Was the event worthwhile?

Skating week review

Thanks to almost 2000 of you who enjoyed the skating week in North Lodge Park in February, and to over 100 of you who responded to give us feedback,

Was the event worthwhile?

 

Was the event worthwhile?

 

 

 

Over 91% of respondents thought the event was worthwhile

Was the event good value for money?

Was the event good value for money?

No respondents thought the event was too expensive.

Would you pay £15 for a real ice rink?

Would you pay £15 for a real ice rink?

50% of respondents would pay £15 for real ice, most with the caveat that hour long sessions would be needed.

What did you particularly enjoy?

A few of the many comments from you

“Being able to afford to do a lovely activity close by”
“Fun atmosphere. Didn’t need to be an expert. Other family members could watch. Enjoyed tea and cake in the cafe afterwards”
“There was a real buzz of happiness about the place, and in our book that’s success!”
“That my children got to try out ice skating for the first time in a very friendly safe environment and had loads of fun!”
“Seeing the park the focus of Cromer activity”
“It being outside by the sea. Music playing. Everyone being friendly. A different activity to do.”
“The happy atmosphere of all who attended both the participants and the people watching. It captured my boys imagination and his joy at being able to shuffle along with his mum was priceless.”
“Hearing the kids happy and outside and doing something.”
“Fun for young families to try skating, and a great atmosphere within the park.”
“Having fun & lots of laughs.”
“Family time without having to travel to far”
“I loved the fact that the whole event brought people and in particular families out doing an event together and having outdoor fun. it had a real sense of community spirit”
“It was fun for all the family”
“I was there on the rainy day and everyone carried on oblivious to the weather”
“The sound of laughter and people’s smiling faces as they came off the ice.”
“That at last the park was being used for family fun!”
“Family fun.”

Easter Treasure hunt in North Lodge Park

Easter Treasure hunt in North Lodge Park

Easter Treasure hunt in North Lodge ParkThrough the Easter School holidays families can explore North Lodge Park in rhyme

Saturday 1st April to Easter Sunday 16th April inclusive

This Easter, families can explore North Lodge Park with the help of a special Treasure Hunt. Carefully prepared by a trainee Bard, the rhyming couplets will encourage children to look around them and find the answers to the simple clues around the Park. On completion of the Treasure Hunt, the use of the magic word in the cafe will release an Easter Egg for successful children. Come and see what wonders there are in North Lodge Park.

Nominal Entry cost: 50p each

 

2017 Annual Public Meeting

Date for your diary

Don’t forget our annual public meeting is on Wednesday 22nd March at 7.30 in the Community hall on Garden Street. Come and meet other supporters of North Lodge Park and discuss the Park and what you want to see over the coming year.

As a registered charity we’re entering a new phase in the life of the Friends. As well as needing volunteers for the day to day running of the group (and helping in the cafe and gardens) we’re looking for trustees who are specialists in their field – such as fundraisers, planners, and administrators – to help us take the charity forward. If you are interested and would like to give time and expertise to the charity please let us know.

skating review

Skating week review

skating reviewThe weather was kind to us, and even the one wet morning didn’t dampen the spirits.

The Park was buzzing all week with happy families.  A huge thank-you must go out to all of you who helped: the volunteers who helped with the organisation and in the cafe, and to the (almost) 2000 of you who came to see whether you could be the next Torvill or Dean.

Thanks to over 100 of you who completed the survey; you can see the results in the news.

Synthetic Ice Rink in Cromer

Get your skates on .. synthetic Ice Rink in Cromer

Synthetic Ice Rink in CromerAre you a budding Torvill or Dean? Get your skates on and come down to North Lodge Park in Cromer. For one week only skate your way into Spring!  February half-term 2017 brings you a chance to try ice skating in Cromer. If you like skating but hate getting wet, or you want the chance to try out ice skating, come along and try this synthetic ice rink.

The rink will be in North Lodge Park from
Tuesday 14th until Saturday 18th February 
open from 10am to 5pm every day (8pm Friday)

There will be 45 minute sessions (£5 per person per session) which will give skaters a full 30 minutes on the rink.  Skates will be provided.

Pre-booking tickets is recommended but tickets will be available on the day

book rink session in cromer

book rink session in cromer

book rink session in cromer

book rink session in cromer

book rink session in cromer

synthetic ice rink - north lodge park cromerThe rink is suitable for people of all ages and is wheelchair friendly.

Children who are not confident on the ice can use ice skating penguin aids.

Make sure you take advantage of this skatetastic facility
and a chance to practise your pirouettes!

Please note there is NO PARKING in North Lodge Park, but there is lots of parking in the Town.  The Park is a short walk from car parking, the railway station, and served by the following buses:

  • Service 5 stops directly outside North Lodge Park and runs from North Walsham via Mundesley to Cromer from the east and from Holt and Sheringham in the west.
  • The X44/X40 service from Norwich/Aylsham and the 6 from Yarmouth/Stalham stop on Norwich Road

Full details from sanderscoaches.com

Thanks to NNDC for their help and support getting this project together.

a new beginning for North Lodge Park

A new beginning?

The end of the beginning

a new beginning for North Lodge ParkAt this morning’s NNDC Development Committee (Thursday 15th December) the planning application for developing part of North Lodge Park to provide a car park and new toilet facilities was refused, by 8 votes to 2, because it contravened several of the council’s core policies.

The decision was rather a surprise for us, but not unwelcome, and we must thank those councillors who spoke out against the proposals, and proved that a strong, evidence based argument is worth putting effort into.

We are pleased that councillors listened to arguments from the community, and think that a small celebration is allowed. It’s only a small celebration, because if the council had engaged with the community before submitting the application we could today be celebrating a bright future for the Park.

So the hard work starts now, to build bridges to avoid this new unexpected twist causing a lull in the future developments for the Park. We believe that if the park is invested in people will be attracted to it with the positive knock-on effect to the economy of the Town

Our ideas for a community trust are well advanced, and we hope to discuss these with NNDC early in the new year. If we can, and we believe we can, create a working proposal we’ll be able to have a proper celebration. We’ll then need your help to make the plans happen. The Park will not run itself and we’ll need many more of you to step up to the tasks.

But this evening it is time to relax, have a small celebratory drink, and lubricate the vocal chords for….

Carols in the Park

There is more reason to sing out at this weekend’s carol singing in the Park (2pm on Saturday) – hope to see many of you there.

Carols in the Park

Parks give life to communities, they create safer neighbourhoods, they provide green spaces in towns and cities, help children learn and promote public health.
What do people think about their local parks?
It’s not just us who are concerned about the future of Parks, and how to make them sustainable while local authorities have their budgets squeezed. In July the House of Commons Community and Local Government Committee launched an inquiry into public parks to examine the impact of reduced local authority budgets on these open spaces and consider quoteconcerns that their existence is under threat.
Over 13,000 people from across the country responded to their survey, supported by over 400 people and groups submitting written evidence. Clive Betts MP, chair of the committee commented: “The responses and comments we received have shown very clearly just how much people care about their parks”. You can see the results of the survey online. The committee has held its last session and will be reporting next year.

There is lots of research about the future of parks in the community, some of it referred to by the inquiry. I’d certainly recommend reading the CABE report Community-led spaces, A guide for local authorities and community groups which you can find on our website. There are no easy answers, but with some forward positive thinking from the stakeholders, and some hard-work from communities there are workable solutions.

Community Trust
In our 2 surveys we asked for views on the future of North Lodge Park, and whether a Community Trust would be an appropriate option. We received good support for the suggestion from you, and in the background we have been looking into options for this, which are coming together.

In early November we had a meeting with the district council and received a positive indication that, providing we could find a workable financial plan and a governance regime that gave a trust managing body sustainability, they would give a proposal for a community trust due consideration.
PF/16/1251
As one of our submissions to the car park determination process we submitted a paper on The Value of North Lodge Park as a Whole which discusses the wider economic value of North Lodge Park. This is an example of how we have tried, without success, to engage in a dialogue with the district council, to discuss the future of the Park and how the proposed car park development could be made more appropriate for the Park.

Unfortunately the district council has been unable/unwilling to discuss any aspect of the proposal with us for fear of compromising the planning process; there has been little acknowledgement at NNDC that any of the points we have made have any merit to them. We are really disappointed (and very frustrated) by this way of working which has left no space for any dialogue to improve the proposals.

Our MP Norman Lamb has offered to chair a meeting with the community and NNDC to review the process. Meanwhile, we have to raise our concerns as far as we can within the planning process.The problem is that, without any dialogue nor recognition that the proposals could be improved, we had to object to the proposal.

carparkspaceThe image is taken from the submitted plans and, yes, if all the bays are filled the only way out of your car will be through the roof. The result of small spaces, and other design faults, will be confusion and less cars parked as they juggle for enough space. Every-time we look at the proposals more issues appear – it would be funny if it wasn’t such a serious issue.

It remains our belief that there is a real risk that the proposed designs will lead to the creation of a car park that is inappropriate, dangerous to users, particularly children, and unsuitable for the disabled. We summarised our concerns to the development committee this week, we have also submitted concerns to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee to ask them to review whether the application has followed due process.

The planning officer, Mr Watson, in his report for the Development Committee (who meet next Thursday, 15th December, to review the application) has produced 19 pages on the application, missing some key points, and recommending 14 significant conditions (including revised plans and details, confirming the submitted plans aren’t appropriate!) including many of the issues that we have raised that should have been covered by the original application. The conditions show what a poor proposal this is, and will result in such substantial changes the development committee will actually be discussing a proposal that will need to be superseded! Somehow he concludes (probably with his fingers crossed): It is clear that the issues associated with this application are very finely balanced.

thumbsUnfortunately he further concludes that the potential economic benefits to the east end of Cromer (which he admits there is no evidence for), the potential economic benefits arising from the increase in footfall through the Park (which are not defined) and the increased potential for social interactions with increased footfall in the Park sway the argument and he recommends the application is approved. We will be attending the Development Committee and hope to be given the chance to speak to challenge his conclusion.
Christmas in the Café
To give our café volunteers time with their families over the festive period the café will be closed from the end of Thursday 22nd December until Tuesday 3rd January.- with the exception of Boxing Day (10-1 to support the swimmers) and New Year’s Day (midday – 6 to support people coming for the fireworks).

This Saturday (17th) afternoon, from 2pm, come along and join us singing carols in the Park. Last year it really brought Christmas cheer to the Park with all your lovely voices.
Charity
As we announced at the AGM, way back in March, we thought it prudent for the Friends to become a registered charity, and you will recall that we updated our constitution at the time to facilitate the change. Over the last few months we have been working with The Guild in Norwich, and can report that we are now a registered charity (Registered Charity Number 1169907). Apart from now having to report to the Charity Commission, and ensure a clear focus on our objectives, there isn’t much we need to change as we have been managing the association ‘as though it were a charity’ from the outset.

Hope to see many of you either before the festivities really start, or during the break. On behalf of the committee, may I take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and best wishes for the New Year. 2017 here we come!

 

Barry Meadows
Humbug manufacturer

old childrens play area in North Lodge Park

Development Committee Email

To: NNDC Development Committee

PF/16/1251 | Change of use of former tennis court/play area to public car park and toilet facilities

The Friends of North Lodge Park, by nature of our constitution to improve the Park, have a special interest in this application, and want to do all we can, if there is to be a car park created in the Park, to make sure it is an appropriate development.

While, ideally, we would rather not have a car park we understand the financial pressures at NNDC and would accept a car-park if was of a sufficiently high quality and benefited the Park as a whole. However, the plans as submitted do not ensure sufficient quality and will not benefit the Park. There is also a real risk that these designs will lead to the creation of a car park that is inappropriate, dangerous to users, particularly children, and unsuitable for the disabled.

During the 3 months of the planning process we have tried to engage with NNDC, have been willing to discuss and compromise, but have been left frustrated by the lack of space in the planning process for dialogue; there has been little acknowledgement at NNDC that any of the points we have made have any merit to them and so we had to object to the application.

We are writing to you directly because it has not been possible to get a response to our specific concerns and we have no other means of ensuring these points are considered during the planning determination.

It remains our strong belief, that these are questions that should be resolved before the plans are passed, to confirm there is evidence for a public interest justification and to improve the design of the car park and toilet facilities.

1.   Is the design for the car park as proposed optimal, appropriate and safe?
The development of a part of North Lodge Park for non-recreational use is a major change. If the council is minded to make such a change we believe that the development should be the best for the space, appropriate and safe.

  • One key justification for the car park is to improve the economic wellbeing of the east end of Cromer, yet there is no pedestrian access to Overstrand Road to facilitate this. To achieve this objective we would expect to see a pedestrian exit at the Overstrand Road end of the drive for pedestrians.
  • We are pleased that priority has been given to blue badge holders, with a higher number of spaces than standard, yet the proposed (shingle based Bodpave) car park surface is not optimal for wheelchair users. We would expect pedestrian walkways to be a surface optimised for wheelchairs.
  • We are pleased that the proposed toilet facilities include a fully accessible ‘changing places’ facility. The design of the slope for the ramp to the new toilet facilities doesn’t seem to meet national standards (the incline appears too steep, but without any measurements on the plans it is difficult to be certain). We would like to see the measurements to confirm this ramp does conform to national standards.
  • The building being converted into the toilet facilities, built as a bandstand in the 1950s, is a key feature of the heritage of the Park. We would expect the finishing of the conversion to be higher quality than suggested in the proposal.
  • A strict one-way system will operate in the car park, but it is suggested that no signs will be installed other that inserts into the surface, which are not prominent on the shingle based Bodpave surface. We would like to see alternative proposals for visual aids to guide drivers around the proposed one way system in the car park, especially at the entrance.
  • A car park for the Park and beach will be used by families, with park/beach paraphernalia, yet the spaces are packed in with no waiting space nor pedestrian walkways (NNDC recommend pedestrian areas in new car parks, and parking spaces larger than those proposed). We would like to see safety considerations for pedestrians, especially children, in the design of the car park.
  • The proposed car park space sizes are smaller than recommended by NNDC, and – as can be seen on the plans – are not adequate for modern cars. It is more than likely, with drivers parking to enable people to get out of vehicles and to avoid knocks, the markings for the spaces will not be followed resulting in ‘poor’ parking alignment and with many fewer then the suggested 47 cars at peak times. We would like to see more realistic space sizes, perhaps with some family parking spaces, suitable for a modern park/beach based car park. Some short term, free, half hour spaces, as with other town car parks should also be included.
  • There is only one small pedestrian exit point, past the bottom of the ramp to the toilets, opposite the motorcycle parking, past the cycle parking. This exit leads onto the main driveway to North Lodge on a ‘blind corner’ for pedestrians who will be at risk from cars entering the Park. Whilst the size of the pedestrian exit was enlarged after we raised our concerns, we would like to see see it larger still, and safety considerations for pedestrians, especially children, in the design of the pedestrian exit from the car park and into the Park.
  • There is only one pay meter in the design, at the northern end of the car park, with no pedestrian routes to it. A second pay meter was removed after we highlighted its dangerous position (directly where cars entered the car park). Without safe routes for pedestrians we would like to see further consideration of the placement of pay meters.
  • The proposed lighting plan uses low level lights behind where cars park, and higher level lights in the proposed central band of trees. Whilst the proposed lights have low light pollution (according to the manufacturer, there has been no independent lighting assessment published), we don’t think they are an appropriate design for the heritage site and don’t think the illumination be sufficient in a full car park. We would like to see alternate proposals for the car park lighting, and an independent assessment of the proposals.
  • A 6 meter (plus?) wide height restriction barrier is proposed to stop commercial vehicles entering the car park. Whilst we agree with the need to restrict access, we are concerned about the sustainable safety of such a barrier which could become dangerous, and would like to see other options, and a risk assessment of the proposal.

2. Does the proposal meet the requirements of the council’s core policies?
NNDC Core policies exist to maintain the standard of the heritage in the area and to protect open space. Once the recreational space is lost to non-recreational use it is lost. The decision to make such a change needs proper justification, with full disclosure, if core policies are compromised.

  • Following our suggestion, the second revision of the Design and Access statement supporting the application acknowledges that North Lodge Park is a park, in the Cromer Conservation area, is designated as Open Space and is in the curtilage of a grade II listed building (North Lodge). The Council’s adopted Core Strategy Document states: “Applicants for planning permission should be prepared to demonstrate how the provisions of all relevant development plan policies have been taken into account”. In our objection2 to the proposal we listed many of the policies that should be addressed by this planning application. To date, our concerns have not been answered, and there is no published justification in the proposal for not giving due consideration to the council’s policies. We would like the council to justify why the relevant policies have not been addressed.
  • The National Planning Policy Framework is clear: “Applicants will be expected to work closely with those directly affected by their proposals to evolve designs that take account of the views of the community”. No such consultation has taken place; the planning process – with no space for a two way dialogue – is not a consultation. We would expect to see a two way consultation on the proposals with the community.
  • It is acknowledged by NNDC, that Cromer is short of green open space. NNDC Policy CT1 (Open Space Designation) states: “Development [of open space] will not be permitted except where it enhances the open character or recreational use of the land.” With the shortage of recreational space in Cromer, further reduced with the loss of Cabbell Park, we would like the council to publish its justification for the further loss of recreational space in Cromer (North Lodge Park) if this development goes ahead.

3. How can the justifications for the car park be considered material considerations when they are purely hypothetical?

  • It is suggested that the car park would provide a benefit to the East End of Cromer. Every single shop & commercial premises from Jarrolds up to and around the corner of Overstrand Road is currently occupied with a wide variety of shops and services. The same cannot be said for the West End of Cromer where, for example, the old cycle shop adjacent to the main car park has been empty since 2015. The planning submission does not provide any evidence or substantiation how or what difference 27 additional parking spaces would make. Without any evidence or substantiation how can this be a material consideration?
  • It is intimated that a car park could somehow make North Lodge Park a commercially viable asset to an investor. If this is a material consideration to be seriously considered then that investment proposal needs to be established and published before a loss to the Open Space should be permitted. North Lodge Park needs to considered and planned for as a whole, to do otherwise would be irresponsible management of a public asset and against the requirements of NNDC’s core policy on Public Realm. A material consideration cannot be based on pure conjecture and should not be used for the breaking up of a public asset.

4. Is the application a full and accurate representation of the proposal?
At all stages we have been directed to raise our concerns in the planning process, rather than with the officers concerned, where all comments, concerns, issues and suggestions are managed. The planning process relies on full accurate disclosure of all information regarding the application.

  • The original description of the proposal incorrectly described the site as ‘brownfield’ which was removed after we raised our concerns, however the revised proposal, supported by several of the officer comments, continues to refer to the site as ‘vacant’ which it isn’t; we suggest this is a misrepresentation and should be corrected.
  • In addition, the dilapidated state of the existing area is being used as justification for this development, within the proposal and supported by officers, on the basis that it is an improvement. The National Planning Policy Framework states that “…where there has been deliberate neglect, a state of dilapidation should not be taken into account in allowing permission for something that would otherwise be unacceptable…”. There are many other opportunities which would improve the site whilst retaining its recreational use. We suggest that this justification be removed from the application, and it should not influence the determination of the application.
  • The 47 car park spaces proposed, whilst possible on paper, is unlikely to be achieved in reality as modern cars are too large to fit safely in the allocated spaces. If any financial justification has been made on the assumption of 47 cars this would need to be reviewed. We have not seen any financial justification.
  • As indicated above, there is a suggestion in the proposal that the car park may help the “…vitality and viability of the eastern end of the town…”, but there is no evidence for this. There are more empty shops at the west end of Cromer, near the main car parks, than at the east end. The proposal acknowledges that at least 20 on street parking spaces will be lost on Overstrand Road so the actual increase in parking provision is minimal. In addition, it is likely that more on street parking spaces will need to be removed (Cromwell Road and Cliff Avenue) when actual traffic movements for the car park are analysed which could result in an actual loss of parking provision for the east end of Cromer (no traffic analysis has been published).
  • Again, as indicated above, there is a suggestion that the proposal will address “…a wider concern that the town’s North Lodge Park was suffering from declining numbers of visitors…”. We would suggest that the decline in the visitor numbers is caused by lack of investment, and that during the last 18 months the Friends have been bringing life to the Park this significantly increased visitor numbers without a car park.
  • Whilst there is some discussion about access in the proposal, there are no details about how drivers will be directed to and from the proposed car park, and the signage round town to facilitate this. NNDC’s policy CT5 requires planning proposals to be examined to ensure “…the expected nature and volume of traffic generated by the proposal could be accommodated by the existing road network without detriment to the amenity or character of the surrounding area or highway safety…”. If there is to be signage on the Norwich Road directing cars along Cromwell Road to the car park this could have a significant impact on traffic flow around Cromer which needs to be understood before this proposal can be determined.
  • It is standard for such developments to be supported by an independent tree survey, the results of which may influence the design and approach. There has been no tree survey to support this application; after we queried why no tree survey has been undertaken a condition has been added to the application to ensure one is completed before any works commence. Without sight of the tree survey it is not possible to know whether the proposed development is appropriate.
  • Whilst not acknowledged by the application, the planning officer has confirmed that bats are known to fly around the park, yet no independent survey from a licensed operator has been published. A planning officer visited the building with a torch and reported that a bat survey was not required. We don’t think this is independent nor complete. NNDC’s Policy EN9 states “…where there is reason to suspect the presence of protected species applications should be accompanied by a survey assessing their presence and, if present, the proposal must be sensitive to, and make provision for, their needs…”. Without the output from such an independent analysis we do not know the impact of this development on bats and their habitats; any disturbance would be illegal.

Regards

Barry Meadows
Secretary, Friends of North Lodge Park

Goodbye summer, hello autumn

The elephant in the room
The proposed car park planning application continues to take much of our time, time we would rather spend on positive plans. Over the past month we have continued to challenge the NNDC planning process in an attempt to understand why due process isn’t being followed by the planning system and to raise our concerns regarding the design of the proposed car park – the design really isn’t fit for purpose.Since we first raised our concerns NNDC have been cobbling together some un-substantive reports and are adamant they are doing all they have to do to get the permission they seek. What they could never deny is that the application has been rushed together, not been thought through and does not meet best practice.

Bodpave as installed in the NNDC Overflow car park

Bodpave as installed in the NNDC Overflow car park

Let us hope the car park they are intent on building is not of similar poor quality. Have you seen the plastic grid car-park at NNDC’s own offices?

There is still time to comment on the application. The consultation period for the application has been extended to 8th December (to allow for the ‘consolidation’ of comments) and the hope is that when the proposal (finally) gets to the development committee (scheduled for 15th December) sense will prevail and the application will be refused.

NNDC have made it clear that no revenue from the car park will go towards the Park. If you only support the application if revenue monies will go to the Park you need to object to the application – caveats in any comments will not be considered in the process.

You can see details of our design concerns in the news section of our website– there are 19 points of concern, all of which we think need to be addressed before the car park design is suitable.

Life is too short for traffic.
One of our major concerns is the impact of the car park on traffic flow around Cromer, which is difficult at the best of times. The introduction of a new car park on a route where through traffic is discouraged will have a major impact on traffic flow however it is decided to route it (there are no details on this in the application).

Traffic into Cromer from the east, from Norwich and Overstrand, is currently directed down Norwich Road, and discouraged from using Overstrand Road (although we all know many cars ‘jump’ the bus lane into Cromer). We have asked the following questions but not received answers:

  • How will traffic be directed to the car park?
  • How will cars leave the car park?
  • How will cars unable to find a space in the car park be directed to other car parks?
  • How many on street parking spaces will be removed to enable traffic flow to the car park and what is the impact of this on the justification to improve the viability of the east end of Cromer? (The only published justification for the car park is increased parking spaces for the east end of Cromer, but if Overstrand Road, Cromwell Road and Cliff Avenue are all to lose free on street places there will actually be a reduction in total available spaces.)

The Statuary Highways Assessment of the proposal stated that before any works are commenced a full traffic plan is required – we just hope it is produced before the development committee assess the planning application as it is key to the success of the proposal.

It’s not a vacant brownfield site
Incorrectly the planning application calls the old children’s play area a vacant brownfield site (National Planning Policy Framework specifically excludes parks from the definition of Brownfield Land.) and makes no mention of the fact the site is open space, public realm and in a conservation area.

In addition, the dilapidated state of the existing area is being used as justification for this proposal on the basis that it is an improvement (National Planning Policy Framework states that where there has been deliberate neglect, a state of dilapidation should not be taken into account in allowing permission for something that would otherwise be unacceptable) implying that there aren’t any other options that would be an improvement. Both NNDC’s in-house consultees, the conservation officer and the landscape officer, have quoted the state of neglect as part of their account of justification of the car park

What would you prefer to see there, that would be an improvement to how it looks? Examples:

  • A Multi-use games area would be an improvement, and provide a space for teenagers to use
  • dodgems in North Lodge ParkA cycle riding road system for learning to ride and for fun cycle based activities (the old bandstand could be a cycle repair centre)
  • The concrete could be replaced with grass for informal games
  • A crazy golf circuit could be created
  • The old dodgem based cars could be dug out of store
  • The bandstand could be returned to its designed use for concerts or outdoor theatre
  • A roller skating rink (ice skating in the winter?)
  • A wildflower meadow, maybe with a bug hotel, bird feeders, hedgehog house etc to attract wildlife
  • A plant nursery
  • A ‘food for free’ community garden

What ideas do you have?

Play Park
The exhibitions of the Play Park proposals at the end of October went very well with over 250 of you passing through and almost 100 evaluation forms completed. The vast majority of you were really supportive, and you liked some elements in all the proposals. We’re really pleased that Cromer Junior School are also providing feedback on the play elements.

We’ve analysed your comments, and fed the results into our assessment of the proposals. There was no clear choice that matched all the criteria. We have asked 2 of the suppliers to update their proposals to take into account our feedback and have asked for these to be returned by the end of November so that we can submit a planning application this year. Our priorities for the project now are fund-raising and resolving the maintenance/sustainability of the proposed play park.

Crepes and Cakes
Don’t forget the cafe in the Park will be open right through the winter, six days a week (closed Mondays) from 10am to 4pm.

It’s your community cafe so please let us know what you would like to see in the cafe, and how you would like it to develop. The team of volunteers, in the cafe and baking the wonderful cakes, work so hard to keep the cafe open and the quality high. On your behalf I pass on all our thanks to them for their efforts – it would be even better if you popped into thank them yourselves. And why not volunteer yourself? We’re always looking for new helpers to join the team.

Gardens
And the park wouldn’t look so good without the small army of volunteer gardeners who beaver away in all weathers. Again, on your behalf I pass on all our thanks to them for their efforts.

Hope to see you all soon

 

Barry
Elephant Trainer (failed)