Letters, January 11, 2013

Charity does not start at our home

FOR several years, my wife and I have received increasing numbers of letters from various charities asking for donations.

So throughout last year, I recorded details of all the requests, and it transpired we received 334 letters in 302 postal days, from 112 different charities.

I am sure they are worthy causes and we would like to be able to support them all, but this is not possible and we have to be selective.I wonder if any other readers have received as many requests, or are we, perhaps, on a “list”. I’m told that charity begins as home - I didn’t realise it was our home!


Avenue Road,


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Did Hillman have last reg number?

READING though Peggotty’s Porthole about car registrations (December 28) it brought to mind my late wife’s car. She bought a Hillman Avenger estate car registration AEX 166N from Kings Garage on Lawn Avenue and was assured by the salesman Mr G Hardy that was the last number to be issued by Great Yarmouth, before it went to Norfolk County Council responsibility.


Cormorant Way,


The long history of Grout’s FC

IN answer to Richard Smith’s letter about Grouts Football Club, I hope the following information will help.

The first time the factory’s football made an appearance was in the 1911 / 12 seaosn when they finished in sixth place in the District League second division, the following season they finished 4th in division one, but at the end of the season the club disbanded.

In the first season after the end of the first world war - 1919/20, Grouts Athletic finished seventh in the District League, but again soon disbanded, only to re-appear at the start of the 23/24 season as members of the second division. They won the second division title in 25/26 only to relegated two seasons later.

The 28/29 season was a memorable one for Grouts Athletic, not only did they win the second division championship with a 100pc record, they became the first local club to reach the Norfolk Primary Cup Final where they faced Kings Lynn Labour Club.

After trailing for most of the game Grouts forced a replay by scoring a last minute equaliser to even the scores at 2-2. Unfortunately they were beaten 4-2 in the replay.

The side which played in both matches was: E Huggins,F Huggins, H Deacon, G Harding, A Cottee, A Seago, H Powles, E Clayton, W Crooks, J Smith and B Tyrell.

After being relegated to the second division in the 30/31 season, Mr Smith was right in stating they won the second division for a third time in 31/32. The club lasted another two seasons before disbanding yet again in 1935.

They reformed in 1949. My records show they played home games on the Beaconsfield, their colours were registered as yellow shirts and white shorts and their secretary was a Mr A W Starling who lived in Belfort Place, Yarmouth. Grouts were members of the third division A section until they again disbanded in 1953.

They reformed again at the start of the 57/58 season as members of the District League third division town section, following two successive promotions they reached the first division.

In the 63/64 season Grouts reached the Primary Cup Final for a second time, where they faced South West Norfolk club, Weeting FC at Carrow Road, but were again runners-up going down 5-1, the Grouts goal being scored by F Horne. The side for the final: B Timms, B Bowles, D Lock, D Johnson, Trevor Snowling, A Green, R Little, G Johnson, F Horne, G Ford and B Loveday. I have a rather grainy photo of this side, which also shows the secretary Ted Powles.

Grouts finnally disbanded at the end of the 1965/66 season. All this information comes from my local football records which I had hoped to have published, but unfortunately due to the present financial climate I cannot find any publishing company willing to take it on.


Harbord Crescent,

Great Yarmouth

Annual fireworks are a disgrace

ONCE again, Ludham village chose to disrespect as its theme to see in the new year with another disgusting fireworks display in the graveyard of St Catherine’s Church, which also contains the war memorial and war graves.

This annual disgrace is organised by the parish council and members held positions, during their working lives, which stood for respect. But now they show no respect for the dead and the bereaved.


Malthouse Farmhouse


Anyone help with navy boat quest?

I AM trying to find archives giving details of Royal Navy ships that visited Great Yarmouth during the 1970s without and success, is there anyone who can help or steer me in the right direction. I am trying to find out if an amphibious assault ship visited the port as I have early but unclear memories as a child. Please email me at smith.danny204@gmail.com



Litter-picking walkers praised

AS a resident of Winterton on Sea may I take this chance to say a Happy New Year to the couple who can often be seen walking their hound across the dunes and also say a big thank you to them.

When I am walking my dog I have very often seen them start their walk empty-handed but when they return they often have one or two bags full of litter they have collected on their walk. What a refreshing attitude.

I don’t know where they live but they would be welcome additions to the village.



Police favoured queuejumpers

COULD anyone tell me, after queuing since 3am outside Next for the sales, why people joined the queue right at the front. There was trouble and the police had to be called to sort it out. Then the queue jumpers were allowed to go in first.

Next year I think I will stay in bed and then go at the last minute and jump the queue myself. Please Yarmouth Police let’s be fair. The queue jumpers should have been shown to the back of the queue.



Don’t recognise MP’s reflections

GOOD to see Brandon Lewis reflecting on 2012 but I do not recognise the picture painted.

Fuel prices remain to be restrained so we are ripped off for another winter by Tory privatised cash guzzling energy companies. How effective will the controls be?

It is good to see our hospital recovering but how did it get in such a muddle? 2013 will see more money wasted on the costly NHS re-organisation and job cuts.

It is good that the errors of the Department of Transport over concessionary fares were corrected but why did it take a petition? Did we get all what was due? DfT seem quite incompetent with the concessionary fare farce costly rail refranchising farce and letting a short franchise for Greater Anglia with all the costs that entailed.

We still have a train company prone to failures like dumping people on buses for two hour bus trips and others out into the cold at Reedham last week. There has been no improvement to services, and hopes of improvements to the A47 go back over fifty years and are not delivered overnight! The A11 upgrade was announced in 2010 and will not be complete until 2015.

On job creation, we only have half an enterprise zone, of course, with few jobs created and yet more job losses announced last week. The casino complex is delayed again and one wonders if it will ever happen.

The answer to our problems is economic growth, including recalling jobs exported abroad. The more in work, the more taxes collected and less benefits paid out- a double win.

Mr Lewis’ new job will see the borough and Norfolk lose government funds creating more job losses and more on benefits. Local government will become even less local as his department tells councils what they need to do, like shared services in spite of the Tories rejecting more unitary councils. A job creating government is needed. If the 3500 unemployed in the borough were able to find work, benefits would be cut and tax revenue increased and more money could be spent, creating more jobs.


Victoria Street,

Caister on Sea

MP’s job is to represent us

HAVING lived in Great Yarmouth for nearly seven decades, I have witnessed many changes to this historic borough.

Throughout this period I have always assumed that a Member of Parliament was elected to Westminster to represent the whole of this constituency. However I was wrong, Brandon Lewis MP has represented Great Yarmouth since 2010, and has been good supporting David Cameron through thick and thin when welding his case on the NHS and public services and has been duly awarded with a ministerial post.

What a pity that his loyalty to the people of Yarmouth is not of the same devotion when he put through the largest cut in the support grant on the town he represents.

I hope a meeting can soon be convened to give Mr Lewis an opportunity to explain this to the constituents.


Coxswain Read Way

Caister on Sea

It’s Christmas! Why leave bags?

I HAD put my black bins out the night before collection with three bags on the top of the bins and I went to work early in the morning before the refuse collectors had arrived.

When I got home from work I find the three bin bags had been put back in my garden, with the bins emptied.

I phoned the council and explained what had happened and they said the bin men do not take extra bags of rubbish. So why is it then that I have seen with my own eyes the bin men emptying other bins that are way overloaded. Please could someone explain to me why they could not take just three extra bags. I don’t suppose I am the only one across the borough with the same problem.

With Christmas just finishing surely they can get rid of a bit more rubbish (what happened to the season of goodwill) or is it health and safety gone mad?



Disillusioned with plan rules

“VILLAGERS urged to say no to turbine plan”, was the caption to an article published in the Mercury, January 4.

I used to teach citizenship in a comprehensive school and encouraged my cynical teenage students to take an interest especially in the building developments in their localities.

Since having had a very bad experience with the proposed building of a large chalet bungalow on a neighbour’s front garden being granted I have become seriously disillusioned that this principle is being upheld by Great Yarmouth Council.

Ten individual residents complained in writing to the Local Government Ombudsman only to be informed even if they had ruled in the complainants’ favour they were powerless to overturn the council’s decision. Even our MP Mr. Brandon Lewis said, “The Ombudsman was the right channel to follow in this matter,” - but does he know they are only a paper tiger?

My students would have said: “Why bother to write thousands of well reasoned and considered words of objection and speak at the meeting when they can just say they have ‘taken our views into consideration’ and do whatever suits them.” Good luck to the villagers objecting to the turbines and hope their numbers and publicity will help their case but when it comes to “planning” the speculator has the overwhelming advantage. My young students were undoubtedly influenced by their parent’s views as I was when my father when he said, “In this world money talk’s son.”

In a better world, that should not be true and this turbines issue could be the beginnings of a fairer local government planning department which listens and is influenced by its residents’ wishes.


Mill Lane,


Yarmouth: Dog poo and rubbish

AGAIN I must say through the Mercury, just how bad the amount of dog poo there is in the passage ways at the back of Palgrave Road and Alderson Road in Yarmouth. You do not see any stray dogs about so it’s just down to lazy owners.

There are bags of rubbish with food in them, plus it seems it has become a dumping ground for unwanted goods of all kind,with broken bottles and glasses laying around. The road itself is full of rubbish.

Take a walk up Kitchener Road; it’s full of dogs poo and not just on the path, there are bags thrown in trees in the graveyard. And why are there pet cages in the churchyard? I don’t think any residents of the graveyard are keeping them.

I’ve lived here all my life and the town is a mess. If I could say one thing to our councillors it would be get a grip!



MP has overseen budget cuts

I FIND it difficult to put into words the disgust I feel at the way our MP Brandon Lewis in my opinion has used the town for his own political ambitions. He has personally overseen and organised one of the largest budget cuts to any council in the UK, for the council of the same town he is meant to represent! Has he done this to prove to the Conservative Party and his friend Eric Pickles that he is an obedient MP?

Whatever your personal politics are, I’d be surprised if any Great Yarmouth resident could say that Mr Lewis’ actions have been anything but totally destructive to our poor, long-suffering town. This must not be forgotten come election time!



Estate’s verges are a disgrace

I AM not one who normally finds it necessary to write to newspapers but in this case I feel I need to, concerning the state of these grass verges which are turning in to mud baths. Last Monday I took myself on a cycle ride around the estate, and I could not help but notice these verges.

What a mess. One road looked like a ploughed field, the whole grass had gone. Tyre parks were filled with water.

Soon the council will need a four farrow plough rather than a grass cutter. It is not just the household cars which are the culprits, some are contractors. Well firstly, they are causing an obstruction on the pavement come verge and secondly you are causing a costly amount of damage.

I think whoever is in charge of the verges should start sending out a few bills, as the whole estate is becoming a total mess.


Lady Margaret Avenue,