Letters, May 16 2014

Grasscutting mess in Crem

On Saturday, we were driving along the A12, passing the James Paget Hospital and turning into Brasenose Avenue on our way to the crematorium and we noticed how all the grass verges were cut and nice and tidy.

Then we turned into the crematorium and could not believe what we could see on the left as you drive in. Rather than cut the edges of the grass around the headstones it has been sprayed and looks a mess with yellow rings around the trees, rather than just strimming it. It is a great shame and affects how the headstones look. I will say well done to the boys who do the grass verges outside the hospital and Brasenose Avenue, it’s a pity you didn’t do the crematorium.



We want more council housing

Does anyone know how to get access to affordable housing in this borough? After planning to move out of my parents along with my partner and after discovering we are expecting a child, I thought I would ask to be put on the council waiting list.

Most Read

Myself and my partner work full time on minimum wage and continue to pay our debts.

After looking and seeing how expensive private rent is, I thought the council would be understanding! I must have been dreaming. After getting through, I was informed I would have to go to Greyfriars House, where they would decide if I would be eligible.

The chances are they would offer me something in the private sector!

I think I am a better judge of what I can afford compared to a council employee.

Average private rents are £550 for a two bed property, yet council rent is around £360. What happened to the old bidding system?

Tower Hamlets in London still has it with a waiting list of 21,000, yet this council can’t even manage it with a waiting list of 560.

Council tenancies also offer you peace of mind and you will not be subjected to month by month leases or be evicted when the landlords have had enough.

So, I’m now about to join many others and be ripped off to pay another person’s pension while this council does nothing. Do any councillors wish to comment on this issue?

Can someone tell me how to get affordable housing without having to apply for housing benefit or becoming a burden on the state?

It would be interesting to know how many people who work or are born in this area actually get access to affordable housing?


Caister on Sea

Male voice choir was impressive

Over the bank holiday weekend I attended Winterton Church and Caister Church to hear a male voice choir from Derbyshire perform and I was so impressed with the concerts.

They have a website which is www.pyehillmvc.co.uk. The choir has performed at both churches before and the people in charge of these churches were so impressed they have invited them back to perform in the future.

Both evenings were so enjoyable and funds were raised for the churches and I wondered whether any other agencies may like to contact them for future bookings or events. Originally it was a colliery choir started way back in 1903.



Havenbridge House so ugly

I read with disbelief of the proposal to upgrade Havenbridge House in order to accommodate county council staff. Correct me if I’m wrong but hasn’t the borough council just given away the municipal offices, as the office space was no longer needed?

Havenbridge House never lived up to its expectations as it wasn’t ever used to its full capacity, and as buildings go, it has got to be the ugliest construction in the borough. Anyone who sees it as iconic really should go to Specsavers!



Loud children on playing field

Ref Jean Samuels posting in the May 9 edition regards Bell Lane playing field noise. I was walking across the field on Sunday with my dog and there was some six children aged from nine to 12 playing loud music within the shelter and shouting out some very loud expletives the type more suited to building sites.

I wonder what their parents would think of this sort of behaviour, more than likely nothing, I feel. I do sympathise with people who live close by but I don’t know the answers.

There are a number of issues regards the field that have been on-going for a number of years raised at council meetings, and field meetings to no avail due, it appears, to the lack of funds. Meanwhile the saga continues.



Thanks for help after cycle fall

Brought to a halt by wind and rain while cycling along Crab Lane on Friday, I fell off my bike. I would like to extend my grateful thanks to the good lady and gentleman who stopped in heavy traffic and picked me up. The Good Samaritans are still out there.


Busseys Loke,


Poor state of limping cat

There is a cat that nobody loves and is wandering around in such a sorry state. So here is a letter to the person/people on Palgrave/Anderson roads, if you can read, who have neglected the black cat.

Some kind people have been feeding it but it is now limping and its fur falling out on one side. It doesn’t want to be caught because it is so frightened. It is rummaging through bins for food.

And to try and report it to the RSPCA is a nightmare, you just cannot get through. The owners should be banned from keeping animals for life - and named and shamed.

Name and Address withheld

All the shops have now gone

Could anyone tell us if there are any particular bunch of idiots who are responsible for the layout of our town centre? All we have now are banks, bookmakers, charity or discount shops. Gone are the clothes and shoe shops, there is ntohing to attract locals or holidaymakers who often enjoy a browse around when they take a break from the seafront.

This was a nice town centre once, with plenty for everyone.


Blackfriars Road,

Great Yarmouth

New testament blueprint failing

Last weekend I searched the Network Norwich website, which lists the churches in Norwich. My dear wife and I wanted to find a church of God to assemble with on the Sunday evening.

When seeking a church that honours the Bible, I first always try to find out who’s steering the ship. Among the 84 churches listed, not one follows the New Testament blueprint for God’s church – a team of equal male elders and male deacons serving the flock!

Many have a “Pastor” in charge (male or female), or “Lead Pastors” (husband and wife), “Associate Pastors”, or even an “Executive Pastor” (whatever that is).

So my wife and I enjoyed a tasty meal at an Indian restaurant instead...


Albemarle Road,


New bus service could be costly

I note with interest the article about First running into Great Yarmouth railway station. We actually ran the 600 service from 2006 to 2010 which was in the station at train arrival times and proved to be a total waste of time.

The persons coming off the train either needed a taxi or simply walked over the bridge into town. We also in the summer of 2008 ran the 300 service which proved a similar dismal failure. I wish First the best of luck with their venture but fear it may be costly for them!


Swift Taxis

Roots of Easter pre-date religions

I noted Mr Barkhuizen’s comments about the roots of Easter but I have to say he is wrong. To early man including Neanderthals and no doubt homo erectus, there were two significant events in the year.

One was when the days stopped getting shorter and after a three-day gap started to lengthen again. That we now call Christmas. And when the leaves and buds started to appear on the plants with the promise of fruit etc this is what we now call Easter.

Easter was so important that our early ancestors even sacrificed both humans and animals, spilling their blood on the ground, to ensure that whatever god they worshipped was appeased or pleased. So the roots of Easter pre-date all the pagan religions by several hundred or even several thousand years. Of course in the various Christian sects today we still have the principle of human sacrifice and the spilling the blood in the crucifixion story.


Royal Naval Hospital

Great Yarmouth

More fire strikes are threatened

Last week’s series of national fire strikes could have been avoided if our local MP and fire minister had chosen not to “sit” on revised evidence-based proposals.

After several years of complex negotiations, a joint clarification was given by treasury officials to the FBU and DCLG (Department for Communities and Local Government) on April 8 that there would be “no obstacle to the DCLG making a revised set of proposals”.

However, despite all this work, Mr lewis seems unwilling to bring forward these new proposals. Many firefighters are left scratching their heads to whether the DCLG were engaged in genuine dialogue.

Unless Mr Lewis presents these proposals to the FBU it is likely that the union will have no option than to continue industrial action in defence of their pensions.



Great Yarmouth Trades Council

Banana buses were so reliable

Has First Bus no respect for the elderly folk of Trinity Avenue and the Shrublands? We get no No 2 on Sundays and so we miss out on bank holidays too. Many of us are able to get out but there is a good incline to walk to the No 8 bus on Magdalen Way and cannot do it.

I wish we still had the little banana buses, they were old, but golly they were reliable and they had lovely drivers. Some are now with First Bus and they are always nice. Anglian Buses are also very good.


Trinity Avenue,


No need to justify Christian roots

I am at a loss to understand why Mr Barkhuizen expected a reply to his letter in the Mercury last week from Christian priests and laity, as they are well aware of the historic roots of Easter, and do not need to justify why it is kept in the Christian church.

Neither do they need a quotation from psalm 127, as it is irrelevant. The word Easter is based originally on the worship of a pagan deity whose name was Eostre. It was realised by the early Christian missionaries that if they wanted to gain converts, existing pagan practices would have to be brought into their teachings.

It was in 325AD that the first date was set for Easter, or Passover. But it had its celebrations associated with various goddesses, including Eostre, throughout the Roman Empire for centuries. For them it was a thanksgiving for the fertility of the earth and crop germination. They also continued the tradition of baking cakes and giving eggs.

Mr Barkhuizen would appear to justify everything by what he reads in the Bible. As our Lord was baptised by John the Baptist, what better reason is there for Christians continuing the tradition. Baptism is the correct word by the way, not christening.

Not everything can be found in the Bible, and not everything in the Bible is correct, as many reputable architects have proved by using state of the art technology.

To add another date to Mr Barkhuizen’s list of festivals and traditions, perhaps December 25, the celebration of Christ’s birth should be mentioned. This was set by Emperor Constantine in 336AD, as it fell in the middle of the Roman pagan celebrations of the winter solstice, on the occasion of which, presents were given and yule logs burned.

Christians had their own inter-pretations, which became the accepted norm. It is of course well known our Lord was not actually born on December 25, but more likely during the summer months.

If Mr Barkhuizen wishes to become more knowledgable about the Christian faith, that he consults the books: The New Bible Commentary, edited by Prof F Davidson, Rev’d A M Stibbs and Rev’d E F Kevin; The Jesus Dynasty, by James D Tabor; and Unholy Business by Nina Burleigh. Further exploration could also enlighten him on the various rites of the Anglican Church from the Evangelical (Low Church) to the Catholic (High Church).

Whatever Mr Barkhuizen’s tradition, it is a matter of his own personal choice.


Anson Road,

Great Yarmouth