Yarmouth’s seafront captured on calendar

GUN-slingers riding the snails at Joyland, Gulliver striding around the diminutive dwellings at Merrivale Model Village – it’s Great Yarmouth, but not as you know it.

For variety is to come alive again in the resort with well-known local places and faces topping the bill.

Where once seaside audiences thrilled to the gaiety of music hall, some of the acts and early cinema legends are to be recalled in a charity calendar.

A daring dozen have stepped forward to appear in the fundraising wall-hanging, which reflects the range of attractions on Yarmouth’s seafront and beyond in a fresh and amusing way.

For Karen Youngs, the woman behind the calendar idea, it is a jolly junction connecting her work and home lives for the benefit of Cancer Research in memory of her “showbiz” mum Betty.

The 50-year-old mother of three is a professional dancer turned tourist authority projects manager–, who grew up in Gorleston’s Harbour Hotel doing a turn in the lounge for visitors.

Her mother Betty Sykes was a leading light in the Gorleston Theatre Company but died of cancer in 2004, aged 66, inspiring Mrs Youngs to raise money for research, forming Betty’s Barmy Army.

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The calendar and attendant Variety of Life show at Gorleston Pavilion are money-spinners for the Relay for Life event in Caister.

Photo-shoots for the calendar are taking place over the next few weeks.

Pin-ups include Merrivale Model Village which will turn into its Lilliput idol for a snap with Gulliver. Meanwhile, a damsel in distress will be tied to mock train tracks at Yesterday’s World in a scene harking back to the earliest silent films.

Alan Carr, pictured, head of tourism at Great Yarmouth Borough Council, is set to do a turn as renowned funnyman and icon of cinema history Charlie Chaplin, as Mr October, with friends and colleagues roped in as pirates at Pirates Cove, clowns at the Pleasure Beach’s funhouse and gun-slingers riding the snails at Joyland.

The SeaLife Centre, Hippodrome Circus and Thrigby Wildlife Gardens are also involved with Mrs Youngs playing the ringmaster.

Mrs Youngs said the aim was to give people something for their money rather than to simply ask for sponsorship.

Last year, more than �3000 was raised through the show alone.

The Variety of Life show hosted by Alan Carr is at Gorleston Pavilion on July 8, with tickets already selling well.