Getting rid of pool concern

WHEN the initial euphoria of having been granted a large casino licence recedes, it is not unreasonable to expect Great Yarmouth Borough Council to ensure the impact on residents will be at the forefront of criteria when analysing proposed developments.

WHEN the initial euphoria of having been granted a large casino licence recedes, it is not unreasonable to expect Great Yarmouth Borough Council to ensure the impact on residents will be at the forefront of criteria when analysing proposed developments.

The council is well aware any development which involves demolishing the Marina Leisure and Fitness Centre will seriously impair the lives of many categories of residents unless facilities are replaced within the town.

The Marina Centre is the borough's main indoor sports facility, and largest leisure facility, as stated in the council's own Cultural Directory, which extols the virtues of recreational participation and healthier lifestyles, emphasising the enormous health benefits of keeping regularly active.

The cumulative effect of all the Marina Centre's various facilities, particularly the level entry swimming pool, contributes more than any other establishment in the town towards achieving the council's own laudable objectives regarding health and fitness.

If the town is to be without a public swimming pool, particularly with residents living so close to the sea and the river, there is great concern whether our youngsters will continue to receive the vital swimming lessons and also the regular practice needed to become proficient swimmers for their own safety, or will it take the drowning of one or more of our youngsters before it is accepted that at least the continuous provision of a public swimming pool in the town is an absolute necessity?

Additionally, the council is aware that the health and lives of the disabled and the ever-increasing number of elderly residents will be very badly affected if deprived of a suitable swimming pool.

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It is understood council employees are being encouraged to have a swim during their lunch break to help relieve stress, boost morale and reduce levels of sickness and absenteeism.

The above highlights very genuine and serious health and safety concerns for many residents of all ages. Through The Mercury it is requested the council issue an unambiguous statement regarding whether or not they are prepared to leave the town without even a public swimming pool, and if so, why?


Caister on Sea

I UNDERSTAND when the southern breakwater of the outer harbour is built, it is expected Gorleston beach will start to erode. This is because the sediment drift from north to south will be diverted. Sand will then build to the north of the northern breakwater arm. Sand will then have to be transported from Yarmouth beach to Gorleston beach in large amounts to compensate.

There is an easy way and a difficult way to achieve this goal. You either pump it through a pipeline under the sea to Gorleston or you run lorries 24 hours a day by road from Yarmouth to Gorleston. I am sure you will have guessed which method has been chosen and it is likely to continue for several years.

Will the powers that be have a reappraisal?


High Street

Gorleston on Sea

SINCE living on East Anglian Way, backing on to Meadow Field, we have had nothing but trouble for the past year. These feral youths have been running amok for some time now, using the children's play area as a magnet for their trail of destruction, drug use, drinking and volatile language, all after dark. As a user of the field, with two young children, it makes me shiver to think of this generation and their's to come.

To call the relevant authorities seems to fall upon deaf ears too many times. How much more does the tax-paying, law-abiding, silent majority have to take?

As for that poor lady, to run over her puppy and show no remorse has to be a complete travesty in this society of gang-land culture we are breeding in our backyards. Will the people in high places sit up and take note when a child is maimed or killed by these yobs? I want to know where are the parents? Out of sight, out of mind, not my problem. But we, the people who have sit and listen watch this behaviour, and tolerate it, because it's not in their backyard, it's in ours.

Name and Address withheld

RE the report last week about a young dog killed by a crowd of yobs on off-road bikes; although I have two dogs and am a avid animal lover, I wonder if we have our priorities wrong.

On numerous occasions I have, like many others from both Baliol and Paston roads, reported these youths for their activities to the local council. One time I called to report my granddaughter intimidated by them. Nothing happened, no action, nothing.

Isn't it a bit late for action now? If the problem had been acted on at the start the killing of the puppy may not have happened, and yes, next time it could be a young child.

I hope this incident gets treated seriously.


Gorleston on Sea

BELTON is about to have a new school with the joining of Waveney and Breydon. The new school is to be named Moorlands Church of England School. Could anyone tell me why Church of England is in the title? Was anyone in the village consulted or involved in the decision? Has anyone considered that people in the village may be catholic, Jewish, Muslim or other denominations, yet there is only one school? Schools should be for education not indoctrination.


Station Rd South


RE: Peter Kirkpatrick's letter in last week's Mercury. I am sure that Mr Layton is not the only one criticising the above complex of 24 units on the former Garibaldi site (Letter, February 29). I have met several people who think it's very congested, has no parking facilities and is built right up to the very busy St Nicholas Road leading to the seafront.

Parking is a problem already around here. What happens if there's a fire? Access seems to be limited as there's only a passage at the back of the complex. At least the block of flats next to it has gardens in front, balconies and a large piece of ground at the rear for washing facilities.

It would be interesting to hear what our local architects think of it.


Well Street

Great Yarmouth

RE: Scroby Sands Wind Farm. Tuesday March 11, 1.45pm, just got back from taking the dog for a walk. Very windy out but NOT ONE wind turbine on Scroby Sands is working, must be the wrong kind of wind. I am all for more wind farms if they are all used.


Dene Avenue

Ormesby St Margaret

I WAS delighted to see in last week's Mercury that councillor Gerry Cook has managed to obtain funding from the council to demolish the run down semi derelict beach huts on Gorleston's promenade. This is positive action from someone that cares about the people of Gorleston and their surroundings and is to be commended.

The lady who suggested spending money on them to bring them up to an appropriate standard was somewhat misguided. Spending good money after bad on a facility that is not utilised, is poorly designed and is located in the wrong place is not the answer.

Clearing the beach hut space and making it neat and tidy is, enhancing the surroundings in which we live, is what is currently required.

This does not of course mean that beach huts of a different design in a different location would not be more appropriate in due course. Gorleston's beach is a true gem and its promenade and facilities should be supported and improved. After all not all holidaymakers want amusement arcades and the hustle and bustle of Yarmouth, some people prefer the more traditional promenade and beach which is what Gorleston has to offer.

Let's hope more councillors like Mr Cook begin to realise that Gorleston should not be treated as a poor relation to Yarmouth and that it has its own unique history and character and far from turning it into a small replica of Yarmouth, local people want its character preserved and enhanced. Sometimes looking to the best from the past is what is required, you only have to look at Southwold or Cromer's promenades to see what can be done with appropriate designed beach huts.


Roslyn Road,

Gorleston on Sea

TELL me it's a joke. One of the proposals for the siting of the casino is to turn our ancient town hall into a gaming house. Is it a coincidence that after years of neglect, the town hall is undergoing a major refurbishment, ensuring that the vibrations from the roulette wheels won't bring the house down? When the chips are down, you can bet that a lot of people in Great Yarmouth will be at odds with such a plan.


Mill Lane


I DON'T understand the politics of either Great Yarmouth or Lowestoft. I am not therefore not really qualified to comment on whether the two holiday towns need to work together. Having worked in the holiday industry on the fringes of both towns I know how much effort is put in to promoting both resorts. Both councils are to be congratulated on their efforts. It always seemed to me though that two heads are better than one. If Mr Jay's wishes were to become a reality then my suggestion for the name would be “Far East Anglia.”


Retired holiday park manager

I WAS interested to read the article in The Mercury about the lady who found a plaster in her meat pie. Last June, I was buttering my Asda granary rolls when I discovered a metallic coiled spring, that looked like something electrical, in the roll. I immediately telephoned Asda, who told me to bring it in. It was discovered to be the top of a ballpoint pen and the bread roll was blue with leaking ink. Obviously this was quite serious, as it could have stuck in someone's throat.

I waited for Asda to respond and they told me the matter was under investigation. I waited a month or more and then I reported the matter to environmental health. I called Asda to inform themm I was reporting the matter. The next day a bouquet of flowers arrived!

On reading your article it makes me wonder if any inspections have been made? How strange no-one was available to comment to the press!

Name and Address withheld

WEATHER permitting, my hubby and I cycle to the harbour mouth on Christmas morning before imbibing in our local pub before lunch. You would be surprised at how many people are down there, sitting in cars, taking a stroll etc. All in a jolly seasonal mood and some “wag” always asks if Santa brought the bikes! So if we don't get our viewing area this Christmas, us locals won't be able to do our constitutional! Please replace it soon for us all.


Exmouth Road

Great Yarmouth

FIRSTLY, I would like to thank Mr Kirkpatrick for his response to my letter. Whilst I can appreciate his point of view that the development at the old Garibaldi site will provide people with a home and security, I'm afraid I find it difficult to accept there are 60-plus homeless people currently living in this town.

Does “homeless” still mean without a home, ie living on the street? Of course, I could be totally wrong about this and if so, I apologise. However, if there a genuinely this many people in this unfortunate situation, isn't it somewhat of a travesty that this is the best that we can offer them?

How ever Mr Kirkpatrick may like to window dress this development, it will not really be a nice place to live. I also appreciate his comment that “slums are created not built”, but slums, all over the world, are usually created because people are living in too close a proximity to one another.

If Mr Kirkpatrick was a local man, he would realise from my address that I have neither a large lawn nor a treble garage. I too live in a flat in the town centre of Great Yarmouth. So there is no snobbery involved in my comments about the development. As for his comment I shouldn't deride this type of housing as I might one day need it, I fully appreciate that anybody can fall on hard times and it could easily be me, but I fear there would be no safety net of cheap housing for myself.


Trafalgar Court

Great Yarmouth

I DON'T think I am an awkward person, but I do object to the fact that every form I have to fill in has every nationality except my own - which is English. Anyone can be British, but I, like many others, am English, and I strongly object to not being able to use that word. I would be interested to know if others feel as I do? I have just filled in a form for membership of the James Paget University Hospital and on that there are over 20 nationalities - but English does not appear anywhere - only British. Why not?



A POLL of Lib-Dem voters support a referendum on the Lisbon “Treaty” by more than two-to-one according to the ICM poll of 1,000 people. 67pc said that voters should decide in a referendum, while only 30pc thought MPs should decide.

During the vote in Parliament last Wednesday, the Lib-Dems were advised by their leader Nick Clegg to sit on the fence and abstain, only three Lib-Dem front bench MPs went against this instruction and were sent to the back benches - that's what you call democracy.

Perhaps those three Lib-Dem MPs would consider joining the United Kingdom Independence Party, the only party committed to trade with Europe but not run by Europe. When will the general public realise the three main parties are committed to the EU and will never take us out of the constrictions of the EU laws and regulations?

I always thought MPs were there to represent the people of their constituency, but obviously not with 88pc of the voters wanting a referendum on the treaty. Is it any wonder why people don't bother to vote in elections?


Groomes Close

Hopton on Sea

IN the recent Borough News is an article together with a photograph of Addison's Lookout at Riverside, Gorleston.

The land was given by Mrs Addison Williamson for use by the public in perpetuity in memory of her husband Cmdr Addison Williamson who had lived at Koolunga. Unfortunately, over the years the property had become overgrown, and there have been several difficulties, including the proposed sale of a strip of the land; this would have broken the covenant.

However, now with the support from conservation groups, Gorleston-on-Sea Heritage and the Sure-Start Society, the council has restored the site which includes a viewing platform. It has also re-opened the entrance from High Road.


Lovewell Road


AT the risk of becoming a bore over dates, I point out that on page five of The Mercury dated February 29 and on page 15 of The Advertiser, March 6 it states that the King John's Charter was received on March 18.

I feel this cannot be correct because what the Charter actually states in its final sentence is: “Dated by the hand of Hugh de Wells at Marlborough on March 18 in the ninth year of our reign.”

I respectfully suggest that even with a chain of good horses it would be impossible to provide same day deliver' from the west of England to Yarmouth on medieval roads. It could have been brought to Yarmouth in about a week later but the date of its arrival is not recorded.

The words and the Charter are in general well explained in the book “The Rise of Great Yarmouth. The Story of a Sand Bank” by A W and J L Ecclestone (Jarrolds 1959).

They give the following explanation: “To sum up, then, King John's Charter made Yarmouth a free borough and its burgesses free men, whose land and property were protected by law. It gave them a court of law and exempted them from appearing at any other court. In their court, which was to be held weekly, they could hear various sorts of cases and were exempt from 'trial by combat', the murder fine (collective punishment) and the risk of losing their case through ignorance of (arbitrary) law.”

The assertions of the freedom of Yarmouth from the Ecclestones are slight exaggerations as they were aware the Yarmouth Charter had to defer to London and various towns which had charters previous to 1208 and the Cinque ports claimed jurisdiction over the herring fishery and this quarrel lasted for many years.

Andrew J Fakes


Great Yarmouth and District Archaeology Society

ONCE again we read in the Mercury that the council are getting tough on fly tipping by bringing a case to court after catching a person red-handed and then he gets off with a conditional discharge. We also read that the council is spending £79,000 a year on cleaning operations when this could be eliminated by the court imposing the maximum fine of £50,000.

Pehaps the magistrates could also get their act together and impose that magic £50,000. This would make other people, who get the idea that they can dump their rubbish where they like, think twice. Then if others are caught fine them the maximum penalty too. I think that Yarmouth council would then see the end of fly tipping.



YOUR article in The Mercury, February 29, highlights yet again Great Yarmouth Borough Council's ineptitude to be concise with the truth. I refer to the beach huts on Gorleston's promenade. The environmental services state they use one of the huts to store equipment in. And that, to the best of their knowledge, they are not privately owned. Surely they must know if they pay to use it or not?

They don't think anyone is using them now, and the huts are not adding anything to the area because they have been neglected. Councillor Cook states they are boarded up and look disgraceful. Whose fault is this?

Is the council admitting it doesn't really know who the huts belong to, and should not the council at least be sure they own the huts and take responsibility for allowing them to get into such a state before demolishing them? I personally believe that councils should be instrumental in saving local historic curios, not demolishing them.

This fiasco is similar to the one in the August 17 issue of The Mercury. Whereby the council laid claim to land without actually proving ownership to the people who say they own it; demolishing a gate they insisted was blocking a non-existing public footpath. But, as soon as it was pointed out to them there was an infestation of a pernicious weed on the land they claim to own, namely ragwort, environmental services were adamant they had no record of ownership and that the owner of the land, whoever that is, was required to immediately eradicate this highly toxic and dangerous infestation thereby curtailing its spread.

It would therefore appear the council is not too sure what it does or does not own, or is it deliberately and knowingly denying responsibility when it suits their argument, especially if it means they may have to spend money to solve a problem.

Incidentally, having been notified of the weed situation last year, nothing as far as I am aware has been done to address this problem, subsequently it was left to seed and therefore proliferate and dry out, leaving it in its most dangerous state.


Northern Close,

Caister on Sea

“SAD end for my husband,” (Letters, March 7). The same thing happened to us when mum passed away, after living in Caister all of her life (92 years) apart from the last few when we had moved her to Gorleston so we could be near her as four of us lived that way. We pleaded with the authorities to let her be buried in Caister cemetery as my dad's name is on the grandparents' grave. He was blown up in the war so no body for interment. But to no avail. Rules are rules according to them. Please someone get them changed and save a lot of heartbreak.

LILY M PEARCE (nee Brown)

Cherry Road