Media storm in King’s Lynn after columnist quits

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A media frenzy has been created after a Lynn News columnist quit over concerns about Lynn.

Diane Lines signed off her Between the Lines column in last Friday’s edition as she felt she could no longer write positively about the town.

She cited vandalism to her car and anti-social behaviour among her reasons for ending the column along with seeing people spit and have sex in public places.

Since then Mrs Lines has appeared on Mail Online, Anglia TV and BBC Radio Norfolk.

Mrs Lines said she has been surprised by the response to her column. She said: “I still stand by what I said about the drunks, spitting and bad behaviour from some of the locals but that doesn’t take away from the fact that Lynn is a beautiful town.

“I have always seen the lovely side of the town but parts have been spoilt. I am not anti-Lynn.”

Leader of West Norfolk Council Nick Daubney said he was disappointed with Mrs Lines’ comments.

He said: “I moved to Lynn in 1981 and the town has improved beyond all recognition. The public and heritage buildings are smarter and the town centre is kept clean.

“It is a beautiful town and statistically one of the safest.

“I guess with any sizable town in any part of the country, not everything is going to be perfect. In the early 1980s I had my car vandalised but it also happened in London and Huddersfield.

“I think we live in a beautiful town in a pleasant part of the country.”

Chairman of Lynn Town Centre partnership and KLFM’s managing director Darren Taylor has also written in response to Mrs Lines.

He wrote to the Lynn News said: “My favourite quote from Ms Lines was in the Daily Mail saying her local park is full of ‘couples having sex’ and I have to agree and say that I too have witnessed this phenomena...but I suspect there is nothing that can be done because the ducks and squirrels simply don’t have anywhere else to go.

“It seems to me that as residents of West Norfolk we have two choices; We either moan and whinge about the world around us or we embrace our area, its friendly people, beautiful buildings, stunning countryside and we work together to make Lynn an even better place to live.”

Chief Insp Dave Buckley said the problems highlighted by Mrs Lines exist everywhere.

He said: “There is always room for improvement with anti-social behaviour but the numbers in Lynn have steadily declined for three years. We believe the situation is improving.

“Lynn doesn’t have a particular problem with criminal damage.

“Norfolk Street has its challenges for policing around violent crime and anti-social behaviour but the numbers are not very big and it is not a massive problem.”

He also said that the police are facing challenges around austerity but the forces is doing everything it can to protect frontline services.

Chief Insp Buckley said: “If a job needs an urgent response, we will always go.

“If it is not urgent and people need to see us we may delay that for a few hours.

“I am always happy to chat to people and show them what we do.”