Joy at plans to bring Yarmouth’s Waterways back to former glory

Waterways regeneration project, Great Yarmouth

Waterways regeneration project, Great Yarmouth - Credit: Archant

Proposals to bring Great Yarmouth's unique Waterways back to its former glory have been met with euphoria by local residents.

Couple of local residents filling out questionnaires giving their thoughts on the Waterways Proposal

Couple of local residents filling out questionnaires giving their thoughts on the Waterways Proposals - Credit: Archant

While yesterday's main consultation was postponed due to high winds, smaller versions of the site's plans were put up at nearby cafes for people to view.

The £1.3m restoration scheme would see timber pedalos and rowing boats brought back to the boating lake.

It also features a small cafe installed on the island, exuberant planting and pergola walkways.

Marita Bagley, from Great Yarmouth, said: 'It is something I think a lot of people have wanted to see go ahead for a long time. In particular I am very happy about the new planting.

Local residents viewing Waterways plans put up at the Beach Hut on North Drive, Great Yarmouth

Local residents viewing Waterways plans put up at the Beach Hut on North Drive, Great Yarmouth - Credit: Archant


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'It should bring back a bit of colour back to the area and make it more attractive for the visitor.'

Dean Maddock, 54, from Gorleston, said: 'I think the plans should make the Waterways unique again.

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'Bringing back the boating lake will bring a lot of people to the Waterways and without some of these features the Waterways lack that special quality.'

The plans were put up for viewing yesterday at the Waterways Cafe, the Coffee Shack, Munchies and the Beach Hut on the north side of the seafront.

Sandra Coker, owner of the Beach Hut, said should the proposals go through it would also benefit businesses such as hers. She said: 'I think it will bring more people over to this side of the seafront.

'It would be great; on one side you would have all of the arcades, the pier and the attractions over there, and here you would have the more peaceful and quaint side of the seafront. The plans would really brighten the place up.'

Great Yarmouth Borough Council assistant conservation officer Charlotte Paddock met some of the residents who viewed the plans at the Waterways Cafe.

She said: 'Unfortunately we haven't had as many people as we would have hoped due to the weather conditions.

'However, we have still been able to get some valuable feedback and another consultation event featuring the large plans will go ahead at the Waterways on Saturday, June 11, from 10am to 4pm.'

Within the original boating lake site, there was a herb garden, Japanese garden, lily pond and pergola – all of which are in the plans to be re-instated.

Repairs to the bridges and thatched shelters would also be made.

The plans are being put in place by the site's owner the borough council, which is also working with Great Yarmouth Preservation Trust.

The designs were drawn up following a trawl of documents and original records from the 1920s which reveal a flamboyant garden described as 'beautifully bizarre and wonderfully Yarmouth'.

The Grade II-listed park is said to be 'absolutely unique' and to be held in high affection locally.

The consultation is being used as a chance to show the Heritage Lottery Fund how important the project is.

People can still view the design proposals online and take part in the consultation until July 1 at www.great-yarmouth.gov.uk/have-your-say

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