside was a notice stating “Largest Parish Church in England by area”, and upon entering I would say our St Nicholas was the largest, but eyes can deceive.

In a recent promotion leaflet for organ recitals at St Nicholas it states it is the largest parish church. Please can someone advise me, so I can correct or apologise to the lady concerned.

BRIAN PHILPOT

Email

6pm is too late

to finish school

I HAVE just finished reading your report of the pupils facing a 45-hour week. Most employed adults do fewer hours and they get paid for them! While I’m all in favour of better education, why must the children be made to stay until 6pm? If they want children to do extra-curricular activities fine, then let them, but why make them cumpulsory? When are the children going to have any family time during the week?

Also, have the governors given any thought to those children who bus to school on their own? Because of the infrequency of buses, to and from the Barrack Estate.

What will happen in the winter? Dark nights, children out on their own; bad weather, weirdos about? Of course, if Mr.Agnew is sponsoring, perhaps he’ll pay for the door-to-door transport for all the children who need it? It is absolutely ridiculous!

GLENIS E HIGGINS

Manor Road,

Gorleston

Well done, Brian

IT was so good to hear that in this memorable Jubilee Year, Mr Brian Potter has become an MBE. Brian Potter and now son John are, “following in their father’s footsteps.” Mr Potter and his family have set a standard of hospitality that will be hard to beat.

ROY WALDING

Mill Lane

Bradwell

Lifeboat shed is

to be saved

GOOD news. After years of needless neglect the Volunteer Lifeboat shed that housed the Elizabeth Simpson is being given a new life as a boathouse. The owner has taken advice from planners and is returning it to use sympathetically. Once again it will be an important jewel in our heritage as a monument to all those brave Gorlestonians who risked their own lives and sometimes gave their lives saving others

I tried to get it listed but it was turned down. I have watched it deteriorating almost to the point or dereliction but now we will be able to see it’s return not only to use but continue as boatshed. Many others will rejoice with me that it will remain a major feature in our heritage.

During her 50 years’ service from 1889 to 1939 the Elizabeth Simpson’s crew saved over 400 lives in 120 launches and never lost a crew member. After retirement she appeared in various guises as a pleasure boat and even now can be seen land bound in North Norfolk awaiting tlc.

For more details, go to www.gorleston-heritage.co.uk

DENNIS DURRANT

Brett Avenue,

Gorleston

Let’s have open

debate on port

THE harbour debate, forum, whatever you want to call it, is back on the table, and that’s what it should be. The decisions made by men and women representing the people of Great Yarmouth should once and for all be brought to the forefront, and dealt with in a grown up manner where voters can have their say.

I believe that John Cooper has fought against extreme odds for decisions made by the outgoing council led by Cllr Barry Coleman.

I think, the council, including those not voted back in, should give Mr Cooper the time of day, to answer his questions. If Mr Cooper and Dennis Durrant were 40 years younger they could wait for the 30-year embargo on the papers regarding the outer harbour deal, but like me, they don’t have 30 years.

I am asking for a meeting to be called and for an open discussion even if it takes more than one day. Let us hear about the background to the harbour and the promised jobs

DAVID BROWN

Yallop Avenue,

Great Yarmouth

Cobholm bus

crash answers

SOME months ago I answered a letter in the Mercury asking for information regarding the bus accident which happened when the boys of the school were being taken to the games field in Cobholm on 13th September 1949 at 3.10pm. The bus went under the bridge at Cobholm Railway and the top of the bus was sliced off.

After many emails and much research we have managed to get quite a lot of information on this little school which I attended from 1946-52.

I am thinking of putting together a small webpage and would love to know if anyone has a photograph of the school. It was The Norfolk Junior School at Runham Vauxhall, built in the 1800s and closed on 25th July 1958. I would be grateful to hear from anyone who attended the school. Photographs would be nice but memories just as useful.

PAULINE DODD

High Road

Gorleston

Stolen statue is

treasure gift

THIS letter is to the person or persons who stole my treasured Elephant with two Babies statue, taken from my front garden between 9.15pm June 15 and 8am June 16. A friend had been working on my garden to make it more maintenance free and the statue had only been moved to the front garden two days before.

The statue has always been dear to me - my husband bought it after we went shopping for ornaments one day. I had fallen in love with it. He returned to the shop to buy it as a surprise and struggled home with it. This was quite a few years ago. Now my husband is terminally ill and has been in a care home for three years. This statue is of great sentimental value to us.

DOROTHY GOODINGS

Bradwell

School changes

optional call

I WOULD like to start by saying in my opinion the changes to the school day at Greenacre Primary School shouldn’t be allowed to happen the way it is. I can say at this moment in time I am 100pc against the idea of making my son, aged seven and currently in Year 2, stay at school until 5pm next year.

I can see and understand some parents point of view that there can be some advantages in having your child or children staying at school until 5-6pm but maybe if these changes were optional there wouldn’t be so much unrest.

Firstly my son, like many others, already takes part in clubs during the evenings after school and at weekends. So under the new weekly system the school is telling me my son will have to give up his chosen activities to do clubs at school he might not enjoy, or want to do. Many other children take part in activities like swimming, football, karate, even cubs, scouts and brownies - all in the evenings. Our children wouldn’t be able to go.

What about the families who like to spend evenings together. So make it optional: families that want to use the new system and those who need their children at school until later can take full advantage, leaving those that don’t want the change to carry on their lives the way they are now.

A few years ago a law was brought in where if a working man or woman agreed to working over 40 hours a week they needed to sign an agreement stating that fact. I would like to know why a child can be made to do a nine hour day, five days a week when there is a law in place to stop an adult doing it? Our children are going to get tired, and when tired you lose concentration.

Lastly, Greenacre School has been part of Great Yarmouth and the Barrack Estate many years. Is it right history is to disappear because one man wants to change the name?

SIMON WHITEFOOT

Harbord Crescent,

Great Yarmouth

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