Author Archives: Just Regional

New Norwich restaurant open for business

The Ivy Collection has announced that reservation lines are now open for The Ivy Norwich Brasserie, opening on Tuesday, 21 August.

To celebrate the announcement, The Ivy Norwich Brasserie team enjoyed a toast with the Lord Mayor of Norwich, Cllr Martin Schmierer and the Sheriff of Norwich, Ros Brown outside the restaurant. Team members including General Manager, Katie Miller and Head Chef, Andrius Buinickas, were joined by waiting staff to celebrate in the heart of the city.

Situated on London Street, The Ivy Norwich Brasserie will offer an elegant dining destination in the heart of Norwich’s bustling city centre. Open seven days a week and featuring extensive all-day menus and a beautiful bar, the brasserie will offer sophisticated yet relaxed all-day dining for locals and visitors alike. The brasserie will accommodate for up to 149 guests across the main restaurant, bar and terrace, and will hold back a number of tables each day for walk-ins, allowing locals to drop-in at any time of day.

The Ivy Norwich Brasserie will feature eye-catching yet refined interiors designed by the acclaimed Martin Brudnizki Design Studio, with the brasserie’s signature green colour palette sitting against striking leather banquettes, polished marble floors and bronzed antiques.

Norfolk Police urge people to stay safe over warm World Cup weekend

With Norfolk being promised more warm weather across this World Cup weekend, officers are reminding people to stay safe and think about personal safety.

Temperatures having been soaring across the county over the last couple of weeks and with sights set on the 3pm kick off on Saturday (7 July) officers are warning people not to put themselves at risk during all the excitement.

Chief Inspector Kris Barnard said: “This is an exciting weekend for Norfolk, not only because England are in the quarter finals of the World Cup but also because we have a number of events being held across the county.

“In Norwich many people will be out to enjoy the Lord Mayor’s celebrations. If you are heading into the city please plan your day ahead, make use of public transport and be aware of any road closures which will be in place for the procession which will now start at 6pm, an hour later than originally scheduled.

“If you are heading out to enjoy the sunshine elsewhere please ensure you secure your vehicle and remove all valuables from display and from the vehicle where possible. At this time of year opportunistic thieves will be on the look-out for homes and cars with open windows and unlocked doors.

“For those who will be watching the football on Saturday we know an increased amount of alcohol and intensified emotions can sometimes lead to an increase in public order offences. We encourage everyone to enjoy the World Cup, but want to remind people to be considerate and tolerant of others.

“If you go out to watch the match we want you to have a good day out and make sure you stick with your friends. Excessive drinking leading to anti-social behaviour can have very damaging consequences for those concerned, and sometimes for their families.

“Norfolk has specific policing plans in place. Officers will deal robustly with any issues, but we hope there will not be a need to do so. People need to take responsibility for themselves and their friends. Make sure you plan ahead, if you’re going to watch a match at a pub pre-book safe transport home and do not accept lifts from strangers.

“There will be an increased police presence during the match in the city and town centres throughout the county to minimise the risk of any alcohol-related disorder.”

Chief Inspector Barnard is also warning people heading towards the broads or the coast this weekend to stay safe near the water: “Norfolk is well known for its maze of open waterways and on a hot day the water may look an inviting place to cool down. Please remember the rivers around the broads are unsuitable for swimming in and have hidden dangers such as a sudden change in depth, decreases in temperatures and unseen objects and currents, which can cause even the strongest of swimmers to get into difficulty very quickly.”

You can get more information about home and personal security across the summer months on the Norfolk Constabulary website at

England Manager Gareth Southgate. Fans will be out cheering his team on across the city and county on Saturday.

Hare-Raising Sunday morning of family fun in Aylsham

Aylsham Market Place will be packed with family fun and games this Sunday morning, June 24.

The Hare-Raising Sunday action is centred on Humphry Hare, the town’s very-own GoGoHare, who will be officially unveiled at 9am outside Barnwell’s newsagent, where the town Christmas tree usually stands.

Humphry’s unveiling will be the cue for the fun to begin, lasting until midday. It includes a giant skittle alley, children’s crafts and games, a teddy tombola, card game, Aylsham Gym activities, face painting and a Hare and Snail race where everyone can place small change on the line beside either an ornamental hare or snail who will then race along a marked course. The Royal British Legion (RBL) will also be running a pop-up Poppy Shop selling RBL merchandise.

At 9.30am Aylsham High School’s drama group will sing, followed by Bure Valley School’s choir at 10am and the Broadland School of Dance will perform two dances at about 10.15am.

There will be Country Market tasters to sample and the chance to take part in Aylsham’s Snail Trail – finding a coloured, laminated collection of paper snails dotted around businesses in the town. Each snail bears a letter of the alphabet and all together they spell out a phrase.

All the activities are outdoors while bacon rolls and a tuck shop will be available in the town hall.

Painted by artist Lisa Kirkham, Humphry is one of 18 decorated models dotted around the county, as well as 50 in Norwich, plus 164 Norfolk leverets, forming part of this summer’s GoGoHares trail in aid of the charity Break, which supports vulnerable children and young people.

Hare-Raising Sunday has been co-ordinated by Aylsham Town Council and involves 17 different local organisations. They will be raising money for their own causes and making a donation to Break.

The entire Norfolk GoGoHares trail also launches on Sunday at 9am and the hares, including Humphry, will be in place until September 8. County-wide trail maps will be available in the Market Place.

A tantalising glimpse of Humphrey’s eye – the only part of him that’s been revealed so far!

There’s a lorra lorra love for Cilla musical

Liverpool arrived in Norwich this week.

Following the much-acclaimed television series Cilla, starring Sheridan Smith, I did wonder how this stage show could be equally as good, condensed into just over two hours.

It is quite simple – this show concentrates only on the music and the key stages of Liverpool’s favourite daughter Cilla Black’s rise to stardom.

It all started with Cilla dancing in the now legendary Cavern Club before being invited on stage to sing with the Beatles prior to them becoming worldwide superstars. She performed in front of music mogul Brian Epstein (played by Andrew Lancel, formerly Coronation Street’s Frank Foster).

Epstein encourages Priscilla White to become Cilla Black and, after finding her a ballad to sing – Anyone Who Had A Heart, Cilla became the number one British female pop star in her twenties.

By her side through every part of her adult life was Bobby Willis, played by Carl Au. The role of Bobby in this production is just as important as Cilla herself and Au plays it admirably.

Kara Lily Hayworth plays the lead role with huge shoes to fill, not just Cilla’s but, of course, Sheridan Smith’s. And fill them she does.

This show takes you on a journey and, despite knowing the story, you still find yourself rooting for Cilla as her life takes its twists and turns. The show is full of colour, laughter and heart-wrenching moments as the production takes your through many well-known and lesser-known Cilla favourites.

Although this is a musical, it also has real substance and it is refreshing to see a virtually unknown making us believe that she really is Cilla with her carbon copy voice and accent.

You don’t have to be a Cilla fan to enjoy the show, the audience varied in age from those who can remember her heyday in the 1960s to those today that saw the feel-good television series and wanted to see it live.

There is a string of hits from the era and not just Cilla’s. So, if you are a fan of the sounds of the 60s, then this show is for you.

It has been nearly three years since Cilla left us but her legacy truly lives on with this stage production and we are certainly lucky to have it in Norwich.

Cilla runs until Saturday April 21st and has a mixture of matinees and evening performances. Tickets are available here: or by calling the box office 01603 630000.

Lee Todd

Traffic fears over extra car boot sales

Fears over traffic problems and safety have been raised after the town’s car boot sale was granted permission to open on a second day.

The sales, on Burgh Road, near the junction with the A140, are already held on Saturdays but will now be held on Mondays also – and residents and town councillors are concerned that it will lead to problems with traffic, parking and general safety.

But the organiser said he believed the fears are unfounded and that it would be nowhere near as busy as the Saturday events.

The application had been turned down by Broadland District Council but has now been approved after an appeal. Sales will be held on Mondays from the end of April.

Residents have taken to social media to vent their concerns and a statement from Aylsham Town Council said that members had looked at the application in detail and still believed it should have been refused.

The boot sale site is near to the high school and, as vendors could set up from 7am, the council feared that they could be arriving around the same time as children were being dropped off at school. There were also worries over commuters on the main and busy road between Cromer and Norwich.

“Although a car boot sale is held on this site on a Saturday, the pressure on the roads at the weekend is not as great nor is there the same level of time urgency for arrival at work,” said town clerk Sue Lake.

The petrol station and drive-through coffee shop is also accessed by the same junction via the new roundabout and Sue added: “This application was made prior to their opening and, again, we do not have full details of the impact on traffic flow these will have.”

Parking for the sales had previously caused problems and the new application says there is parking for more than 600 cars, which has raised fears of roads being blocked and residents being inconvenienced.

But organiser Dave Penrose, who has run the sales for many years, believes that the Monday sales will attract fewer people than the Saturday events and will not cause the problems people are predicting.

“There will be no more traffic than for the Aylsham sale,” he said. “And it won’t be as busy as Saturday.”

He said previous parking problems had now been curtailed thanks to better signs around the site.

The Highways Authority had said that peak times for the car boot sale would be from 11am when buyers arrive, but the town council says this is “naïve”.

“Buyers arrive far earlier than this to try and obtain bargains. Also the larger traffic, ie the sellers in vans, will be arriving and leaving at peak time which will coincide with both the start and finish of the school day.

“The Town Council have looked at this application in detail and still retain the view that the application should be refused. The main reason is related to the highway issues,” said Sue.

Beer and gin on the menu this month!

It’s that time again, when Aylsham Round Table is well under way with planning for its next annual charity beer festival.

Last year, the event raised more than £6,000 for local good causes and proved to be one of the best ever, attracting visitors from all over north Norfolk and the county.

Now organisers are hoping to beat that amount with this year’s event, which includes a new attraction . . . gin.

Tabler James Marks said: “Along with the 35 ales and 15 ciders we are also introducing some fantastic gins.

“We had feedback from the public last year asking us for a gin theme at the festival. So, we will be introducing our new gin palace, sponsored by Just Regional, which will stock more than 20 different varieties.”

The Round Table is again asking for local businesses to support the festival and help it become an even greater success.

“This is our 13th year and If you feel you would like to be involved in sponsoring a barrel please contact us through the website,” said James.

The festival opens on Friday, April 27, at 6pm, with the last beer being served on the afternoon of Sunday, April 29.

Find out more at

Food heroes to launch in market place

The search for the crème de la crème among Norfolk’s food and farming industry will begin at a new launch event in Aylsham town centre on Saturday 7th April.

Organisers of The Aylsham Agricultural Show Association’s 12th annual Norfolk Hero Food and Drink Awards ask the public for nominations for the premier individuals and businesses in four categories (last year’s winners in brackets):

The Overall Championship Sponsors are Lovewell Blake – Accounts, Business Advisers and Financial Planners, and the Association is very grateful for their continued support. They will be represented by Chris Solt, who, with Michael Baker (winner of the 2017 Individual Food or Drink Hero award), will judge the overall winner of the four Categories below.

1. Best specialist food or drink supplier, sponsored by Barclays. The supplier may only sell products using ingredients mainly grown or farmed by them (Yare Valley Oils, Surlingham).

2. Best use of Norfolk produce on menu, sponsored by Gressingham Foods. The owner, chef and staff need to demonstrate the use of, and enthusiasm for, Norfolk produce (The Duck Inn, Stanhoe and winners of the Overall Championship).

3. Best food or drink retailer, sponsored by Dewing Grain. The retailer needs to promote and sell a large range of Norfolk produce (Nortons Dairy, Frettenham).

4. Best new food or drink venture, sponsored by Spire Solicitors. This new venture must have started trading in 2016/2017. The owner needs to demonstrate the future potential of the business, and the use or promotion of Norfolk produce (Vanvino, Wymondham).

As usual, the Individual Food or Drink Hero – who will be chosen by Aylsham Show president for 2018, Michael Gamble – will be presented with the President’s Tankard at this summer’s Aylsham Show.

And the winner of the Overall Championship, who will receive the Ken Dye Memorial Salver, will also be revealed at the action-packed show, which takes place at the Blickling Estate on bank holiday Monday, August 27.

In one of several new departures this year, the 2017 category award winners will judge, along with the sponsors, the 2018 victors.

And in another “first”, the awards will be launched at Aylsham Farmers’ Market, in the town’s Market Place, on Saturday April 7, from 9am-1pm.

Forms and help will be available for visitors wanting to make nominations and last year’s winners will be showcasing their products – with plenty of free tastings on offer.

Alex Haswell has taken over from Jacinth Rogers as head steward for the awards. A former chartered surveyor who loves the countryside, Alex, from Lammas, near Coltishall, now works as a fundraising manager for Macmillan Cancer Support in Norfolk and Suffolk.

She said: “We believe it is important to recognise the hard work that many individuals and businesses invest and are delighted that the 2017 winners will be judging this year’s categories with the sponsors, to acknowledge their contribution.”

The Duck Inn Stanhoe,
Overall Championship
Winners and Category
Winner for Best Use of
Norfolk Produce on Menu.
Presented with the Ken
Dye Memorial Salver.

Residents urged to be vigilant after spate of burglaries

Police in North Norfolk and Broadland are urging residents to be vigilant after a spate of burglaries across the area recently.

18 burglaries have been reported since 31 January 2018 with properties being targeted in Wells, Holt, Little Barningham, Morston, Little Snoring, Sheringham, Ludham, Stalham, Potter Heigham, Foulsham, Aylsham, Acle, Halvergate and Woodbastwick.

Chief Inspector Wes Hornigold said: “We are investigating a number of burglaries which have taken place across the districts during the past two months and I am appealing for anyone with information to contact police.

“In some of these cases the premises have been left insecure, therefore I would urge residents to take some time to review their home security and take some simple steps to prevent them from becoming victims of crime. Many thieves are opportunistic, so please ensure your doors and windows are locked at all times – and if you go out, leave a light or radio on to give the impression someone is home.

“Also, if you are going away for the night, please ask a friend or neighbour to keep an eye on your property and consider using timers on lights.”

“If you see any suspicious activity in your area, please contact police on 101, paying particular attention to any unfamiliar vehicles and registration numbers; however; please call 999 if you believe a crime is in progress.”
Further home security advice includes:

• Remove window keys and keep them in a safe place. However, everyone should know where the keys are kept so they can escape in an emergency
• Fit five lever mortise deadlocks to all external doors to BS3621
• Fit multi-locking systems to patio doors or install mortise security bolts with removable keys at the top and bottom of both doors
• Considering fitting a letterbox cage or restrictor which prevents burglars from putting their hands or gadgets through the letter box and trying the latches from the inside.
• Never leave a spare key in a convenient hiding place such as under the doormat, burglars know all the usual hiding places
• Never leave your house or car keys in or near a door or window