Crowds replace crows as village gets “scary”
An artful army of crafty characters is preparing for its annual friendly invasion of a Norfolk holiday village.
A hundred scarecrows will line the streets, gardens and green at Martham near Great Yarmouth during the May Bank Holiday.
While crows will be giving the village a wide berth, crowds will be flocking there instead to see the festival which boosts local businesses and community causes.
And this year organisers are opening up the event to scarecrow makers from outside the village for the first time – with the lure of a £100 cash top prize.
Designers or businesses will be able to showcase their creations on the green to be seen on May 1st and 2nd by an estimated 10,000 visitors – three times the population of the village.
They are the white knuckle seafront rides that unleash a rollercoaster of emotions and memories across the generations.
But their timeless fairground fun is also playing a key role in the future of a leading UK holiday resort.
Great Yarmouth’s speedy smiling Snails have clicked, twisted and trundled through their jolly corner of the Joyland children’s funfair since it was opened in 1949.
Their brightly-painted smiles and shiny shells have been getting their winter facelift ready for the season ahead.
The colourful creatures have given countless wide-eyed children their first taste of the heady cocktail of fear and excitement that goes with a seafront funfair ride – even though they only plunge a few feet among cheery gnomes and colourful creatures.
A seaside caravan park boss, who has been a long-standing supporter of tourism in the Great Yarmouth area, has been given a lifetime achievement award.
Don Peers has a half century of experience at the family-run tourer and static Grasmere site at Caister, started by his great great grandfather in 1850.
He has been involved since a child and on neighbouring sites has added a 12-chalet site and converted a town house into award-winning apartments.
Mr Peers, 67, who is also a Methodist lay preacher in the Great Yarmouth circuit, said he was thrilled to receive the honour at the climax of an awards ceremony held by the Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area.
A trans-Atlantic seafaring hero is helping to launch a national regatta’s maiden voyage to a Norfolk beach this summer.
A fleet of 400 school-age sailors will head to Gorleston in July to compete in a week-long series of tough seafaring tests run by the National Schools Sailing Association.
But the starting gun gets fired this month as a special ball onshore this month helps raise funds and awareness for the prestigious event.
Star speaker is Norfolk-based Matt Boreham, who has twice rowed 3000 miles across the Atlantic, including helping partially-sighted former Royal Navy Lieutenant Alan Lock through mountainous seas in 2008. He also had to abort three other attempts in the late 1990s.
A top Norfolk seaside resort is adding a touch of Hollywood to its holidays through a pioneering series of mini movies being screened on-line.
The 70-second short films provide vivid video snapshots of the people, places, activities and events in the main town and surrounding areas.
Although Great Yarmouth remains one of the UK’s most popular and enduring destinations, particularly for people from the Midlands and London, there is a concerted campaign to attract even more trippers, from different areas and backgrounds – and to dispel any misconceptions about the resort.
Greater Yarmouth Tourism and Business Improvement Area Limited is behind the drive, and has put £45,000 towards making a dozen varied films along with further funds to promote them online.