At sheringham paper, norfolk uk

@ Sheringham Community Paper - Issue 154 - 1st October 2013

SHERINGHAM & DISTRICT BRANCH OF THE ROYAL BRITISH LEGION

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Editors Comments

As editor of this online paper, I rarely make comment and the only personal things I enter are details about The Royal British Legion, however, this time I am making an exception as I feel very strongly about it.

I had not been back in Sheringham for many weeks when I attended a show at the High School which my daughter was taking part in. I went along with a new acquaintance and thoroughly enjoyed the evening. Some of the kids were excellent, and some not so good, which is the norm. But all had obviously worked very hard to put on a show for us.

On our way out, a lady a little way in front of us fell over. I immediately went to her aid, but the person I was with said, in a very loud voice, “Leave her, she’s p****d”, and made no attempt to assist. Because my observation of her prior to the fall had been that she was dragging one leg and walking with an uneven gait, I had already decided that she had some form of disability. The lady in question had not had anything to drink, indeed, she suffered from MS.

We can walk side-by-side with people and ‘see’ the same thing, but individual perception of the event or occasion will invariably differ. Our experiences in life make us look at things in a different way, colour things differently.

Some people put much time and effort into organising events for the enjoyment of others; some feel that everything is about them and that organisers should ensure that such events benefit them in some way.

As is the case with Sheringham Carnival. In my last issue I printed a letter from a person whose name I have on file, but who signed the email ‘Dismayed’. This person was unhappy with several things during Carnival Week, but of those listed even I know or can guess the answers.

No closure of Station Road? At a guess this would be because the local traders did not want it shut – this was certainly the case for the 4 – 5 years I served on the committee.

Local Traders not being told what is going on. Consultation always took place with the Chamber of Commerce and I expect it still does.

Rescheduling of Carnival Procession. You never know until you try if something will work or not – this was a better time for those of us who work for a living as it meant that we could get home and changed, find somewhere to park and see the parade – for others it was too late, children were tired and it was getting dark. (Have you ever taken part in the Cromer Parade?)

I have taken part in many Carnival Parades, from large floats to small walking groups and I expect that many people assumed from my shenanigans that I had had a few sherberts before, during and after! However, I do not drink alcohol, ever, but I can make an idiot of myself and get into the Carnival mood without it! – Again, perception.

The one comment that really hit home for me personally was the paragraph beginning: ‘So come on people of Sheringham’, if the writer of the letter were to take the advice it gives, then I expect that the next year’s committee will have an extra person helping out.

To go back to the beginning of this editorial and the said High School show. . ‘Some of the kids were excellent, especially my daughter, and some not so good, which is the norm’ – perception!

To finish I would personally like to say to all the Carnival Committee, helpers, float makers, fancy dressers, barricade builders, street cleaners, indeed EVERYONE who was involved in any way – Thank you to you all and roll on 2014.

Below are just some of the emails I received as a response to the said letter:

Readers Email 1

In reply to your `Dismayed` shopkeeper, I think it is only fair to respond in support of the carnival committee.

I too have a shop in town. I have been associated with the carnival for 20 odd years, and although I don't take an active part in organising the event any more I still try to do my bit.

Several shops in and around the Station Rd, Church St area are totally anti street closures, whatever the reason. They say it is detrimental to trade. Every year they complain if the streets are shut. That is why Station Rd. wasn't closed. If Station Rd isn't closed obviously no events can take place there, everything has to be done where the streets are shut. i.e. around the bottom end of the High Street/ Lifeboat Plain area.

The carnival committee works extremely hard to promote the town and fill it with visitors. You can count the number of traders in town (who reap the benefits) actually involved in the organisation of the event on 1 hand, Come on dismayed, front up, join the committee.

By the way I don't ever remember the parade moving off at 4.30. It has always been about 6.30. To move it back to 7.30 to enable people to get home from work, pick up the kids and bring them into town was a master stroke!

Here's to next years carnival and from this trader a very sincere thank you to Mac and his team for everything you have done.

Readers Email 2

Again you have managed to upset the good people in Sheringham by your editor printing letters which are **** by unnamed person (not for the first time). Our world is not perfect I work at carnival and also work in town this letter has some good points which will come up in committee which I am not a member but why do you have to print letters from small minded morons who not put there names and I am putting my name to this letter
Yours Graham Trimmer

Readers Email 3

The article from 'Dismayed' in your website, about Sheringham Carnival, has moved me to a reply - I have no connection with the Committee, but feel they must be defended.

Station Road wasn't closed because the businesses along it asked for it to be open if possible. There were no food stalls outside shops because, due to the large number of customers, shops have no spare staff available on Carnival days. Those customers were lured into town by the very committee about which he is complaining. The Carnival Caravan was at various places in the town for about a fortnight before, but had problems finding enough people to staff it - where was 'Dismayed'? Other advertising is expensive, and not always justified by results of extra visitors. Anyone who bought a Carnival programme had all the information in front of them.

The Carnival Procession was timed for later so that business people who had bothered to have floats would not have to let their staff off early to join in. Presumably he didn't bother to have one, so didn't see the point. The High Street was packed, so it didn't seem to put watchers off.

The Mayor was out and about all week, I kept seeing him everywhere. 'Dismayed' perhaps didn't see him because his own business was busy and kept him in his shop. Was he expecting an individual visit to his premises?

It is interesting that 'Dismayed' is not prepared to stand by his views to the extent of revealing his identity - perhaps he is embarrassed by the fact that he takes no part in the drudgery of organizing, whilst he reaps the benefits in his shop; after which he will criticize the results. If he is so concerned, and so expert an organizer, then he should put his efforts where his mouth has been, and offer to help improve the Carnival experience. We live in hope!
Yours sincerely
Brenda Bizzell
 

I think that these responses give you all a sense of the outrage evoked by the letter from 'Dismayed'.