Two of King’s Lynn’s most famous landmarks could be forced to close to visitors

Two of Lynn’s most famous landmarks will be forced to close to visitors this summer unless more support can be found, officials have warned.

At present, a team of volunteers open both the South Gate and the Red Mount Chapel to visitors three days a week during the summer season, culminating with September’s Heritage Open Day.

But organisers of the scheme say they have almost 70 empty slots to fill at the two sites over the coming weeks.

If they are not filled, the Red Mount will have to be shut on 15 days and the South Gate on 32 days.

A new leaflet campaign is being launched in a bid to increase volunteer numbers.

But, speaking during Tuesday’s meeting of the borough council’s King’s Lynn area consultative committee, John Collop said he was worried about the impact that could have on the town.

He said: “We put a lot of effort into making King’s Lynn a place to visit. Volunteers give up a lot of time to do this and they must be looked after for the fact they give so much time.

“Once these buildings close on certain days, word gets round and that’s the worst scenario I can see for us.”

The meeting was told that a new website is being created and posters distributed in a bid to attract new recruits.

However, officials also revealed that volunteers at the sites are not included in the council’s Time Credits scheme, which is intended to encourage people to do more in their communities.

Sandra Collop, who was elected as the committee’s new chairman during the meeting, suggested that would be an incentive.

Sarah Moore, the current co-ordinator, said there had previously been a concern about whether volunteers would be able to use any credits they earned by helping out.

But she added: “It’s worth looking at again.”

She also revealed that staff at the town hall would be taking over the management of the sites’ volunteers next month.