Family fun proves no tall order for Great Yarmouth’s Merrivale Model Village
- Credit: Nick Butcher
It is a popular annual event that sees the little wonders of a tiny village receive their biggest reception.
And the Merrivale Model Village is also one of big significance for the town it occupies, as it is a symbol of the beginning of the busy summer season.
The iconic tourist attraction, which has stood small in Great Yarmouth since 1961, held its annual preview day at the weekend by welcoming families through its doors at a reduced rate of £2.
There were beautiful blue skies above as mums, dads and children marked Mother's Day with a visit.
Each year the village - which is currently up for sale - unveils a new addition to the ever-growing Merrivale, with this year being no different. The addition of an 8ft fibreglass rocket ship was well-received by the families who came along to the event, which saw a constant stream of visitors throughout the day.
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Peter Williamson, owner of Merrivale Model Village, said: 'Preview day is normally the busiest day of the year.
'It is also one of the most nerve-racking days of the year but everything was just tickety-boo.
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'The idea for the rocket began in September last year and building work continued right up to the 11th hour - the finishing touches only went on last week.
'People have been blown away by the sheer scale of it.'
Another new addition this year is a car showroom - complete with a bikini-clad Merrivalian on the bonnet of one of the cars, which Mr Williamson said was 'a little nod to the past'.
Even Percy the Green Engine coming off the tracks could not derail the afternoon, making for a successful first weekend of the season for the attraction.
With Mr Williamson preparing for retirement the village is currently up for sale, with a suitable buyer yet to be identified.
The owner added: 'We did think we had another owner, but unfortunately they decided to pull out because they were buying something better.
'There has still been loads of interest and it is still very much on the market - so you never know, there may be a new Lord and Lady Merrivale in Mervale very soon.'
The attraction is also looking to name its charity of the year - which will receive any coins thrown into water features at the village. Charities wishing to be considered must send applications in writing to the village.