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Hopes pinned on beach huts

PUBLISHED: 14:16 09 April 2009 | UPDATED: 13:38 03 July 2010

Riot of colour: The council's Labour leader thinks beach huts, such as these at Southwold, would help regenerate the North Denes area.

Riot of colour: The council's Labour leader thinks beach huts, such as these at Southwold, would help regenerate the North Denes area.

BEACH huts could be the answer to regenerating Great Yarmouth's North Denes area, according to a local councillor.

Labour leader Mick Castle reckons quality beach huts would offer tourists a peaceful haven away from the bustling seafront in the summer and provide the council with income which could be spent on the upkeep of the Waterways.

BEACH huts could be the answer to regenerating Great Yarmouth's North Denes area, according to a local councillor.

Labour leader Mick Castle reckons quality beach huts would offer tourists a peaceful haven away from the bustling seafront in the summer and provide the council with income which could be spent on the upkeep of the Waterways.

The comments come as the borough council prepares to discuss a report focusing on North Denes regeneration, which will also tie in ongoing schemes such as the SHARP project.

The Waterways opened in 1928, boosting the town's standing as a resort and until the 1960s boat trips could be enjoyed until 10.30pm but Mr Castle said the attraction's heydays as crowd pullers had gone.

“Although the council keeps the gardens tidy, the area is looking a little bit sad. The promenade is also in a poor state.

“I think if you could create a modest income there to pay to pay to upkeep the gardens and create an attraction in keeping with the quieter part of town.

“We know from north Norfolk and Southwold if you get the right format people are prepared to keep them tidy.

“Hopefully the council will give it consideration,” he added.

The idea of beach huts was first mooted by Mr Castle back in 2004, a move which didn't go down well with hoteliers on North Drive, who said the roofs of huts would impact on hotel views.

A report outlining recent regeneration projects in the area, including the SHARP scheme which has seen dozens of derelict and empty buildings refurbished and brought back into use, will be discussed by the economic and environmental advisory group later this month.

Tim Howard, head of regeneration, said the report looks at the North Denes area and what can be done in the future to improve it.

He said: “The report will offer some suggestions to what could be explored and we will also be asking for suggestions. Beach huts are something we could explore.”

Mr Howard said other potential schemes to breathe fresh life back into the one-time heyday area would be to lease the Waterways to an operator, as the council does now at the Boating Lake.

WHAT DO YOU THINK? Are Beach Huts the answer to regeneration, or can you come up with a better idea? Write to Letters at The Mercury, 169 King Street, Great Yarmouth NR30 2PA or email anne.edwards@archant.co.uk


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