Letters, September 6, 2013

Cleaned - at end of the season?

At last, at the end of August the boating lake in Great Yarmouth has had a much needed clean up after looking like a bomb site for most of the summer months.

The Waterways flowerbeds have suffered from a lack of watering and are not looking as good as other years.

I have noted that the beds and baskets around the Town Hall are well maintained though. I think the borough council present and past have let these two unique features go downhill, shelters and bridges have been removed and not replaced, while those remaining are looking sadly in need of some repair work. These features are well used by locals and holidaymakers alike.

While I am writing I would just like to add how disgusting the Market Gates bus station is. It is filthy, with gum and bird droppings an inch thick in some places. I do not put my shopping on the ground while waiting for a bus.

Do councillors use the buses or walk around the town to see what a state parts of Great Yarmouth are in?

In this day and age is it not possible to pressure wash areas such as the bus station?

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Too much flesh at breakfast

Naked flesh Madam, the film Calendar Girls has a lot to answer for. Do we really need all of these pictures of naked flesh from the good people of Hemsby? (Mercury passim).

It is quite putting me off my breakfast for the last couple of Fridays. I suppose we should be grateful that tattoos don’t appear to have reached that part of the world. Give it time though.


Collingwood Road,

Great Yarmouth

Good Biblical points are made

Although he follows the Jehovah’s Witness (Watchtower), and not the Christian faith, Philip Knight makes some good biblical points in his letter last week.

Many so-called Christian churches (in my experience) are run by an insecure, ambitious man desperate to have a title (“Reverend”, “Pastor”, “Senior Pastor”), which gives him status in the eyes of some. A man who, rather than earn his own bread by the sweat of his brow, prefers to live off the “tithes” of his hard-working (or on “benefits”) congregation – yet nowhere does the New Testament say Christians must tithe!

“Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness ... selfish ambitions ... of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practise such things will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19–21).

Finally, to those who hate my letters in the Mercury: please note, in them I simply quote the eternal, unchanging words of the living God – Father, Son and Holy Spirit. He says to you, “Come to Me ... and I will give you rest.”

The Bible says lukewarm Christians and those who reject Jesus’ offer of entry to heaven (which is conditional on living a holy life) will one day stand naked before the great white throne to be judged, by Him “from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away” (Revelation 20:11–15). The record of their life will be opened and it will then be too late to ask for God’s mercy or to change their lifestyle.


Albemarle Road,


Dear Sweet Cheeks . . .

I read a Mercury website comment from Mr/Mrs Sweet Cheeks? It’s a shame the lady or gentleman did not have the guts to add their real name to inaccurate comments.

Housing Appeals committees are extra to the full council, scrutiny, development control, and licensing committees that I also sit on.

There are approximately six full council, 10 scrutiny, 10 development control, 10 licensing meetings per year. Out of the total of 36 I have attended 32 or more. Mr/Mrs Sweet Cheeks may like to contact member services manager Robin Hodds if they wish to find out my exact attendance list.

The meetings can sometimes last more than two hours after 7pm - unsociable hours.

The majority of people in this borough like politicians to be honest, own up to mistakes and use their real names to air their views.



Daft idea to sell off church pews

While sat in my shed at peace with the world, God came to me and said that he thought it was a daft idea to sell off all those lovely pews in St Andrew’s Church, Gorleston.

Especially as they had been made with such care and skill in His name. What particularly miffed Him was the suggestion that somebody should state “It’s what God wants” thereby using His name to promote their own ideas on how the church should be run.

Thus in effect bullying parishioners into the “party line”.

I must admit if true it does not seem to be a very Christian thing to do.

The whole thing seems to echo the Archbishop of Canterbury’s comments this week where he described the Church as “out of touch”. I know that it seems a strange thing, but perhaps God had spoken to him too.

Lastly, back in the shed, He also wanted to thank BF Ward for bringing this matter back to everybody’s attention and to the Mercury for publishing it.



Thoughts on the port operations

The Port of Great Yarmouth (a Trust Port) is operated by the old Port and Haven Commissioners, now the Great Yarmouth Port Authority, being a Trust Port all operating profits put back into the Port, they are the Landlords of the Outer Harbour and the River Port.

The Great Yarmouth Port Company, a private investment company formed and operated by International port Holdings is the management company on behalf of the GYPA, they are the Lease holders for the next 99 years when the leases will revert back to the GYPA, operating profits are for shareholders of Global Infrastructure Partners.

GYPC supports financially the GYPA this allows the Port Company to dictate terms on all aspects of the Port functions, by so doing the Port Authority is not an independent body.

The previous government and the present one, along with the previous MP and the present one for the borough, plus the county council and the borough council, went against ratepayer’s opinions and supported in full, with no safeguards, the private company that now owns the leases of our Port.

The Port Authority handed the total management of the Port to the GYPC. The GYPA holds meetings just four times a year, the GYPA is just dealing with two items of Port business, 1 Agreeing Port Tariffs for the year and 2 overseeing the financial side of the Pilots.

What should happen now is:-

The GYPA should come out of the shadows and oversee the operations of the GYPC, as the GYPA is the Harbour Authority, the present Board should be removed, replaced by commercial people unconnected with the political parties that have been involved these past seven years, and I include the unelected officers employed by NCC and GYBC.

Captain Pryke, chairman of the GYPA board, should appraise the present board members in conjunction with the government instruction Modernising Trust Port 2nd edition, those members that have no background in port operations should be replaced with members fully conversant on port matters.

Those elected to government and county and borough councils all of which supported the deal done between the GYPA and the International Port Holdings (GYPC), should now look at and take action over the poor return of the £20m public funding, the present MP, and NCC and GYBC who has representation on the GYPA board (until replaced) should also insist that GYPC does the necessary improvements, management in an economical and efficient manner.

From those elected ones that sanctioned the decisions, the voting ratepayers now expect a real show of strength in producing a port that is able to produce employment and competing world-wide, instead of as now being eclipsed by Lowestoft and Aberdeen.


Burnt Lane,


Pink golf day was marvellous

Through your newspaper, we would like to say a huge thank you to the directors of Pink Office for the marvellous charity golf day they organised last Saturday at Gorleston Golf Club for Breast Cancer Care.

The whole day was simply brilliant, including the weather. Everyone dug deep into their pockets and more than £3,500 was raised. Well done Danny, Tom and all concerned for all the effort put in and looking forward to the next one.




I’m a patron, not a charity trustee

I note in your article online about East Coast Hospice buying land at Gorleston for their new facility you quote me as being a trustee, to which it should read patron. If this could be corrected.



Bins not emptied over weekend?

On bank holiday Saturday I was appalled at the state of the rubbish by the rubbish bins at The Waterways. The lady in the cafe said the bins never get emptied at the weekend.

How disgusting to see dog poo bags on the floor around the bins. Surely we need to get our act together in Yarmouth at the weekend when we must have more day trippers. the water in The Waterways was also filthy at the north end.

On Thursday last week how surprised I was to see nine, yes nine, men and three, yes three, wagons cleaning the weeds out of the non functional boating lake next door to The Waterways. In theory, only the cans and booze bottles need to be removed. There was damage done in the lake but that has been left like a tip - police investigation I am told. How pathetic!

Normally, the “bad boys” in the town do the weeding so what’s happened to them?

Surely Great yarmouth Borough Council should be getting their act together on health, cleanliness and sense.



Thanks to all for fun day success

I would like to say a big thank you to Cobholm island Credit Union for helping make the Cobholm fun day on August 25 such a big success. I would also like to thank Gwen, Karly and Lizzie for their time in making lovely cakes, Lewis of Cobholm FC for setting up the goalposts and helping out with the football games, Holly Notcutt and TS Warrior for all their help and support. And thank you to Broadland Rugby Club for letting us use their facilites.



Our town needs a big clean up

First of all I would like to say well done to the East Coast Truckers and to the people who donated their time on Bank Holiday Sunday.

I would also like to suggest to Mr Derek Brown he needs to get out more on foot and take a look round the town: bins overflowing with rubbish on the seafront, the Empire Cinema is a mess, rubbish on the prom, discarded takeaway cartons everywhere, dog mess on the paths, people walking around drinking cans of alcohol. You get to the Market Place and again more rubbish, divebombing seagulls, more drunks, empty shops. St Nicholas churchyard headstones vandalised, more drunks, more rubbish. Let’s go down to north beach: more rubbish, bags of dog poo on the beach which people are to lazy to put in the bin. What’s the point in bagging if you don’t put it in the bin?

I could go on about the parking in Great Yarmouth, the new harbour or even the state of the train station. To me the term Great Yarmouth is no more; it is not the seaside town where I grew up and my parents before me.

All I can say is sort it before we are the headliners on BBC and not Southend. PS let’s start with getting the roads swept and not just on our seafront.



Flytippers should be ashamed

I fully agree with the letter writer in last Friday’s Mercury, but the nappies left for six days is nothing compared to the rubbish and fly-tipping we have to contend with in the service road at the rear of St Johns Terrace.

When the flats were first occupied Yarmouth Council gave the landlord permission for his tenants to have their wheelie bins outside on the path/road, (why we do not know as there are three yards at the back of the flats).

Since then there has been a constant battle with the council and environment agency as each week the bins are full to overflowing filled by household rubbish and include many unmentionables. The seagulls have a field day leaving everything littered over the roads.

The wind then carries everything down the road and, since the council has decided to save money by making street cleaners redundant we no longer see any road-sweepers. Why are these bins not emptied weekly?

As there is so much rubbish and 15 bins (all black, as the green ones were abused) it attracts all sorts of fly-tipping, TV’s, carpets, wheels, three piece suites, beds, mattresses, barbecue coals, suitcases you name it we have had it.

Only Sunday night we had a very large black bag deposited outside our garage full of commercial cardboard and containing a letter addressed to a man from the retail section of Lloyds Bank.

Lo and behold on Monday another bag appeared containing an invoice from Yarmouth Borough Council addressed to a gentleman on Regent Road in respect of a property on Nelson Road Central. These people know who they are and should be ashamed of themselves.

Whilst talking about cleaners, the toilets at the Jetty are a disgrace, its quite obvious they are not inspected or cleaned as regularly as they used to be. What a state Great Yarmouth is getting into.


Lancaster Road,

Great Yarmouth

People are out looking for work

I’m sick of people who work scapegoating the unemployed. It’s not the unemployed persons fault there’s a national debt - they did not cause it.

It is not their fault some people are on low wages, it’s not their fault rent and mortgages are so high and finally it’s not their fault they cannot get a job.

All unemployed have to apply for at least six jobs a fortnight; it is compulsory to do so and claimants who fail to do so face severe sanctions on their benefits. So do not tell me they don’t look for work because they do.

However, with 2.5m people unemployed there are 30 people going in for the same one job.

Finally no-one is better off on benefits than they are in a job. That idea is a total myth: 99.9pc of the unemployed get less than the minimum wage, only a few get paid more in total benefits than they would in a job.

Most people have to manage on £70.70 dole money and under 25s only get £56 unemployment benefit. They have to pay for heating, electric, clothes, shoes, water rates, sewage rates and 8.5pc of the council tax thanks to the coalition government. All the cuts and caps on benefit means everyone is better off in a job.



Car a necessity not a luxury

I agree with Jenny Newcombe about the parking permits as only one car per household can park on the road for £40. Parking in a car park is £150 for one car. The permits are unfair when people already pay road tax etc.

My son lives at the far end of Yarmouth where there is talk about permits. He works at the other side of Norwich and is on a minimum wage and a quarter of his earnings are spent on fuel to get to work and back. He has to be at work at 5am every day.

He parks his car, which is a necessity and not a luxury, in the adjoining car park to his home. He has had no pay increase for six years and now he has to worry about parking charges which he cannot afford – and there are not enough spaces on the road.

If the council goes ahead with the changes my son will not be able to afford to go to work, but he does not want to be jobless either. The scheme should not be forced onto people who try and earn a decent living and need a car when no other transport is available.

This scheme is another little earner for our council. They don’t care.


Braddock Road


Answer parking charge please

Once again we have classical examples of Labour councillors, Councillor Sutton excluded, being extremely economical with the truth concerning their justification for the introduction of these residents parking charges.

Councillors Wainwright and Castle claim to have a mandate from the residents as the percentage in favour from a pitifully low return was 53pc.

On discussing this with a number of affected parties they all indicated that the map issued was virtually illegible so they were unable to make an informed judgement.

So let us have some costings, my earlier letter refers, and a proper consultation with clear mapped areas affected.

Also will Councillor Trevor Wainwright answer the charge, that he knows revenue raised in this fashion cannot be used to finance other Services.