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Letters, July 11

PUBLISHED: 10:39 11 July 2008 | UPDATED: 11:24 03 July 2010

I READ with some alarm your article about Norfolk Police selling off their services to schools and businesses. Is this a short cut to privatisation, I ask myself.

I READ with some alarm your article about Norfolk Police selling off their services to schools and businesses. Is this a short cut to privatisation, I ask myself. The majority of people in this town pay the community charge, a percentage of which goes to the police, so why should they have to lose the policeman on the street because businesses can afford to pay for their services. Surely this will take away the services of the police where they are needed, ie on the street?

On my estate you hardly ever see the police or PCSOs and when you call them the response is farcical. So surely farming out their services is just going to make it worse. Of course this does not just affect the Middlegate but everywhere in Yarmouth and Norfolk as a whole. When are the police hierarchy going to realise that the police force is a public service paid for by the public and not a money making machine? They keep saying that there are not enough police officers now to do the job properly so how are they going to run this scheme with the shortage they keep telling us about?

JOHN DONOVAN

Clarendon Close

Great Yarmouth

AT last! Thanks to the Mercury, we now know why we haven't heard for such a long time about the third river crossing. Months ago, various agencies and their minions were rushing about trying to find somewhere to put the crossing but to no avail.

With the outer port due to come on line in 2009, the last quote about the crossing was for 2013 and a lot of people were very horrid about how 400 plus lorries a day were going to reach the port. Councillor Holmes is now suggesting that 2016 might be the date for the crossing, which makes it seven years for all the port traffic to use South Quay and Hall Quay in order to reach the ships. The mind boggles! The Mercury has now disclosed about all the road works that we are going to suffer later this year. For obvious reasons the Golden Mile cannot be used, so going past the Town Hall is the only alternative. I'd hate to think what state the Haven Bridge will get into as the biggest percentage of the lorries will have to use it. I've written before about this subject and with the massive expansion now taking place at Felixstowe I still cannot see the point of having a new outer port. The vast expense could have saved the Norfolk coast from sea erosion. I rest my case.

C CASS

Station Road South

Belton

WHEN you view the progress of the new outer harbour, as in the photograph published in last week's Mercury, and you go and see for yourself what has been achieved in a relevantly short space of time; creating a large new land mass by sucking up sand from the bottom of the sea and depositing on the shore for a relatively small cost, you see what you get for a million pounds these days.

It makes me wonder why the powers that be are talking about flooding a large part of Norfolk around Hickling because it is too expensive to keep the sea out. Billions are spent abroad defending people's right to democracy so it is claimed, and I think it's about time we spent a few millions defending our own country. It is, of course, Dutch engineers who are doing the job at the outer harbour. The Dutch have been doing this for years in their own country and have considerably increased their land mass.

GERRY JARVIS,

Mission Place,

Great Yarmouth

SO South Quay is not suitable for the anticipated 600-800 daily truck movement from and to the outer harbour! Surprise, surprise!

I thought the third river crossing was supposed to solve this particular problem, but alas that will not happen before 2012 or whatever. It is not possible to use the seafront because it is now pretty and pedestrian friendly. Whatever happened to joined-up thinking? Perhaps I have got this all wrong. Perhaps the plan was always to relocate the little harbour business that occupies the inner harbour at present to the new outer harbour, thereby freeing up the miles of quayside for building accommodation thus turning the inner harbour into a sort of urban yacht station. But perhaps that is joining-up too many good ideas!

T ANDREWS

Northern Close

Caister on Sea

I REALISE that the subject of dog fouling has been covered many times in your column but I would be most grateful if you could afford me the opportunity to address an accusation made to me recently. Last Sunday afternoon I was walking my dog along Poplar Avenue in Gorleston when a car drew up alongside me and the female driver wound down her window and quite sternly said “I saw what your dog just did.” I was thrown for a moment as my dog had been well behaved as usual. Then I realised the woman must have been referring to the fact my dog had just squatted to urinate. Before I had a chance to defend either my dog or myself the woman drove off. I did hold up my poo bag in the vain hope she would see I had in fact cleared up the mess my dog had made earlier on the walk, but to no avail. I consider myself to be a responsible dog owner - my dog is vaccinated, insured, always on a lead unless in an enclosed area where she likes a run and I always have a supply of bags with me when we go on our daily walks. I would therefore suggest to the lady concerned that (a) she makes sure of her facts before hurling accusations and (b) if she has any practical suggestions as to how I clear up urine then perhaps she could forward the same to The Mercury and I would be happy to give it a go.

Mrs TRACY MANNALL,

Upper Cliff Road

Gorleston

I AM begging your readers in Caister to get together and fight to stop single and double-decker buses coming through the housing estates, before we have a repeat of this week's tragic death of a young lad and just a few years ago another innocent lad died. These buses are far too big for these streets. We have had our accidents because they will not give way or wait. We weren't consulted. They just arrived one day and the sooner they go the better.

Mrs A CAFFELL,

Prince of Wales Road

Caister on Sea

AS chairman of the Villarome/Blyth Road “Home Watch” scheme I was initially asked by one of my residence to enquire as to the possibility of having our roads declared a “No Cold Calling Zone”. This was after some of my elderly and vulnerable neighbours were recently and forcefully pestered by a double glazing salesperson. One elderly person was told her double glazed plastic windows were no good and she should have his installed (at a cost undoubtedly of thousands of pounds). The introduction of being able to declare an area as being a “No Cold Calling Zone” is a recent innovation. It has been introduced nationally mostly to help reduce distraction burglaries which are aimed at the elderly. This type of burglary is becoming more prevalent in our area, as too is the extortion of money from the elderly by offering “services” such as “tarmac drives” and “gardening”. Statistics have shown that where this scheme has been introduced these types of burglaries and extortion have dropped dramatically. There is a scheme encouraged by Norfolk Trading Standards and supported by Norfolk County Council. Resident communities have to declare, 100pc, that they no longer wish to accept traders calling without an appointment. Having carried out a census of our home watch area I was encouraged by the fact every household supported an application being made to the Norfolk Trading Standards. Having complied with their pre-requisites where the Norfolk County Council carried out their own census, Villarome and Blyth Road Home Watch has now been accepted as a “No Cold Calling Zone”, the first in the Great Yarmouth area.

DAVID MORRICE

Villarome

West Caister

WHAT a dog's dinner is the suggestion that Great Yarmouth Borough and Lowestoft councils should be swallowed up in a grand Norfolk area. Gorleston would be even more swallowed up, unrepresented, in this gigantic morass.

The more sensible conclusion surely is to bring together the two urban, resort, harbour towns of Lowestoft and Yarmouth as a political entity. There is already so much co-operation and sharing of facilities that we are on the way there already. I know some in Suffolk won't like the idea of losing their Suffolk identity, a process that Gorleston went through about a hundred years ago and other villages more recently. Gorleston and the villages are only politically in Norfolk anyway, geographically they are still in Suffolk.

Within the so called “Yartoft” area there would be a great need for Gorleston to have local representation, probably in the form of a town council, something we have always should have had to fairly represent the interests of this large wedge of Yarmouth borough. Yarmouth has for too long been the centre of the universe as far as our council is concerned with poor old Gorleston a poor relation to contribute without receiving very much in return.

For this important decision to be made it needs to involve whole communities to get the opinions of the people who really matter, the residents who pay the taxes. So far, apart from the relatively private argument between the two political parties, we residents haven't been involved - no public meeting to explain the party differences, hence no participation in this most important change to our services and our lives.

When will public participation start and what form will it take? We all need to be involved and have our say now. Come on you politicians this isn't something to be fought on party lines but let the people decide for a change. Any residents who don't have an opinion will get what they deserve and have no cause to complain if they don't like what they get.

DENNIS DURRANT

Brett Avenue

Gorleston

I WOULD like to thank the three workers who removed their hard hats as my mother's funeral car passed them by on Southtown Road last Friday morning. Their simple act of respect gives me hope in a world of ever diminishing standards. Thank you, you are indeed gentlemen.

FRED JARROLD

Winifred Way

Caister-on-Sea

RE: M Watson's reply to mine about “one stop shops.” I have read the recent batch of letters to your newspaper on your website and it seems that in his reply to mine about Unitary Authorities either M Watson of Gorleston has misunderstood me or else my letter was carelessly written. M Watson appears to believe that I was referring to what I suppose must be a “retail” shop in Pound Lane. I most certainly was not. I was referring to the council desk in Gorleston Library. I have always understood that in Liverpool such desks are called “one stop shops” and I assumed the same for Great Yarmouth. I certainly had no intention of insulting anyone and I was only drawing attention to what appears to be over-employment in local council offices - my point being that any UA savings might just add to this. When I have visited Gorleston Library at least one and sometimes both officers at the council desk seem to have been doing very little. To be misunderstood in this way is distressing so I would be grateful if you could somehow convey these thought to M Watson so that he can pass them on to the staff in Pound Lane. Naturally I had no intention of insulting the council officers either. Would it be too much to print a sentence or two to say that I was not referring to Pound Lane and that I was insulting no one?

J F LAMBERT

Mossley Hill

Liverpool

ON Monday, June 30 my husband watered our front garden at approximately 5pm and everything was okay. We both went out that evening. The next morning we went out in the garden at approximately 11am to find one of my garden ornaments smashed and the person who had done it had neatly piled the pieces in front of another pot. There was no apology note or offer to replace it. This could not have been an accident as it was not in line with our front door so they would have had to go across the garden. How would they have liked me to enter their garden and smash things? If the person feels they can come and apologise I would appreciate it.

MRS S BURGESS

Gorse Close

Belton

ON a Monday morning recently I needed to see my doctor so I phoned my Great Yarmouth GP's practice to make an appointment. I was told there were no more appointments available that day but if I phoned at 8.30am the next day, they would get me in. That I did and eventually got through after half-an-hour only to be told there were no more appointments that day. I asked if I could pre-book an appointment for the next day and they said no. I asked what happens now and they told me I would have to wait three weeks to see my doctor. What a joke. I told the receptionist this was very unsatisfactory and unprofessional and that I would like to leave the surgery and find another doctor. I am 24 years old and have been with the surgery since the day I was born. I have never ever heard of anyone having to wait three weeks to see their doctor.

PAUL HUBBARD

North Denes Road

Great Yarmouth

RACHEL Moore is, of course, entitled to air her opinions, in fact she is paid to do so. This does not justify her crude attempt at humour at the expense of HM The Queen which I found particularly offensive. She frequently regales her readers with sentimental stories of what a wonderful mother she is, and her efforts to teach them to become caring adults, so I hope she will explain that the right to freedom of speech and opinion should be tempered by consideration for the feelings of others. We should not resort to sarcastic comments about someone who for any reason is not in a position to reply. “The East Coast's most talked about working mum” has every opportunity to respond in her column to my assessment that she has some rather strange chips on her shoulder. I bet she doesn't and I will be quite surprised if this letter finds its way into print.

NICK POWNALL

Seafield Close,

Great Yarmouth

IN May, some of the Friends of Yare Hospice Care were collecting for this local charity in Asda Superstore in Great Yarmouth and were approached by a gentleman who offered them a knitted toy. After accepting it he went away and brought back a superb hand knitted elephant. The Friends were so impressed with the quality and thought which had gone into to producing such a creation that they would like to make it the mascot of the friends and hold a competition to name it. We desperately would like to make contact with the gentleman concerned in order to thank him properly and to seek his permission to so use the elephant in our publicity. If anyone knows who he is, of if he himself would like to contact us, please ring Brian Thorne on 01493 310278 or Corinne Bryant on 01493 442063.

CORINNE BRYANT

Friends of Yare Hospice Care

ANOTHER tragedy, another life lost, another bus involved. I wrote to complain via the Mercury some time ago condemning the actions of First buses continually sending double decker buses through the narrower roads in Caister and to bring back if necessary, the smaller banana buses as the larger buses are normally empty anyway. Did they listen? No!

I do not know the family concerned but my heart and sympathy go out to them, for I know very, very well the pain and suffering they are going through.

You cannot ever replace a life, but you can replace the stupid system of sending large buses along these roads. Stop them now. RONALD EMERY

Thames Way

Caister

ON behalf of the Norfolk Deaf Association I must apologise that the Listening Hall bus did not come to Winterton on July 8, as had been well advertised in the Winterton parish notes. The reason is that we are now concentrating more on the large centres of population, because on the original route the response had been disappointing in some smaller villages. The current programme of visits should be: Acle (Herondale and Bridewell Lane), July 15 and August 19, 10am to noon; Brundall (the Street car park), July 15 and August 19, 2 to 4pm; Hickling (Methodist Church car park) July 17 and August 21, 10 to 11.30am; Stalham (Staithe Surgery car park), July 17 and August 21, 1 to 3pm. This mobile clinic has been set up to help deaf and hard of hearing people cope with problems they have due to their deafness. Free advice and support along with practical help such as returning NHS hearing aids, supplying the batteries etc is given by trained volunteers. It is not possible to give hearing tests. The bus has been financed by a lottery grant, following a vote for the Norfolk Deaf Association Project by TV viewers last year. Many thanks if any of you voted for us. For information phone 01603 404440, email nhss@norfolkdeaf.org.uk.

JOHN HIRST

Trustee NDS

Ormesby St Michael

CAN anyone give me a reason why the grass and weeds are not being cut by the garages in Eastern Avenue, Caister? I was told by the person in charge of the grass cutting that it should be cut at least three times a year and as up to yet it has not been cut once. The people who pay money for the garages each week cannot see the traffic coming down from Braddock Road, but the private grass verge down Manor Road is cut quite often.

P JONES,

Eastern Avenue

Caister on Sea

I WOULD like to give praise to all the performers of Dance Estelle show which took place at the weekend at the Hippodrome Circus. What a wonderful show. I was full of admiration for Estelle Clifton, so much hard work had gone into this show, the costumes were superb, it was full of variety, a pleasure to watch. My father, who is disabled also went to watch the show. The staff were so helpful getting him to his seat. Well done to the Hippodrome staff and to Estelle Clifton for an excellent show.

Mrs P CUTAFAR,

Appleton Drive

Ormesby

THERE will be a beach clean up on North Drive, Great Yarmouth on Sunday. Everyone is welcome to help. The more the merrier. Please meet on North Drive opposite Salisbury Road at 11am.

YVONNE WALSH,

North Denes Road,

Great Yarmouth

MY previous letters in the Mercury stirred up a hornet's nest. So if you publish the letter below, from what I've heard, *many* Mercury readers will be keen to read the responses you get (more sales of the Mercury the next week?)

Plus, although my statements are controversial, they're straight from the Bible - the most controversial book in the world.

Interesting that none of the men and women of cloth (the “reverends”, “pastors”, “captains”, “canons” etc) has, from the Bible, refuted any of my previous letters (unless they have, and you've chosen not to publish their replies).

Surely, if these were genuine men and women of God (and called by Him into the positions they occupy), who cared for their flock, they'd know they have a *responsibility* both to their flock (many of whom, no doubt, read the Mercury) and, far more importantly, to God (whom they claim to represent), to refute *from the Bible* what I've written? But their deafening silence helps to confirm the truth of what I've said in all my letters. Qui tacet consentire videtur (silence gives consent).

Soberingly, these are eternal truths (not mine, but God's), which affect the final destination of all your readers (the Day of Judgement is an appointment each of us will keep). Most people are happy just to continue believing what comes from the front Sunday after Sunday, without investigating for themselves, and remain in a state of effortless mental stupor until death. But what next?

What a horrendous shock to wake up in hell and discover - too late, for ever (hell has no fire escapes) - that what you chose to believe the whole of your life was in fact a delusion (because you just blindly accepted what the titled person, the “expert” at the front, told you Sunday after Sunday)! “To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them”" (Isaiah 8: 20).

If what I say in my letters shakes even *one* person awake (to go and start checking these things out in the Bible, to see if what I've written is true), and it helps that person come to know Jesus Christ and avoid going to hell, the time I've put into crafting each letter will be worth it. Do you agree?

Jude (possibly one of Jesus' earthly brothers), writes to the Christians of his day, “Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life… others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire…” (Jude 21-23).

Respectfully, the ball's now in your court…

ELDO BARKHUIZEN

Albemarle Road

Gorleston

LAST week my mother went through numerous boxes and treasurers - we had a van full. My mother chose to donate the items to the Cancer Research shop, so I duly rang and was advised they do not take cuddly toys or electrics (which we had none of). Everything we had was mostly brand new, boxed, not chipped, cracked or broken. The gentleman in the shop came to the rear of the van, raised his eyebrows and said “we don't want that!”, “we don't want that!”

I said, excuse me, you said you'd take almost anything, but but cuddly toys or electrics. Then two other gentlemen came to look. We had some outdoor flower pots and one gentleman said and I quote “No, I don't want that, I don't have a garden!” Are there no customers with gardens? After, my mother ferried the items they did want all by herself in the rain, we were left totally and utterly humiliated and very angry! We drove around the corner to the Faith charity shop, my poor mum was so upset. The gentleman in there didn't even want to know what we had, he helped us to offload everything without question. Thank you Faith.

A QUIRK

Beechwood Road

Hemsby

AT the end of the summer term my son's nursery will sadly be closing. As anybody with young children will appreciate starting nursery is a traumatic time for both the children and the parents but from day one my son has thrived at and enjoyed being part of Jack and Jill's nursery.

I have always felt more than confident and extremely happy leaving my son in the care of all the lovely ladies that have prepared him for starting school. It is a real shame that we are losing such a wonderful nursery and I know that the other parents feel the same and equally the children. I want to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to everybody who works at Jack and Jill's nursery on Clarence Road in Gorleston and wish everybody the best of luck. You have all been brilliant.

EMMA LISSAMORE

(Harry's mum)

Gorleston

IN today's world, when you have to pay for everything, we are writing to say a big congratulation to Cliff Park First School in Gorleston. We picked up our granddaughter from school this week and was surprised to find a wonderful magazine inside her book bag. It was crammed full of photographs and work the children of the school have done since September and it didn't cost her anything. It was wonderful to look at all the achievements the children have done over the months. The pictures were fantastic and beautifully presented. The school should be proud that their staff are willing to work so hard to give each child a record of their time at school. As grandparents we sometimes feel as if we miss out on what our grandchildren are doing at school. This magazine is fantastic at showing all the wonderful and exciting opportunities that the children have. Through the Mercury we want to say a big thank you to all the staff, not only for a wonderful record to treasure, but for providing it free. Well done.

Mr and Mrs GOODYARD

Gorleston

ARE you extremely overweight and looking to kick start a healthier lifestyle? Are you super slim and desperate to put on a few pounds?

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After the swap, they both embark on a 12-week healthy eating regime. Both the swap and new regime will take place under strict medical supervision. At the end of the 12-week period the show catches up with the two contributors to find out whether they have transformed their bad eating habits for good.

Series one saw amazing results from our swappers and now it's time to challenge eight more pairs to embark on a healthier new life. We are looking for people now who want to change their relationship with food for good.

So if you are unhappy with your weight and desperate for a change, please email super@endemoluk.com with your contact details, height and weight plus a latest photo if possible.

CLAIRE EDWARDS

Cheetah Television

I LIVED in Great Yarmouth from 1974 until around the 1980s and I went to the Hospital Secondary School until 1978.

I am looking for Janet Davies (maiden name Potts), Sharon Davies and Susan Davies, these are their maiden names. I know Janet Davies lived in Byron Road, Newtown. Hope you or your readers can help. I can be contacted at 27 Gibson Road,

London SE11 6UP or call 02075873716.

CHRISTOPHER POTTS

I AM now doing research for my eighth local history book. This book will be about the River Bure from Great Yarmouth to Upton. If you have lived in any of the houses along the riverside and have memories to share, or any old photographs and would like them to be in the book please contact me on 01508 492239.

SHEILA HUTCHINSON

Stoke Holy Cross, Norwich

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