Letters, August 19, 2016

Prefab pub is totally unique

Bradwell has a population (at the last census) of 10,500. This is much larger than Beccles, Cromer or Diss. It’s not quite the “village” spoken about in a planning application for the destruction of The Arches public house

The Arches is one of only two pubs left in Bradwell. It has a simple construction being formed by two prefabs built together. I believe these are the last prefabs left in an area that used to have thousands.

Many people still living will have been very grateful for their prefab “home for heroes” in buildings such as this after the second world war. Well, these are the last two. Rather than knock it down it should be listed for preservation as a totally unique building not found anywhere else, anywhere. It is an asset to the community which is losing its pubs at an alarming rate. Within a mile of The Arches, the White Horse, Magdalen Arms, Sportsmans Arms and The Falstaff have all been closed and turned into housing, or in one case a vets. Once these establishments have gone they are gone and are not replaced except with out of town eateries such as The Grayling or Capt Manby’s.

It would be wrong and a shame and a major loss of a facility for the people of Bradwell if this valuable and unique pub was to be knocked down and destroyed.

If you have an opinion either way then please tell GYBC planning (Planning App 06/16/0442/) before August 25. Use it or lose it.


Most Read

Lowestoft Road


I know fire-hit town will recover

I was born in Norfolk but moved to London as a child. After reading about the fire at the indoor market/bowling alley I was worried about coming here on holiday as I wondered how the town would cope.

The town has really rallied around the traders of the indoor market and it’s been great to see how busy everywhere has been, despite a huge part of the town not being there.

It is still heartbreaking to see a hole in the town but after this week I know that the town will definitely recover and I’m sure when I come back next year the indoor market will be rebuilt and be back better than ever.



South East London

Needing photos of Matthes vehicles

I am trying to locate photos of vans and lorries operated by Matthes Bakery of Gorleston but I have not had any success and wondered if your readers could help.

I restore Diecast-Toys and I want to restore some in the Matthes livery. My late uncle worked for P W Watson Ltd in Lowestoft and they built the bodies and painted their vans and lorries. Any photos, information, registration numbers etc would be of great help, I can be emailed at mburwood@live.co.uk



Couldn’t traders use the Minster?

It is such a bad time for all the Regent Road Indoor Market traders who have suffered the loss of their businesses. Of, course the defunct BhS store would be a perfect replacement site, but no doubt it would be difficult to achieve in the short term.

But has anyone considered approaching the vicar and looking into using the Minster? It is a huge area and certainly not used to its full capacity, belongs to all of us, and as we all are aware the church is there to support the community.


St George’s Road,

Great Yarmouth

Will bridge funnel in holidaymakers?

There is talk of a new bridge across the river at Gas House Quay, and councillors are crowing about receiving £1m to do the groundwork but where will the £99m come from to build it?

Unelected officers and councillors are deaf to some who use the port and who disagree with the crossing’s position, the port will no longer have a 24-hour facility which cannot be good.

There is a suspicion the position of the bridge is just to funnel holidaymakers to the Golden Mile, isn’t that the norm for this council?

Our council have stated over the past months that money is tight but just look at the empty plots of land on the South Denes industrial site. I defy anyone to show me any advertising board stating “Lease for sale” or “To Rent”. Is this an oversight? Exactly just what deal did GYBC, NCC, and GYPA make with IPH back in 2007, did it include all of South Denes as well as the river?

The great fire on Regent Road, yes, it’s only human nature to feel sorry for the traders’ losses. Unlike those of us who are flooded out through an act of God, having no insurance is not an excuse. We do not see people in rented property with buckets touting for support after they have lost everything in floods.

We have got to give the new owners of the port time to settle in, but for the life of me I can see no way that all the cars now blocking the outer harbour and tent site can bring employment to the unemployed of our borough! Where will wind energy assembly take place? Decommissioning? Will this now be a pipe dream? And a ferry service that would rejuvenate the town and county, has that been written off for good?

Our MP and GYBC have a lot of lip service but with no progress.


Burnt Lane,


400 new homes for small village?

Destruction of Martham Village: I refer to the article in last week’s Mercury regarding the building policy in Martham.

I agree with the view expressed in saying the majority of people in Martham are against the latest outline proposal for 144 houses. This will be in addition to the 100 to be built on the mushroom farm, 100 plus on a nearby site to it, and 55 on the Broiler farm.

If the new development gets the go-ahead this equates to over 400 houses being built in a “village”. How can local services cope?

I have spoken to many people in Martham who say they are against it, they don’t complain or object because “the authorities will do what they want anyway”. I am sure this sentiment is music to the ears of the planning department, landowner and developer/s as a lack of response will indicate that people don’t care. The council can then tick a box to say they are building lots of houses as is Government diktat and be told what good boys they are.

Never mind what the people they represent want or don’t want.

Please residents of Martham, if you don’t want this to go ahead, object to the council, complain to your parish council, borough councillors and MP, all of whom are supposed to represent you. Contact details can easily be found online or on the public noticeboard in the village.

There are already considerable problems with traffic flow and lack of parking. It is already difficult to get a doctor’s appointment and the closure of Greyfriars medical centre will certainly not help the situation.

There is a quote from Cllr Charles Reynolds in last week’s Mercury, a member of the council’s development committee, businessman and councillor, saying: “Flegg villages, like it or not, have got to take some of the pressure of housing.”

Well Councillor Reynolds, I think Martham is more than doing its bit. It does not need another 144.

We hear about the need for houses for first-time buyers, I understood the recent development of nine houses on the ex Comtec site in Martham was geared at this group. Immediately on completion at least four had To Let signs on them - so much for first-time buyers.

Surely planning must take into consideration and encompass quality of life for people already living here. Who will want to move to a quiet “broadland village” with a development of 400+ houses and how will people who already live here be able to sell their homes.

We are informed the land for the proposed development is not used, however, there seems to be photographic evidence from a respondent on the planning department’s website showing most of it is used for crops. Does the landowner live in Martham? Would he/she like another 144 houses near them?

Please Martham residents, voice your objections.

Name and Address withheld

Thanks to three police officers

I would like to publicly thank the three policemen from the Acle station who gave such kind help to my grandson at about midnight on Friday.

He had ridden his motorcycle all the way from Poole in Dorset and suffered a breakdown on Acle Straight, they took him back to the station and made sure he and his bike were safe to get home to Yarmouth.

Thank you gentlemen


St George’s Road,

Great Yarmouth

Crossing will still mean traffic jams

Re the third river crossing: The traffic jams at present on Southtown Road and even the bypass would only end up at South Quay - so you would swap one jammed-up road for another and still get nowhere any faster.

You need to avoid all the nearby villages such as Bradwell, Burgh Castle, Belton and as a laywoman, even if it was possible, it would be an enormous expense - on top of which the old railway line that use to run that way has been built on - guess no-one really really looks so far ahead.

Be interesting to see other replies on this.



Hemsby lifeboat event a success

Can I please congratulate Daniel Hurd and all of the crew members, wives and girlfriends at Hemsby lifeboat for a very successful event celebrating their 40th anniversary. What an amazing event from the start to finish.

The Red Arrows were the icing on the cake, and I hope they raised a record amount for a great cause. The day highlighted Hemsby at its best; the volume of people having a great time was a joy to behold, thousands of people which I haven’t seen in Hemsby for a long time, which gives us all a glimpse of what can be achieved at Hemsby.

Special mention to James Taylor for organising the flypast, a great piece of work.



Time for change of talent in town

I have noticed over a period of a few summers that the puppet man and the Charlie Chaplin impersonator are competing against each other. They both stand only a few yards apart on Regent Road where the buses stop.

It’s about time we got some new talent in Great Yarmouth for a change instead of the same thing all the time. I am sure some people would agree with me.


St Margaret’s Way,


Corbyn is easy in his own skin

In response to David Nettleship’s letter in last week’s Mercury, I have been called many things: long-winded, verbose, but I haven’t as far I can recall been called ‘mazy’ before which I think roughly translated means ‘confused of Cobholm’.

I re-read my letter and felt it was a fairly proactive one and fully admitted that the EU vote is in and we have to make the best of if and yes, I am fully aware of the concept of democracy.

As to his comments about Jeremy Corbyn, as usual this was a rather rude portrayal of a principled man who has appealed to a great swathe of the electorate. Owen Jones in The Guardian wrote a cracking article about the deficiencies of the PLP who themselves are no real great shakes and provide little inspiration.

They are not as strong on self-criticism themselves, instead are ladling out vitriolic and gratuitous amounts about the incumbent leader. I disagree, I think Corbyn is comfortable in his own skin and resonates strongly in his views on inequality and continuing austerity. I had to smile as David Miliband is now being approached as to his coming back into politics, they appear to be more confused than I am.

I felt also his comments about BhS were rather harsh and I still feel the buck stops with the owners of this chain, who showed little interest and what is more little investment in resurrecting this well-respected name on our High Streets.

But the real victims are the staff who have now lost their jobs and expect to have on going worries about their pensions. This is an invidious situation and to draw parallels with the implosion of the Labour Party is I feel uncalled for.

David McDermott’s graceful comments about the courtesy of the staff of this beleaguered store, speaks volumes and that is obviously where my sympathies lie and this is where also

Jeremy Corbyn would hang his hat as well, on the hook of the disgraceful treatment of staff, who do their level best to provide a good retail experience for little reward in inequality Britain. Hopefully Theresa May will finally put a stop to zero hours Britain and the exploitation of workers in all areas.


Winifred Road,


I will not give up on this borough

Stan Smith in his letter in the Mercury last week said that he is “truly ashamed to admit this town is where I am from”.

Businesses are closing because of cheap internet prices, pubs are closing because of cheap alcohol in supermarkets, and on top of it all, government is cutting the money this borough receives.

Year after year we have to do the same job with less and less money. By 2020 we will get next to nothing!

If we get a third river crossing does this make up for lack of funding to improve the infrastructure of this town so we are better able to do business? Maybe not, but we’ll take what we can get.

As a councillor I will not give up on this borough; like my fellow councillors we put ourselves in the firing line to try and turn this borough round in very difficult times, and we will try, rather than running the place down.

We have a lot wrong with the borough, but there is a lot that’s right and that’s where we start building from, for a better future.


UKIP Bradwell North

A difficult position for fire site owner

It was quite interesting to read of the idea of a temporary car park while finance is being put together to replace the buildings burned down in Regent Road. It is certainly food for thought.

The site owner must find himself in a very difficult position, as his insurance may only cover the cost of the buildings which were lost; and not provide for a future rebuild which could run into several million pounds. Rather than see the site as a load of old rubble for several years; or hidden behind high fencing from the view of holidaymakers, the owner could recoup some of his losses by charging people to park on the site.

The sooner the finance is raised to rebuild something in this massive hole the better. In the meantime, the traders from the Indoor Market must look elsewhere as this is not going to be a quick fix. It would be good to keep them altogether but there is no site for them to go en masse that I can think of.

Regent Bowl I fear will not be returning to the town. It is interesting that the Mercury had no comment from them in their reporting of the aftermath of the fire last week.

Name and Address withheld

Thanks for all the help and support

Can I please through your paper thank all those involved in dealing with the fire on Regent Road on August 5:

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, whose expertise controlled and contained this devastating significant fire, it could so easily have spread giving the close proximity of neighbouring residential housing and businesses.

Members of Norfolk Constabulary and Ambulance Service for ensuring the safety of residents and property.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council, building control, environmental health, property services, housing department, and many senior officers, who oversaw the council’s responsem to include the leader of the council Graham Plant, ward councillors and many other members of staff.

Great Yarmouth Borough Services. The town’s estate agents and the utility companies. Businesses and residents for their unstinted support for those who have been directly affected by this incident.

The Archant group, Eastern Daily Press for setting up the community fund to support those who have lost their businesses. The federation of small businesses, the department of work and pensions, council staff who at short notice set up a drop in for those businesses and their staff.

The owner of the site Mr Philip Thompson has also acted swiftly and is quite determined to play his part and expresses his desire to build again.

I have talked to many traders who have lost everything, and their staff who have lost their jobs. What shines through is the sheer determination to start again. They are overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity of the community and the wider community. It was a miracle that no-one lost their lives or were injured in this blaze, and for that we are all thankful.

I wish all those affected by this all the very best and success for the future to them, their families and staff.


Caister North

Chair of housing and neighbourhoods

Deputy leader, GYBC

Rampart Road disaster zone

Writing as a near casualty, considering the potentially disastrous situation especially to pedestrians, at Rampart Road in Great Yarmouth, hopefully our councils will wake up, not to the cries of victims, but the common sense of UKIP councillor Chris Walsh.


Falcon Court,

Great Yarmouth

Paget became my holiday home!

The James Paget Hospital doesn’t leap off the page as the ideal destination for a holiday, but on July 30 that’s exactly what it became.

Travelling up from Romford in Essex to stay at Midway Flats in Gorleston, I started to feel decidedly under the weather.

I suffer with emphysema and have been plagued with chest infections and bouts of pneumonia for some years.

Usually I manage to fight these off with the help of antibiotics, but a few days after reaching our destination we had to call an ambulance and I was taken into the James Paget - an unhappy ending to our holiday but a very happy stay with the hospital.

I spent just over a week with them while they ran tests and looked after me. It turns out they found a very nasty bug that had been hiding away in my lung for some time.

My treatment was exceptional and I have nothing but the highest praise for the hospital and its staff.

I would like to thank each and everyone especially on ward 15. My gratitude and thanks. Well done James Paget.



Get people back to their livings

I just could not believe a car park on the fire-hit site in Regent Road, Yarmouth, was an idea from our Mayor. How do you think the people would react to that idea, and what else would be demolished to get to this so-called car park. Think on Mr Mayor, get people back to their livings, not discard them for a car park.



Seeking info on old shipwreck

In the early summer of 1869, the vessel August from Larvik, Norway, was found drifted ashore close to Bacton in Norfolk with the keel up. There was a hole in the hull done by a piece of the hull`s copper cladding. The Swedish-Norwegian vice-consul in Great Yarmouth told about this.

The cargo was wood and they had sailed out from Larvik. I do not know if the ship was full or empty of its cargo when it capsized. The captain was Nils Larsen, 30 years old. He was the oldest of the crew, and the only one who had children. My great-grandfather, his son, was born a couple of months after this.

If anybody knows anything more about the August or about what happened to the shipwreck and the content, please email me at trineporto@hotmail.com