Take pride in your pier

TO the owners of Gorleston pier (whoever you may be!). I get no satisfaction in writing this letter, but as an individual who has been visiting the pier regularly for over 50 years, fishing and meeting people and friends, I feel it is part of my life, as it is for others.

TO the owners of Gorleston pier (whoever you may be!). I get no satisfaction in writing this letter, but as an individual who has been visiting the pier regularly for over 50 years, fishing and meeting people and friends, I feel it is part of my life, as it is for others.

Visitors come to Gorleston from all over the country, and not just for the benefit of their health. They expect a holiday destination that has a gentler pace - a quaint seaside resort that, with a lick of paint here and there and good car park facilities, shows that residents care about their visitors. This is especially so of Gorleston pier, where parking can and should be provided, and also kept spick and span, as summer holidaymakers and day-trippers like to walk along it nearly every day of the year to enjoy the air and watch the boats.

At the moment, all they see is a complete eyesore of a pier, and there is no excuse that you, the owners (whoever you are), can give for the state that this is now in. You should be ashamed of your total disregard of what holidaymakers and residents think, unless, of course, you have renovation plans already in place. If so, it would be nice to hear of them, if only to ease the tension a bit; maybe we can then all breathe a sigh of relief.

Gorleston has lost so many things over the years: swimming pool, beach huts, pony rides, ferry service, bus service to Gorleston beach, and loss of access to some parts of the quayside due to subtle exclusion, etc, to name just a few. I know some of these are due to changing times, but not all of them. In all that time, Gorleston people have never allowed the town to fall into the same state of disrepair as the pier has. With help from the borough council, local business people, and citizens, the parks, homes and gardens, etc look clean and tidy, but the pier is another story.

Great Yarmouth has had millions of pounds spent on the pedestrianisation of its seafront, Regent Road and Market Place, so one could say it is the “jewel in the crown”, but what's the point of a jewel if the rest of the crown is looking so tatty? So please take some pride in this pier you own, as we, the residents of Gorleston, take pride in the town we love.


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Lady Margaret's Avenue


GREAT Yarmouth promotes tourism based, in part, on it's beaches. It is on these beaches that families, some with children, hope to enjoy their holiday (weather permitting). Notwithstanding, we are all lectured on the benefits of walking as a means to a healthier lifestyle.

Unfortunately, the above pastimes are adversely affected in Great Yarmouth by ignorant and irresponsible dog owners. The owners of these animals not only violate local bylaws by allowing their dogs to run wild on our beaches and promenades, but have no concern whatsoever that people, including children, might step in the foul remains of their pet's excrement.

Signs are clearly posted that state no dogs are allowed on the beach, with a potential �100 fine for violators.

It is a common misconception the signs only apply to the beach and promenade public areas between Britannia and Wellington Piers. This is not the case. There is no mention of either Britannia or Wellington Pier on the signs whatsoever.

Additionally, there are signs which state dogs are to be on a lead on the promenade. Again, there is no mention of either Britannia or Wellington Piers. In law, the sign is applicable to the entire public beach and promenade areas.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council employs environmental health officers. Part of their remit is to protect the public from potential health hazards (animal excrement). Rather than take positive action towards this hazard, GYBC would rather vehemently target vehicles that do not display a parking permit. The easy option.

May I suggest that if GYBC wish to increase their coffers and genuinely promote tourism, they direct immediate and firm action be taken against the scourge of the dogs.

S Colman


COULD somebody in authority, police or borough council, please inform me how certain pubs at the end of the Market Place blantantly get away with playing very, very loud music with its doors open and its customers openly drinking pints of beer on the streets nearly every night - Sunday night is particularly bad. Correct me if I am wrong but I am under the assumption that it is against the law to consume alcoholic beverages in the open and that the local Environmental Agency has a duty regarding the noise and the police to enforce the law! Peace in one's Halcyon days!



I READ with dismay Tony Wright's column (August 7) that he has “no intention” of completing a survey regarding his commitments during the summer.

Whilst I'm sure nobody would begrudge Mr Wright a break, I would hope that he does not spend the entire 57 days of the recess on holiday. This is far more many days than I, and most people receive for their holidays. As an elected Member of Parliament, Mr Wright should be accountable to his own constituents. If we do not know where he is or what he is doing for Yarmouth during the summer months then he is not fulfilling this role.


Hawthorn Road


BEFORE the public rhetoric is whipped up again blaming “health and safety” for preventing or stopping lawful activities, the root cause usually behind a reason is where the focus should really be. I refer to EastPort chief executive Eddie Freeman commenting that “South Pier car park has been closed due to health and safety issues relating to car park surface”, as quoted in the Mercury, August 7. As with all commercial activities, health and safety sits alongside other business processes such as performance, finance, security, HR etc. For any of these to become an issue, usually means failure to address correctly, thus becoming an issue. That is the real root cause in this case, health and safety is merely the outcome of failure.


Clarence Road


WITH reference to Mr Cockrill's letter (Mercury, August 7) regarding Duncan House School, Mr Cockrill was quite right.

Dr Tomkins opened his academy 'for young gentlemen' on South Quay early in the 1900's. It moved to Camperdown after the first world war, when it became Duncan House School (after Admiral Duncan). It removed again to larger premises in the early 1930's, to Albert Square (now the St George's Hotel).

An interesting side note: When Camperdown closed, it was taken over by a Mrs Jarvis (was she related in someway to Dr Tomkins?) and this school was run as a very successful girls school called Sutherland House. This school removed to Cromer, and again run successfully until it closed during the 1990's.

Duncan House remained open during the first few months of world war two. When one of the staff, Mr P Smouton, was killed by a bomb blast whilst on fire watch duty during the blitz on the town in 1941, it was closed and pupils evacuated to Wales.

The building in Albert Square was requisitioned by the Royal Navy and when the WRNS home was bombed in March 1943 resulting in eight deaths and 27 injured, the WRNS were transferred to Albert Square until the war's end.

Duncan House was re-opened at Albert Square in 1946 with Morgan-Hughes as its headmaster. It relocated again in 1949 to Scratby Hall and the name changed to Duncan Hall School. It ran successfully until it closed in the mid 1980's.

Many of well known business and professional gentlemen involved in running the town are “old Duncanians”. Indeed the associate has a healthy existence and they have an annual reunion at the Burlington Hotel every November. We always have a good attendance of about 80 plus and range from those who attended both Duncan House and Duncan Hall Schools. The president of the association for 2006 was Dr John Morgan-Hughes, son of the headmaster 1946-1950.

Some of the principal teachers over its lifetime are: Dr Tomkins, Dr Fledger, Mr Morgan-Hughes, Mr Laughton, Mr O'Brien, Mr Searles and Mr Boswell.



Old Duncanians Association

SO Puppet Man Davie Perry has no talent according to a number of correspondents, Letters, August 14. These are probably the same type of people who have yet to realise the great artistic value of Tracey Emin's unmade bed, or Damian Hurst's dead sheep in formaldehyde. Nigella's husband, Mr Saatchi, regularly pays tens and sometimes hundreds of thousands of pounds for such modern and avant garde work.

What Mr Perry does is pure street theatre that just does not happen conform to some people's blinkered view of art. It is only a matter of time before Mr Perry comes to the notice of someone like Mr Saatchi and then things will change. Who knows, in years to come when Mr Perry's unsung talent is truly recognised, those same readers will be proudly telling their grandchildren that they saw him first, performing on the streets of Great Yarmouth!


Burgh St Peter,


LIKE T Townend, in last week's Mercury, I too am concerned about swine flu. At least hospitals and places of work have hand sterilising dispensers. Yet doctors' surgeries are asking you not to visit them if you have flu symptoms so as not to spread germs. Yet some of the surgeries you have to book yourself in on a computer screen when you arrive. There must be thousands of germs on these screens, and some of the surgeries have no hand gels at all. To help to prevent germs spreading I think all the surgeries should have hand gels all of the time, as do the hospitals.


Groomes Close


HOW strange that money cannot be found to repair the ancient jetty while posh signs on Blackfriars Road informing drivers of pay and display machines that don't exist seem to be a priority. One is reminded again of the huge hoardings that advertised the non-existent park and ride facility. Visitors to the town must think they have entered the twilight zone!


Mill Lane


WALKING around the fort grounds in Burgh Castle on a glorious summer's evening last Sunday the visit was spoilt by finding a spread of rubbish at the bottom of the flight of steps on the north side.

There was evidence of a great time being had by all - but who they were is unknown. They left everything behind for someone else to clear. We carried home what we could, so that this dreadful sight did not greet any other visitors, many of whom are on holiday in the area.

It is too much to ask that someone, somewhere, will have a conscience about the mess they left behind judging by other examples of carelessness and inconsideration for others around this lovely site, though this is the worst that we have seen this summer.

Name and Address withheld

I WOULD like to say how kind the three dustmen were last Thursday on Hertford Way, in Gorleston. The driver ran a cat over which had run out into the road. They were very upset and would not leave it. Luckily a vet turned up in her car and the men got something to wrap the cat in and the lady took it away.


Queens Crescent


SINCE first being informed about the outbreak of the swine flu, we have been kept up to date on when the vaccine should be ready and when it is who is to get priority. However, we are now being told some front line staff, those who are administering it, are to reject the vaccine due to health fears.

The government has said nurses who do not have it are putting patients lives at risk and and this worries me because of my illness is terminal.

Are we being fed what the government wishes us to hear? If so, why is the government being so complacent as we have a right to know? Yet the vaccine is to be fast tracked and will not be fully tested before being administrated to those in need.

Some 14m are to be covered by the first wave of the vaccinations, but how many will die during this process?



ON June 28, I was on holiday with my wife at Caister on Sea. It was a hot summer's day so we decided to watch the Caister festival floats go by and were standing at the side of the road. When a float collecting money for Caister Lifeboat went by, the people on the float had water pistols. We had no trouble with this, but when they went into a barrel and got out water bombs and started throwing them at the public, we all turned our backs in order to avoid the water.

But later my wife found a water bomb had gone into her handbag and it was swimming in water. And inside, a camera and mobile phone were found to be useless and had to be replaced at a cost of over �200.

When we rang the Lions Club who were running the event, they said they would call us back before we went home but they never did.


Lowfield Road

Wheatley Hills


HAVING been to many seaside resorts around the British Isles, I think you could certainly say Gorleston have been blessed with one of the best family beaches. It is also reassuring to know we are all watched over for our safety by the RNL lifesavers, although it's a little worrying to see the jet skis are back so close to the bathers. I have also enjoyed the variety of different music at the bandstand each Sunday, but hope the surrounding grass doesn't turn into a car park for the performers.


Stuart Close