New wave of beach huts snapped up in Gorleston
- Credit: Archant
Ten more beach huts have been installed along Gorleston's lower prom amid a surge in demand.
All 10 have been sold on either a 10 or 20-year lease, generating up to £19,800 each for Great Yarmouth Borough Council just as income has dipped from sources like car parking due to the pandemic.
It brings the total number along the stretch to 30, 19 of which are sold, 10 are for annual hire and one is available for weekly or monthly hire.
Carl Smith, council leader, said he was delighted the beach huts were finding their feet after a slow start.
He said last year saw a surge in interest, fuelled by hot weather and the staycation summer with most people's holiday wings clipped by the pandemic and preventing them from flying off abroad.
Some of the buyers were people who had hired them last summer and experienced for themselves the joy of beach hut life - converting their passion into something more permanent, he said.
"Last year they were boosted by the staycation summer," he said. "And this year could well be the same.
"We put 10 down in the first lockdown and they proved to be popular and we will look at demand and put another 10 down there.
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"It takes people to actually be in them, then it springboards from there.
"Any revenue that comes into the council is welcome in these times.
"They were slow to start with but are now becoming popular."
The council gave itself planning permission for 70 huts, and despite initial reports of queues to buy those issued under the first phase it turned out only a handful of sales were completed.
However, all 10 available for annual hire up to March 31 this year were sold out.
Weekly hire rates range from £42 to £157.50 in July and August.
Monthly rates range from £144 to £472.50.
The beach huts are not available to hire during lockdown.
The first six beach huts were put in place in May 2019.
A borough council spokesman said it had already received many enquiries for 2021/2022.