Funds disaster’ as sea fayre cancelled

East Anglia's tourist industry has been dealt another blow after the second major event in as many months was cancelled. Lowestoft's Sea Fayre draws on the town's historical roots in the fishing industry, attracting thousands of people for the two-day event every year.

East Anglia's tourist industry has been dealt another blow after the second major event in as many months was cancelled.

Lowestoft's Sea Fayre draws on the town's historical roots in the fishing industry, attracting thousands of people for the two-day event every year.

But last night, due to complications with the fayre's existing venue in Waveney docks, organisers said they had been forced to cancel this year's show.

The news comes just weeks after the town's annual boat show was cancelled because nobody could be found to run it following the retirement of the show's organiser, Graham Kinnersley.

Martyn Spore, chairman of the sea fayre's organising committee, described the cancellation as “disastrous news” for both the

town and the Royal National Mission to Deep Sea Fishermen as it is one

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of the charity's main fundraising events.

He said: “In the last six years alone the event has raised over £75,000 for the fishermen's mission, so it is essential that we raise funds locally to help the local port missioner carry out his work effectively.

“To this end the committee is determined to find alternative means of raising in excess of £12,000 in 2007, which is the minimum requirement for the local mission,” he said.

He added: “We have recently been informed by Associated British

Ports that the majority of the

fish market normally utilised for the sea fayre has been let to a local company for storage so we will not

be able to use this area for the 2007 event.

“We are indebted to ABP and the fish market users for many years in allowing us to use this area for the annual event, and while we are disappointed we fully understand their business requirement for letting this area.”

Tim Jenkins, port missioner, said: “The sea fayre raises up to £14,000 a year for us, so its cancellation is a concern.

“But I know the sea fayre committee is trying to put on some other events to raise this money, so we are just hoping the people of Lowestoft continue to support the mission in the wonderful way they have done in the past.

“We are just grateful to ABP for letting us use the dock for so many years.”

Asa Morrison, Waveney District Council's tourism development and marketing manager, said: “It is unfortunate that the town has lost this sort of event, which appeals to both local people and visitors, and draws on Lowestoft's history.

“We are now hoping that an alternative venue can be found and that we will see the event return in the future.”

Anyone interested in supporting the mission or who has any event or fundraising ideas can contact Mr Spore on 01502 538063 or the fishermen's mission on 01502 565269 or by e-mail at lowestoft@rnmdsf.org.uk