Review of 2014 in Norfolk and Suffolk: July – December

The helicopter crash scene on farmland at Gillingham in Norfolk which killed four people.Picture: Ja

The helicopter crash scene on farmland at Gillingham in Norfolk which killed four people.Picture: James Bass - Credit: James Bass

In the second part of our review of the year, ROSA MCMAHON profiles what stories got us talking in 2014.

Olympic swimmer Ross Davenport with college student Murad Khan

Olympic swimmer Ross Davenport with college student Murad Khan - Credit: Archant

July

The big story: Amid the balmy summer weather, Anglia's booming tourism industry was revealed on July 31. The rise of the staycation saw thousands more people employed in the sector and coastal towns saw a real boost to their popularity.

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The steam engine, Queen Mary, breaks down on the A11 at the Brandon roundabout after spending the da

The steam engine, Queen Mary, breaks down on the A11 at the Brandon roundabout after spending the day at teh Charles Burrell Museum. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2013

The quirky tale: It could have been a terror crash for 42 youngsters heading to Hunstanton on a school trip. Despite the coach overturning on the A10 at Hilgay, ending up in a ditch, the children escaped without injuries. And to keep their spirits up, they sang 10 Green Bottles in a field nearby.


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Quote of the month: The Archdeacon of Norwich, the Ven Jan McFarlane, on the introduction of women bishops on July 15: 'It's like the cork has come out of the bottle of champagne – it's been in there too long.'

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Rod Emmerson with his Christmas Bubble Car, a 1962 Heinkel Trojan. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Rod Emmerson with his Christmas Bubble Car, a 1962 Heinkel Trojan. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2014

In sport: July was all about the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, with plenty of Norfolk and Suffolk representation on the medal podium.

Dereham shooter Mick Gault won the 18th medal of his career at the age of 60, North Lopham judoka Colin Oates won gold in the under-66kg category and there were squash silver medals for Great Yarmouth-born Laura Masaro and North Walsham-born James Willstrop, while Fakenham bowls player Jamie Chestney won silver in the men's fours.

August

The Duchess of Cambridge at the Norfolk Showground to launch the East Anglia's Children's Hospices t

The Duchess of Cambridge at the Norfolk Showground to launch the East Anglia's Children's Hospices the nook appeal. Cerys Emeerith-Burley, left, 7; presents a posy to the Duchess, with her friend, Caitlyn Chesher-Brazier, 8; both from Queen's Hills Primary School. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2014

The big story: 100 years ago on August 4, 1914 one of the bloodiest wars this country has ever seen began. Costing millions of lives worldwide, the EDP printed a roll of honour to remember the fallen in the region's towns and villages.

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The quirky tale: It was announced that the Duke of Cambridge will take up a pilot's job in the East Anglian Air Ambulance. Queue 'air to the throne' jokes – and pride that a royal will serve our region.

Quote of the month: 'I don't think anyone ever forgets the moment they're told they have cancer. The moment their world stands still. Shock, denial, anger, fear, bewilderment – all these emotions and more rage around' – The Archdeacon of Norwich, the Ven Jan McFarlane on her cancer battle.

In sport: Norfolk CCC brought an end to a mixed season in the Minor Counties Championship, finishing in mid-table in the Unicorns Championship Eastern Division.

September

The big story: Hannah Witheridge, from Hemsby, was killed along with fellow British tourist David Miller, 24, in an attack on Koh Tao island. The brutal attack sent shockwaves around the world.

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The quirky tale: A bird that made its home in a Great Yarmouth supermarket was given a last-minute reprieve after the store had threatened to shoot it. Tesco considered bringing in a marksmen to kill the wagtail in its Pasteur Road branch, but after public outcry that followed the EDP's reporting of the bird's plight, Tesco changed its decision.

Quote of the month: 'If we can prevent one accident, one family going through what we have been through, then David would not have died in vain' – Branda Holmes after releasing hard-hitting video footage of her son's fatal motorbike crash.

In sport: Swardeston Cricket Club was celebrating as they secured their third successive East Anglian Premier League title.

October

The big story: It emerged that Norfolk was ill-prepared for an Ebola outbreak affecting more than one patient. Officials from Norfolk's three acute hospitals said they had plans in place and front-line staff were prepared if there was an isolated case of Ebola, but some admitted they did not known what would happen if the country's only high level isolation unit was unable to cope with an outbreak of the deadly disease in the UK.

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The quirky tale: It was a roadside recovery more suited to 1914 than 2014 after vintage the Queen Mary, broke down on the side of the A11. Police were forced to partially close one lane of the road while a three-hour recovery took place.

Quote of the month: 'There's nothing for me in Afghanistan. If there was I would go back there. But there are explosions every single day' – East Norfolk Sixth Form student Murad Khan (pictured above) after he was sized by immigration officers

In sport: A remarkable record was brought to an end in the Norwich & District Sunday Football League. After 48 games, two league titles and 180 goals, the unbeaten record of Norman Wanderers was finally brought to an end by a 3-1 loss at Acle Rangers.

November

The big story: The Duchess of Cambridge wowed crowds at the Norfolk Showground as part of the East Anglia's Children's Hospices' Nook appeal. Her effortless style and down-to-earth ways set the £10m project off to a royal start.

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The quirky tale: A secret letter from Lord Admiral Nelson to his mistress Lady Emma Hamilton, sent just a fortnight after the birth of their love child, Horatia, sold for £23,750 at auction.

Quote of the month: 'I don't know who was more excited, me or my three-year-old, when I saw him at the side of the aeroplane' – emotional Sqn Ldr Prendergast, 37, retuning to RAF Marham at the end of the 10-year mission in Afghanistan.

In sport: The Norfolk boxing world was celebrating, as Cromer 28-year-old Liam Walsh won his first British title.

Walsh beat Gary Sykes on points at London's Excel Arena to become the new British super-featherweight champion, to add to his commonwealth title.

December

The big story: The newly dualled A11 was unveiled after years 40 years of planning. It's hoped the £134m nine-mile section of the A11 between Barton Mills in Suffolk and Thetford will open the region up to greater prosperity.

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The quirky tale: A striking red car, topped with an oversized Santa hat, became a familiar sight on Norwich streets over Christmas. The 1962 Heinkel Trojan was decked out by owner 71-year old Rod Emmerson from Thorpe who gave Father Christmas a run for his money.

Quote of the month: 'It's the best feeling in the world and has been the best experience of my life' – Thetford-born Strictly Come Dancing winner, Caroline Flack.

In sport: Norwich United are dominating the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division after losing just one of their last 17 matches, winning all of the other 16.

The Blofield-based Planters are six points clear at the top of the table, have applied for promotion and are hoping 2015 will be their best year yet.

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