Author Archives: Gay Webster

See in the autumn with colour and inspiration

This autumn sees women from all over the area coming together for two “inspiring” events.

First on the agenda is the Inspired Women BIG Conversation on September 26.

Inspired Youth has been running various Inspired Women projects in schools across Norfolk and Suffolk, involving hundreds of young women and local businesswomen.

This will be the second Inspired Women BIG Conversation and the chance to hear from some of those who have been involved with Inspired Women in schools and in the world of work.

The events is free and gives women the chance to share their thoughts on subjects including what makes a person inspiring and how they can help young women, how self-esteem and self-confidence impacts on life choices and the next step for the organisation.

The events will run from 8.30am to noon at The Space, Roundtree Way, Norwich. For more information see

On October 12, the venue switches to Sprowston Manor Hotel and the emphasis is on colours for the Inspired Women charity event Girls Night Out 2017.

The theme is I’m Every Colour to celebrate all the different colours that represent women. Marketing manager Jenna Rich said: “We’d love everyone who comes along to dress in your favourite colour to help us make the event as colourful as each of you.”

It’s the third year for Girls Night Out, which aims to give local young women the opportunity to showcase their talents in front of an audience, to be pampered and entertained.

The funds raised on the night will be used to support the Inspired Women mentoring programme for young women across Norfolk, as well as raising money for partner charity BREAK.

The evening will include a fashion show, pampering stands, shopping stands, goody bags for the first 50 through the door, a raffle plus more.

Earlybird tickets are available for £8until September 27, after which the full ticket price will apply of £9. Group discount bookings are also available.

See more and book at

Jenna Rich is ready with a smile

Support for women through that ‘tricky period’

Homeless women and females on low incomes will benefit from a new service set up to provide free sanitary products at Norwich’s main libraries.

The Tricky Period project involves the libraries taking donations of products and handing them out to people who cannot afford them, with no questions asked about proof of eligibility.

Staff at Tuckswood, Earlham, West Earlham, Mile Cross, Plumstead Road, St Williams Way and The Millennium libraries have been taking in donations of tampons, sanitary towels and carrier bags for the last few weeks ready to start the scheme on Thursday, September 28.

Community librarian Caroline Varney-Bowers is behind the project. She said: “I became aware of a project called The Homeless Period where homeless women struggle to afford these items and did some further research about period poverty. I found this is also an issue for young women from low income families and sometimes leads to girls missing school during their period.

“Library staff have been hugely supportive of starting up this service and we have already had some donations.”

Order forms will be available in Norwich Libraries at the staff desk (at The Millennium Library this will be the ground floor joining desk). Customers can tick the products they require and hand in their form at the desk and receive the items they need.

Councillor Margaret Dewsbury, chairman of Norfolk County Council’s communities committee, said: “It’s fantastic that our library staff have set up this service which will help vulnerable women and girls in Norwich. As well as the problem of affordability, this could potentially improve women’s health, as there are risks associated with not changing sanitary products regularly. The Tricky Period may also help to reduce period related truancy from school or time off work. I would encourage library users to support the project by making donations of supplies.”

Norwich foodbank is supporting the project as they are acutely aware that many who access their services find it very difficult to ask for these items.

Norfolk County Council’s Library and Information Service works closely with the council’s Public Health team on the Healthy Libraries project to improve awareness, information and support around health and wellbeing to people living in Norfolk.

This also includes supporting and promoting public health campaigns around issues including dementia awareness and reducing childhood obesity. Libraries work with local and national organisations to host events which encourage people to improve their health and wellbeing.
The service is available during library opening hours.

Just Regional is keen to support this initiative and we have offered to our offices as a point for anyone who would like to donate sanitary products. Just drop your donations off to our HQ in Penfold Street, Aylsham, NR11 6ET and we will make sure they get to the libraries in Norwich.

Editor Gay Webster said: “This is something which most women take for granted, that they have access to sanitary pads and tampons. It’s only right that all women have that choice and we are happy to be part of this worthwhile scheme.”

Starbucks confirmed for Aylsham

Euro garages, one of the UK’s largest privately owned forecourt operators, has confirmed a Starbucks will be opening in Aylsham before the end of the year.

The new drive though and cafe will open next to the new garage on land currently being levelled and prepared for the premises. The company is currently advertising for a supervisor/team leader for the business and, in total, 15-20 local jobs will be created.


Police appeal on man in Norwich CCTV photo

Police are appealing for help to identify this man (see photo below) who was pictured on a CCTV camera following the theft of a bike in Norwich.

The theft happened near a property in Bates Green between 7pm and 9pm on Friday July 28.

The stolen bike is described as  a green Carrera with white stickers and white wheel rims.

Anyone who may recognise the man, whom police would like to speak to in connection with the theft, or anyone with information, should contact PC Chris Paton at Earlham Police Station on 101.

Alternatively contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.





Final call for Norfolk beach lovers to join coastal clean up

The UK’s leading marine charity, says it hopes more people than ever before in Norfolk will take part in the Great British Beach Clean from September 15-18.

The event around the county’s coastline will help ensure some of the most beautiful beaches in the UK aren’t being taken for granted.

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) is running at least 11 beach cleans and surveys around Norfolk and so far just over 70 volunteers have signed up.

The charity says it’s really helpful if people register their interest online before the event to ensure organisers have enough kit to go round! You can register right up until the very last minute, and of course you can just turn up on the day.

This year, the Great British Beach Clean in England is being sponsored by Waitrose who are supporting MCS’ year round beach clean programme.

The MCS beach clean event takes place every third weekend in September as part of the charity’s year round Beachwatch programme. Volunteers who get involved in Norfolk will be joining an army of beach cleaners not only around the UK, Channel Islands and the Isle of Man, but all over the world as part of the global International Coastal Clean-up, which takes a snap shot of beach litter across the planet on a single weekend.

Lizzie Prior, MCS Beach and River Clean Project Officer, says volunteers are the lifeblood of the event and the data they collect is vital: “Last year an amazing 133 volunteers took part in the Great British Beach Clean on Norfolk’s beaches. We’d love to see even more people heading to the county’s beaches and helping clean up at the events that have been organised at:
Heacham: North of Jubilee Bridge
Titchwell Marsh
Cley Beach / Blakeney Point
Great Yarmouth Central
Sheringham West
Old Hunstanton Beach
Cley Beach
New Hunstanton

Each event only takes a couple of hours and, alongside the clean; 100 metres of beach are surveyed. The form is straightforward to complete, and helps MCS to add to the local and UK litter data picture, as well as the global view. Each clean-up has an organiser so there’s plenty of advice on the day on how to fill in the simple data sheets. This information will be used by MCS to work with governments and industry in the charity’s ongoing work to stop litter getting on to our beaches in the first place.

To get involved in the Great British Beach Clean 2015 in Norfolk and be part of the most influential fight against marine litter in the UK visit You can also speak to the team on 01989 566017.


Norwich firm among top tech companies in UK

A Norwich firm, launched with a £5,000 loan, has gained a prestigious national ranking.

Notice Media, which makes free financial comparisons easy for users, features on the Sunday Times Hiscox Tech Track 100, published on September 10. The list recognises fast-growing tech companies in the UK.

The company, which started over 10 years ago, operates financial comparison site which now attracts more than 450,000 users each month.

The site was launched by three entrepreneurs who built up their digital media expertise while working for online agencies, Google and insurance company Aviva.

The Sunday Times Hiscox Tech Track 100 listing is open to private companies with yearly revenue sales between £5m and £50m. The programme is designed to recognise the top 100 UK tech companies, and ranks them according to average sales increase over a three-year period.

The firm’s success has been attributed to the team’s desire to develop technology that helps users make quick, simple and clear financial comparisons through a variety of tables, tools and filters. Knowyourmoney users can compare the details of current accounts, business banking, loans, mortgages and breakdown cover.

The site aims to simplify financial product information allowing users to make informed financial decisions.

Breaking into the Sunday Times Tech Track 100 caps a series of recent accolades for the Norwich company. Having been voted Website of the Year in 2016, the site recently scooped the title of Best Comparison Site for Mortgages at the 2017 What Mortgage awards.

Operations director John Ellmore believes the website’s competitive edge comes from the ability to react quickly to market conditions.

He said: “Knowyourmoney’s strength is in our ability to quickly apply latest technology developments to the comparison service. We are certain that our team’s continuous desire to be the best-in-field, will ensure we continue to offer users a great comparison service”. Commercial director Jason Tassie attributes the recent success to the fantastic team ethic of the company.

“Over the last three years the team has grown knowyourmoney into a site capable of competing with the big household financial comparison brands. We are so proud of the team for this achievement, and breaking into the Sunday Times Tech Track 100 is great recognition for the fantastic effort we put in”.

Pictured: The Notice Media team in Norwich

Four arrested after big fight in Norwich

Police are investigating a fight involving a large number of people in Norwich.

Officers were called to Peterson Park, in Peterson Road, at approximately 6.30pm on Tuesday September 5.

Three teenage boys and a woman in her 40s were arrested on suspicion of affray and have been released from custody but remain under investigation.

Officers are keen to speak anyone who witnessed the incident or anyone with information. They can contact PC Craig Middleton-Keen at Mile Cross Police Station on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Road Safety set to be top priority at PCC-led meeting in Aylsham

Members of the public will be able to see first-hand the inner workings of a police speed van during a special Q and A session with Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and Chief Constable tomorrow.

PCC Lorne Green will be taking his regular Police Accountability Forum meeting on the road to Broadland and area residents are invited to attend.

The meeting is scheduled for 5pm tomorrow (Tuesday 12 September) at Aylsham Town Hall, Market Place, Aylsham, NR11 6EL. The meeting will be followed by a public question and answer session at 7pm.

Road safety will be a key aspect of the meeting and Lorne has invited members of Community Speed Watch (CSW) and Community Enforcement Officers from Norfolk Constabulary to explain their roles and demonstrate their speed enforcement equipment – including the van.

The meeting will hear there currently are 758 CSW volunteers in the county – an increase of nearly 15% on last year.

“Road safety is a big concern for many of Norfolk’s residents, with excessive speed being one of the Fatal 4 factors which put our road users at risk, which is why I have invested in a number of schemes to tackle speeding on our county’s roads,” said Lorne. “Enforcement of the law, alongside sustained education and awareness, will help keep our county’s roads safer for all who use them, and speed cameras have an important role to play in that. This is an ideal opportunity for members of the community to see first-hand how our committed speeding enforcement teams operate throughout the county.”

The meeting will come just a week after Lorne chaired a special meeting in Cromer dedicated to the police response to recent events in the town and surrounding area.

More than 100 people attended the event and, at the Aylsham meeting, Lorne will be asking Chief Constable Simon Bailey for an update on the review of policing in the Cromer area over the weekend of August 18-20.

Other matters to be discussed will include policing performance in the district and an update on rural crime including the introduction of 24 members of the Special Constabulary to the Constabulary’s Rural Crime Force.

The meeting will then be followed by an opportunity for people to put their policing and crime questions to the PCC and Chief Constable.

Lorne added: “This will be the sixth time we have taken our meetings on tour. We’ve had an excellent cross-section of the community in Dereham, Great Yarmouth, King’s Lynn, Norwich and Cromer and we will be heading to south Norfolk in November. All kinds of questions have been put to the Chief Constable and me on issues which clearly matter to local people.

“When I became Police and Crime Commissioner my pledge was to be visible, accessible and accountable and that is exactly what I continue to be. I look forward to speaking with a good number of people at the meeting in Aylsham next week.”