Wensum, by Jim Harding, March 3, 2015

David Cameron, Chief Exec Officer Indro Mukerjee and  Dr James Harding at Cambridge Science Park electronics company FlexEnable ANL-150227-111607001
David Cameron, Chief Exec Officer Indro Mukerjee and Dr James Harding at Cambridge Science Park electronics company FlexEnable ANL-150227-111607001
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I’m sure their plans were not coordinated but just last week two major building projects got under way here at the same time.

As I observed the massive bits of machinery moving both soil and tarmac at opposite ends of the town it really did seem as if the last vestiges of winter had gone and the way was now clear to get on with proposals envisaged many months ago.

First to catch my eye when walking beside the river near Aldiss Park was the digging out and levelling of land just south of the Kinnerton chocolate factory.

A massive dirt bank had accumulated and it was a strange sight to see one of the workers on top of it, his helmeted head virtually parallel with the top of the building behind.

Anyway, this is the first stage towards constructing a 2,700 square metre extension to the factory which will enable the company to bring all its workforce under one roof.

Those working out of town at South Creake will be transferred and the whole operation will become much more streamlined.

The extra space will also help to accommodate the temporary employees taken on during especially busy periods prior to Christmas and Easter.

Closer to the town centre, the diggers have been busy clearing the former Peugeot dealership yard on Norwich Road to make way for a new Aldi supermarket.

Thanks to the weather, this has got going early and there must be hopes that the store will be up and running come late summer or early autumn.

According to the management team which spoke to the town council last September, 40 jobs will be created and around 80 parking spaces made available.

The last I heard, a waiting time of one-and-a-half hours would be applied so that shoppers could nip into town as well if they so wished. What effect such a popular outlet will have on other small shops nearby remains to be seen.

In the short term, these two big schemes are bound to create their fair share of disruption. Particularly on the busy Norwich Road, I reckon.

n The Prime Minister’s whistle-stop tour of the region was rightly given extensive coverage by the Lynn News when he visited RAF Marham and announced an investment package for the base worth more than £300 million.

But in searching for a more personal angle on the tour to include in this column, I never expected it to involve our eldest son James. After leaving Marham, Mr Cameron had flown on to the Cambridge Science Park for a guided tour of electronics company FlexEnable where the boy currently works as a system design manager.

They had been advised the previous day that there might be a ‘ministerial visit’ but only heard it was to be the P.M. an hour prior to his arrival.

James, who ‘graduated’ through all the schools in Fakenham before obtaining his PhD in Physics from Imperial College, has been leading a project on the manufacture of flexible liquid crystal display screens at FlexEnable and was invited to talk the Prime Minister through their potential value both at home and around the world.

When I asked him how he had enjoyed the whole experience he replied that he’d loved it and reckoned it had been great fun to share some of his expertise with Mr Cameron.

Certainly much better than your average day at the office.