EDitorial ± 12-Aug-2002

Mr Whiplash

Amid the ever-growing pile of spam (debt consolidation! static on your mobile? breast enlargement!), a couple of intriguing emails arrived recently on the same subject: good old 16th century Freston Tower. One from a lady in Devon - hi Helen! - who may be a descendant of Thomas Gooding, who quite possibly built the Tower way back when. Number two was from the local FM station:
We here at BBC Radio Suffolk are running a daily series called Secret Suffolk and were hoping to include Freston Tower as one of the items...I wonder if you are able to help us.

'Course, I gave them a ring, and explained that (a) it belongs to the Landmark Trust, not me, and (b) personal interest stems from my middle name. Fortunately some people from the Trust were due for a visit to the Tower on Monday 12th August - today! - and Radio Suffolk were good enough to invite me along (stick with it since events take a dramatic turn soon).

Being powered by pushbike, I'd wangled a lift with the lady from Radio Suffolk, so off we drove to rendezvous with the Trust at 2pm. Out under the Orwell Bridge, clear skies, up the hill and into the village. Then, as we turned into the track on the left hand side: whack from behind! Barely had time to take this in before our increased forward momentum was brought to a rapid halt by a metal gate post. Thank goodness for seat belts.

And they say local radio isn't remotely exciting or dangerous

We walked away unscathed, as did the driver of the Co-op delivery lorry who'd rear-ended us, as did the lad desperately trying & failing to stop his little black Mini going into the back of the lorry. Poor lad had to call out his dad from the next village, who arrived as various insurance details were being swapped. Oops all round. Tomorrow lunchtime, might try a quiet cuppa coffee in town instead.

Be seeing you!


EDitorial ± 6-Aug-2002

By The Sea, By The Sea

Sunday storms & showers so hit the Scenic in search of wholesome indoor family fun armed with a kids-go-free voucher for Sea Life. Heading to the coast, we'd all changed into chilly-by-the-sea clothes, as you do. Of course, when the Broomwagon rolled into Great Yarmouth an hour and a bit later, it was cloud-free and piping hot. So it goes.

Sea Life has something for everyone: the bay of rays, curious fish fellas who happily surface to eye the visitors; the walk through think tank, where the sharks swim overhead; and (new for 2002) the lair of the octopus, who managed to scare at least two of the kids, heh heh.

But a resort like Yarmouth isn't about being educated and informed, no sirree bob. As generations have done before, we dutifully sashayed around the time-warped model village of Merrivale licking our 99s (the boy dropped his, being much more excited about the non-stop model train) before strolling along to the pleasure beach.

Just a coupla kids enjoying the rides on the pleasure beach   Sampled some doughnuts - you have to - but still preferred the ones down at Felixstowe

Early evening and the beach looked very inviting   TXWho?

That rollercoaster's still there, the one that I went on just the once with my brother and dad thinking this can't be all bad, then turned green once we'd zoomed down the first incline. But the old water chute, which I'm sure was featured in an episode of The Prisoner once, has disappeared. Had to tear the wife away from the fairground game where you roll the balls down the holes to make the horses move though, to her credit, she did win a race.

Final high point was finding the old bumpy snail ride still in action at the other end of the prom. I would think that spares for this are becoming mighty hard to find by now, so get there while you can. Thumbs aloft for Great Yarmouth!

Be seeing you!