Lights! Camera! Action! for Eaton pupils

Sixty Year 6 students from Eaton Primary School hosted a special screening at Cinema City on Wednesday, June 21, that featured a series of the children’s adverts, music videos and short films made in conjunction with City College Norwich’s creative media department.

The 10- and 11-year-olds invited their parents to watch the work that was produced during a week-long project with 30 Level 3 creative media production students from City College Norwich. After a pre-production day at Eaton Primary School, the young pupils spent three days working with the students in the college’s virtual television studio and media editing suites to put together their final projects.

The aim of the project was to give the Eaton Primary School children a taste of media production and to also open their eyes to the opportunities open to them beyond school.

Eaton Primary School pupil Poppy Dawson, 11,said: “We’ve learnt how to use cameras, how to act and how all the technology works. My favourite bit was filming all the different types of shots with the cameras. Our film was about ninjas kidnapping the Queen and I was very excited to see the final product at Cinema City. Having our film shown on the big screen felt really weird because I was the one filming it so it made me feel kind of important.”

City College Norwich media production student Mia Dann, 18, said: “I’ve enjoyed seeing how enthusiastic the children are about the project and it’s been great to see how passionate they are about something that I’m passionate about too. Having our work shown at Cinema City has been really good and it was really nice to actually see our project being played on a bigger screen.”

Cara MacDonald, creative media production lecturer at the college said: “We’ve been doing this project for a few years now and have found that both sets of students get so much out of the experience. The children from Eaton Primary School have been so creative throughout the project and have produced some excellent quality work. I’m really impressed with the work that they have produced and was so proud to see their final edits on the big screen at Cinema City.”



Literary talent at Open Academy festival

Some of the county’s best and most diverse literary talent will visit Open Academy, Norwich, during the sixth Literary Festival running from July 3 to 7.

Events begin with a From the Horses’ Mouth workshop run by The Norwich Writers’ Centre, which will involve students investigating the life of Anna Sewell. On July 4, former scriptwriter of EastEnders, Casualty and Holby City and novelist, Lilie Ferrari, will be taking students through the difficult process of creating an effective book cover.

On July 5, increasingly popular writer Heidi Jo Swain, whose work has just been published in Germany as well as England, will be introducing students to the concept of using their favourite books as a platform for writing and July 6 will see UEA’s Dr Epstein discussing the comic genre with some enthusiastic students.

In addition, members of The Garage in Norwich will be putting a cast of Oompah Loompahs through their paces for their supporting performance in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory which will be performed later in the month.

Not to be limited to purely literary scripts, singer and songwriter Tom Ryder will be performing and discussing the art of songwriting.

Students will also be doing literary battle when they showcase their talents in a Literary Death Match, a Director’s Challenge and a Slam Poetry Competition to be held in school during the week.

“The aim of the week is to help students develop their own literary skills,” said Angela Taylor, Head of EPAC Faculty at Open Academy.

Min’s going bald for change

Domestic Abuse campaigner Min Grob is facing a close shave to help a charity for those affected by  domestic abuse in Norfolk and Waveney.

“You know that song ‘I want to wash that man right out of my hair’? Well I want to cut him out.

“It’s taken some time to get up the courage to do it but now is the right time,” she said. “You always know when something has happened because people change their hair… well I was 50 this year and I wanted to go into the second half of my life unencumbered –  and that includes hair!”

She will be losing her long, dark hair at Leeway’s domestic violence conference on July 14 and she hopes to raise at least £2000.

“They have had a 27 per cent increase in demand, but not the corresponding funding,” said Min, founder of Conference on Coercive Control.

She is already making plans for her new hair, when it grows back but for now she plans a summer “swathed in scarves, maybe a panama” with a collection of bobble hats for the colder winter months.

Anyone who wants to sponsor Min should visit:

Public consultation over Paston merger

Paston Sixth Form College in North Walsham is launching a public consultation to seek views from members of the community on plans for a proposed merger with City College Norwich.

The two colleges have been in talks to work together since the start of the year, as part of the Area Review of Post-16 Education in Norfolk and Suffolk led by the FE Commissioner, Richard Atkins.  Due to the success of these discussions, and following a recommendation from the Area Review, there is now a proposal that the colleges merge by December 2017 and a formal consultation about that  plan is being announced today.

The consultation invites students, parents, staff, local employers and the wider community to express their views on the proposals which aim to expand the choice of post-16 education options in North East Norfolk.

Overall, the plans will result in the creation of a “resilient and financially sustainable organisation that will widen the educational offer for existing and prospective students, employers and the community in North East Norfolk”. The merger will also “ensure a skilled future workforce for the local area”.

The final decision  will rest with the governing  bodies of each college.

Kevin Grieve, principal of Paston Sixth Form College, said: “This is all about growth. By becoming one institution, we want to work together to become an even stronger educational force than we currently are. We have a proud history and we are determined to build on this history by joining with City College Norwich.”

Corrienne Peasgood, principal of City College Norwich said: “We are very excited about the proposal and are looking forward to hearing what members of the local community think of our plans. Both institutions have a strong history and it is our aim to maintain, develop and celebrate their individual strengths and specialisms following the merger.”

A document setting out the full proposal and the consultation arrangements (with details of how to make your views known) is available at: or on request via email ( It can also be obtained from FOUR Agency, Hill House, 20 Hill House Road, Norwich NR1 4BE.

The principals from both institutions will be available at Paston Sixth Form College to discuss the merger with members of the public 1-6pm on Thursday, June 22, Friday, June 23 and Monday, June 26.   Please report to the college’s reception at the Griffons site in North Walsham.

Replies to the consultation need to be received by midnight on Saturday, July 22. Both colleges will consider all responses received by that date and will publish a summary of the consultation and its outcomes by September 23 (to be available at

Kevin Grieve and Corrienne Peasgood.

A sweet thank you to Sprowston fire crews

A Norwich resident has been delivering cakes to the county’s fire service to say thank you for their dedication to the job.
Linda Cullum lives in Markham Tower, which suffered extensive damage during a blaze in 2011 that was attended by 80 firefighters.
Linda said: “With the Grenfell Tower fire last week, it reminded me what a fantastic job the fire service does and I wanted them to know how much the public appreciate what they do.”
Her gift comes after fire service staff spent the weekend visiting residents of high rise blocks in Norfolk to chat through any concerns about fire safety in light of the London fire.
Linda, who works at Tesco in Drayton, made cakes in the bakery there on Wednesday morning iced with thank you messages, and delivered them to Green Watch crews at Earlham and Sprowston at lunchtime.
Linda’s flat was heavily water damaged in the 2011 fire and she lived in a hotel for 13 weeks.
Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service’s Assistant Chief Fire Officer Les Britzman said: “We appreciate the thought and the show of support for the service from Linda.
“Over the weekend our staff visited 10 high-rise blocks in Norwich and Kings Lynn to provide advice and reassurance around fire safety, following the Grenfell Tower fire. We would remind all Norfolk residents of the importance of regularly testing their smoke alarms.”

Cromer ambulance station open day for children’s charity

Cromer ambulance station open day will return next month to give visitors a unique insight into the work of the emergency services in Norfolk.
Ambulance, fire, police, critical care charities and a host of other organisations will be at the free event, in Middlebrook Way, Cromer, on Sunday, July 2, 10am-3pm.
The open day provides an opportunity for people to find out more about the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST), meet ambulance staff and volunteers, and explore inside an ambulance and rapid response vehicle.
Proceeds will go to Nelson’s Journey, a charity that supports bereaved children in Norfolk.
Daisy the vintage ambulance will be on show as well as Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, Norfolk Police, RNLI, Norfolk Accident Rescue Service, and East Anglian Air Ambulance will also have a stand.
There will also be live music and refreshments and tea and cake stalls.
Organiser Dale Meacham-Roberts, who is a duty locality officer for EEAST, said: “The open day is a great opportunity to welcome the community to the station and get all our partners together to celebrate the work of our emergency services and charities.
“People will get a behind the scenes look at the ambulance service as well as raising money for a very worthy cause.”
For more information about the work of Nelson’s Journey, visit

Aylsham Street Party – Everything you need to know

This Sunday the town will gather once again for a street party in the market place. Here is everything you need to know:

THEME: The theme this year is ‘floral’. Dress to impress!

ROAD CLOSURES: The Market Place, Red Lion Street and Penfold Street will be closed to all traffic.

PARKING: Do not leave your car parked overnight in the market place as organisers will be setting up early. Please walk into town if possible as parking will obviously be limited.

ARRIVAL: Arrival is from 12pm for those who have booked a table. Please do not arrive any earlier. You will be greeted by a scout or cadet who will show you to your reserved table. Tables and chairs will be provided but you will need to provide your own table cloth.

ENTERTAINMENT: There are three acts planned – Gershwin Gang, Hayley Moyses and Agent Orange.

FOOD AND DRINK: It is expected that most people will take their own picnic. However, Coxfords will be having a barbecue and various shops will be open.

The day is expected to finish around 5pm. It is hoped that people will take their rubbish with them and bin bags will be provided.

Have fun and if you take any pictures you’re proud of please send them to no later than 5pm on Tuesday June 13.

Blickling unveils new family-friendly multi-use trail

The National Trust has opened a new all-weather, multi-use trail at Blickling that will give families the opportunity to get active and discover the wider parkland and abundant wildlife that calls it home.

Officially opening on Friday 9 June, the route at Blickling offers a new 4-mile safe off-road path through the beautiful historic park and farmland. The new trail follows existing paths for all but 800m, with a new stretch completing a circular loop that avoids roads. The all-weather surface also means more people can explore the estate whatever the season.

Stuart Banks, Countryside Manager at Blickling, said: “With more families visiting Blickling, it’s important for us to provide a safe place for them to enjoy the wider estate. Cycling is an activity that the whole family can enjoy together and this provides an easy, safe route to get them started.

“It’s a traffic-free environment, and has an all-weather surface that’s suitable for pushchairs and buggies too, so we hope families with younger children will now find it easier to explore the wider estate. It’s also suitable for adapted wheelchair users and we hope to have a mobility scooter available to hire in the coming months.”

The park is Grade II* listed, which meant that very careful consideration had to be given to the material used for the trail’s surface.

National Trust Project Manager, Katherine Mortlock, said: “Carrstone is a local stone that weathers quickly and gives a suitable surface for cyclists, walkers, runners and adapted wheelchair users. The conservation benefits of the path are already being felt and were one of the prime considerations of the project.”

The new trail has enabled Blickling’s countryside team to improve and repair many areas, which had previously been muddy or pot-holed from heavy use, making the park more accessible even in the wettest weather. There was also noticeably less damage during Blickling’s recent bluebell season, with visitors keeping to the well-marked path, protecting these native wildflowers.

The National Trust would like to thank our members, supporters, donors and visitors, without whom projects like this would not be possible. And with the trail starting and finishing at the Muddy Boots Café in the main car park, there’s lots of opportunity for a well-earned treat too.

PICTURE: Antonia Gray