'Stay patient' - Norfolk holiday providers' plea to visitors

Richard Graveling, who owns The Grove hotel in Cromer with his brother, said Saturday's restaurant r

Richard Graveling at The Grove hotel in Cromer.

North Norfolk accommodation providers have pleaded with people to be patient and wait until lockdown restrictions allow them to visit the area again.

It follows a sunny weekend which saw hundreds of people - many from other parts of the country - drawn to the area's beaches and beauty spots. Norfolk police handed out 160 fines and issued 132 warnings to people for lockdown-related breaches on Saturday and Sunday.

Richard Graveling, one of the partners at The Grove hotel and self-catering in Overstrand Road, Cromer, said: "We're having people phone up and trying to book for next week, but they know our hands are tied. 

"Our main message at the moment is just to stay patient. We know it's difficult at the moment because of the roadmap announcement, so people can see the light at the end of the tunnel. But it's important to remember that those restrictions are still there."

Mr Graveling said The Grove's self-catering and glamping sites should reopen on April 12, followed by the hotel and restaurant on May 17.

A few people enjoying the beach at Sea Palling this weekend. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Police were handing out fines to visitors who had broken Covid rules to travel to Sea Palling on the final February weekend. - Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021

Charlotte Norton, who runs Tree Top View self-catering let in Sheringham, repeated the message, saying: "We don't mean it personally, but at the moment we have to abide by the government rules.

"It doesn't matter where you live, people want to get back to their normal life as soon as possible. And if that means 'stay local' for now people should be abiding to that."

Mrs Norton said she was looking forward to a healthy summer season, but was uncertain about how things would be the following winter.

Police were fining people in places including Hunstanton over the weekend. 

Police were fining people in places including Hunstanton over the weekend. - Credit: Chris Bishop

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Timothy Hay, managing director of The Beeston Group, which includes  Mundesley Holiday Village and Beeston Regis Holiday Park, said: "We're really happy with the roadmap and happy to be reopening steadily and gradually. We're advising all of our customers not to turn up before April 12 - we look forward to seeing you, but not just yet."

All three businesses said bookings had been strong and they expected this summer season would be as busy, or busier, than last year. 

Mr Hay added: "The difference is this time we're rolling out the vaccine, which will help businesses bounce back."

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