Chance to bid for one of 100-plus baby beach huts in Cromer auction spectacular
More than 100 imaginatively-decorated beach huts will be gathered for all to admire on Cromer seafront next month.
The mini masterpieces are currently gracing north Norfolk shop windows, businesses, hotels, pubs and guest houses as part of the annual Sheringham Crab and Lobster Festival art trail.
But on Sunday, August 28, all 102 will be taken to the promenade and Cromer Pier forecourt for everyone to admire en masse – and possibly to snap one up in a charity auction which will get under way at 2.30pm.
The auction will follow the festival's popular annual World Pier Crabbing Championships, which will take place in the morning.
Meanwhile, visitors can enjoy following the baby beach huts trail around the resorts, and some places in between, until Friday, August 19.
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More than 2,000 hours of work is estimated to have gone into the huts' creation with results including a boathouse complete with slipway and lifeboat, a potting shed filled with flowers, and a fully-operational Moulin Rouge windmill night spot.
Decorators have included artists Dianne Lindsay, Samuel Thomas and Lizzie Riches, together with schools and community groups.
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Charity auctioneer Martyn Fox, whose efforts have helped raise more than £33,000 for local good causes at the festival's previous six auctions, will be wielding the gavel once again.
Festival chairman Tony Shipp said: 'The auction is your chance to bid for your favourite and is the climax to this year's festival which has proved the most popular yet.'
For the first time, people unable to attend the auction will be able to send in a sealed bid to festival organisers in advance.
For more information and to download a sealed bid registration form, visit www.crabandlobsterfestival.co.uk
Famous beach hut owners:
? The Queen and her family occasionally enjoyed using her beach hut on Holkham beach, until it was destroyed by arsonists in 2003.
? Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards bought a hut on the south coast, near Chichester.
? Artist Tracey Emin's battered blue beach hut, called The Last Thing I Said To You Is Don't Leave Me Here, was bought by art collector Charles Saatchi for £75,000 in 2000 and moved from its seafront site. It was destroyed in an art warehouse fire four years later.
? The late crime fiction writer PD James used to draw inspiration for her work while sitting in her beach hut in Southwold, Suffolk.