A plea to visit the “not far east” has been so successful that businesses are joining forces for a second big push to attract trade.

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Last autumn, shop owners and other traders got together to launch East Side Cromer - a campaign group designed to encourage people to visit the sometimes forgotten end of the coastal town.

The move had an impact, with businesses reporting increased trade and interest over the festive season and the early weeks of 2012.

Marcus Hickling, the owner of Artyfax, who helped establish East Side Cromer, said traders were keen to build on the early success.

He said: “The campaign worked a treat. More people than we expected came into the shops as a result of what they saw, including in the North Norfolk News.

“We are going to do another leaflet, and almost all of the shops have agreed to get involved. Another couple of businesses have joined in.”

He added: “We had a good summer but autumn was down. But December was up again, so if you judged it strictly by that, then the campaign was a success.

“Obviously we need to maintain it, though. There’s been a few concerns about setting ourselves apart from the rest of Cromer, but that is certainly not what we are about.”

He said Tracey Khalil from Foundations Estate Agents would be co-ordinating an Easter egg hunt, and added that the East Side Cromer Facebook page was gathering interest.

East Side Cromer was launched partly because of the economic downturn and partly because the lack of a public car park at the east end of the town means the shops and other businesses are often missed by visitors.

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