Before alerting Heacham residents to the latest threat to their quality of life, here is a newsflash from Hunstanton Heritage Centre.
Thanks to the efforts of John Smith and Tony Armstrong, instead opening from 1pm to 5pm every Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from now until July 28, the Heritage Centre at 15 The Green will be open all week.
On Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays it will be open from 10am to 4pm and on Wednesdays from 1pm to 4pm. This week the theme is Hunstanton shops and businesses – past and present. Next week the focus will be on Hunstanton from 1950 to 1980. The following week it will be on the visit of the Lovat Scouts in 1915. The theme for the last week in July will be WWI advertising and John’s extensive postcard archive.
From 10am to 4pm on Monday August 1 the Heritage centre will be the venue for another of Sue Burge’s friendly and informal one-day courses. The theme will be ‘Memoir Writing’ for all levels of experience. The fee is £30. For more details visit: www.sueburge.uk. To book a place on the course: email@example.com or phone 01553 692798.
n According to a letter received last Thursday from community and environmental services at Norfolk County Council, August 1 will be significant for the village of Heacham because on this day, or shortly afterwards, work will begin on a new roundabout at the existing junction of Hunstanton Road and the A149.
If this news is not bad enough, the severe disruption to traffic flow during construction will continue until approximately March 31, 2017. This is not the worst of it, because for the duration of the road works Hunstanton Road will be closed at its junction with the A149. There will be no vehicular access to the A149 from Hunstanton Road and a signed diversion route will direct traffic to Lynn Road via the Tesco junction, before joining the A149 at the Lavender corner traffic lights.
Buses will be diverted and the bus stops adjacent to Heacham Manor will be relocated to the A149 at its junction with Manor Road.
It seems doubtful if the person at County Hall who dreamed up this scheme is aware that Manor Road is little more than a bridleway with no footpaths. This will present a hazard to pedestrians, particularly in the winter months. For those wanting to catch a bus to Lynn there will be the added danger of crossing the A149, unless the intention is to install a pedestrian crossing and reduce the speed limit from 60 to 30mph.
This disruption could have been avoided. The initial response to the Hopkins/Searles application for 166 new dwellings on Redgate Hill was to oppose access from Heacham, because all the proposed properties would be located on the Hunstanton side of the parish boundary. Residents on the Manorfields estate were quite right to point out that vehicular access via Harrys Way is not feasible.
Unfortunately, a proposal by Sir Henry Bellingham for a much smaller development accessed via Searles Leisure Resort, was not taken up by Searles.