We are still open for business, say Norfolk tourism operators
Our coastline may have taken its biggest pounding for 60 years but the message from our seaside towns is: we are still very much open for business.
At the launch of the Great Yarmouth tourism brochure on Tuesday, chairman of
the borough tourist authority Michael Jeal highlighted the concern that in the
post-flood confusion there was a prevalent feeling that some places – such as
Hemsby – were almost off limits to visitors.
Underlining the fact it was most certainly not true, he made an appeal to
trippers to continue to come and support the flood recovery by spending their
Hemsby became the focus of international attention after the storm surge because
of the dramatic pictures of debris from broken homes strewn across the beach.
But James Gray, a member of the village traders’ association, said that despite
the heartache for home owners living on The Marrams, there had been no damage to
tourism businesses along Beach Road.
Mr Gray said his business, Lost World Adventure Golf, was closed for the season
but plenty of others were still open.
“The Lacon Arms is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday, the usual times for the
winter, and MB’s Leisure Bar is open every day,” he said.
“My message is that every business will be reopening for Easter as normal.”
A similar message was delivered by North Norfolk District Council spokesman
Peter Battrick, who said that Cromer was “open for visitors and up and running”
despite the battering the coastline had taken.
He said the show on Cromer pier would be back running by the matinee performance
today and although promenades were closed in places there was plenty of public
Businesses in Burnham Deepdale are also keen to report that events and
activities on the north Norfolk coast are carrying on and everyone is welcome to
come and visit this winter.
A spokesman said: “Yes, there have been some really tough days with very
significant damage, and some businesses and homes have been very badly affected.
Our thoughts are very much with those for whom the clean-up has only just begun.
The best way to support them is to keep visiting and keep enjoying the glorious
north Norfolk coast.
“Here in Burnham Deepdale, we’ve already started our Christmas celebrations with
the Deepdale Christmas Market last weekend. Deepdale Backpackers and Camping
have various offers on throughout the winter period and the shops of Dalegate
Market will help you sort your Christmas shopping.”
In Yarmouth, Peter Williamson, owner of the Merrivale Model Village, said: “Our
hearts go out to all the people who were badly affected by the storm surge.
“We are extremely grateful and believe we were extremely lucky to escape damage
to our attraction on the seafront.”
The model village is now closed for the season, but Mr Williamson confessed that
on Thursday afternoon he thought they would lose the entire fruits of their
£600,000 investment over 10 seasons and be facing a one-to-two-year rebuild.
Instead, he said Yarmouth seafront was ready and waiting for winter visitors –
“and on a sunny day like today it looks very inviting”.
Stephen Pullinger - Eastern Daily Press