Plans to bring casino to Great Yarmouth are still alive

Pleasure Beach owner Albert Jones' proposed leisure complex called The Edge on wasteland next to the

Pleasure Beach owner Albert Jones' proposed leisure complex called The Edge on wasteland next to the Pleasure Beach on South Denes.Casino, Bowling Alley, Cinema, Hotel, Bars and Restaurant.Picture: James BassCopy: For: EDP NewsEastern Daily Press © 2010 (01603) 772434 - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2010

Ambitious plans to bring a casino and leisure complex to Great Yarmouth are still “very much alive” the man behind them said this week.

Fairground impresario Albert Jones said he hoped to have something solid to say in the next few weeks and that negotiations were continuing behind the scenes.

His scheme called The Edge was unveiled to the public in 2007 as the government gave the go-ahead for eight large casinos across the country.

The plans originally provided for a 180-room hotel, 10-screen cinema, 22-lane bowling alley and combination of restaurants and bars, as well as casino on wasteland next to the Pleasure Beach at South Denes.

But the challenge had been recruiting operators to the project.

However Mr Jones said this week that things were moving in the right direction with the casino scheme “still very much alive.”

“One minute there is a lot of interest and the next there is not,” he said. “However cinema is booming at the moment.”

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He said he hoped to be able to make an announcement in the next four weeks.

Meanwhile one of Great Yarmouth’s most popular and enduring fairground rides is being meticulously dismantled for a major renovation project.

The log flume was custom-made for the seaside spot at the Pleasure Beach 27 years ago.

And while maintenance is on-going with nips and tucks taking place every year this will be its first full make-over.

Generations of fun-seekers are familiar with whizzy ride and consequent soaking with even bystanders risking an impromptu drenching if they walk past at the wrong moment.

The ride, at the main entrance to the park, suffers from its wind-blown salt-saturated spot and needs constant maintenance.

Taking it apart bit by bit and replacing some of the steel is not a straight-forward job said Pleasure Beach owner Mr Jones.

It is the first time engineers have taken the ball off the top and all the work is being done by local companies, he added.

Mr Jones said the ride was manufactured especially for the site and that the job of refurbishing it was “not cheap.”

“Work has been on-going for the past few years,” he said. “Like most of our rides there is an on-going maintenance programme but this is the biggest we have undertaken to date.”

Meanwhile work was going on behind the scenes to bring in a new ride but nothing was finalised yet.