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Looking back at King’s Lynn rail vandalism, Ethel Tipple School at Fairstead, Farmers Arms vs Swan Street Motors at Knights Hill in 2005

Our weekly Memory Lane column looks back to March 1993 and March 19 - 25 2005...

Victory was sweet – but occasionally messy – for the Farmers Arms in a Lynn sporting challenge against Swan Street Motors in March 1993.

Staff at the Knights Hill pub threw down the gauntlet to the Hardwick garage and battled for top honours in paintball, petanque, darts, tenpin bowling and snooker.

Victory was sweet – but occasionally messy – for the Farmers Arms in a Lynn sporting challenge against Swan Street Motors in March 1993. Photo: MLNF-930340
Victory was sweet – but occasionally messy – for the Farmers Arms in a Lynn sporting challenge against Swan Street Motors in March 1993. Photo: MLNF-930340

The five sporting skirmishes over the space of two months eventually saw the Knights Hill team carry off the engraved trophy, which is held in this picture by Farmers Arms manager Diane Thompson.

David Watts, the pub bar manager, said it was possible a similar challenge could be held in the future for charity.

Lynn’s track record for vandalism and trespass on the railway has seen it named at number two in a league table of shame for East Anglia.

On This Week: March 19 – 25, 2005

Youngsters playing on the tracks, jumping level crossing barriers and trespassing on the lines are worse in Lynn than all bar one of the stations across five counties – with lives being put at risk. Last year a total of 21 incidents were recorded on Lynn’s railway, and out of a total of 226 stations in the region that figure was only topped by Enfield in Greater London.

Railway operators are hitting back with a new campaign to drive home the message that tracks and crossings are not playgrounds.

The Ethel Tipple School at Fairstead, Lynn, will close for one day this week due to strike action planned by local government workers.

The closure of the school, which caters for pupils with special needs, was confirmed by Norfolk County Council, with members of Unison, UCATT, Amicus and T & G members all set to strike over their pensionable age being raised from 50 to 55.

Members are also protesting over the removal of the 85-year rule which allows them to take early retirement if their age and length of service adds up to 85 years or more. Staff at Gaywood Park High School may also be involved.

Ray Harding has been appointed as the new chief executive of West Norfolk Council, the role he has been fulfilling on a temporary basis for the past nine months.

Mr Harding, who joined the authority as a corporate director in 2003, has been acting as chief executive since the former incumbent Geoff Chilton went off on long-term sickness before taking early retirement at the end of last year.

Drivers travelling through Nordelph for the next four days face a 35-mile diversion with the closure of a stretch of the A1122. Wisbech Road in Nordelph will be closed between the Barroway Drove road and the old Nordelph garage from 7.30am to 10pm while the carriageway is resurfaced as part of a £67,000 project.

Just two years after major redundancies, Jaeger has shed yet another five jobs from its Lynn warehouse, with its future in the town hanging in the balance. The clothes retailer has just months left to look for a new home before it is forced to make way for Lynn’s next £5 million DIY store. Jaeger says it is keen to stay in Lynn and is currently in talks about a possible move to the Nar Ouse Regeneration Area (NORA) scheme in South Lynn.

Vanilla Pod, one of Lynn’s best-loved bands, will celebrate its tenth birthday this week by rocking the night away with a party at North Lynn Discovery Centre. After its formation a decade ago Vanilla Pod recorded their first full-length album, Trigger, in 1997 and were soon busy touring the UK as well as playing venues in mainland Europe, Australia and Hong Kong. Despite having done so much, vocalist Rob Bunting said Vanilla Pod could well last another ten years.

Wissington sugar factory is now officially the leading beet processing plant in the world. Processing around 2.4 million tonnes of UK-grown sugar beet every year, British Sugar’s flagship operation is the largest and most efficient of its type. Others in Europe produce more crystal sugar on a daily basis but none process so much sugar beet in a season or produce so much sugar in a year. During the last couple of months the 2004/05 campaign it broke its daily processing record and averaged more than 18,000 tonnes daily.

Sixty more mopeds for loaning to people who need help getting to work in West Norfolk have been provided through a £427,400 Big Lottery Fund grant. Since starting in 1996, the scheme has a total of 200 mopeds throughout rural Norfolk and The Fens. Now based in Dereham, it is the largest project of its kind in the country and recently passed the 1,000 applicants milestone.

Encouraging more schools across the country to join in recycling schemes is the first priority for Downham College student Janneke Dobben as she settles into her new role as Member of Youth Parliament (MYP) for West Norfolk. Janneke is one of only four MYPs representing the whole of Norfolk.

Hundreds of workers at the Kinnerton chocolate factory in Fakenham are celebrating a tasty share of £1million after the sale of the business. Company owner Clive Beecham has accepted a £28 million bid for the business and said he was keen that workers should also get a generous cut.

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