Letters September 9 2011

Exotic ideas for

Winter Gardens

I READ with interest the article about the future of the Winter Gardens. However, filling it with exotic plants will not be enough to attract tourists and local families. With the exotic plants you need more, such as exotic butterflies, tropical freshwater and marine fish.

The fish tanks could be raised so they can be viewed and have underwater lights and fountains.

They would be a great attraction for the seafront.


Ashwood Close

Most Read

Caister on Sea

Magical day

with Truckers

I AM writing regarding the wonderful job the East Coast Truckers do to create that magical day for each special child. The thought of having to stop this event is one of the saddest examples caused by this massive wave of destruction which is sweeping our country of its human kindness, and it is called Cuts.

I remember when we lived in Cobholm 20 years ago and my children waved to the Truckers and now my grandchildren do the same. Each cab carries a chid with a tragic story, yet on this day their little faces are lit up with excitement. It is an experience they will carry with them for the rest of their lives.

The Truckers do it for free and I know the police force contains many good-hearted officers who if asked would also give up their day to cover the event for free.

This event is too special to stop, so please let it continue.


Mercury website

Fears for future

of garden

I WOULD like to bring to the attention of your readers something which my wife and I think is very important for the community.

For nearly two years, my wife and a number of other volunteers under the guidance of a county community worker have been working on the piece of land in front of the library. They have turned it from a piece of waste ground into a wonderful community garden which people now use as a meeting place and a place to relax. Apart from maintaining the garden they also teach any local children who wish to participate about the skills used in gardening and about the plants.

Unfortunately the operation is now threatened as the funding for it ends in December and at present there is no sign of any further funding for the new year. While the volunteers give their time for nothing there are some costs involved and the scheme will not, and would not, have worked without an experienced professional to organise and guide the project.

We feel that unless funding is provided in the future the garden will in time deteriorate into a weed-infested piece of waste ground which will be an encouragement to vandalism which up to now has been virtually non existent.


Royal Naval Hospital

Great Yarmouth

Police car was

going too fast

ON Wednesday last week the Market Place in Great Yarmouth was full of people when a siren was heard, and it turned out to be a police car. Well, the speed it came through the Market Place was disgusting and it’s not the first time this has happened.

I’m amazed someone hasn’t been killed. A blind man and a guide dog were at the stall where I was working and he was quite concerned because it wasn’t possible to suss which way they were coming. They should have more thought.


Mercury website

Here’s my own

AAA rating

I’VE seen and heard a lot about AAA or triple A in the media recently from batteries to use in your torch to the credit rating of a country, well now I offer a similar method of distilling shenanigans and goings on in the good borough of Great Yarmouth and Gorleston with the outer harbour project.

A – Amenities. The outer harbour project continues to attract paper column inches, it has become a complex story much of which is lost on the man and woman on the streets. It actually boils down to a loss of amenities, where people used to walk or drive has now been lost to them, so they rightly ask how and why long held public access and amenities be lost without our elected representatives blessing or veto?

A – Accountability. When the public purse is involved it demands a higher level of accountability. How strange that having been elected into office, some then choose the condescending “let them eat cakes” approach to all that rightly question management of public funds and resources. A 30-year embargo on the facts of the outer harbour deal with a “we know what is best for you” attitude is hardly accountability familiar to most of us.

A – Antics. An elected councillor asked to leave before being physically ejected from a council meeting, who previously still makes jibes as to “opponents of the outer harbour” (source Letters page GYM 19/08/11 Mick Castle) illustrates, in this reader’s opinion, a narrow jaundiced view as to what accountability means. To my knowledge all of our group want this project to succeed, but it must remain both transparent and accountable with public amenities intact.

Come on guys forget the cheap politicking and point scoring from your own party perspective and view and address the issues and the questions in a proper manner for the benefit of us all.


Clarence Road


Riot memories

from Depression

DOES anyone remember that a riot took place in Great Yarmouth at the time of the Depression in 1931 when there was much employment so that many people were unable to afford the basic foods. In the event, it was necessary to have food tickets and these were supplied through the relieving officer George Ebbage (later to become my father-in-law). He was appointed by the board of guardians made up of local magistrates.

He was a very fair-minded man and gave the tickets to the most needy. My husband said that their house in Belgrave Road had to be boarded up in fear of it being raided by the desperate.

Then one day a crowd massed before the Town Hall in great fury and hunger demanding that something should be done. They were becoming vicious and it was necessary for the chief magistrate to read the Riot Act (now repealed). Police were everywhere surrounding the crowd with the chief constable on horseback, steel-helmetted.

I was a 15-year-old office girl in one of the lawyer’s offices in South Quay and all the staff came out to watch from a distance. The act was read and fortunately the crowd dispersed, fearing arrest and imprisonment.


Lovewell Road


Rita’s letters get

right to point

WHAT a treat it is to read from time to time on our letters pages, those cryptic little missives from Gorleston’s own Rita Farmer – and a real character if ever there was one.

And I know she wouldn’t mind me saying so. Her letters are so succinct and to the point. All our verbosity summed up in a nutshell, and she goes straight to the kernel! All power to your elbow Rita, keep them coming, they make a real telling point.


Links Road


Looking down

on us minions

THERE are words in the dictionary that come to mind in regards to Steve Ames and his councillors in regards to an Open Forum, and one is fobbed off, which means inadequate explanation I feel they look down from their high tower on us, the minions.

Myself, and I am sure many others, feel we are just here to make little ripples in regards to the outer harbour, and other fobbing off the council deems necessary.

There always seems to be an excuse to stall any meeting for a reasonable time and date, but Mr Ames has decided a winter venue would be best for the Gorleston Pier public meeting. But many of us may not be able to attend because of snow, heavy rain, buses not running on time, etc. The elderly, and wheelchair-bound like me, cannot attend. This would mean a very poor turnout.

I thought local politicians knocked on our doors to vote them in with promises for a better Great Yarmouth. We want to talk now!


Yallop Avenue


Don’t park on

grassed areas

I RECENTLY attended, on a Sunday, a sports meeting at the Wellesley Recreation Ground. I was astounded and disgusted at the number of cars and vans parked on the grassed areas, mainly north of the running track.

Whatever happened to the old principle of please do not walk on the grass, let alone park vehicles on it. Come on Great Yarmouth, where is the civic pride in our amenities? There was adequate road parking in the area, and just a few steps away there is a manned secure car park, in the Beach Coach Station!


Alderson Road

Great Yarmouth

Reunion call to

Old Priorians

THERE will be a reunion of the Priory School Girls and Boys at the school, at 11am on Thursday, October 13.

All Old Priorians are welcome and there will be refreshments available. If any Old Priorian has any photographs or any other memorabilia, they are asked to bring it along to share with others on the day. The organiser is Colin Brown who lives in St Neots. I live at The Firs, Bultitudes Loke, Caister on Sea and I attended St Andrews from 1947-1949 and then The Priory from 1949-1957.


Sale of my local

history books

I AM going have a pitch adjoining the East Coast Truckers on Sunday at the Norfolk Gala at the Norfolk Showground, Norwich, selling my local history books; Freethorpe Past & Present being my latest book. For every book I sell I will make a donation to the truckers’ charity to help support them in the good work they do giving children days out and parties etc.

They need all the help and support of us local folk so why not come along and have a yarn and take part in the activities and help support them. I am now in the process of editing a book for the East Coast Truckers, which, all being well, will be published by Christmas.



Dedication is


DURING a pleasant walk at Burgh Castle on Saturday it was our privilege to meet John Russell. Your article about vandalism there described him as “key keeper” but he seems to do so much more than the title suggests. We found him busy clearing weeds from the new plantation areas near the car park.

We had a long and pleasant chat with him and found that he mounted solitary patrols of the ruins at all hours of the night to eject groups of youngsters who gather there. He also picks up a lot of litter. It was a pleasure to talk with him and we would like him to know that his dedication is appreciated.



Sexualisation of

children is sad

WELL done to Sarah Crow for complaining about the condoms being within the reach of young children. As much as the support of JLS is commendable, I wouldn’t have thought that the fans of the group would be old enough to know what a condom is for.

The sexualisation of our children is so sad, with the “anything goes” attitude which now prevails. Teaching morals is an old-fashioned concept and programmes such as Waterloo Road, which portrays children sleeping together, gives the impression that this is the norm. If the girls do get pregnant it doesn’t seem to matter.

Children having children – where will it all end?



Shock, horror

– or was it?

WELCOME to the “sleepy hollow” that is Great Yarmouth and Gorleston – or at least that is the impression that last week’s front page of the Mercury suggested.

Never mind “Armed officers race to flat incident” (page 7) or “Man is jailed for human trafficking” (page 6) or “Helicopter makes emergency landing” (page 2) or even good news concerning the Maritime Festival next weekend (page 12),.

No, we are treated to a mother’s outrage over condoms found in of all places – shock, horror a chemist.

If the lady in question wants to make a point with Durex or JLS or even Superdrug she is perfectly entitled to and as a parent I can understand her concerns, but why does The Mercury consider this worthy front page news?

The spokesperson for JLS summed it up when they said “they didn’t see how Mrs Crow’s concerns warranted a story!”

Come on Mercury, you can do better that this.


The Mews



reunion date

WE are looking for people who spent their childhoods in Filby or any of the Flegg villages, and they are aged 60 plus. We are having a childhood reunion on Sunday, September 25, in Filby Clubroom at 2.30pm. There will be lots of old photographs to look at. More details from myself on 01493 369336.


Mercury website

Parents must

play a key role

RE the report in last week’s Mercury about the condoms endorsed in JLS: At 12 years old a child should be fully educated in the mechanics of sex and should be beginning to understand the emotional aspects but this is not going to happen unless the parent is prepared to explain these things. If the parent does not ensure the child is fully informed then you end up with an adult with problems. Well done Superdrug and well done JLS.


Royal Naval Hospital

Great Yarmouth

We couldn’t

have our say

I ATTENDED the borough council scrutiny committee on Monday night re the residents’ parking scheme issue. What a turnout of local residents! People standing in the council chamber, and others in the public gallery but we were not allowed to speak. Listening to the discussion, and hearing new financial information, it became clear the scheme could be retained.

There is a long way to go on this issue, all the local councillors in the parking zones support residents parking.


Central and Northgate ward

Blessing in


I AM sure that many people will agree with me that the outer harbour has proved unsuitable for its designed purpose: it is not a fiasco.

The present successful Gorleston inner harbour was developed following several failures. Scientifically speaking, the new harbour could be considered an experiment which yielded an unexpected result. I would not be surprised if the structure becomes “a blessing in disguise.”

May I suggest the outer harbour could be converted without too much expense to a large and successful wave-powered electricity generating station. This change could be accomplished by the use of structures resembling James Watt’s beam engine. Anyone interested in my ideas may contact me on 01493 662323.

Wind turbines generate energy only when the wind speed is suitable. Photovoltaic panels do not generate at night. The maritime waves constantly roll, though with varying amplitude.


Addison Road,


They should

know better

I READ with interest David Barnes’ letter in The Mercury (September 2) and wholeheartedly agree with his sentiments regarding the lack of manners, politeness, honesty and respect that is spoiling our society today.

But if we are to achieve unconditional respect for others and get back to fundamental qualities and values that make us better people and a better society, as he rightly suggests, surely we have to look at the way we behave in our local community. He’s right to accuse celebrities and overpaid footballers for not setting the right standards and examples that we need to become a better society, but in a lot of cases people who put themselves forward as local figure heads within our local community share that same guilt.

All the time we have local councillors organising firework displays around a war memorial and war graves in a graveyard and churchwardens operating a licensed bar in a church such as we have in Ludham, we are never going to achieve fundamental qualities and values we need to become a better society. You cannot blame the younger generation for this one; it’s down to people who are supposed to know better.


Malthouse Farmhouse


Memories of

coffee and cakes

I WAS interested to read Peggotty’s memories about the Kenya Coffee Bar over the top of Purdy’s cake shop in the Market Place. My friends and I also used to go for a frothy coffee on the way home from the new Technical High School to Newtown in the 1950s, changing buses at the Regal and purchasing 3d worth of chips from a stall on the market before moving on to the Kenya Coffee Bar.

Previously it was a Purdy’s own Tea Rooms and they made excellent cakes. Can anyone remember a painting of MTBs moored along South Quay during the second world war which had pride of place in the tea rooms? Thank you Peggotty for your interesting columns , but your maths teacher at the Grammar School would have fumed if you had said 2 guineas was �2 10 00, it was �2 .2 shillings!


Beechwood Road


Time to punish

‘feral elite’?

A CORRESPONDENT last week said that captains of industry were complaining “Maths standards are not improving” among today’s children. One assumes the captains of industry are able to master differential calculus and other maths such as probability and risk assessment.

Despite this they have made a serious mess of the nation’s economy and it is not them, but the poorer sections of the community, who are taking the punishment. When will we get round to punishing the “feral elite”?

Your correspondent seemed a little confused about the difference between a primary and a secondary school. Of the children pictured, up to a third would have passed the 11 plus and gone to the Boys Grammar, Girls High or the Technical High School so it is hardly surprising that some entered the professions mentioned. As an old Greenacre boy I’m very glad the divisive 11 plus ended in 1982.


Postponing was


PERHAPS someone could inform Paula Winsor (Letters, September 2) that there is a big difference in the expressions “postponing” and “cancelling”.

The letter from Tracy Chaplin explains it quite clearly: Asda explained it to Gloria Solomons that they had to postpone their arrangement with her over the holding of a Help for Heroes event, but would be quite happy to have another one with her at her convenience. You can’t do better than that.


Station Road South


Thank you from

the mayor

THE mayoress and I would like to thank all those who attended our charity barbecue at the Merrivale Model Village on Friday evening. It was a delightful event, enjoyed by all, on a rare balmy evening.

The Model Village was immaculate and looked stunning when illuminated. Sincere thanks to Peter and Shirley for their generosity on the evening. We raised just under �600 for the Mayor’s Charity. This would not have been possible without the help and co-operation of the Town Hall staff, the caterers and the entertainers on the evening. A very big thank you to you all.


Pier fence work

was shoddy

I WAS shocked to see chunks of the newly renovated Gorleston pier fence destroyed yesterday, (September 6). While the wind and waves were moderately bad it seems incredible that those who designed and constructed it didn’t take this into consideration! How long has the old fence weathered storms, crashing waves and bad weather? Decades. How long has the newly “repaired” fence lasted? Weeks. A very shoddy job by EastPort, I guess we shouldn’t be surprised.


Back Pier Plain