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Fair made our lives intolerable

PUBLISHED: 15:15 24 April 2008 | UPDATED: 10:55 03 July 2010

BEFORE this year's Easter fair fades completely from our memory can I request the council and its officers ensure that regulations relating to levels of noise and operating times for the rides are strictly enforced next year?

For four days residents who were unfortunate enough to have rides erected close to their properties without choice or consultation, were subjected to a barrage of noise that made life intolerable.

BEFORE this year's Easter fair fades completely from our memory can I request the council and its officers ensure that regulations relating to levels of noise and operating times for the rides are strictly enforced next year?

For four days residents who were unfortunate enough to have rides erected close to their properties without choice or consultation, were subjected to a barrage of noise that made life intolerable. This unrelenting assault on the senses by music played at an unreasonable volume started in the afternoon and continued well past the announced closing time every night including Sunday.

This extra day granted to celebrate the charter boosted the fair's profits but further added to our misery. It brought no observable benefit to the town as visitors to the centre had nowhere to park and I hope there are no plans to repeat this next year.

I have lived at this address for 38 years with no previous complaint but this year was unacceptable.

I take no pleasure in moaning about an historic annual event that is eagerly anticipated by many which has been so enjoyable in the past. It is, however, the responsibility of the council to protect the quality of life of all the town's rate payers.

When approving a residential location the council should ensure that a sensible and enforceable policy is adopted on closing times and on the positioning of rides. The level of noise should also be regularly monitored by the Environmental Health Department when the fair is in progress.

EMRYS PARRY

Northgate Street

Great Yarmouth

I WAS delighted to read Rachel Moore's item about the FA Vase last week. As a Great Yarmouth Town FC supporter for over 40 years, and the club's press officer and reporter for the last few seasons, I was overjoyed to learn that Mrs Moore has even heard of us - and even thinks we might have a chance of matching Lowestoft's achievement!

It often seems to me that we are “whistling in the wind” when we try to promote the club, and I shall never forget one comment made to me a few years ago: “I didn't even know we had a football club!” So well done Rachel for your local knowledge! Perhaps you'd like to offer your support in person one day?

And yes - I will be at the new Wembley cheering on The Blues, just as I did for Diss Town when they reached the final at the old stadium.

Despite historic rivalries, The Bloaters remain on friendly terms with Lowestoft Town, and although I have lived but two minutes walk from Lowestoft's ground these past six years my support for my old home town club has never wavered.

However, here's a thought to ponder - if unification ever comes about, could the three local east coast clubs ever get together to form one professional outfit, AFC Eastport (or whatever name Peter Jay comes up with!)?

GERRY BROWN

LAST month I found my garage door (up and over metal) would not open as it should, only about a foot. I phoned the company. As I was waiting I found the problem was that the boot of the car was left up, thus stopping the garage door from opening as it should, so got on a step ladder and put a broom in the top space and pushed down to shut the boot.

Being 75-years-old I was not strong enough to do the job. By this time the door men had arrived and did the job in three minutes.

A week later I received a bill for £140 for three minutes' work. After pressure from my wife to pay up and shut up, I did. I sent them a cheque for £140 under protest. I phoned them the next day saying £140 was over the top for just three minutes' work.

A week later I received my cheque back with a note from the manager Darren Woodall telling me no money was required for this work, with his regards.

As Meldrew said: I don't belieeeeeve it! It's nice to know all companies don't want to rip off OAPs.

JOHN H WHITE

Winterton

ON the subject of pub closure in the area, smoking is only one contributory factor. We ran the Anson Arms last year which is an Enterprise owned establishment and found that we were unable to compete with places such as Wetherspoons and free houses due to the high rates charged by Enterprise to their lease holders.

Supermarket prices have been probably the biggest cause of the public staying at home instead of going to the local. Who can blame people when they can get 20 bottles of Becks beer for £9 and it costs £2.50 plus for one bottle in a pub.

Coupled with constant increases in duty by the Government and that young people follow different recreational paths the only pubs that will survive are those that offer something extra such as entertainment or sheer personality of the landlord and landlady.

MIKE SMITH

Swift Taxis

WHAT has happened to living in a free country? Labour, of all governments, stopping the working man's little pleasure of going down to your local and having your pint with a fag. Believe it or not, there are as many non-smokers die as there are smokers. The answer would have been to have smoking pubs and non-smoking pubs, then you would still have your choice of what one you used. My father fought in the second world war for feedom. What, I wonder, is going to be next?

MICK WYNES

Bradwell

PLEASE let met get this straight, according to Mr Patrick Chessells “From Where I'm Sitting” (Mercury, April 18), Yarmouth is a deprived area where the people are poor, and as we know it's only poor people that smoke and therefore it's obvious that they cannot afford to eat out. Well, from where I'm sitting Mr Chessells and it's not from an ivory tower, not everybody wants to dine out at some glitzy gastro pub, they enjoy the friendly social atmosphere of our local traditional pubs, and have done for many years.

In fact, if you and companies like yours had spoken out against this draconian smoking ban, then we would not have found ourselves in the position we have now, where over 1,500 pubs are going out of business a year. I am absolutely certain that a compromise could have been reached.

P HUBBARD

St Mary's Court

Great Yarmouth

IN response to letters sent in about the smoking ban. The pubs that have just closed, as many more in this town need to, have been empty for a very long time, long before the ban. Many more pubs should close and all customers will go to the rest creating a better atmosphere - people enjoying themselves, meeting friends, chatting away.

It is so miserable in so many pubs with two or three customers. Even bar staff in some are so bored they sit on a stool playing fruit machines or reading the paper. Fewer pubs, more takings for the rest who will also need to employ more staff, in a nice clean-aired local pub with more customers who never went to pubs before because of the smoke.

D CLARK

North Denes Road

Great Yarmouth

I CONSIDER it imperative to forewarn pedestrians who approach Rampart Road, Great Yarmouth, either from especially the west side of Palgrave Road or the backs of terraces on both sides.

Parking is permitted on the south side of Rampart Road with two-way traffic on the remainder. Though this appears to be adequate for vehicles of moderate size travelling at a cautiously low speed, this is not invariably the practice. However for larger vehicle eg vans, lorries and the occasional coach, the road is definitely inadequate and provokes some drivers to mount the pavement and render each of the aforementioned locations - which constitute “blind spots” - potentially dangerous.

As Rampart Road connects the two main roads of North Quay and Northgate Street and effectively places it in that category, it is obvious that sizeable vehicles will use it.

I write this from first hand and traumatic experience. Two youths and I narrowly escaped injury - or worse - by a matter of seconds. This episode I reported to appropriate authorities, and until this issue is addressed I would urge anybody, especially with children in their care, to exercise considerable care.

DAVID KING

Falcon Court

Great Yarmouth

ONCE again the logic of the council's planning committee comes into question, this time over the Norfolk County Council's plans for the Central Library.

They say they are concerned about the Medieval Rows and the Medieval Street scene. I and many other people are a bit puzzled as to where they are. As this area was heavily bombed during the war, nothing much survived and everything was built over, leaving nothing other than the outer walls of the Tolhouse Museum in Rows 108 and 106. In fact all that exists of Row 108 is a painted sign on the wall to show that it existed, on Row 106 there is nothing as far as I can see.

This scheme with the library can only enhance the area and also create more community-based themes such as a garden area and IT facilities for the community, along with other projects that were being considered. I suggest the council gets its priorities right and start doing what it says it will do and start listening to the residents of the town as to what they want.

At least the money is there for this scheme. What are they doing about St George's Theatre? So how long have we got to put up with the eyesore of scaffolding around it? I suggest the council starts worrying more about that project, which is something that does exist, than something that does not.

JOHN DONOVAN

Clarendon Close

Great Yarmouth

IT was with great sadness that I heard of the sudden death of Jack Bacon. I had the honour of knowing Jack for many years, and for a number of those, was proud to have him as personal friend and a father-in-law.

From the first day I met Jack, I had an enormous amount of respect for him, especially as he was a kind, considerate and caring family man who always had time for others, and he welcomed me into his family with great humility and grace.

When Jack died, a light in the theatrical world of Great Yarmouth and Norfolk went out, as he was a leading light in this area for many years, and encouraged those who had a dream and ambition in this field, to just “go for it.” He was always on hand to give help and and advice, and for many years, was responsible for producing and directing many of the successful shows that were put on in different venues through Gorleston and Great Yarmouth.

Like his family, and the many thousands of people throughout East Anglia who knew and loved Jack, we will miss him, and he will always have a special place in our hearts.

God bless his wife Molly, daughters Wendy and Janice, along with his grand daughter Sarah, and his two great grand daughters Charlea and Emily.

BRUNO PEEK

Lowestoft

I HAVE great sympathy for the residents of Gresham Close being denied access to their homes because of the parking problems associated with the James Paget Hospital. On the other hand, given the high cost of parking at the hospital for visitors, it is hardly surprising that people will try to find alternatives. Only recently a member of my family was in the hospital for an operation and her husband was charged £6 per day to park, only to be charged again if he popped home to freshen up.

The only consolation to the residents of Gresham Close must be that at least they are within walking distance of the hospital, so they won't ever have to incur exorbitant parking fees.

PAULINE LYNCH

Mill Lane

Bradwell

I AGREE wholeheartedly with the letter Chaos in the Community (Mercury, April 11) and I hope more people will give the support Norfolk County Council carers need.

I have received care for many years, being both elderly and disabled. These carers who work for the council are well trained and really care for the people they attend. My nurses know they can depend on my carers to send for them. They know, at a glance, if things aren't right with me. No agency staff would be able to do that.

It seems on top of other problems we have we now have to worry about the possibility of going into hospital again. It seems now that after a stay in hospital we get handed over to strangers we don't know and don't know us. This state of affairs is hardly conducive to our continued recovery.

Another point with people receiving care is that we pay a lot of money each month and I consider we have a right to decide who cares for us, and if we are happy with present arrangements - leave well alone.

What this boils down to is that those who work as social services carers are being shabbily treated and being pushed out. Their hours are being cut, unless they are guaranteed hours, to make way for private sector. Is there no one out there to fight in their corner? What about their union, don't they care what is happening to their members, or is that a silly question

Please will someone out there do something before Care in our Community is a thing of the past, like a lot of good things now are.

Name and address supplied

I RECEIVED a letter in January stating we would have to pay for parking for the disabled from February 29, then it was cancelled because of the forthcoming elections in May, but they would possibly be charging again in June. I think this all wrong.

R G POWLES

King Street

Great Yarmouth

I AM writing with regard to Stray Dog Fears (Mercury, April 11). If all councils are going to have to deal with strays maybe it should now be law that all pets are microchipped.

Before taking over this action they should get together and demand the law changes first.

Also has anybody noticed how dog muck now comes ready bagged along the promenades at the north end of Caister and around the lifeboat station area. I am a dog owner myself on a mobility buggy. If I can get off and pick up, then put in bins provided, why can't others? Come on dog owners pick up is okay, but bin it as well.

I stopped a dog owner as he did it. His reply, “I'll collect it on the way back.” Only trouble was he didn't know I recognised him from when I lived at Scratby and this is where he was heading (home). The saying is true: dogs are okay, it's their owners that are the problem.

GILLIAN AKERMAN

Watling Close

Caister

I SPENT my early life (1951-1975) in Great Yarmouth and I am gathering information about the “Yarmouth barrow boys.”

When I was 10, my father built me a barrow, made from pram wheels and an old piece of timber which I used every Saturday from June until September to carry visitors' suitcases and luggage to and from their guest houses and hotels.

I used the barrow each summer for around 10 years (1960-1970) in an age when taxis were rare and only for the rich. Few people had cars in those days and holidaymakers swarmed into the town via the two train stations and Beech Road coach station. On some days we earned up to £5, which was a small fortune.

There were about 30 children who regularly went “barrowing” and I wonder if any of your readers have any recollections of that experience? I would be interested in memories, stories and photographs.

I can be contacted at: rabed45@aol.com

RICHARD BATES

WITH regard to my letter (April 18) about the beach huts at Gorleston, there was a mistake in the reference to the location; this should of course have read: emplacements and not replacements.

CECILIA EBBAGE

Lovewell Road

Gorleston

REGARDING the rise in taxi fares in Great Yarmouth, I do not think people in Yarmouth realise that the fares are much higher than in Norwich. The reason is Yarmouth is on premier rates because we are a holiday resort. Fair enough in the summer, but we are still charged premier rates during the winter, which is unreasonable, because it is the locals using the taxis in the winter who keep the firms going out of season.

This information was given to my daughter who lives in Norwich and wanted to travel the 25 miles and 25 miles back to Caister-on-Sea. It is cheaper to order the taxi from a Norwich firm - not pence, but pounds cheaper.

MARIE WOOD

Caister-on-Sea

AS Caister residents, my wife and I often walk our dogs on Gorleston seafront, where car parking is free and the surrounding environment is very clean and well maintained ie bins emotied, clean toilets and car park surface sound (no potholes).

Can anyone explain why it is that at Caister Beach Road car park, ridden with potholes, bins only emptied twice a week, shabby toilets etc, between April 1 and the end September, from 8am to 9pm, we are expected to pay 50p per hour for the privilege of parking? Are are we the only Caister residents upset by this?

Name and Address withheld

Caister residents? It's up to you. Write to Letters at the Mercury, 169 King Street, Great Yarmouth NR30 2PA or email anne.edwards@archant.co.uk

PART of the article about the proposed Stokesby Conservation Area, “Calls to throw out village zone plan” (Mercury, April 18, is based on spurious figures and its references to Zimbabwe are ridiculous and insulting.

The facts are that 106 leaflets and questionnaires were delivered one per house door to door throughout the designated conservation area in Stokesby. A total of 19 responded in favour of the proposed scheme, and 18 against. There were also two anonymous responses against as well, but no one can seriously take these into account as they could have come from anywhere.

There were also two “Don't Knows.” This makes a total of 39 valid answers from the 106 houses and a percentage of 37pc. Of course there were still a lot that did not respond (63pc) but that is nowhere near the 82pc referred to in the article. There were also seven replies from outside the designated area.

On the basis of these figures I could argue that Stokesby supports the scheme with the 63pc being content with the proposals. I am sure a great number do. After all it is usually the “anti's” that do most of the talking and the rest of us are not called the “silent majority” for nothing. However, it would be far better to have a public meeting in the village to give everybody a further opportunity to have their say and to have any concerns about conservation area status addressed by the Broads Authority.

To throw the scheme out now on figures that are clearly subjected to “spin” is not the Stokesby way.

DAVID TROWBRIDGE,

The Green

Stokesby

ends

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