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Filby's special map for the perplexed

PUBLISHED: 13:54 09 April 2010 | UPDATED: 17:23 30 June 2010

THE final touches have been put on a locally created map designed to provide one more tool in the arsenal of emergency services.

A collection of houses with mostly names rather than numbers, the layout of Filby has often led to perplexed visitors asking for directions from bemused locals.

THE final touches have been put on a locally created map designed to provide one more tool in the arsenal of emergency services.

A collection of houses with mostly names rather than numbers, the layout of Filby has often led to perplexed visitors asking for directions from bemused locals.

And it was after hearing about a lost late-night medic who struggled to find a home after its resident suffered a suspected heart attack, that one homeowner decided that something needed to be done.

Now, thanks to a lot of help from his neighbours, parish council chairman Adrian Thompson now has a map on prominent display outside his post office and copies ready to hand out to the 999 services.

He said: “We're very pleased with how it has turned out. As well as giving the maps to the emergency services, we have copies which are being sold for a pound each, and we've already had inquiries from a number of companies in the area.”

Mr Thompson went on to praise the efforts of local young website and magazine designer Luke Rumbelow, who used his skills to build on the work of others.

The 25-year-old answered his appeal in The Mercury two months ago, and was handed the map after Pat Bell, 69, used an old notebook listing local addresses she had had from her time as a stand-in postwoman, to make an initial hand-drawn map.

And having laid out the map, which was at this stage a series of A4 sheets, on to his dining room table, he set about the task of converting Mrs Bell's efforts into a fully polished finished product.

Luke said: “I read the ad in the Village Life pages and thought I would give it a shot. It must have taken me about 10 hours of work, which I did in my spare time over three weeks.

“I re-drew the map before transferring it on to my computer, and the real difficulty was in making sure there was enough room for everything to go on. We wanted it to be A3 sized because that's as big as anyone would want it in their car, and it took a long time to get all the roads and house names fitting.”

After handing it over to Mr Thompson three weeks ago, and after a few adjustments, it was printed and is now ready for use.

Luke added: “I was very proud of it when it was finished and I wouldn't have handed it over to Adrian if I wasn't - it just feels good to know it could help someone.”

Spokesman for Norfolk Fire and Rescue Services, Martin Barsby, thought the idea was “innovative” and welcomed the community-led initiative. He said: “It's something we would look forward to receiving. I have not heard of anything like this before, and though we have our own mapping systems anything that can help us get to people quicker is great.”


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