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Driver clocked at 100mph by Aylsham speed sign

A driver was clocked at 100mph on Henry Page Road earlier in the year, according to statistics collected by Aylsham’s moveable speed sign.

Aylsham Town Council bought the SAM 2 speed awareness system last summer to raise awareness of speed limits around Aylsham.

The unit is positioned on various roads around town for up to four weeks gathering data and warning drivers if they need to slow down, before it is moved to another spot.

The data includes maximum speeds measured, the volume of traffic, average speed and the percentage of drivers breaking the speed limit.

Some of the most notable statistics are:

  • A staggering 100mph registered on Henry Page Road towards the A140 on February 10 at 4.55pm. The limit is 40mph.
  • Another speeder was registered at 80mph in the other direction on Henry Page Road on January 27 at 1.25am.
  • Someone driving at 55mph in the 20mph limit on Millgate at the bottom of Gas House Hill at noon on April 9. At this same location, Sunday was the worst day in terms of the percentage of drivers going over the limit at nearly 56%.
  • A speed of 75mph recorded on October 26 at 1.50pm in the 30mph limit on Norwich Road, travelling towards town.

The sign has recently been on the Blickling Road going out of town so there will be another set of data produced for that location.

The data collected from the units by the town council is reviewed and passed to local police.

Clerk Sue Lake said: “The town council is recording all the information gathered and forwarding it to the police who can identify any issues and immediately address persistent regular offenders if any are identified. This is only one aspect of speed awareness and the council is still keen to re-establish speedwatch in the town but require the public to volunteer.”

That data can be viewed on the town council website at www.aylsham-tc.gov.uk/sam-2-traffic-analysis.

The speed sensors that have been moving to various location around the town.

 

Paul and Bluebell hit the road again

The fastest milk float in the East will be off on her travels again as Paul Thompson and Bluebell head to Cornwall in aid of Cancer Research.

The Sheringham-based singer/songwriter will be driving the souped-up vehicle all the way to Land’s End, performing gigs along the way on a tour which he hopes will raise £5,000 for the charity.

With a top speed of 19mph, Bluebell is 4/5mph faster than the average milk float – but Paul won’t have his foot down all the way. He expects Bluebell’s Busking Bonanza tour to take most of the summer, at a more sedate 10mph.

“I think it’s going to take about two months to get there because I’m playing lots of gigs on the way,” he said. “I am aiming to do about 30. I called it the Busking Bonanza but it’s mainly not busking. I will be doing some busking, but lots of the gigs will be proper gigs in pubs with gardens or festivals and artisan markets.”

Events lined up already are a classic car festival near Oxford and a session with radio legend Bob Harris for his online TV channel . Paul is also waiting to hear if he has nabbed a coveted spot at Glastonbury. A dream gig which, he said, would be “absolutely brilliant”.

The tour will start with a launch party at the Harnser, in Cley, on June 2 where there will be food from 7pm and music from 8pm. Paul and Bluebell plan to hit the road on June 3 – a poignant anniversary .

“My dad, Terry, passed away from cancer a year ago so I wanted to do something really positive to commemorate him. Having seen what cancer can do to someone I wanted to help the next generation,” he said.

Fitted out with a stage and solar panels to power the gear needed for Paul’s performances, Bluebell has most of the mod cons needed for the journey but Paul hopes to hear from people who can put on a gig, host him for a night or help to keep Bluebell charged up.

He is already grateful for those who contributed £80 towards his challenge as he busked outside Budgens in Holt, courtesy of Bakers and Larners, last Saturday.

Anyone wanting to follow Bluebell’s route can visit www.paulsmusic.co.uk for his blog and keep up with live updates on Facebook and Twitter. Donations can be made at http://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/paulsmusic.

PICTURE: CHRIS TAYLOR PHOTO

 

Search is on for young dancer to star in family show

The search is on for a local performer to join the cast of a laugh-a-minute family show featuring characters created by David Walliams.

The producers of Gangsta Granny, which comes to Norwich Theatre Royal on July 13-15, are looking for someone to play the role of Diane in the show opposite the professional cast.

The successful performer will have a short solo dance in the middle of the show as well as being part of the finale routine. They must be 16 years old in August this year but be able to play a character who is 11-12 years old.

The successful dancer will get a video link to learn the routine. They will not need to rehearse with the cast but will need to commit to each performance of the show in Norwich.

To apply for the role, just email gangstagranny@birminghamstage.com and the production team will get back with more information.

Alison Fitzjohn, of Birmingham Stage Company which is producing the show, said: “It is a fun role to play. It will also be great for an up-and-coming dancer to have a show like this on their CV. Gangsta Granny is creating a buzz around the country and audiences are loving the chance to see this favourite book brought to life.”

The show itself tells the story of Ben who usually spends Friday evening with Granny eating cabbage soup, cabbage pie and cabbage cake. But his weekly visit gets much exciting when Granny reveals a secret which sees the pair of them embark on the adventure of a lifetime.

To book, log onto www.theatreroyalnorwich.co.uk or call the box office on 01603 630000

 

It’s all quiet for North Walsham pub plans

Ssshh, there are plans for a new micropub in North Walsham.

The concept for the former taxi office at 2 Market Place shuns all forms of electronic entertainment with the idea to “keep it simple”.

The application to North Norfolk District Council is for a change of use of the empty building to drinking establishment.

The micropub will sell cask ale on gravity from the barrel, also real cider and limited bottled beer, mostly speciality foreign beers, plus serve traditional pub snacks.

There will be no TV, fruit machines or recorded music and as such little noise, other than conversation. The plan is to steer clear of lager and alcopops and also not brew beer on site.

The application sates: “The Market Street Tap will be a throwback to the traditional ale houses of the mid-19th century. It will be a single room micropub with limited space (room for approximately 25-30 people) and limited opening hours.”

The business will be based primarily on three core themes – local cask ales served straight from cask to glass; traditional snacks such as pork pies, scotch eggs, crisps and cheeses sourced from local artisan businesses; conversation between locals and tourists alike.

It is not intended that there will be any structural changes to the property, inside or out, other than hanging pictures on the walls

The application says: “A micropub is a small freehouse which listens to its customers, mainly serves cask ales and promotes the art of conversation.”

The first micropub opened in 2005 in Herne Bay, Kent and since then the concept has gone from strength to strength.

There are currently more than 280 micropubs listed with the Micropub Association and news of further openings continues to buck the recent trend of pub closures.

Get your 60s groove on in Cromer, dudes

The 1960s was full of great music, great clothes and great new ideas, and this year the dudes at North Norfolk District Council and Cromer Pier are inviting you to celebrate the decade in style.

From Mods to mini-skirts, The Beatles to The Beach Boys, flower power to flares, Mini Coopers to mood rings, the 60s were a gas! So why not relive some of that magic at Cromer’s 60s Festival on The Pier and Promenade on St George’s Day, April 23.

Maggie Prior cabinet member for culture, leisure, health and wellbeing at North Norfolk District Council said: “Whether you remember the 60s or want to know what all the fuss was about, Cromer’s 60s Festival is set to capture the flavour, sights and sounds of that era.

“We’re so pleased this community event has attracted such support from groups, entertainers and businesspeople wanting to make the day special. Keep looking at our Facebook and Twitter posts for more confirmed activities and stands. As they used to say in the 60s – be there or be square!”

The festival will be officially opened by TV presenter Helen McDermott and showcase live music and dance, vintage vehicles, screenings of the 1966 World Cup, vintage clothes, Punch and Judy and great food. And in The Pier bar there will even be 1960s happy hours with beer at £1 a pint.

Nigel Pearce, ward member for Suffield Park, Cromer, who has championed and promoted the 60s festival for Cromer, said: “The 1960s is the decade when Britain led the world in music and fashion; that really was a time when we ruled the airwaves. St George’s Day is a time to feel proud and holding this new event on St George’s Day should make us all feel proud of Cromer and the people who make our town and our district so amazing.”

The event will feature:

  • Photographs, film footage and memorabilia
  • Beatles exhibition
  • Vintage mopeds, scooters and motorbikes
  • Live music
  • 1966 World Cup final screenings
  • £1-a-pint happy hours
  • Music and video tribute to the 1960s
  • A display of Gerry Anderson memorabilia featuring Stingray, Thunderbirds, Supercar, Fireball XL 5, Captain Scarlet and more
  • Vintage cars
  • BBC Radio Norfolk’s Wally Webb complete with Lambretta and Parka coat
  • Hog roast
  • Punch and Judy
  • Vintage clothing stalls
  • RNLI Lifeboat exercise, and so much more!

New head for North Walsham school

St Nicholas House Prep School in North Walsham has welcomed a new head to take the school into the future.

Philip Oldroyd has taken over the helm of the independent school and is “looking forward to leading St Nicholas House into its next exciting phase of growth and development”. The appointment comes after headmaster Martin Castle decided to leave his position to enable the school to move forward to the next phase of its life.

Philip lives in Horstead with his wife, Niki and two sons, Dan (17) and Tom (19). The family moved to Norfolk from Sevenoaks, in Kent, six years ago to be closer to Niki’s parents. Philip is a graduate of Leeds University with a BA in PE and business studies and gained his PGCE from the University of Surrey.

His career in education has spanned 28 years, 10 of which as a head eacher. He successfully led Sevenoaks Prep, a co-educational school for children from nursery to Year 8, for seven years and more recently, was headmaster of Langley Prep School. Under his leadership both schools flourished, growing in both numbers and reputation.

Currently, Philip is head of the lower school at Langley, in Loddon, where he has the responsibility for both the pastoral and academic education of the children in Years 6 to 9.

Outside of school, Philip enjoys sports coaching and spectating, having “hung up his boots” a few years ago.  He has coached at both Sevenoaks and North Walsham Rugby Clubs for the past 12 years and cricket for Otford CC until his move to Norfolk.

“I am very excited to be joining such a fantastic school,” he said. “The children clearly benefit from being members of a small community and the family feel of the school is evident Small class sizes allow for more individual attention from well qualified staff who spend quality time with every child.”

There’s a chance to meet the new head at the school’s open day on Saturday, March 18.

New website to support care recruitment campaign

Norfolk County Council has launched a new website to support its Social Care Recruitment Campaign.
The purpose of the campaign is to encourage more people to work in social care across Norfolk by creating a central digital platform. The new website: www.norfolkcarecareers.co.uk will share stories and experiences from people working in the sector, answer any questions potential candidates may have and promote the opportunities available in Norfolk.

Norfolk has seen a growth in population, and with people living longer and those with disabilities more likely to survive to an older age, there is a bigger demand in homecare services.

To spread the word about how rewarding a career in caring can be, Norfolk County Council’s Recruitment and Retention Project Lead for the campaign, has teamed up with local care providers throughout Norfolk to promote working in the sector. Events will be taking place throughout March – details are posted on the new website: www.norfolkcarecareers.co.uk and on the campaign’s Twitter feed @NorfolkCareJobs and Facebook page, Norfolk Care Jobs.

Sarah Thompson, who runs Extra Care Home Services in North Walsham, is giving her full support to the campaign. “We have recently celebrated 10 years in delivering home care and it is becoming increasingly difficult to recruit people into the sector and I want to show people how rewarding a career in care can be,” she said.

Sarah nominated her deputy manager, Alex Marks (pictured), 20, for an award at the Norfolk Care Awards as she saw her potential. “Alex has a passion for doing what she does with us, her commitment shines through and her empathy for others.” Alex was the recipient of an award in the Rising Star category.

James Bullion, Norfolk County Council’s executive director of Adult Social Services said: “We must support the social care staff in their daily work, and promote good services. In these days of many negative headlines, promoting positive images of care work will help us to attract more people to fill our vacancies.

“This partnership working approach to develop the Norfolk Care Careers website will help to meet the needs of care recruitment for the challenges ahead.”

Norfolk County Council’s chair of the Adult Social Care Committee Bill Borrett said: “I am delighted that we are finding new ways to tackle recruitment issues in the care sector. The Norfolk Care Careers website is a great opportunity for signposting people to the right information and for advertising vacancies across Norfolk on behalf of our care providers.  I would urge people to visit the site to take advantage of the many events that are taking place across the county this month.”

Davenport’s Magic Kingdom closes

The magic-themed family attraction, Davenport’s Magic Kingdom, in North Walsham, has been closed and placed into voluntary liquidation following a legal dispute.

An ongoing dispute with a former consultant to the business resulted in a legal bill of almost £60,000 and as a result, the business was unable to continue trading and the directors took steps to appoint Jamie Playford of Leading Corporate Recovery as liquidator of the company on 23 February 2017.

The attraction housed the Davenport family’s extensive magic collection of artefacts and memorabilia spanning almost 500 years, as well as providing a fun and interactive space for museum displays, a magic theatre, gift shop and café.

Prior to opening in May 2013, the Davenport family committed over £1m to building the attraction.

In 2015, visitor numbers decreased and operational costs had increased, causing some cash flow difficulties. The business sought a financial rescue package from the director and his family and friends in order to fund ongoing trading.

The business had accumulated creditors of £1.7 million, of which £1.4m was owed to the Davenport family. The closure resulted in two immediate redundancies although other staff had been laid off over recent months.

Fourth-generation magician and current managing director, Roy Davenport, is currently in talks with Mr Playford to produce a rescue package.

Mr Playford said of the closure: “It is always sad to see a local attraction such as this forced into liquidation, however the local community have expressed their support for the Davenport family and so we are hopeful that a rescue package can be formulated over the coming weeks. We are looking at the detail of the proposals and hope to make a decision in the next week or so.”

Mr Davenport added: “Of course it is very unfortunate to have to go through this process. I am grateful to everyone who has supported us in so many ways over the last years. We are putting all our efforts into a possible rescue package and are hopeful that we can save our unique British magic collection and continue to make it accessible to all.”

A flashback to the opening of Davenport’s in 2013