Sands of time running out for Cromer and Sheringham deck-orators

Summer may still be some way off but there has already been a run on deckchairs along the north Norfolk coast – and time is running out to order yours.

Dozens of people have signed up to sponsor a deckchair as part of this year's Crab and Lobster Festival which will include an arts trail, street theatre, a concert, cookery demonstrations and a finale charity auction.

To date there have been 87 takers who are all going to decorate their chairs to form an arts trail around Cromer and Sheringham throughout the summer season.

The tally includes the Lobster pub in Sheringham and the Cromer Crab Company which are each sponsoring giant deckchairs, standing just over six-feet tall.

Festival secretary Kate Royall hopes numbers will break through the 100 mark and urged anyone else who wants to take part to sign up quickly because the February 16 deadline is next week.

Deckchairs can be sponsored for �60 per ordinary-sized one or �200 for a giant, and they can be decorated in any way, as long as a crab and lobster are included somewhere in the design. Ms Royall said she knew of decorators who were planning to paint, print and even embroider or weave their chair canvas.

Orders so far top those for last year's inaugural festival when models of crabs and lobsters were up for sponsorship, attracting 82 takers.

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The festival long-weekend, from May 20-22, will include a free opening concert in the Cromer Pavilion Theatre, featuring the Cromer Smugglers, Sheringham Shantymen and entertainer Olly Day.

Cookery queen Mary Kemp will host demonstrations and is looking for chefs to join her.

And anyone who would like to take part in the street entertainment, alongside acts including Razz the Clown and Auntie Pearl, and Punch and Judy, is also invited to contact festival organisers.

Deckchairs will be on show through the summer before they are auctioned for charity on August 28.

For more information ring 07796 463507, email or visit

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