Bid for new vintage fairground with full-sized helter-skelter

Artists impression of proposed helter-skelter on Great Yarmouth seafront.

An artist's impression of what a planned new vintage helter-skelter at Merrivale Model Village facing Great Yarmouth's busy seafront could look like. - Credit: Merrivale Model Village

A full-sized helter-skelter could be coming to a seaside model village under a bid to bring back a traditional fairground.

If planners agree the 16m (52ft) tall structure will bring a retro new look to Great Yarmouth's Golden Mile.

Merrivale Model Village on Yarmouth seafront has been taken over by new owners, Dean Gray and Sophi

Merrivale Model Village on Yarmouth seafront has been taken over by new owners, Dean Gray and Sophi Parkes. - Credit: Kate Wolstenholme

The ride is being planned for the west side of the Merrivale Model Village site and involves removing a shed on space currently used for storage.

Owner Sophi Parkes said there had been old-fashioned rides on the site in days gone by and that the colourful structures had a seaside charm that would give people another reason to visit the resort.

A high-striker and games stalls are also tipped as adding to the entertainment, although Ms Parkes said they were suggestions at this stage.

Merrivale Model Village on Yarmouth seafront has been taken over by new owners, Dean Gray and Sophi

Merrivale Model Village on Yarmouth seafront has been taken over by new owners, Dean Gray and Sophi Parkes. - Credit: Kate Wolstenholme

Ms Parkes said she and partner Dean Gray who took over the site at the end of March, were keen on the vintage theme which chimed with the unhurried appeal of the model village and retro penny arcade which has a clutch of new machines.

A design and access statement submitted in support of the application states the vintage fairground would sit well with the historic seafront with its array of Edwardian buildings, and contrast with the sleek new lines of the modern Marina Centre due to open this summer.

Merrivale Model Village on Yarmouth seafront has been taken over by new owners, Dean Gray and Sophi

Merrivale Model Village in Great Yarmouth is moving into the world of full-sized fairground attractions. - Credit: Kate Wolstenholme

The proposal also includes taking down a fence and replacing it with black metal gates.

The papers state: "The benefit of the proposed vintage fun fair will be making good use of the space and the added benefit of installing a more aesthetically pleasing gated boundary for the public walking along the footpath."

Merrivale Model Village on Yarmouth seafront has been taken over by new owners, Dean Gray and Sophi

Merrivale Model Village on Yarmouth seafront has been taken over by new owners, Dean Gray and Sophi Parkes. - Credit: Kate Wolstenholme

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They add: "The existing use of this land was to house fun fair rides, therefore returning it to its former state will benefit the Merrivale Model Village."

The hours of operation are given as 10am to 9pm.

Ms Parkes said it would likely be open to the general public and not exclusively to those visiting the model village.

Meanwhile, the couple were getting stuck into their new roles as lord and lady of Merrivale. They have made a range of improvements, sprucing up the buildings, refurbishing old models, and adding new characters - including a wedding proposal couple taking advantage of a scenic location on a bridge.

To view  the plans visit Great Yarmouth Borough Council's planning portal quoting reference 06/22/0488/F.