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Grieving parents and mental health campaigners launch fight for services in north Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 19:27 01 December 2018 | UPDATED: 19:57 01 December 2018

(L-R): North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb, Martin Booth from the TUC, and a spokesperson from the Campaign to Save Mental Health Services in Norfolk and Suffolk spoke at a meeting in Cromer. Photo: Jessica Frank-Keyes

(L-R): North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb, Martin Booth from the TUC, and a spokesperson from the Campaign to Save Mental Health Services in Norfolk and Suffolk spoke at a meeting in Cromer. Photo: Jessica Frank-Keyes

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Campaigners, an MP and grieving parents have called for the restoration of mental health services to north Norfolk at a meeting “prompted by a series of desperate tragedies”.

Nyall Brown. Photo: Picture: Mearl BrownNyall Brown. Photo: Picture: Mearl Brown

North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb and members of the Campaign to Save Mental Health Services in Norfolk and Suffolk spoke at a meeting in Cromer on Friday, November 30, to discuss “the crisis in mental health care in north Norfolk and beyond”.

It comes as the region’s mental health trust, the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT), was rated inadequate and placed into special measures for the third time in a CQC report published earlier this week, and follows a number of suicides of young men in north Norfolk.

The parents of 19-year-old Nyall Brown, and 22-year-old Adam Brown, who took their own lives this year were present.

Adam’s father, Shawn Brown, said: “I witnessed my son begging on bended knee to be sectioned.

Adam Brown, who took his own life in June this year, in Cromer. Picture: Brown familyAdam Brown, who took his own life in June this year, in Cromer. Picture: Brown family

“Maybe if I’d been in a better financial position I’d have been able to pay for treatment and my son would still be alive.”

Martin Booth, from the Trade Union Council (TUC) said: “This public meeting is to discuss the crisis in mental health care in north Norfolk and beyond.

“The decision to call this meeting was prompted by a series of desperate tragedies in this area of young people who have taken their own lives in the past year and the glaring lack of mental health support.”

He added: “This has been brought into sharp relief this week by NSFT being put into special measures.

“It’s absolutely scandalous.”

He added: “We’re campaigning for the restoration of services which have been cut in north Norfolk. We want a walk in centre in north Norfolk in Cromer.”

MP Norman Lamb said: “I know there are people here who have experienced tragedies and feel they have been let down by mental health services in our county.”

Mr Lamb called for changes to be made at NSFT and said: “I think the time has come to look at whether we need to split Norfolk and Suffolk and start again.

“I think the staff need a sense of hope. I think this organisation needs a fresh start.”

A spokesperson for the Campaign to Save Mental Health Services said: “We want to launch here in north Norfolk a section of the campaign to save mental health services.”

A silence in memory of those who lost their lives was observed.

The free Samaritans helpline can be accessed by calling 116 123 from anywhere in the UK.

READ MORE: The lives lost in Norfolk and Suffolk’s mental health crisis

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