Letters, Augusy 21 2015

Don’t worry about residents!

Free parking - beyond the current one-hour-free promotion - would cost the council hundreds of thousands of pounds but such unrestricted free parking spaces would inevitably be filled by town centre workers all day and you wouldn’t then get a constant throughput of shoppers through the day.

Instead they park in residential streets, so that makes great sense to me. You can’t even park outside your house because of this, Town Wall Eoad being a massive problem.

But hey the County Council doesn’t care about this road because it takes the problem away from the town, and they have meetings on how to solve this. Anyone for a cup of tea and a chat must be the way they start the meetings. They don’t do anything else or they just ask the shops on Northgate Street how they feel about it. The simple answer from them is no don’t make it a residents parking zone.

Thanks Norfolk County Council, do nothing and keep shopkeepers happy. Don’t worry about the residents.



Most Read

Please give cash to local branch

I am the secretary of the local Macmillan Cancer Support group. I have seen articles in the Mercury where people have very kindly raised money for Macmillan Cancer Support from various activities.

This is superb, but I just wanted to let your readers know that if they send money they have raised to Macmillan headquarters it is spent on a national basis.

However, if they send it through our local branch it is earmarked by Macmillan for spending in our area. In 2014 with the help of such fundraising the sum of £32,500 was raised and earmarked for spending in this area.

Therefore if you are considering fundraising for Macmillan and would like it to be spent locally then please pass your donations to our chairman Michael Muskett, contactable on 07887601001, the treasurer Lynn Bensly on 07768621008, or myself on 01493 730990 and the money will be forwarded to our headquarters and then earmarked for this area.

In addition if anyone would like assistance with publicity materials or other help for their event, then do not hesitate to contact us.



Somewhere for wine and meal

Gorleston High Street now probably has more shops than Yarmouth Market Place and bringing in Wetherspoons could encourage people here and benefit other businesses.

At the moment the High Street dies at 6pm and it is very hard without transport to find somewhere to have a meal and a glass of wine. This has to be better than another charity shop or estate agents. Bring it on!


Shrublands Way,


Here’s our little feathered friend

In common with many who encourage birds to their gardens, we have always tried to feed and give a lifeline to a wide variety of birds particularly during the cold winter months. Although we only have a small garden, we attracted a wide variety of birds and noted the highest numbers of separate species during the past several years. We recorded over 20 different types of bird during the recent bird watch survey.

One cold morning in February this year, we noticed a small bedraggled looking female blackbird perched on our fence staring at us through our conservatory window. On closer inspection, it seemed the bird had been the victim of an attack by a cat, or other predator, as it had a broken leg and most of its tail feathers were missing.

We were surprised the bird had survived amongst its more able-bodied peers and other competing wild birds. My wife filled a small dish with mealworms, and gingerly enticed the bird from the fence to the patio, placing the dish in front of the bird that showed no alarm. The bird eagerly tucked in and somehow flew to the nearest shrubbery in our border which then became her future refuge

Since that day, the bird, which we call Bella, has returned on a daily basis and announces her presence by making a commotion outside the patio door or by perching on the windowsill. This produces a saucer of mealworms, and she returns several times a day for ‘top-ups’.

Bella now responds to her name called by my wife and will feed inches from her feet. Male blackbirds are a constant threat that try and scare Bella from her food, so my wife now acts as guardian while she feeds.

The bird still visits us several times a day, and we hope in our own way we have helped her survive in the wild.


Thurne Rise,


Move office to the Tolhouse

I have followed the saga of the suitability of the library as the town’s registry office, and the alternate argument of moving it to the town hall, or elsewhere.

Would a better and virtually cost free option be to move the office 30 metres to the east of its current location, into the oldest civic building in the town, and not too short of being the oldest i n the country, the Tolhouse Museum?

This building is not accessed by the general public unless visiting it as a museum, and is a much nicer entrance to a venue.

I’m sure space could be made available for what would be a more suitable setting for weddings, and registrations of births and that of the deceased. All this without having to make passage through a public building with its vast array of users.

Removal costs would amount to the use of a sack barrow and relocation of associated furniture within the current building. Is there anyone who could disagree with this idea?



Local people cut out of the loop

Well, the facts are coming out now, with people like me and plenty of others down the years trying to point out the contempt a London centric government has towards rural communities except that is when they wish to dump their problems on us. For years they have conned us.

When I came here 54 years ago steam trains were still running behind Cliff Park School. That had only just been built and I was IN a tiny group of pupils who did not come from Norfolk. The opposite is properly true now. Cattle were still being moved through the streets of Norwich and Cobholm Island had pigs, geese, ducks and was full of characters and character now has been turned into something completely different.

There is a deliberate policy of cutting local people out of the loop and to turn Norfolk and Suffolk into an adventure playground and a dormitory for London, the southeast and the Midlands etc. The point I am trying to make in a letter that nobody seemed to grasp is that whatever subject your letter is about, and some of them have been very good, there has been some interesting conversations about what is going right or wrong in the town down the years.

Finally, as I started to compose this letter there was a major road accident on Butt Lane, then on arriving at Gorleston high street find one had happened there too, then later a third one in Gorleston. Where are the flashing lights/signs warning drivers they are doing 60mph in a 30mph limit, if they are. It beggars belief the authorities seem more worried about upsetting the motorist doing 60 in a 30mph limit than catching them, or are they afraid that a great many of these idiots will be the tourist trade.

One national newspaper even published an article about how they have found townie motorists do not know how to drive in a safe and proper manner in rural areas just to prove my point.


Burgh Castle

Add support to drugs campaign

The Off-patent Drugs Bill will be voted on in Parliament on November 6. I am campaigning in support of this Bill and hope that my local MP joins me and lends their support to this vital piece of legislation which could benefit hundreds of thousands of patients across the UK.

Supported by Breast Cancer Now, the UK’s largest breast cancer charity, the Bill is designed to address the problem of making drugs that have fallen out of patent, but have since proved effective for clinical uses outside of their original licence, routinely available on the NHS.

If it successfully enters UK law, it will improve access to low-cost treatments for a range of conditions including breast cancer, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s. In order for it to progress a step closer to becoming law, 100 MPs need to turn up and vote in its favour this November.

Neglecting the clinical benefits of off-patent drugs is a huge oversight, especially as these drugs tend to be very low-cost. Given the budgetary constraints on the NHS, surely this is exactly the type of opportunity that decision-makers should be embracing.

I would encourage others to join me and add their support to Breast Cancer Now’s Unlock Drugs campaign by visiting breastcancernow.org/unlockdrugs


Prince of Wales Road,

Caister on sea

A High Street David v Goliath

David versus Goliath (Local pubs vs Wetherspoons). The local pub has been in decline over the past decade and many have shut. Cheap supermarket booze, social media and greedy pub co shareholders have been reasons for this.

Having survived the past decade, the local Gorleston pubs that remain, many of which are freehouses, are now set to face their biggest challenge of all, namely Wetherspoons.

This giant of a pub chain, offers the majority of well-known brands at competitive prices and will ruthlessly compare their offers against other pubs in the locality. It is impossible for local pubs to contend against this and, in my view, is unfair competition.

They just don’t have the resources, eg the buying power to secure discounts from major suppliers.

There will also be a knock on effect on Yarmouth pubs who rely on mid-week pool, darts and euchre leagues to support their turnover. The more Gorleston pubs that close, the more these teams will disperse.

Any hope could be drawn on the fact that, I understand, Wetherspoons do not play music in any of their establishments. So the public houses that incur the cost of live entertainment and karaoke have an outside chance.

Also, I feel the need to mention the local restaurant trade that will definitely feel the effect of steak night, curry night, fish night etc. All served with a free pint, glass of wine or an equivalent.

This is not an anti-Wetherspoons rant, because I frequently use these establishments in areas such as Riverside in Norwich. Situated in these zones they are competing like for like with other big chains.

I wonder if any local businesses that have endorsed Wetherspoons will still see them in the same light when their insurance premiums are increased.

If the local authorities can’t police a few drunks outside the library/registry office in Yarmouth, how are they going to deal with the increase in drunken behaviour on the High Street when this establishment eventually opens its doors?



Time to move register office

I, like many other people didn’t believe the state of the registry office/library could have been so bad. Last Friday morning, August 14, I walked from Peggottys car park across via crown buildings to get to my car that was parked on the quay.

It is unbelievable. As you get to the crown buildings the front of it is overgrown, there is refuse everywhere, there is human waste. It is a sheer and utter disgrace and as you walk across on the pathways I tripped as I had to avoid a homeless person who was asleep and looked as though he was going to be there for the day. This is an appalling reflection on Great Yarmouth.

According to the papers things have been put in motion for a massive improvement of the approaches to the library/registry office. Nothing has been achieved in the last three weeks.

This is a public health risk, surely the environmental health should be round to sort this out. If it was a private company they would be closed if they carried out a health and safety or risk assessment on this. Surely this has to be sorted out, the mess (to put it midly) cannot continue.

I plead to the county council and the local council to get together with the registry service and have this moved as soon as possible.

I’ve lived in the borough of Great Yarmouth all my life and have never been so ashamed.



Help in tracing several items

To all you car booters. I need some help.

Have you in the last four weeks bought a green sheet with a leaf pattern, 90x100 with a pillowcase to match; several weeks earlier, a gold chain necklace with a small sapphire pendant? Perhaps a year ago, or even longer, did you purchase a silver chain necklace with a Maltese cross pendant?

You are in no trouble at all, I just want to know where the items ended up.

Contact me on 01493 667530 of you have any information.


Address withheld

James Paget is one of the best

The James Paget Hospital always seems to pick up bad press but for us it is one of the best. From the first moment our Dad arrived desperately ill on the AEDU ward he received treatment second to none.

He was put into a single side room where the doctor quickly and professionally assessed him and then advised the family in a clear but kind way of his condition. From then he was cared for by dedicated, friendly nurses who ensured his every need was catered for ensuring his passing was made comfortably and as pain free as they could.

Even the car park attendant played a part in the smooth running when the family were called to the bedside.

Such dedication, professionalism and kindness deserve much praise and we as a family wish to offer many thanks to all staff at the AEDU ward at the James Paget Hospital.



Make Straight a ‘lit corridor’

Here is an idea: The Acle Straight to be a lit corridor.

A sign or signs to be placed at either end, highlighting the huge number of incidents and requesting that all vehicles put their lights on for the duration of the Straight.

This would have two direct effects: Increase the visibility of each vehicle and the conscious act of turning on the lights would make drivers think more about the risks of driving on this road.

The cost would be small and it may well save injury or lives.