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Your views on flooding, crime in the King’s Lynn area, health and Liz Truss losing her South West Norfolk seat at the General Election

Here are the letters from the Tuesday Lynn News of July 9, 2024…

It’s time to tackle these worrying questions

On the Thursday a week before Election Day, Fenland and West Norfolk Friends of the Earth gave people the chance to hear Dr Charlie Gardner’s talk ‘Walking in Water’.

In September 2023, wearing a diver’s mask, Charlie walked from Cambridge to Norwich. The aim of the diver’s mask was to raise awareness of flood risk but the 180 mile walk was about much more than awareness raising.

Woven into descriptions of fenland and high tides, Charlie asked questions that need urgent attention.

Pausing at Denver Sluice, where a system of pumps and sluice keeps the sea from returning to the Fens, he asked for how much longer would the drainage system prevent flooding?

On occasions last winter, a combination of heavy rainfall and high tides came close to overwhelming the system.

It’s possible that next time such a combination occurs it will overwhelm the pumps and result in widespread flooding.

The Fens, where land is at sea level or below, has sunk and is still sinking, which makes flooding even more likely.

The ruin of St Peter’s Church (Wiggenhall St Germans) serves as a reminder of what happens to buildings cut off by the sea.

How many buildings in coastal villages will be cut off by sea water?

How long before insurance companies will no longer insure homes? Do householders know this may happen? Are there plans for households vulnerable to flooding to be looked after?

Funding is one reason why not all coastal villages will be able to be protected.

Repairing and strengthening so-called hard defences like the shingle bank, which protects Snettisham and Heacham, has become hugely expensive.

Costs have increased so much that the borough council is unlikely to be able to afford repairs.

Will provision be made for householders before the tide breaches the shingle bank? Will places like Holme that have protection from nature in the form of sand dunes fare better?

People need to know what policy makers are planning. What are the choices? Are there plans to protect some villages? Has it already been decided to abandon some village to the sea?

It’s time for the newly elected MPs to tackle these questions. Heavy rainfall is the new norm. Heavy rainfall combined with a big sea storm could result in flooding not 50 years hence but now. People need to know their options.

Brenda Kent

Fenland and Wet Norfolk Friends of the Earth

Jenny Walker

KLimate Concern

There are far bigger issues to deal with than cannabis

For the second time recently I have seen a story about someone arrested and charged for possession of a small amount of cannabis (Lynn man Chad Cook, last Tuesday’s Lynn News).

Does the Lynn police force not have more important things to deal with?

Our European neighbours Germany have recently decriminalised cannabis, following Holland's longstanding approach.

Around town, it's clear there are far more pressing drug-related issues. Problem drinking, for example, which is actually dangerous to society, and the sale of vapes to minors.

More surprising yet, I noticed Mr Cook was charged in court, having to pay a "victim surcharge" of £26. Could the police and court clarify who the victim here could possibly be?

It seems like excessive policing for a substance that many police forces and most residents rightly turn a blind eye to nowadays, for there are far bigger issues in society to deal with.

Peter Bickerton

via email

What a waste of money and an intrusion of privacy

Before I get into the core of this correspondence I would like to reiterate my appreciation of the medical treatment I received from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and the health care centres from frontline staff in Viewpoint past, but unfortunately I find myself in opposition to the Norfolk and Waveney Integrated Care System.

I received an A4 sized envelope and contents through the letterbox, 11 pages and two envelopes to be precise, quite substantial.

It was a lengthy survey seeking feedback from me, which I found antagonistic, as being in retirement I hoped I had left box ticking exercises behind me in public sector employment.

I weighed the package at the Post Office to find it would have incurred postage stamp costs of £2.90 first class and £2.10 second class. Replicated in large numbers, this squandered money could have been better spent on vital medical equipment in theatres.

It was the questions which made my blood boil.

What do questions about my ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation have to do with my diabetes and osteoarthritis? The assurance of all answers 'in confidence' didn't wash with me as it still constituted Nanny State surveillance to use as a recourse at a later date. My privacy was invaded.

A separate survey form was enclosed for my carer to complete on my healthcare, which I will not do to the kind lady, humiliating her, as the same questions were asked about her private life.

It is good enough for me that she is professional, considerate and compassionate, seeing to all my domestic needs, bless her.

Our intelligence was insulted in a condescending manner when on the surveys two empty sheets read: "This page has been left intentionally blank".

I returned my questionnaire signed but uncompleted to the ticking non-jobsworths at the Trust, echoing their phraseology: "These answer spaces have been left intentionally blank". Touche!

David Fleming


We can spot a fake at 10,000 yards and in poor light too!

Liz Truss has been voted out in South West Norfolk
Liz Truss has been voted out in South West Norfolk

Who wasn't a tad gleeful at the fate of Liz Truss at the hands of her constituents?

After endless warnings from the SW Norfolk electorate and constant moans about her indifference to her chosen bit of Norfolk the Swaffham Conservatives still stuck to their guns and re-selected her as their champion.

I'd guess their confident words have turned to ashes in their mouths and we'd hope they'll now reconsider parachuting Tory Central Office hopefuls into a rural county where we can spot a fake at 10,000 yards in poor light.

Lesson learned I hope. Locals will only take so much contempt and clearly, they'll take a lot of persuading to return to voting for 'the nasty party'.

Steve Mackinder


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