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NEW! ISSN 2044–7965

All aboard with the crew of Hunstanton Lifeboat...






Here to help you grow: Norfolk Master Gardeners LIFESTYLE





editorial 01553 601201

Eric Secker Charlotte Thorneycroft Dan Scase Ian Ward Alex Dallas David Learner Graham Murray Sue Payne Ann Weaver Christine Glass Karen Reeves Michael Middleton

advertising 01553 601201

Grant Murray Laura Dunn Becky Drew KL magazine cannot accept responsibility for unsolicited submissions, manuscripts and photographs. While every care is taken, prices and details are subject to change and KL magazine takes no responsibility for omissions or errors. We reserve the right to publish and edit any letters. All rights reserved. If you’d like to order prints of any photograph featured in KL magazine, contact us at the address below. Please note this applies only to images taken by our own photographers.

Welcome! Y

ou can’t fail to be amazed at the colours and beauty of our local landscape at this time of year, which is partly why we chose the splendour of Sandringham for this month’s front cover – the other reason being that the Sandringham Game and Country Fair takes place on September 10th-11th. It’s always a great event, packed with variety, and we hope to see you there. This month’s magazine is full of variety too – from a local link to the sinking of the Titanic (page 50) to a local gardening initiative designed to help you start growing your own (page 24). Continuing the nautical theme, we’re taking a look at Hunstanton Lifeboat service (page 12), and featuring the work of local artist Tessa Newcomb (that’s her painting Silver River above, by the way). All that and beekeeping, Wisbech, fishing and a look at the history of St George’s Guildhall in King’s Lynn – enough reading to keep you going until the end of the month! Of course, if you’ve been reading KL magazine from the first edition, you’ll know that next month will be our first birthday issue, and we’re already planning on making it better than ever. Enjoy this month’s magazine – and see you again next month! THE KL TEAM

Contact us at KL magazine, 18 Tuesday Market Place, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE30 1JW TEL: 01553 601201 E-MAIL: KLmagazine September 2011


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Contents 7

WHAT’S ON Forthcoming events in West Norfolk


THE KING’S LYNN CORN EXCHANGE Highlights of the coming season


HUNSTANTON LIFEBOAT Behind the scenes with the local lifesavers


THE BIG INTERVIEW We talk to Palm Paper’s Derek Harman


BEEKEEPING An ancient skill and a growing pastime


GARDENING Grow your own with help from the Masters


PETS Help and advice with local vet Alex Dallas


KING’S LYNN ARTS CENTRE The cultural history behind the Guildhall





34-41 FOOD & DRINK Recipes, reviews and recommendations 42-44 EXPLORER This month we visit Wisbech 50

LOCAL HISTORY A local woman’s link to the Titanic distaster


ARTS PROFILE The work of local artist Tessa Newcomb


HOOK, LINE AND SINKER Meet the King’s Lynn Angling Association


MY KL Readers’ questions and photographs


WILD WEST NORFOLK Michael Middleton’s lighter view of things

KLmagazine September 2011


60 5


September 2011

love film. love luxe. The local cinema experience for serious movie fans

l Jane Eyre l Rise of the Apes l Super 8 l Little White Lies l Conan the Barbarian l Abduction l Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy l Ther Referees l Hangover 2 l Smurfs

As lavish as something from the golden days of Hollywood, The Luxe Cinema is an elegantly stylish film lover’s delight. The Luxe Lounge bar sets the mood for a social drink with friends whilst the cinema itself offers luxurious and spacious leather sofas and armchairs – including a selection of Premier Sofas with waitress service! Allowing moviegoers to sit back and relax in true style, enjoying a glass of wine or a coffee whilst watching a wide programme of mainstream, arthouse and classic films. If you love film, you’ll love Luxe.

The Luxe 01945 588808

Alexandra Road Wisbech Cambridgeshire PE13 1HQ


SEPTEMBER BOX OFFICE: (01603) 63 00 00 Tues 30 Aug - Sat 3 Sept JOSEPH & THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT Favourite family musical £6.50 - £25

Mon 5 - Sat 10 Sept END OF THE RAINBOW Tracie Bennett stars in compelling drama about Judy Garland £6.50 - £24.50

Sun 11 Sept JANE MCDONALD Music, warmth and laughter £6.50 - £29.50 Mon 12 - Sat 17 Sept SEASON'S GREETINGS Glynis Barber, Christopher Timothy head all-star cast in Ayckbourn's hilarious comedy £6.50 - £22 Sun 18 September JIMMY CARR Razor sharp stand-up £6.50 - £25

Mon 19 - Sat 24 Sept THE MADNESS OF GEORGE III David Haig stars in Alan Bennett's vivid drama £5.50 - £22.50 Sun 25 Sept GLENN MILLER ORCHESTRA Nostalgic big band £5.50 - £18.50 Wed 28 Sept PAM AYRES Funny and perceptive poet £5.50 - £19.50 Thurs 29 Sept NUMBERJACKS Children’s TV favourites £5.50 - £12



KLmagazine September 2011

WHAT’S ON 65 YEARS AGO: 5th September 1946 birth of Freddie Mercury, Zanzibar-born singer and songwriter with Queen



FRIDAY 2nd to SUNDAY 4th ART EXHIBITION Royal British Legion Hall, Church Road, Snettisham (10am – 5pm) An exhibition of watercolours, acrylics, pastels and crafts by members on display and for sale. Free admission, donations to the Royal British Legion welcome. For details, call Mike Gaskin on 01485 544721.

SATURDAY 17th & SUNDAY 18th SUNDAY 11th HERITAGE BUILDINGS OPEN DAY King’s Lynn (10am – 4pm) This yearly event is a fantastic opportunity to explore King’s Lynn’s historic buildings. The town’s in for a real treat and, with over 30 places of interest to see during the day, you can expect a bumper day of history and heritage! Call the Tourist Information Centre on 01553 763044 for full details on what’s on and where.

40’s WEEKEND North Norfolk Railway, Sheringham Station (9.30am – 7pm) Step back in time to the sights and sounds of the 1940’s. Dress in your finest uniform or civilian dress to join one of the best events of its type in the country. Refreshments available in the form of wartime rations from the NAAFI (complete with SPAM sandwiches!) and nostalgic music from the 1940s. See for more information or call 01263 820800.

GHOST HUNT Castle Rising Castle (8pm) Join Mystic Worlds for a night of paranormal activity at the historic Castle Rising Castle (soon to be featured in TV’s Ghost Hunters International). Long and short stay options are available, with tickets priced at £40 and £25 respectively. Over 18’s only. For more details contact Mystic Worlds on 07758 485217.

FRIDAY 23rd to SUNDAY 25th SATURDAY 10th & SUNDAY 11th SANDRINGHAM GAME AND COUNTRY FAIR Sandringham (10am – 6pm) A weekend packed with entertainment for all the family with three arena areas featuring falconry displays, daredevil stunts and gun dog demonstrations. Sheepdog and duck displays and family dog shows will keep little ones amused and there are plenty of ‘have-a-go’ opportunities. Plus lots of rural crafts and food displays/demonstrations. Adults £10, Children £4.00 (under 5’s free)

SATURDAY 17th BEACHWATCH EVENT Holkham National Nature Reserve (11am – 3pm) Take part in a beach clean and litter survey and help make a real difference to our amazing marine wildlife. The information collected will be used by the Marine Conservation Society in its campaign and education work to make our local beaches cleaner and safer for people and wildlife. Start from the Lady Anne’s Drive car park entrance to the Reserve – you can help at any time, and it’s free to take part. Equipment provided but bring your own gloves (gardening type) if you have them. Children must be accompanied by an adult. For more details contact Catherine Foreman on 07825 377652

KING’S LYNN POETRY FESTIVAL King’s Lynn Town Hall Now in its 27th year, the Festival returns with big names such as Matthew Sweeney, Wendy Cope (above), Andrea Porter and Imtiaz Dharker. For details see

SUNDAY 25th CHARITY GOLF EVENT Tydd St Giles Golf and Leisure Estate, near Wisbech Teams of four competing in aid of the Alanna Leukemia Fund. Tee off at 10am, and places still available – or just come and support the event. For details, please contact Linda Purdy at

If you’ve got an event to publicise, send the details to KLmagazine September 2011



King’s Lynn Corn Exchange Autumn 2011

Panto auditions - join the ball! Want to be centre stage at this year’s pantomime, Cinderella? We’re looking for talented young dancers (aged 8-18yrs) to be part of the cast of this year’s panto. Jordan Productions will be holding auditions in King’s Lynn on Sunday 18 September. If you’d like to try out, contact to receive a registration form and further details.

ABOVE: The London Community Gospel Choir will be in fine voice (as usual!) when they perform at the Corn Exchange on October 29th

es lined up for the We’ve got some big nam in the pipeline. If autumn and many more ets for a sold-out you’ve missed out on tick in touch with y sta to y show, the best wa w announcements is breaking news and sho . Join us there! via Facebook and Twitter

An autumn of great shows at the Corn Exchange... From comedy to choirs, from opera to rhythm and blues, the autumn season at the Corn Exchange has something for everyone...


here’s no need to be bored this autumn as the King’s Lynn Corn Exchange have just announced their new season and it’s packed with top names, live action and of course the traditional family pantomime – this year the heart-warming Cinderella! Comedy features heavily this season with many top class comedians poised to take the stage. Jimmy Carr (17th September) and Al Murray (17th October) are already sold out. However, there are still tickets


available for Stephen K Amos (1st October) Tony Hawks (28th October) and Ed Byrne (14th November). Live music also offers a wide variety of choices including Blake (30th September), London Community Gospel Choir (29th October) Bill Wyman’s Rhythm Kings (27th October) and Shakin’ Stevens (10th Nov). There’s also a healthy choice of opera, ballet, drama and childrens theatre. For the full listing of what’s on, go to the website at

Just the ticket...

We’ll soon be launching a new online booking system. We’ve been listening to your comments for a while and our new system will enable you to select exactly what seats you want. You’ll be able to check it out at from the middle of this month.

KLmagazine September 2011

Verdi’s La Traviata

For the very first time the Children’s TV favourite Numberjacks comes to the stage. Join the TV superheroes as they leave the sofa and embark on their first live adventure – and help them solve problems as they go! But watch out for the dastardly Spooky Spoon and Numbertaker who’ll do all they can to get in the way... A wonderful introduction to theatre for children of all ages, the Numberjacks Live Show has all the fun, comedy, music and excitement from the TV show, and lots more! You can join in the fun on Sunday 23rd October at 12pm and 3pm

KLmagazine September 2011

Numberjacks LIVE!


Featuring the voice of Stephen Fry as the narrator, DrumChasers is the new percussion spectacular from the creator of international success Noise Ensemble. Ten virtuosic percussionists and dancers take to the stage in an explosion of sound and light with a story of rivalry, romance and rhythm. Powerful and energetic, moving and funny, DrumChasers is a show for all ages, promising an evening quite unlike anything you’ve seen before. DrumChasers tells the story of Mr Bennett, a caretaker in an old concert hall who is transported to the land of the DrumChasers, a land of percussion where forbidden love struggles to be heard against the noise of rival gangs. It’s left to Mr Bennett to settle this ancient dispute and bring peace and finally, quiet. Drum Chasers will be at the King’s Lynn Corn Exchange Sunday 2nd October, 7.30pm

Featuring the internationally-acclaimed Ukrainian Opera of Kharkiv this is the love story that gripped Paris, coming to King’s Lynn for the first time. A tragic tale of searing passion and memorable music, La Traviata is Verdi’s outstanding interpretation of one of the most popular love stories of the 19th century, La Dame aux Camelias. Based on a true story, it tells of the passionate consumptive Violetta. There are many echoes of Verdi’s own life in La Traviata and he threw himself into the music. The highlights include the Brindisi, the best known drinking song in opera, the duet Un Di Felice and Violetta’s haunting aria Addio Del Passato. This magnificent production boasts sumptuous sets and costumes. Sung in Italian with English surtitles. Appearing at the King’s Lynn Corn Exchange Wednesday 5th October, 7.30pm

SEPTEMBER HIGHLIGHTS JACKSON LIVE IN CONCERT Friday 9th September (7:30pm) £17 (£16 concs) ROCK ‘N’ ROLL PARADISE Saturday 10th September (7:30pm) £18.50 (£16.50 concs) WE’LL MEET AGAIN Wednesday 14th September (2:30pm) £12.50( £10.50 concs) Group discounts available BACK FOR GOOD Friday 16th September (7:30pm) £19.50 (£18.50 concs) Under 16s £16.50 LD OUT SOLAUGHTER JIMMY CARR THERAPY Saturday 17th September (7pm and 10pm) AN EVENING WITH ALED JONES Friday 23rd September (7:30pm) £22.50 Group Offer – 1 in 10 goes free! BUBLÉ FEVER Saturday 24th September (7:30pm) £17.50 (£15.50 concs) CORN EXCHANGE COMEDY CLUB Wednesday 28th September Doors open 7:45pm, comedy at 8:45pm £8.50 Adults only! AN EVENING WITH BLAKE Friday 30th September (7:30pm) £25

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Situated on the North Norfolk Coast, Briarfields offers you the perfect setting for your big day – and night. We’ll happily organise and plan every aspect of the event with you (including food and wine choices) so you can enjoy a stress-free and enjoyable time. We have a great portfolio of local contacts who’ll help add all those special touches to your day. Whether it’s a wedding, special birthday or just a very memorable time with friends, Briarfields can seat and cater for 90-150 people sitting down – and up to 300 people for a drinks party. Our meal prices start at just £30 per guest.

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hen it comes to raising money in a fast and efficient way, there’s no better option than the traditional pawnbroking service offered by Blatchford & Mills. Items of gold jewellery or those set with precious stones such as diamonds, rubies or emeralds (which can be graded by our inhouse diamond expert) can be taken in return for cash on a re-purchase agreement. Lasting for 28 days the customer is able to ‘buy back’ their item on full payment of the agreed loan amount (plus interest) or extend the agreement for a further 28 days on payment of the accrued interest. There’s no minimum or maximum amount that can be borrowed (subject to the value of items).


Unlike many other money lending options, the convenient service offered by Blatchford & Mills avoids credit checks (though ID is still required), whilst being quick and discreet with a sensitive approach towards such confidential transactions. Because the Lynn-based jewellers understand that sometimes it’s necessary to access cash in hurry, they also offer full cheque cashing and giro cashing facilities. Rather than waiting for the banking process to complete, cheques can be paid out in cash in just minutes rather than days (subject to ID and checks). Even pre-dated giro cheques can be dealt with swiftly and securely at Blatchford & Mills. Fast cash services from a King’s Lynn business you can trust.

Main Street, Titchwell, Hunstanton Telephone: 01485 210742 E-mail: Web:

SHORT TERM LOANS Cash lent against gold and jewellery – any item considered

3rd PARTY CHEQUES CASHED Best rates in town on 3rd party cheque and Giro cashing: All 3rd party cheques – 4.9% commission All Giros – 10% commission

PAYDAY ADVANCES We will cash your personal cheque and not bank it for 28 days, subject to you having a current cheque guarantee card

CASH PAID FOR GOLD & JEWELLERY Gold and jewellery purchased for cash Written details available on request

Details BLATCHFORD & MILLS 6 Tower Street, King’s Lynn Tel: 01553 661227

KLmagazine September 2011


Diary dates for the big day Wedding fever is in the air. The summer season for tying the knot is winding down and the bride and grooms to be are ready to plan their big day. This month is a busy time for wedding fayres – the perfect place to browse, try and buy all you will need to make your big day even more special... THE MARRIOTT SPROWSTON MANOR WEDDING SHOW Sunday 11th September (10am – 4pm) Sprowston Manor, Wroxham Road, Sprowston, Norwich NR7 8RP Telephone 0845 2301666 In the stately surroundings of the magnificent Sprowston Manor country house hotel, the Wedding Prom & Party Wedding Show has a host of ideas from no less than 80 top quality local businesses. If you’re planning a Norfolk wedding then this is one fayre not to miss. Therell also be hair and make-up demonstrations and much more. CUPIDS AUTUMN WEDDING SHOW Sunday 18th September (10.30am – 4pm) Springfields Exhibition Centre, Spalding. Telephone 07738 912092 Established for 15 years, this wedding show is always popular with over 70 exhibitors on the day. Fashion shows, live hair and beauty demonstrations and a complimentary glossy wedding guide to ensure you leave with all the contacts you need. £4 for adults, children and senior citizens free. THE CRESSET WEDDING SHOW LIVE Sunday 25th September (11am) The Cresset Theatre, Rightwell, Bretton, Peterborough PE3 8DX Telephone 01733 265705 A full exhibition day from gowns and rings to cars and cakes. The Cresset Wedding Show Live aims to showcase everything you need to make sure the wedding of your dreams goes without a hitch. At 12.30pm and 2.30pm you can enjoy the breathtaking professionally-choreographed fashion shows featuring stunning gowns for brides, suits for grooms and outfits for page-boys and bridesmaids. THE NATIONAL WEDDING SHOW Friday 30th September to Sunday 2nd October (10am – 6pm) Earls Court Exhibition Centre, Warwick Road, London SW5 9TA See As the UK’s biggest wedding event, you’re sure to find whatever you’re looking for from the thousands of ideas on show from over 300 exhibitors. A truly unique event, there’ll be shows throughout the weekend including the very glamorous Catwalk Show, How to Look Good Show, Bridal Coaching and How to Look Good Advice Clinic. And the grooms aren’t forgotten, with top tips at The Staggered Ultimate Groom Seminar. Booking is strongly advised visit the website for tickets and further information.

KLmagazine September 2011




KLmagazine September 2011

ABOVE: Hunstanton RNLI’s Spirit of West Norfolk, and some of the local crew (left) that are helping save lives around our local coastline

Meet the local crew that’s a genuine local lifesaver... RNLI Hunstanton Lifeboat Station provides a 24-hour lifeboat search and rescue service, seasonal lifeguard services, and it relies on voluntary contributions. Words: Charlotte Thorneycroft. Photography: Ian Ward


alt marsh, mudflats, miles of beaches and wide open seas... there’s no doubt our varied coastline offers outstanding natural beauty, but it can be a very dangerous place too. So it’s good to know that when disaster strikes, the experienced team of RNLI volunteers at the Hunstanton Lifeboat House in Sea Lane, Old Hunstanton are there to help. Founded in 1924 as the National Institution for the Preservation of Life from Shipwreck, the national organisation was formed in response to an appeal made by Sir William Hillary.

KLmagazine September 2011

From his home in Douglas on the Isle of Man, Hillary had witnessed the wrecking of dozens of ships and even assisted in the rescues of survivors. With royal patronage his plans for a national sea rescue organisation were carried with acclaim and to date the RNLI (the Royal National Lifeboat Institution as it became known in 1854) has saved over 139,000 lives. There’s been a lifeboat house in Hunstanton since 1824 when the Norfolk Shipwreck Association housed their rescue boat (it’s name is unknown) on the site. However, less than 20 years later, the boathouse built by the association had

closed and the only protection against shipwreck and casualty was the coastguard boat. For many years locals campaigned for a lifeboat in Hunstanton and the Board of Trade also put forward the cause to the RNLI. Finally, in 1867 the RNLI station was opened with the financial backing of the Licensed Victuallers of Great Britain (and further help from locals such as Mr Hamon Le Strange and Mr W.C Beely). Named the ‘Licensed Victualler’ after its benefactors (a tradition which continues at Hunstanton today), the lifeboat was soon sent on its first launch to the Swedish


barque ‘Thetis’. Most vessels passing the waters at this time were cargo or fishing boats with only two recorded rescues of pleasure craft by the Hunstanton pulling and sailing lifeboats. In 1920, Hunstanton was chosen as the station to test the first caterpillar tractor for launching lifeboats, a necessary development since it was becoming increasingly difficult to obtain horses necessary for launches. The test was huge success – 20 tractors were ordered and Hunstanton was first on the list to have one. Other significant changes were also underway with the addition of petrol engines to the boats – so drastic was the improvement to the service that the number of stations nationally was dramatically reduced as a result. Hunstanton lifeboat station was closed in 1931, recording 53 service launches and 117 lives saved. But the story didn’t end there. In a 1979 survey carried out by the Search and Rescue Committee of the RNLI it was established that there was now a genuine need for a lifeboat station once again in Hunstanton.

The increase in leisure activities around the coastline as well as commercial shipping using the Wash was a major factor in the decision, as was the time taken to reach inner parts of the waters by boats from the stations at Wells and Skegness. Today, the crews and shore helpers still have to move with the times through constant training on the use of advances in technology to aid their roles as Rod Hicks, Deputy Launching Authority (DLA) for Hunstanton explains. “Most of our volunteers come into their positions with little or no maritime experience,” says Rod, “but even the most experienced crew members have something to learn as new equipment is introduced. Initial intensive training takes place at the specialist RNLI College in Poole, Dorset but the education side never stops – it’s what keeps our causalities and crew safe when the boat launches. ” When the pager goes off the crew immediately drop what they’re doing (whether it’s working, sleeping or shopping!) and head for the station ready for launch. It’s the job of the shore helpers to have the boat (or hovercraft) ready to leave as soon as the crew is on board.

Press Officer Geoff Needham fully appreciates the vital role the people on the ground play in any rescue operation. “Everyone has to work as a team,” says Geoff, “and getting the boat prepared, communicating over the radio and seeing the boat back in are all important to a safe rescue.” Problems at sea can present themselves in a number of ways, and rescues from the Hunstanton station have ranged from offshore aircraft crashes to lost boats in the inland waterways near King’s Lynn. Although some incidents are unavoidable, Geoff believes continued education helps avoid unnecessary risks on the coast. “The RNLI have an excellent education programme for schools,” says Geoff. “We always tell children to stay SAFE. S for spot the dangers, A for always go with a friend or adult, F for find and follow safety signs and flags, and E for emergency – stick up your hand and shout, find a lifeguard or ring 999 or 112. “It’s just as important for adults in their own boats to stay safe too – simple things like carrying a compass and having a means of calling for help may seem simple but they really can save your life.” KL

How to help... Hunstanton Lifeboat Station is still looking to recruit crew members to become part of the dedicated team who crew the lifeboat and hovercraft. If you are aged between 18 and 35 (male or female) and would like to become part of that team, find out more about the RNLI and visit the station any Sunday morning where Geoff Needham or one of his team will be pleased to show you round. The RNLI is a charity that saves lives at sea, supported by voluntary donations and volunteer crews, for more information visit

The Boats Spirit of West Norfolk The B-class Atlantic 85 was recently introduced to replace the former lifeboat ‘Spirit of America’. A rigid inflatable has a manual self-righting mechanism, radar and VHF finding equipment. Twin 115 horse power Yamaha engines power the boat, which is capable of 35 knots suitable for use in heavy seas. On board: Helmsman and three crew members. Hovercraft Powered by two VW Passat 1.9 turbo diesel engines, the hovercraft is a valuable piece of equipment to the Hunstanton lifeboat crew, perfectly suited to rescues on sandbanks and marshes where the boat would become banked. On board – Pilot, Commander and one crew member.


KLmagazine September 2011

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Palm Paper hasn’t just made a significant impact on the horizon of King’s Lynn – it represents a massive £400 million investment, employs a local workforce and houses the world’s most advanced newsprint machine. Charlotte Thorneycroft meets Co-Managing Director Derek Harman...



KLmagazine September 2011

PALM PAPER KL MAGAZINE: What exactly does the role of Co-Managing Director at Palm Paper involve? DEREK HARMAN: I’m respsonsible for managing the sales and administration of the newsprint produced in King’s Lynn, plus volumes of paper produced in Germany and the United States of America for the packaging industry. KL MAGAZINE: What were the deciding factors in choosing to site Palm Paper in King’s Lynn? DEREK HARMAN: Mainly it was the freehold land availability to meet our current and potentially future requirements. We also had positive local council encouragement and the resources we require were readily available. KL MAGAZINE: A large percentage of raw material within the plant is recycled – is this something the Palm Group consciously chooses as part of a wider environmental awareness in production? DEREK HARMAN: The Palm Group has been making paper since 1872 and has never used any virgin fibre. KL MAGAZINE: Recruiting 150 employees locally was a very welcome decision for the area – how important has this been to Palm? DEREK HARMAN: It was key to recruit locally, because we wanted to have a workforce of engineers and electricians we could train in the Palm way to be papermakers. This has proven to be a very successful strategy. KL MAGAZINE: Has the collapse of the News of the World affected Palm Paper? DEREK HARMAN: To date it’s had no impact at all, as the other publishers Palm supply have iactually ncreased their newsprint consumption in response to higher demand for their respective Sunday titles.

KLmagazine September 2011

KL MAGAZINE: Dividing your time between Germany and King’s Lynn must be demanding. Have you any favourite areas of West Norfolk you’ve managed to explore? DEREK HARMAN: I have flat in Hunstanton and I do enjoy spending time around the North Norfolk coast. KL MAGAZINE: How do you enjoy your free time? DEREK HARMAN: Outside of work, I enjoy jogging, playing tennis and spending time with the family. KL MAGAZINE: Who inspires you? DEREK HARMAN: Dr Palm provides inspiration because he’s totally committed to developing and extending further the family business which was founded by his great grandfather in 1872. He has great vision and takes long-term decisions in what has become a short-term thinking business world.


s a subsidiary of German-based Papierfabrik Palm, Palm Paper Limited produces a wide range of paper grades for the UK market, including newsprint for national and regional newspapers and corrugated case papers for the production of packaging and boxes. After many years operating a UK sales office for these products, Palm Paper took the decision to install a new newsprint machine in King’s Lynn – the first major UK investment in the paper industry for over a decade. The opening the mill was celebrated on June 18th 2010 at a special inauguration event held in the King’s Lynn Corn Exchange, which was attended by some 470 guests from across Europe. The paper mill at King’s Lynn houses the world’s most modern paper machine for newsprint, affectionately known as LYNN PM7. Over 10 metres wide, PM7 has the capacity to produce no less than 400,000 tonnes of high quality newsprint every year – from 100% recycled fibres. More than 50% of these fibres are supplied by the subidiary Palm Recycling in Ellesmere Port (the former Cheshire Recycling).


PALM PAPER LIMITED Poplar Avenue, Saddlebow Industrial Estate, King’s Lynn PE34 3AL Tel: 01553 782222 E-mail: Web:



KLmagazine September 2011


West Norfolk: Then and Now


2011 We’re back to the High Street in King’s Lynn this month, thanks to a postcard from 1908 sent to us by a KL magazine reader. We’re not sure what happened to the building next to where Top Shop is today, but it’s good to see that the town centre was just as popular with shoppers in those

days as it is today. For more photographs of how things used to be in King’s Lynn and the surrounding area, contact Picture Norfolk – you’ll find them at the Norfolk Heritage Centre, Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library, The Forum, Millennium Plain, Norwich,

Norfolk NR2 1AW. We’ll be bringing you another nostalgic look at West Norfolk next month. IN ASSOCIATION WITH

To view thousands of images of Norfolk’s history visit: KLmagazine September 2011




KLmagazine September 2011

ABOVE: Some of Mike Melton’s beehives – they make a charming addition to a garden, but the true magic takes place inside them (opposite)

The timeless beauty of beekeeping uncovered... Beekeeping is one of the oldest jobs in the world – and it’s still as popular as ever, as Charlotte Thorneycroft discovers with local apiarist Mike Melton. Photography by Sue Payne, honey from 50,000 busy little bees...


ne of the oldest known relationships between man and beast, the evidence of beekeeping for honey dates back thousands of years. Vessels containing honeycombs have been found in Egyptian tombs, and in other parts of the globe even more ancient cave drawings have indicated the collection of honey from wild bee colonies. Now with an increased enthusiasm towards natural and self-sufficient lifestyles, beekeeping is becoming an increasingly popular hobby. For some, the decision to become an apiarist (that’s beekeeper to you and me) comes from a combined love of wildlife and honey – but managing a hive has other benefits. According to the British

KLmagazine September 2011

Beekeepers Association, over 30% of the food we eat is dependent on pollination. Unmanaged pollinating insects (such as bumblebees) have a significant effect on some of the fruit and vegetables we eat – apples are highly dependent on insect pollination, at up to 80%. For this reason more and more flower, fruit and vegetable growers are choosing beekeeping as natural addition to complement their interests and aid the productivity of their gardens. When Mike Melton, member of the West Norfolk and King’s Lynn Beekeepers Association took on a property as a renovation project, a dormant interest in beekeeping was awakened. “I had lots of plans for the garden,” he

says, “mainly focused around growing my own fruit and vegetables – which is something I’ve always done. I discovered the house was once known as ‘The Apiary’ and was keen to re-introduce bees as much for pollinating the garden as the honey. “It wasn’t hard to get into, and talking to other beekeepers was very helpful. Through books and advice from the local association I was soon up and running. I’s t a fascinating hobby.” Joining a local association (linked to the national British Beekeepers Association) is a good starting point for anyone thinking of taking up beekeeping. There are a host of membership benefits including the necessary insurances you’ll need, and contact with other experienced local


apiarists is invaluable for the knowledge and advice they are able to share. Some of the vital equipment (the hive and bees, the bee suit with veil, the smoker) can be expensive, but these are one-off costs and generally beekeeping is an inexpensive hobby – especially when you consider the rewards. And one piece of advice every beekeeper will tell new starters – invest in the right equipment, because if you keep bees, you should expect to be stung at some point! Although accidental stings do occur, generally a bee will only sting if the hive is threatened or they’re frightened. Understanding the biology of the bee and what happens inside the hive is essential to managing a successful colony. Within the hive there are three types of bee – the queen, the female workers andthe male drones. It’s the role of the Queen to mate and lay eggs – and during April and May she’ll lay around 2,000 a day. The female worker bees work all day (from when they’re 22 days old) leaving the hive to pollinate plants and collect nectar, pollen and water. Usually they’ll fly within a radius of a mile from the hive with a strong colony (typically 35,000–50,000 bees) which is the equivalent distance of travelling to the moon each day. Hence the phrase as busy as a bee! Unlike the Queen – who can live for up to five years – these worker bees usually live for around 40 days during summer. Drone bees are produced from the Queen’s


unfertilized eggs. They do no work in the hive during the summer (although it’s their job to mate with the Queen) and they leave in the autumn to die. Inside the hive bees communicate with each other through ‘dance’ to explain the locations of good food sources. Worker bees then fly to the sites gathering nectar which they combine with enzymes from glands in their mouths to form honey, which they store in the wax comb back at the hive until the water content has been reduced. Pollen is collected in the thick hair lining the back legs of the bee. As well as providing a plentiful supply of honey, other byproducts from the hive such as wax and royal jelly can be used to make useful items for the home such as soap and candles. In monasteries during the medieval period, the role of the beekeeper was one of the most important jobs around, since a large quantity of wax was required to make ceremonial candles. Honey is also versatile – as well as being a delicious addition to natural yogurt and fruit for a sweet fix at breakfast, it’s widely used in cooking for its distinct flavour and can even be used to replace sugar in some recipes. “In a good season one hive can produce 40–60lb of honey,” says Mike. “You soon start to find good uses for it. I make jam from mine, using honey and fresh strawberries from my garden – nothing else is needed and the flavour is something special. And nothing is more appreciated than a jar of home-produced honey as a gift or thank you.” As a natural product, the taste, texture and appearance of honey varies considerably from clear and runny to opaque and hard. This is dependent on the source of the bees’ collected nectar, as differing varieties of flowers and plants produce different types of honey. Although most garden apiaries will produce a honey mixed from the range of flowers and plants in the flight area of the hive, some beekeepers specifically site their hives to allow the bees to create a certain type of honey. Mike has a spread of hives for his favourite flavours. “My colonies near Heacham produce the

most wonderful Lavender Honey,” he says. “The bees won’t travel further than they have to in order to collect good nectar, so I know it’s all come from the lavender as there’s so much there for them. It’s a unique flavour and there aren’t many places you could produce honey like this.” Mike also has a site on the North Norfolk coast where he enjoys pots of ‘Sea Lavender Honey’ which has to be collected during tight harvesting windows to ensure there’s no contamination from other nectars. It’s widely thought by the beekeeping community that ‘Heather Honey’ – often harvested during the autumn from hives on the moors – is one of the finest flavours. Whatever the preferred culinary use, honey and the process from nectar to honeycomb is an extraordinary achievement of nature. We’ve been working with bees for thousands of years – and thanks to people like Mike Melton it looks like a relationship with a great future. KL

More details... For more details on beekeeping and advice on getting started, you can contact the local organisation – the West Norfolk and King’s Lynn Beekeeper Association – who have a number of learning opportunities available for new members. Visit

KLmagazine September 2011






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KLmagazine September 2011

ABOVE: Master Gardeners Nancy and Rick take a break from work – they’re now part of a programme to support local people produce locally-grown food

The local people here to help you grow your own... Launched last August, the Norfolk Master Gardeners programme offers expert growing advice and support to local people and communities and it’s been a huge success. Charlotte Thorneycroft investigates...


art of a three-year pilot managed by Garden Organic (the national charity for organic growing), the Norfolk Master Gardener programme aims to help local people grow their own organic fruit and vegetables through the help of other experienced local volunteers. Although all Norfolk Master Gardeners have varying specialist areas of interest and at least two years’ experience within the garden, they all share one common interest – a passion to promote food growing in the wider community and inspire others to have a go. With recent campaigns to encourage

KLmagazine September 2011

healthy eating and active outdoor lifestyles, vegetable gardening has really taken off with more and more people seeking spaces to grow on. Allotments are no longer the place where elderly men go to relax on a Sunday afternoon – they’re actually very trendy and in very high demand. T Television programmes have also made us much more more aware of the distances our food travels to reach our table, clocking up unnecessary food miles. In general, the public are more conscious than ever of the importance in knowing where their food has come from and what’s in it. Rising prices in the supermarkets have also caused us to look for other, more cost-

effective ways of feeding the family. “Growing your own organic produce offers the perfect solution to all these issues,” says Gabbie Sharp, the Volunteer Coordinator at Norfolk Master Gardener. “The taste of home-grown organic fruit and vegetables is so much better than anything you’ll find in the shops. Your own veggies won’t all be uniform shape, size and colour but once you have the organic growing bug you’ll never look back.” None of the Norfolk Master Gardeners will say growing is a quick and easy process. Producing organic fruit and vegetables at home takes time and effort, but it isn’t without fantastic rewards – an abundance 25

Getting Started in Growing A quick guide by Gabbie Sharp


Choose your growing space – use pots on your patio, convert an old flower bed, use a portion of your lawn or maybe share an existing growing space with a friend. An open sunny spot will be ideal for most vegetables. Although salads are happiest in a slightly cooler, shadier spot, that can be easily achieved with some screening.

2 ABOVE: Norfolk Master Gardener Paul Young in his vegetable garden – the initiative aims to put experience such as Paul’s to work for you

of fresh fruit and veg throughout the year ‘free’ from your own back garden. So if you’ve decided home growing is for you, the first hurdles are where, what and how? There’s much to learn in the world of organic vegetable growing and going it alone can be a daunting prospect – and that’s where the Norfolk Master Gardener programme steps in. Advice is offered in a number of ways ranging from talks, stalls and events in the community to mentoring with individuals and families keen to begin their organic growing ‘journey.’ Master Gardeners will mentor ten households, offering free seasonal growing advice over a 12-month period. Don’t think you’ll have some free labour with the shovel either – the hard work is still down to you, but whatever the question or query your Norfolk Master Gardener mentor will be on hand to help.

“Preparation is the first part of the process,” says Gabbie. “Getting the soil right makes a huge difference to the success of your crop, as does planning what and where to plant. It’s easy for the new gardener to be put off, especially when things aren’t growing as expected – with one of our volunteer Master Gardeners on hand, these problems can be overcome and learned from rather than the new grower giving up.” Getting the family involved outdoors will not only ease the work load, it’s a great way of getting active together. Giving children the responsibility of looking after their own ‘patch’ of vegetables or even a single plant can be a very rewarding task. There’s sure to be a beaming smile and eagerness to tuck in when the day arrives when they pick and eat the very vegetables they’ve grown from seed themselves. KL

Decide how much time you can commit to on a daily/weekly basis. Time-saving methods such as raised beds, an irrigation system and the use of mulches can all help reduce routine tasks such as weeding and watering. Plan to spend a little time every day rather than a few hours once a week – the work will be far more enjoyable and a lot less backbreaking.


Assess your site – the soil texture, structure and PH level all need to be assessed before any planting. Knowing what you’re working with will help you identify what vegetables will be successful and – more importantly – those that will definitely not grow.


Decide what to grow. Seed catalogues for next year are available now, so take an evening with the children to choose exciting varieties of their favourite veg – maybe Golden Sunrise (a golden yellow small tomato) or Purble Haze (a slender purple carrot with an orange core). Plan ahead if you intend to grow from seed and only grow what you’ll eat. Setting small goals to begin with can really help – for examply, sow small plants of Brussels, winter cabbage and leeks in late spring ready to be eaten on Christmas Day!

5 6

Sow little and sow often – this means you’ll have a continuous supply rather than a glut of one veg. Carrots, if grown in succession, can be available most of the year, either fresh or stored. Keep a growing diary – not just to record your successes and challenges, but to note what you grew where so you don’t grow vegetables from the same family group in the same spot next year. Crop rotation is an important and very simple method of preventing the potential build-up of pests and diseases. Make your diary colourful with photos – they tell a much better story in far fewer words.


Share your experiences with like-minded friends. Join your local gardening club or horticultural society. This helps your learning and your level of enjoyment – and it’s also a great way to swap ideas, plants and seeds.

If you’re interested in growing your own and would like help from a Norfolk Master Gardener, you can make contact by visiting the website at – where you can discover more about events and volunteers in your area. If you have two or more years worth of growing experience and want to share your time and knowledge helping others as part of the Norfolk Master Gardener programme, contact Volunteer Coordinator Gabbie Sharp on 01362 869286 or visit the website above. Gabbie is currently recruiting for the next Master Gardener training course which will take place on September 17th–18th at Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse.


KLmagazine September 2011

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KLmagazine September 2011


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KLmagazine September 2011

AnimalMatters Our monthly look at the issues concerning you and your pets with Alex Dallas of the London Road Veterinary Centre...


PetProblems Q

I take a joint supplement myself and recently I’ve been giving these capsules to my dog Josh (aged 12) as well. Is this okay or am I maybe harming him? Mrs BARRATT, King’s Lynn


We certainly recommend joint supplements for dogs and cats, but some of the shop-bought human products aren’t particularly high quality and can be harmful. Recently a new animal-specific product called Supleneo Flex has been launched, and this has all the best ingredients for joint care and is safe and very palatable. Best of all we currently have 25% off the price making it very affordable. ALEX

Small bites

Not another vaccine?!


e always recommend annual vaccination for dogs and cats against a range of infectious and frequently fatal diseases. However, I’m often asked why pets need yearly protection, when many of the human vaccines are give only once in a lifetime, or on a much less frequent basis than our pets. I suppose the first difference is that humans largely avoid the behaviours that encourage disease, avoiding noxious material and undertaking hygiene practices that help avoid catching bugs. Compare that to dogs who relish bad smells, and cats that will share feed bowls and even bite one another. These lifestyles assist the spread of many of the infectious diseases we’re trying to prevent. Certainly vaccination for pets has been incredibly effective. I haven’t seen a case of canine distemper in West Norfolk for many years, and that’s purely down to a largely vaccinated population. Given that we’re visited by thousands of dogs from cities from all over the country every summer and most weekends, it’s great to know our local pets are safe from diseases potentially being brought in. Parvo virus is also at a very low level, with just a few pockets of infection – largely because a few people still won’t vaccinate, and they’re still seeing their dogs (and especially puppies) die from this preventable scourge. But the big hazard to our local dogs in

West Norfolk is Leptospirosis, a disease found in ditches and dykes, in old farm buildings, near poultry and sugar beet, all because it’s carried by rats. Dogs are fascinated by such smells and may drink from puddles where rats have been, leaving them open to possible infection. The length of the protection from the vaccine in dogs isn’t certain but it isn’t long, so regular boosters are very important. For cats, the risk is mainly from the leukaemia virus, which causes cancer in cats and early death. Here the success has also been astonishing, with reduction in cancer cases and an increase in life expectancy that we should be hugely proud of. If ever there was a reason to have annual vaccination then this is it. Without these annual visits, many pets would also never receive a regular check up. A vaccination appointment includes an examination, a chance to talk through any problems or changes in behaviour or weight that may suggest a problem that can then be identified and sorted. I like to think of it as an MOT for pets – especially as they get older. I believe the vet acts as the advocate for the animal, assessing conditions that may be causing discomfort or needing attention to ensure the pet lives happily for longer. In this role we can advise what’s genuinely unimportant, not requiring attention and giving the client peace of mind. Equally, as advocate we can be sure the pet receives attention to any condition that would improve their quality of life.

Following the deaths of two police dogs left in a van in hot sunshine a hard-hitting campaign has been launched, taking off on social networking sites, and even involving local hero Stephen Fry. The slogan is ‘Don’t Cook Your Dog’ with graphic car stickers. Google dontcookyourdog to find out how you can get involved and help prevent more horrific deaths.

Your pets Who said you can’t teach an old dog new tricks? Mrs J Schorah of Dersingham doesn’t have to worry about shopping for dog food and treats – her dog does it for her! Thanks for sending the picture! Don’t forget to keep sending me pictures of your pets (the funnier the better!) to Animal Matters at KL magazine, 18 Tuesday Market Place, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE30 1JW or e-mail them to

LONDON ROAD 25 London Road, King’s Lynn t: 01553 773168 e: HOLLIES Paradise Road, Downham Market t: 01366 386655 e: KLmagazine September 2011




KLmagazine September 2011

ABOVE: The interior of St George’s Guildhall, the much -loved venue and centrepiece of the King’s Lynn Arts Centre

The history of King’s Lynn in one amazing building... Charlotte Thorneycroft charts the history of St George’s Guildhall – from sailmaker’s loft to county court, from gunpowder store and button factory to an ever-popular theatre. Photography by Ian Ward


ell known as one of the premier arts venues in the Eastern region, the King’s Lynn Arts Centre is also home to St George’s Guildhall, the largest medieval guildhall in the country. The Guild of St George the Martyr was formed in 1376, building on the saint’s huge popularity following the Black Death (it was believed he had the power to answer prayers for recovery from the plague). As with every guild in the town, the aim was to support the trades with which it was linked and provide for those who had fallen on hard times, although there was also a very important spiritual element.

KLmagazine September 2011

Promoted by three of the town’s most notable merchants – John Brandon, Bart Sistern and John Snailwell – the Guild of St George had their most important meeting of the year (appropriately enough) on St George’s Day. Collecting funds through fees and fines and also renting properties in King’s Lynn and the surrounding area (including warehouses in King Street) the Guild invested in the repairing of the town’s defences and sea banks. An exact date for when the St George’s Guildhall was built isn’t known, although its first mention occurs in the 1444-45 archives when Lady Bardolf attended a supper as the guest of the Mayor and aldermen – the building was no older than 20 years at this


time. With so many medieval buildings dotted around King’s Lynn there are often similarities to be found between two or more properties, and the bricks of St George’s Guildhall closely resemble those (in both size and colour) found in the South Gate – suggesting the same maker. The upper storey of the building was the Hall itself (which was used as the Guild’s dining hall) with a lower storey undercroft utilized as a warehouse. In 1500, it was found the roof was too heavy for the supporting walls (which had begun to move) although it didn’t help that the land on which it was built was newly claimed! As part of the restoration, large buttresses were erected against the north wall to support the building.A plaque on the south wall is a very old representation of the seal of the Guild of St George. Reforms of King Edward VI saw the property of Lynn’s two richest guilds (Holy Trinity and St George), transferred by the Crown to the Corporation. The first had a valid use within the Lynn as the Town Hall, which meant the latter was deemed too expensive an excess. Rented to tenants, the property was home to a schoolmaster and a sail maker over the following years. However the building’s association with the arts began very early on. In much the same way travelling theatre companies tour the country today, so would similar groups of players in the late 16th century when they began to arrive in King’s Lynn – the Queen’s Players came to the town in 1585. Although a local legend claims that Shakespeare himself trod the boards of the Guildhall, there’s no evidence to support it, although the Lord Admiral’s Men (with whom he was associated) performed in Norwich in 1593. By the 18th century, larger audiences were being attracted to the venue so the Lynn Corporation (urged by a number of Norwich companies) ordered the construction of a proper Playhouse inside the Guildhall. There were several performances by leading British actors, but in the mixedclass audience the atmosphere seems to have been less than harmonious. In February 1774, the editor of the Cambridge Chronicle noted that “the letter addressed to the proprietors of the Lynn theatres complaining of indecency among servants and irregular persons mixing with their superiors in the pit and other improprieties was too long and too local for insertion in this paper...” Unfortunately by 1814 the success of the Playhouse was its own downfall as the large audiences led to a new theatre being opened in St James Street, and the Guildhall closed its doors. The property was used as a wool warehouse before being sold in 1920 to the scenic artists GM Bridges & Son Ltd for the


ABOVE: The Queen Mother opens the Guildhall in 1951 at the launch of the King’s Lynn Festival

sum of £2,650. On one occasion in the late 1930s, Bridges transformed the Guildhall into a children’s fairyland to coincide with the annual mart. The tale of Jack and the Beanstalk was magically laid out through the building using models and scenes with working parts, much to the delight of the many children who visited. Sadly, by 1945 the property was again derelict, and this time it actually faced demolition when the site was earmarked for the expansion of a nearby garage. Thankfully, the historical detailing of such a fine property in Lynn was brought to public awareness before the Guildhall was auctioned and it was saved by Alexander Penrose who purchased the building. With funding from The Pilgrim Trust, the Arts Council and public subscription a great restoration project was launched which would transform the dilapidated property into an Arts Centre to be placed in the ownership of the National Trust. The centre had a new entrance hall at ground level with access via a new staircase to the theatre, complete with a fullyequipped stage and dressing rooms. Later additions have included the development of the barns in the courtyard to art galleries and today the undercroft is a coffee shop with a restaurant to the rear of the building overlooking the river. Such was the catalyst of this new lease of life for the arts in King’s Lynn that some very influential people (all with a fond interest in St George’s Guildhall and the arts) became involved with the new venture. Significant fundraising efforts were organised by Lady Fermoy – who was instrumental in the launch of the King’s

Lynn Festival, an event that has put the town firmly on the country’s cultural map. With the launch of the King’s Lynn Festival in 1951, the Arts Centre was opened by the late Queen Mother, who had taken great interest in the whole restoration of the ancient Guildhall. A building of great historic importance to both the town and nationally, yet it came close to being lost forever. Thankfully today St George’s Guildhall is greatly valued by all as a fine medieval building, a piece of Lynn’s history and of course as thriving hub of activity for the arts in the region. KL

For more information on St George’s Guildhall visit or enjoy the full experience of the ancient theatre at one of the many performances – visit for upcoming shows and ticket details. The launch of the King’s Lynn Arts Centre Trust will take place on 25th September in the Fermoy Gallery. This will feature the exciting community arts initiative SUPPORT: The Bigger Picture – a mystery painting challenge undertaken by hundreds of West Norfolk artists who’ve each contributed to a collective masterpiece. A reveal of the giant reproduction alongside the original will take place at 4pm.

KLmagazine September 2011

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KLmagazine September 2011



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KLmagazine September 2011



Savoy cabbage with bacon, Stilton and walnuts INGREDIENTS 1 tbsp olive oil 150g diced smoked bacon lardons 1 Savoy cabbage, cored, halved and shredded ½ tsp fennel seeds, crushed 100g Stilton, crumbled 50g walnuts pieces Freshly ground white pepper Preparation Time: 5 minutes Cooking Time: 15 minutes Serves: 4

KLmagazine September 2011

INSTRUCTIONS 1 Heat the oil in a wok or a large frying pan. Add the bacon lardons and cook for 4–5 minutes until they’re beginning to crisp 2 Add the cabbage and fennel seeds, and stir together. Stir-fry for a further 5–7 minutes until the cabbage is tender but still crunchy 3 Add the Stilton and walnuts, season and stirfry gently for a couple of minutes and serve


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KLmagazine September 2011



with Melanie Done

Planet-friendly fizz!


ith local opinions divided over the proposed incinerator in Saddlebow at the minute, our attention is being drawn to the consequences of waste disposal. How many of us recycle 100% of our plastic drinks bottles and how many go to landfill? According to the Recycle-More website, every household in the UK uses 500 plastic bottles each year on average – of which just 130 (roughly 25%) are recycled. Shockingly, it takes 450 years for just one plastic bottle to break down! However, there is a preferred alternative to landfill and recycling in the form of ‘precycling’. This is the practice of reducing waste by avoiding bringing items that will generate waste as an end product into the home – such as receiving e-mailed bills and bank statements to avoid the production of paper copies. Similarly, every special pressure-resistant 1 litre bottle used with Sodastream can be reused for up to three years, and will

prevent the use of approximately 1,500 bottles in its lifetime. This makes Sodastream an ‘active green’ product as you actively reduce your carbon footprint each time you use it, minimizing the huge eco-footprint caused by the manufacture, transport and waste of plastic bottles. Sodastream is also easy and convenient to use, with no need to carry those heavy bottles of drink home from the shops – and it doesn’t need batteries or electricity. It’s also very costeffective, as a gas bottle refill costs just £8.99, and will carbonate up to 60 litres of water for just 15 pence a litre. There is a wonderful variety of modern flavours from cola, orange, lemonade, apple, pink grapefruit, ginger ale and tonic to more retro tastes like cream soda, dandelion & burdock, and cherry.

Alternatively you may prefer one of the lightly-flavoured waters, the isotonic blueberry sport, xstream energy drink, or refreshing green tea. Many flavours also come in a sugar-free option, or you can simply carbonate chilled water for a refreshing drink. Each flavour costs less than £4 and will make around 12 litres of drink. Every Saturday in September you can take advantage of our special demonstration days and sample the Sodastream flavours for yourself. In addition to this, throughout September you’ll receive a FREE sample pack of flavours worth £9.99 and 2 FREE 500ml bottles worth £8.99 (perfect for onthe-go) with every Sodastream machine purchased. So, get busy with the fizzy this autumn and help free the world from bottles!

M el

MELANIE DONE is the joint owner of Cook to Perfection 47 High Street, King’s Lynn PE30 1BE Telephone: 01553 767575 Website: KLmagazine September 2011




In her culinary quest to enjoy a taste of everything west Norfolk has to offer, Ann Weaver visits Voujon...


ith its sky blue facade, the Voujon Indian Restaurant on Railway Road certainly stands out amongst its neighbours. Roughly translated, ‘voujon’ means ‘invitation to dine’ – so with no further ado, let’s accept the invite. Inside, the decor is modern and light although the low ceilings and pillars combined with a few too many tables makes for a rather overcrowded feel to the room. Our drinks orders taken, we began to peruse the very extensive menu. Although there were many choices of starters, mains, ‘chef specialities’ and side dishes, I was impressed to see a brief description – and helpful indication of heat – next to most dishes. Not being overly adventurous with the starter, I opted for a favourite of mine – chicken tikka, my partner choosing the prawn puree. Whilst we waited for our order we nibbled on some poppadoms and pickles over drinks. No sooner had we finished these when our starters arrived at the table, which was surprisingly quick as the restaurant was full of diners. As it’s such a simple dish, the tikka relies on perfect cooking which in this case was achieved. It was served with a crisp side salad that included a strawberry, which may have been in the spirit of summer but didn’t work particularly well with the tikka! It was, however, very generously proportioned, as was the prawn puree. I


was assured the latter was equally tasty, and although part of the dish was fried there was little grease to be seen. Whilst we passed the (short) time waiting for our mains, we realised the closeness of the tables meant adjacent diners were certainly not conversing privately had this been their intention! Our waiter then bought to our table my sizzling lamb korai which filled the air with a mouthwatering aroma of green peppers and onion and for hubby a creamy butter chicken. The dishes were such a contrast we decided to share – a policy we also adopted with the large portion of pilau rice and meaty keema naan bread. The milder of the two dishes had huge moist chunks of chicken breast in a flavoursome buttery sauce although it was a little too thick and rich for our tastes. My korai was just the right medium level of spice for me, with sour undertones complemented by the sweetness of the occasional fresh tomato. Despite sharing we were unable to do the meal the justice it deserved – there was just so much meat in each dish. Although I’m still finding it hard to believe, the total bill was under £40 – which included two alcoholic and two soft drinks! The atmosphere may be a little loud due to the of the size of restaurant, but we experienced beautifully-cooked, truly delicious food and impeccably good service which we’re both looking forward to enjoying again. KL




45 55 55

VOUJON INDIAN RESTAURANT 24 Railway Road King’s Lynn PE30 1NF Tel: 01553 777977

KLmagazine September 2011



ust off of the A149 on the edge of Snettisham village is the Poppyfields Garden Centre and Cafe, well placed for a light refreshment stop after a busy morning’s bird watching at the nearby nature reserve. Inside, the cafe is light and modern – although the layout of the tables could be improved to give some extra room when trying to manoeuvre trays of drinks! The menu was simple and extensive with a choice of sandwiches, breakfast items, jackets and salads as well as a good selection of hot meals such as ham, egg and chips, scampi and chips, etc. A specials board had further lunch and dessert options. I chose a roast chicken salad from the specials board and my partner a BLT sandwich on white bread. We ordered our food at the counter and within minutes the waitress had brought our meals to the table. Although the BLT looked appetizing (and was by all accounts very tasty with thick, lean bacon), top prize went to my dish. Presented beautifully with lots of crisp, fresh and colourful salad, with homemade coleslaw and apple and orange slices, my chicken salad tasted every bit as good as it looked. I’d presumed the chicken would be hot, but it was enjoyed none the less for being a cold salad. We did sample the cakes – one being a chocolate fudge cake, which (although not homemade) was moist and fresh, and hit the sweet chocolate craving for which it was intended! In total the bill came to just under £17 with a water and juice which was excellent value. Nice food, friendly and efficient service and sensible prices, what more reasons could one need to visit? You will be pleased you did!

POPPYFIELDS GARDEN CENTRE Poppyfields Drive, Snettisham King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE31 7UD Tel: 01485 544638 KLmagazine September 2011



LocalTastes Selected by Charlotte Thorneycroft

In the Lunchbox... DAIRY Little Melton Gourmet Yogurt, Little Melton Forget the squeezy tubes, these creamy Greek-style delights are layered with fruit puree in a choice of exotic flavours such as passion fruit or mango and are super-scrumptious yogurts. SANDWICHES For the bread, take a Granary Roll from Redgate Bakery, Hunstanton filled with Sandringham Red Poll cooked beef from J.E Howard, West Newton, topped up with some plump ripe-from-the-vine Norfolk tomatoes. For a really tasty touch, add a spread of mustard – from Colmans of Norwich, naturally! DRINK Norfolk Cordial, Wood Dalling Fill your favourite drinks bottle with something special – try Wild Elderflower or Rhubarb, Orange and Ginger – these handmade cordials are packed full of Norfolk goodness.


good balanced lunchbox should have a mix of healthy tasty food across all of the main food groups – carbohydrate, protein, dairy, fruit and vegetables. Swap sandwiches for wraps or pitas to keep lunch interesting, or try a pasta salad for something a little different. Try using only local produce and see how much better a ‘Norfolk’ lunchbox is – we’ve packed ours below to give you some ideas.

FRUIT Choose something in season, and why not pick your own? Apples from the Royal Fruit Farm at Sandringham (the season usually starts around mid-September) or flavour-packed blueberries from Fair Green Farms, Fair Green (the season usually runs until the middle of September).

Buffet Place at Freebridge Farm!

MONDAY: Chinese night!

THURSDAY: Curry night!

FRIDAY: Fish & Chip night!

All you can eat buffets only £5.99! Join us for a Sunday Carvery: only £9 for 2 courses or £11 for 3 courses!

Don’t forget our Playzone Kid’s Parties: At Brewers Fayre we’re always serving up Food, balloons, something new and can’t wait for you to join us. cakes, fun and Call now to book your table! lots more! Clenchwarton Road, West Lynn, King’s Lynn PE34 3LJ lots, Only £7.99 per child!

Tel: 01553 772221 40

KLmagazine September 2011

Eating Out The Ancient Mariner Inn Galley Restaurant Golf Course Road, Old Hunstanton 01485 536389

Congham Hall Fine dining Lynn Road, Grimston 01485 600250

The Kings Head Hotel Award-winning fine dining Great Bircham, King’s Lynn 01485 578265

Palmers British Brasserie 45 High Street, Downham Market. 01366 388124

Bank House Brasserie Brasserie food, British Classics Bank House Hotel, King’s Staithe Square, Kings Lynn 01553 660492

The Crown and Mitre King’s Lynn’s only traditional riverside pub. Great English food using only fresh locally-sourced ingredients. Ferry Street, King’s Lynn 01553 774669

The King William IV Country Inn and Restaurant Heacham Road, Sedgeford, Norfolk 01485571765

The Riverside Restaurant English Cuisine 27 King Street, King’s Lynn 01553 773134

Best Western Knight’s Hill Hotel Garden restaurant South Wootton King’s Lynn 01553 675 566

The Crown Inn Gastro pub The Green, East Rudham 01485 528530

Best Western Le Strange Hotel Golf Course Road, Old Hunstanton 01485 536389 The Blue Boar Inn Good locally sourced food Great Ryburgh, nr Fakenham 01328 829212 Bradley’s Restaurant and wine bar 10 South Quay, Kings Lynn 01553 600836 Brewer’s Fayre Premier Inn West Lynn, King’s Lynn 01553 772221 Briarfields Titchwell, Hunstanton 01485 210742 Buckinghamshire Arms Traditional and modern local food Blickling Hall, Aylsham 01263 723133 Caley Hall Hotel Gastro pub Old Hunstanton Road, Hunstanton 01485 533486

KLmagazine September 2011

The Dabbling Duck Seasonal English Cuisine Abbey Road, Great Massingham 01485 520827 The Deer’s Leap 361 Wootton Road, South Wootton King’s Lynn 01553 671919 D’Inacios 9 Newmans Yard, Norwich Road, Fakenham 01328 851247 The Gin Trap Inn Gastro Pub 6 High Street, Ringstead, Hunstanton 01485 525264 The Hare Arms Varied fine dining Stow Bardolph, Kings Lynn 01366 382229 Heacham Manor Hotel Varied fine dining Hunstanton Road, Heacham 01485 536030 The Jolly Sailors Pub favourites Brancaster, Kings Lynn 01485 210314

Leziate Park Local English Cuisine Brow of the Hill, Leziate, King’s Lynn 01553 630393 The Lodge Old Hunstanton, Norfolk 01485 532896 Market Bistro English Cuisine 11 Saturday Market Place, King’s Lynn 01553 771483 The Neptune Inn and Restaurant 85 Old Hunstanton Road, Old Hunstanton 01485 532122

The Rose and Crown Traditional pub favourites Old Church Road, Snettisham 01485 541382 The Swan Inn South Wootton, King’s Lynn 01553 672084 Timbers Hotel & Restaurant A la carte and traditional pub food Lynn Road, Fincham 01366 347747 Titchwell Manor Traditional and modern infusion Titchwell, Kings Lynn 01485 210221 The Yurt Restaurant Drove Orchards, Thornham Road, Thornham, Hunstanton 01485 525108

The Old Vicarage Seasonal Local Food. The Street, Hemsby 01493 731557 The Orange Tree New takes on pub classics and seafood High Street, Thornham 01485 512213

A taste of West Norfolk If we’ve missed your favourite local restaurant from this list, we’d love to hear from you – and so would our readers. Send the details to us at, and remember to pass on any fine dining tips, advice or recommendations as well! 41



n the north bank of the River Nene is The North Brink Brewery, home of Elgood’s Brewery (above) – established in 1795, it was one of the few breweries of its type outside London. By 1878 the brewery was under ownership of the Elgood family, as it has remained since, continuing to be a family company. The history and heritage of the building is mirrored by the traditional brewing methods still embraced today, although modern technology has allowed Elgood’s to keep up with the ‘tastes’ of today’s drinkers. From April to September (selected days) the brewery provides guided tours for visitors as well as access to the delightful four-acre well stocked garden to the rear of the brewery complete with herbaceous borders, exotic house and herb garden (below). For more information including opening times, visit


n Bridge Street (the site of the old Butter Market) is the 68ft Thomas Clarkson Memorial (above), an imposing structure commemorating the life of the famous anti-slavery campaigner. Born in Wisbech, Clarkson studied at Wisbech Grammar School before continuing his studies in London and then Cambridge. It was while at Cambridge he entered a Latin essay competition in which he was asked to discuss ‘Is it lawful to enslave the unconsenting?’ Thoroughly researching the subject, Clarkson soon became appalled by his findings and devoted his life to abolishing the slave trade.


KLmagazine September 2011



Words: Charlotte Thorneycroft Photos: Sue Payne


s a town well known for its fabulous Georgian architecture, Wisbech’s jewel in the crown has to be Peckover House (right). Built in 1722, the magnificent building (formerly known as Bank House) has been described by many as one of the finest Georgian town houses in the whole country. In the late 18th century the property was purchased by Jonathan Peckover, a respected Quaker and draper who in 1872 opened the town’s first official bank. The family made considerable wealth from the bank and remained at Peckover House until they presented it to the National Trust in 1948. As well as the house itself and its fascinating exhibits (such as the cabinet of curiosities), visitors can enjoy two acres of attractive gardens complete with croquet lawn and rose garden. For more information (including opening times and admission charges) and details of special events contact Peckover House on 01945 583463.

KLmagazine September 2011


Explorer Wisbech


ne of the most influential women of the 19th and 20th centuries, Octavia Hill was born in Wisbech and her Georgian house overlooking the river (below) is now home to a museum telling her inspirational life story. In 1895 Octavia Hill, together with Robert Hunter and Hardwicke Rawnsley formed The National Trust for the Preservation of Historic Buildings and Natural Beauty in response to their concerns on the impact of uncontrolled industrialisation and development. The first property acquired by the association was Alfriston Clergy House in East Sussex, followed by two acres of land (Wicken Fen) in Cambridgeshire in 1899. Today, the National Trust (as it’s now known) cares for 612,000 acres of countryside, more than 700 miles of coastline and over 200 important buildings (and gardens). This was far from Octavia’s only life achievement, however. Her parents were well known for their social reform work, something Octavia continued throughout her life. With many concerns for the poor in cities such as London, she led the way in a number of significant developments to better the lives of these people. Her friendship with John Ruskin enabled the purchase of three properties (all managed by Octavia) creating successful communities with suitable facilities for satisfactory standards of living. Through this and other social work (such as her involvement with her sister’s organisation , the Kyrle Society) Octavia is thought to have laid the foundations for modern social casework and housing associations. Teacher, writer, artist and philanthropist, Octavia Hill has left lasting legacies through her groundbreaking work which is informatively displayed at The Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum, South Brink, Wisbech. For details of opening times and admissions contact 01945 476358 or visit the website at



or an insight into the history of the town of Wisbech and the surrounding Fenland area, pay a visit to the Wisbech and Fenland Museum on Museum Square (above). As well as fascinating exhibits relating to the development of the town, there are many other diverse and interesting collections including some detailing further the work of Thomas Clarkson. British costume and textiles, archaeological items and natural history are just a few of the displays in the museum which is thought to be one of the oldest in the country. For further details contact the museum on 01945 583817.


nce famous for its Horse Fairs, from which the local shopping centre takes its name, Wisbech is now home to an annual Rose Fair (the Horse Fairs ended in the 1800s). Started in 1963 to raise funds for the restoration of St Peter’s Church, the Rose Fair has blossomed from a few local growers selling rose buds to a celebrated ‘festival’ event across the town. At its heart is the church of St Peter & St Paul with its breathtaking floral displays. Other organisations and attractions within the town offer special events for the Rose Fair such as talks and exhibitions emulating the sense of community involvement. With street entertainment, stalls and music the climax of the fair is the Parade of Floats – a beautiful and decorative procession enjoyed for its ‘carnival’ atmosphere. KLmagazine September 2011

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Good Looks

with Elizabeth Dutton

Yes, socks do matter! A

s much as we’re hoping for a September heatwave after our disappointing ‘summer’ months, the chances are you’ll be donning socks once more – and so will your children be once they’re back in school uniform. But before you rush out and buy a bargain pack of socks, think again! Why? l Your feet have over a quarter of a million sweat glands each, and can produce up to a pint of sweat a day! Poor quality socks hold on to the sweat, helping set up the right conditions for blistering and athlete’s foot – and a nasty pong! l Socks that are too tight can restrict circulation and affect the structure of the foot, while socks that are too loose can slip down at the heel and bunch up at the toes, causing discomfort and blisters l Your feet take a lot of pounding over the day, so if you’re on your feet a lot or going hiking, you’ll benefit from specialist socks that help absorb impact So, when you’re looking for new socks, spend a little extra on socks that breathe, fit well and cushion, and you’ll save yourself discomfort, pain – and many trips to your local foot clinic!

Special deal on footcare for the over 70s!

Available every third Thursday between 10am and 1pm at The Foot Care Centre, King’s Lynn SAVE £5.00! Nail cut and foot buff only £10.00! SAVE £10.00! Nail cut, buff and 10 minute fish treatment (see opposite) only £15! Starting September 2011 – book your place now!

Want a new, rewarding career? Why not become a foot care practitioner? It’s suitable for women and men of most ages, and you can soon be up and running your own part- or full-time business. Visit our website for details and dates of the different courses available, or call 01553 768661 (clinic) or 07973 230293 (mobile)

More information...

Fish rid your feet of hard & dry skin!


es, you read that right! A painless and pleasant way of getting rid of hard, dry skin from your feet is taking off in the UK – and it’s using fish! These aren’t any old fish, however; they’re Garra Rufa or ‘doctor fish’. These delightful creatures love to feed on dead skin. As they nibble away, it feels like little bubbles popping gently on your feet. Suitable for all age groups and expectant mothers, it’s a great way to get rid of the hard skin you’ve built up over the summer. The treatment is even good for those with psoriasis and eczema. You place your feet in a tank of doctor fish and they gently nibble away areas of bad and dead skin – their meal is your treatment. And don’t worry – they don’t feed on healthy skin! You simply sit back and relax and enjoy the gentle ticking sensation. Pregnant or a Bit Wobbly on Your Feet? Don’t worry! We’ll sit you back on a comfy couch, raise you up, bring your legs round, and lower your feet into the water. NOTE: Avoid treatments that are being offered in back rooms and basements and where the fish are presented in a bucket. The practice is unhygienic, and the fish often die. How much does Fish For Feet cost? The treatment is just £10.00 for 15 minutes, and that’s often enough to last for up to three months. If you really want to pamper your feet, ask for a medi-pedi and get the whole works! Treatments start at £28.

ELIZABETH DUTTON is a qualified foot health care practitioner and trainer. She offers treatments from the Foot Care Centre, 4B Tower St, King’s Lynn, PE30 1EJ. For more information, details, help and advice please contact Elizabeth centre in King’s Lynn or visit the following websites: (for details of the Foot Awareness Week) (for help and advice on foot care treatments) (for details of how to train as a foot care practitioner – note that the QR code on the right will also take you there) Finally, you can call Elizabeth on 01553 768661 (clinic) or 07973 230293 (mobile) or send an e-mail to


KLmagazine September 2011




treasure trove of home interior products, the Unique Tottenhill showroom stocks an enormous range of home and garden furniture together with accessories and giftware of all descriptions. Whatever style you’re looking for and whatever your budget, you’ll find a world of creative and inspirational ideas. In addition to the main showroom, the Unique Design Studio offers a complete interior design package including product sourcing and supply, bespoke curtains and blinds, soft furnishings and upholstery. Thousands of fabrics available from top name brands such as Osborne & Little, Sanderson, Designers Guild and Harlequin. For a truly unique look for your home, you’ll find everything you’re looking for – and a lot more besides.

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T: 01553 772277 W: KLmagazine September 2011

TheConsultingRoom Richard Haywood A consultant plastic surgeon, Richard specialises in breast reconstruction surgery, micro- and cosmetic surgery including breast enlargement, nose reshaping, facelifts, skin resurfacing and tummy tucks. In addition to offering a wide range of cosmetic surgery at BMI The Sandringham Hospital in King’s Lynn, Richard also runs a Minor Lesions Clinic.

What does the Minor Lesions Clinic offer? Many people have lumps and bumps which aren’t life threatening and don’t affect how a patient functions. However, these still can cause a great deal of concern for patients in their appearance and can reduce their quality of life. The Minor Lesions Clinic can treat the vast majority of these lumps and bumps under local anaesthetic in the treatment room at BMI The Sandringham Hospital. A patient’s appearance and quality of life can be greatly improved by this relatively simple straightforward type of surgery. What types of lumps and bumps can be treated at the Clinic? We can normally remove all general lumps and bumps which are under 2cm in diameter. These lumps and bumps can be cysts within the skin, small fatty lumps under the skin or commonly benign pigmented moles or skin tags. Is the procedure painful? The injection of the local anaesthetic does sting slightly – it’s similar to a wasp sting – but this eases off quickly within a few seconds.

home within an hour of the surgery. There may be some stitches which will need to be removed five to seven days after the surgery. Most wounds will be healed by a week. Will it leave any scars? It can take three to six months for some of the redness to start settling and for the scar to mature fully it can take up to a year. How much will it cost? The cost depends on the number of lesions (lumps or bumps) to be removed. The hospital will quote you a noobligation one-off fixed price fee. The price includes your treatment, up to two follow-up appointments and any histology if the tissue needs to be looked at under the microscope. How do I arrange an appointment? You can call the hospital direct for further information and a price. If you are happy with the fee quoted, the hospital will arrange an appointment for you. For more information and details, you can call the BMI The Sandringham Hospital on 01553 769770, or visit us at

How long does the procedure take? We can treat most patients on the spot. The procedure itself takes different lengths of time depending how large or small the lump or bump is. The vast majority of procedures take between 15-30 minutes. Most patients would be going

e Sandringham Hospital

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KLmagazine September 2011

We do right by you



ABOVE: The ill-fated Titanic at Southampton in April 1912 – on board was band member John Law Hume (below), whose story has now been told by his great neice and local writer Yvonne Hume (opposite)

A local link to the tale of the Titanic... As the centenary of the Titanic disaster approaches, local writer Yvonne Hume has uncovered the story of her great uncle, who was in the band that played on...


ookery writer Yvonne Hume has recently stepped aside from her regular genre to pen the story of her great uncle, John Law Hume – the first violinist with the Titanic Band. Yvonne had known about John since she was a child, although due the tragic circumstances in which he died his life was never discussed as openly as she would have liked. For the generations immediately following the 1912 disaster, it was still too raw a memory to delve into, but as the centenary of the ill-fated voyage approaches, Yvonne has uncovered a surprising and detailed account of her uncle’s life.


“I’d always been told that John had played with the band right until the end,” she says at her home just outside King’s Lynn. “The musicians knew they weren’t going to survive but continued playing their instruments to calm the other passengers who were fleeing the boat. It’s this proud memory of such a brave man that spurred my desire to know more about him.” Through extensive research, Yvonne started to build a picture of a jolly and friendly man whose career in music began at an early age. Born in Dumfries, Scotland in 1890, John Law Hume was the son of a skilled violin maker (and violin teacher) in a family with

many musical ties. Learning to play the violin from the age of five, John quickly earned himself the reputation of a talented musician – even playing during intervals of theatre performances in his teens. After leaving school John tried an office job at a local firm of solicitors, but after a year he realised music was the only career for him. At the age of 18 he embarked upon a life on board the cruise ships, despite his father hoping for a future in the concert halls of New York. John’s travelling life was a happy one, and written accounts from fellow musicians describe him as a ‘Scottish lad with a big personality, full of life’ – he was known as ‘Jock’ amongst his friends.

KLmagazine September 2011

The ultimate in quality

Aged just 21, John Law Hume boarded the Titanic as first violinist with Wallace Hartley’s orchestra, who’d been employed by Liverpool firm CW and FN Black, who supplied musicians to all the steamer companies. Just four days into her maiden voyage, at 11.40pm on 14th April, 1912 the unthinkable happened and the ‘unsinkable’ Titanic hit an iceberg and began to sink. The band went on deck and played whilst panic and chaos exploded around them. Accounts suggest the band played to the very end and evidence suggests this is true since none of the bodies of band members later recovered had their lifejackets on. They would surely have put their lifejackets on had they had time before the waters took them. None of the band members survived – John froze to death in the icy waters, and his body was later recovered by the CS MackayBennett, a cable repair ship. John was buried in Nova Scotia, Canada in May 1912. He left behind a loving fiancé who Yvonne discovered was pregnant with his child, although it isn’t known whether or not he knew this. “Finding out about John’s child was a complete surprise,” says Yvonne. “Because they weren’t married it was very hard to trace all the details but I felt it was so important to complete the picture. Eventually my efforts paid off and I received a letter from John’s grandson – his mother was John’s daughter; it was a wonderful moment for me, finding my cousin.” Through her book Yvonne tells the story of her great uncle in a true and sometimes emotional account of his life – Yvonne was keen for the story to be accurate and factual, rather than romanticising the disaster of the Titanic. As interest in the ship and its fate intensifies in the build up to the centenary anniversary Yvonne has been busy working on television projects including a filmed travelogue of her first visit to John’s grave in Canada. KL RMS Titanic: The First Violin is published by Stenlake Publishing Ltd and is a follow-up to Yvonne’s debut book RMS Titanic: Dinner is Served which features her own adapted recipes of those prepared by the liner’s head chef Pierre Rousseau. For more information on Yvonne Hume and her books visit

KLmagazine September 2011

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KLmagazine September 2011

Books THE MAGIC OF REALITY Richard Dawkins Dawkins is already our pop scientist national treasure and here, with glorious illustrations by Dave McKean, he detonates a wealth of overwhelmingly interesting questions to which we’ve all sought answers along the way. Tsunamis and shooting stars, sneezing giants and ravishing rainbows: they all begin with ‘Why?’

David Learner Adventure real and fictional, past and present in this month’s recommended new books... BILLY CONNOLLY’S ROUTE 66 Billy Connolly It could be called Curling Up with Connolly. Our dreams of the wind in our hair as we race the Harley along the American fantasy that’s Route 66 become a journey through the States that’s Chicago compelling and Badlands beautiful. A wonderful literary trip from Billy to bed.

SOLDIERS Richard Holmes It’s sad to relate that the publication of this endearing book by our foremost authority on the British soldier will be a posthumous one. Nobody’s come closer to the historical heart of the soldier than Holmes, leaning over the garden wall on his way to the pearly gates to tell us all why his passion, and therefore ours, is so strong.

CITADEL Kate Mosse After the blitz of Labyrinth and the spook of Sepulchre comes Citadel. Mosse’s fans have waited tongues alolling for this, her sixth novel, and will not be disappointed. The fervour and courage of the Maquis, the French resistance against Nazi occupation of France, are brought thrillingly to life by the brilliant Mosse. A SHORT HISTORY OF ENGLAND Simon Jenkins Come along, come along, Battle of Catterick…when?! Simon Jenkins makes history readable, round and roistering and this is one for the shelves, for autumn nights, for the love of learning and to settle once and for all those chaotic dates and events that have slipped past you with the darkness of a black cat in a coal cellar at midnight.

IS THAT A FISH IN YOUR EAR? David Bellos Ever considered that ‘sagesse normande’ translates as ‘Norman Wisdom’? Why did Latin rule the world? Is it possible to tell a knock knock joke in Swahili? For philologists everywhere (and I bet you’re one if you’re reading this article) then delve deep here to find out why the Babel Fish may after all exist.

KLmagazine September 2011




At 4pm, tucked amongst the travel section, you’ll find a welcoming cup of tea and some fascinating chat about When God was a Rabbit, the wonderful debut novel by Sarah Winman that’s had reviewers whipping out their finest superlatives. Join us for yet another lively book group meeting.


At 11am, we’ll be welcoming Liza Goddard, one of Britain’s best-known actresses to sign copies of her autobiography – Working with Children and Animals. It’s an absorbing and tearjerking story of love, loss and the smack of stardom all rolled into one lovely person. Be there if you can.

David Learner is Assistant Manager for Waterstone’s at 137 Norfolk Street, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE30 1AU Telephone: 01553 660111



ABOVE: Aldeburgh Fishermen by Tessa Newcomb, one of the area’s most accomplished artists

Tessa’s lifelong love for art... Charlotte Thorneycroft talks to local artist Tessa Newcomb, who’s created beautiful and striking images of East Anglia for over 30 years...


ith her enchanting depictions of coast and countryside across East Anglia, Tessa Newcomb’s painting are often (and quite wrongly) thought of as works of fantasy. In reality, each of her charming pictures is created from her own drawings of the moments and places she has captured in real life. “The softness and amiable characteristics of my paintings could well be described as ‘dreamlike’ images,” says Tessa. “They’re my own visions of the general happenings and incidents within a landscape – the same things which often


get overlooked in life as they do in art.” Tessa was born in Suffolk, the daughter of self-taught accomplished artist Mary Newcomb, famous for her paintings of rural life which have often been referred to as poetic works of art. “I think it’s inevitable for any child with a parent who works from home to pick up on their work and form an interest from an early age,” says Tessa. “For me, working on my mother’s offcuts and watching her was like an apprenticeship into art.” In the early seventies Tessa studied at the Norwich School of Art, gaining an Honours degree from Bath Academy of Art in 1976. Following this she studied printmaking for

a year at the Wimbledon School of Art. Now, having exhibited extensively since 1977 locally, in London and abroad, Tessa has developed a loyal following of collectors. Her works can be seen in public collections at the Bradford Metropolitan Museum, the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester and Chelsea and the Westminster Hospital Collection, London. Passionate about East Anglia (having been born and bred in the Waveney Valley) Tessa regularly stays in Brancaster to enjoy one of her favourite sources of inspiration – the North Norfolk coast. There have been many other places that have stimulated Tessa’s brush work

KLmagazine September 2011

including Venice and Cornwall, but the unhurried Norfolk way of life is one she portrays in such a pleasing way that everyone can relate to. “My pictures focus on ordinary life, which is why they appeal to ordinary people. They tell stories without hidden meanings, and the slight hints of motion within them such as the little dog or man on a bicycle [which have become notable features in Tessa’s work] give them a sense of animation.” Like the houses in her pictures, pretty fishing boats are characters in the paintings rather than objects, each with its own story to tell. Like an unfolding tale, all of Tessa’s paintings have something more to give the viewer, by using their own imagination and looking deeper into the image. For every picture, Tessa chooses to work with oil on board as her preferred media although the picture is never started from a blank white surface. Before painting, Tessa picks the colours she feels are right for the painting and covers the surface of the board to give a colourful background which stimulates her imagination – in the same way a writer pens the important first sentence of a chapter. With one book already available on her work (The Art of Tessa Newcomb by Phillip Vann), Tessa is currently working on another book coinciding with her partner’s passion – the allotment. The People’s Plot will be published by Sansom & Co next spring and will explore the love people have for their allotments and will feature recent paintings Tessa has worked on at the allotments. KL Represented by Lena Boyle Fine Art, Tessa’s paintings can be viewed online at, and you can also see a selection at the Crane Kalman Gallery, London by visiting the website at

KLmagazine September 2011

ABOVE: A detail from Tessa Newcomb’s charming Thistles and Sorrel, a painting typical of her work, and Dog in the Rain (above left) a more abstract treatment of one of Tessa’s trademark subjects


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KLmagazine September 2011

Taking a load off your mind – and your hands! Take a fresh look at your laundry needs with the professional team at Clock Wash and Clock Clean in Gaywood...


normous holiday washes and broken machines may often have us heading for the helping hand of a laundrette, but imagine how easier life could be if every week your daunting heaps of dirty laundry were transformed into piles of pressed, clean clothes. Clock Wash Laundrette and Clock Clean in Gaywood offer exactly that – providing full service wash facilities and ironing (if required) for an affordable price, returning you something money simply can’t buy – plenty of time. Now you can wash and dry those big loads economically and quickly – especially when compared with doing it at home. “As more people are working longer hours, they’re finding there just isn’t the time to keep up on household chores,” says owner Andrew Stevenson. “It’s amazing how much time you have for other things when you cut the endless loads of washing and ironing from the ‘to do’ list!” In the dry cleaning side of the company, suits, curtains and delicates are all provided for, matched by a large number of wedding dresses for which the company offers a special service. As well as having your most treasured garment cleaned, Clock Clean can offer a ‘boxing’ service to elegantly pack your wedding dress, preserving it in a speciallydesigned storage box. All three businesses – the laundrette, the dry cleaners and steam laundry – can take any garment and give it the individual treatment and care it requires. At Steam Laundry site on the Hardwick

KLmagazine September 2011

Narrows Industrial Estate, the giant machinery of the laundry world caters for extra-large loads, meaning even mattress toppers and king-size duvets aren’t a problem. This site also manages another unique facility provided by Andrew’s team – the holiday let laundry service. “Supplying fresh linen and towels to guests is essential to any holiday let business,” he says, “but the workload involved with this can be very timeconsuming, particularly if there are large numbers of duvet covers and sheets that need ironing. At Steam Laundry we have equipment specifically for this purpose to ensure an efficient turnaround. Many of these customers also bring us their chair covers and curtains to freshen their let before the season begins.” As a local business established for over 20 years in the town, Clock Wash provides essential services to the people and businesses of King’s Lynn and the surrounding area. One of the highlights of the 20 years was when Andrew and Lesley and their staff were invited to the Queen’s Jubilee Garden Party in 2003, an honour in recognition of the dry cleaning work they’ve undertaken over the years for Sandringham House. Andrew puts their reputation for top quality and reliability down to the dedicated team of staff who are both fully trained and passionate about the work they do. Take a fresh look at your laundry needs and try the squeaky clean services of Clock Wash today.

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KLmagazine September 2011

ABOVE: England’s World Champion Alan Scothorne fishing on Ten Mile Bank

Peace and quiet – and hard-edged competition... It’s one of the most popular sports in the country, and there’s no better place to get started than West Norfolk. Charlotte Thorneycroft meets Darren Reed of the King’s Lynn Angling Association...


ishing is one of the most popular participation sports in the UK with more than three million estimated regular anglers. Under the wideranging umbrella of angling are different types of fishing including sea, coarse and game – which are then categorised between participants who compete in matches and those who fish purely for pleasure. Because fishing isn’t typically classed as a spectator sport it unfortunately doesn’t get the coverage in the media and on our screens it perhaps deserves. For this reason it’ll probably come as a surprise to those not in the angling community to learn that England have some of the world’s top anglers, regularly winning competitions around the world. In 2010 England won gold for coarse

KLmagazine September 2011

fishing in the World Fishing Championships in Spain, yet there still isn’t the level of funding put into competitive fishing in the same way other, more widely-covered sports receive assistance. Local angling associations up and down the country are the backbone of the sport’s development, investing in their waters and running events to encourage a wider take up of fishing. Here in West Norfolk we’re lucky enough to have an extremely pro-active club which is managed by a team of anglers passionate about their sport and helping young people get involved – the King’s Lynn Angling Association. Established way back in 1881, the club has grown from providing stocked trout fishing in the Nar and Gaywood rivers (as was eagerly sought by the gentry of the

time) to owning no less than 35 acres of freehold fisheries and leases on a number of further fisheries right across West Norfolk. Darren Reed from King’s Lynn Angling Association (KLAA) believes the variety of water offered by the club provides excellent opportunities for established and new anglers alike. “Because we have still water, river and Fenland drain fisheries, there’s always something new to try – whatever the level of angling knowledge,” says Darren. “Because of the area we’re in, with easy access to sea fishing hot spots too, we have a large number of visitors and holidaymakers who come to the area to fish, so it’s important that as an association we cater for these anglers too.” Membership of KLAA is open to anyone,


The ones that didn’t get away...

PROUD MOMENTS: King’s Lynn Angling Association members Ashley Brown (left) with a tench from the river, Mark Smith (centre) with a 9lb bream from the Cut off Channel and Martin Chandler (right) with a 12lb 8oz pike from the middle level

and at present the member base – which numbers over 1,000 – is a mix of both locals and those from outside the West Norfolk area. For this reason, full details of all of the fisheries under management of the association are on the KLAA website. “There are precise location maps online which tell anglers the basics of car parking, restrictions and access,” says Darren. “The site also tells them the information they need to get the best from their trip, like what they can expect to catch and what baits to use – they can even zoom in to see the pegs before they arrive!” With promoting fishing at the heart of the club, the KLAA are proud of the support and coaching they’re able to offer to juniors. Throughout the year, qualified club coaches Darren Reed and Bill Morris hold regular sessions for youngsters wanting to learn more about the sport. Whether they’ve fished before or not, training for the youngsters starts from the very beginning. “When you’re around water, health and safety is a really important issue and it is something we address with the kids before the fun bit starts!” Darren explains. “Coaching covers every aspect from how to behave around the lake to fish welfare. Most people are surprised how much there is to learn when it comes to angling, depending on how advanced you want to get. Starting with the simple things like tying a hook and mixing ground bait stand our youngsters in good stead to be successful, independent anglers.” If you hadn’t ever thought of fishing as an adrenalin sport then


match fishing will most certainly change your mind. The thrill of the chase as a fish hooks itself on the line is instantly multiplied when a competitive element is added to the mix. Four to five hour matches are held throughout the year on KLAA waters and but bringing home the silverware for the club at national level is the junior match squad. Over the past five years the team of youngsters have enjoyed regular success, many moving up the ranks from Darren and Bill’s coaching sessions. But coaching isn’t just for the young ones – KLAA recognises there are many adults who have ‘skipped’ the angling generation as lifestyles become busier. As the team behind the association have varying fishing interests they’re able to offer coaching in coarse, sea and even trout angling. They’re happy to teach the varying methods of particular types of fishing – for instance, showing

those who have only ever used a rod the benefits of pole fishing. The coaching is adapted to what’s required by the anglers who participate. “It’s all about getting people interested in fishing again,” says Darren. “Unlike other activities like popping to the gym for an hour, fishing takes time and patience which is ultimately why it’s so relaxing. However, it can also be very exciting and that’s what King’s Lynn Angling Association want to show anyone who hasn’t given it a go.” If you like the thought of sitting by a tranquil lake in the heart of the Norfolk countryside, surrounded by natural beauty then why not give fishing a try? To get started Darren advises new anglers to have a go with a whip – but it’s not what you think. As a less complicated option to the (easy to tangle) rod and reel combination, the whip is much like a small, basic pole. Together with a readymade rig (the bit to catch them on!) this shouldn’t cost more than £10 from any tackle shop. Half a pint of maggots and some bread will get the fish biting and a landing net will help you get your catch on the bank. In local waters you can expect to catch carp, bream, roach, rudd and tench – to name but a few. Then all you need is a licence. “Never fish without a valid rod licence,” says Darren, “and always follow the rules set out by the fishery. Fishing is great fun and you can easily get hooked!” If you are interested in becoming a member of King’s Lynn Angling Association visit for full details. KL

KLmagazine September 2011

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KLmagazine September 2011

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KLmagazine September 2011



This atmospheric photograph of the King’s Lynn Customs House was sent to us by KL magazine reader THOMAS DICK who took a series of pictures of the town and night and felt this one really stood out – and we’re sure you’ll agree!

The win that got away... Michael Middleton’s column last month about the people who won £161 million on the Lottery made me laugh, but it did bring back some rather bittersweet memories. About four years ago, I bought a scratchcard on my way out of the supermarket after I’d done my shopping and found I’d won £1,000. As you can guess, I was really excited and I rushed back to my car to get my mobile to call my husband. I quickly put the shopping in the back of the car, got my mobile, told my husband the good news and then went back to the supermarket to find out how to cash in the scratchcard – but I couldn’t find it! The scratchcard never did turn up, even though we looked everywhere we could think of. People don’t know what to say when I tell them the story – but I always tell them you never miss what you never have! MARGARET SIMON E–mail CONTACT US: We’d love to hear from you! Send your letters and photos KL magazine, 18 Tuesday Market Place, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE30 1JW or e-mail

KLmagazine September 2011


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Michael Middleton’s



f the countless government departments it’s been my pleasure to deal with over the years, I’ve never had any close enounters with DI55. In fact, until last month I’d never even heard of it. It’s actually the part of the Ministry of Defence charged with investigating UFO reports. In other words, DI55 is the country’s first line of defence against hordes of alien invaders. Last month the government released the official files of DI55 covering the last 25 years of UFO-related documents, investigations, drawings, letters, photographs and parliamentary questions – about 8,600 pages worth. Even better, they were made freely available (for a month only) from the National Archives. In an interest to discover whether the truth was out there, and whether King’s Lynn has ever come under interstellar scrutiny, I obtained the files containing all the references for UFO-related activity in Norfolk. The two files amounted to a hefty 796 pages, but sadly only three of them had anything to do with Norfolk. One was a photocopy of a page from the Mail on Sunday for February 20th, 1994 reporting on a video shot by three men from Dagenham who’d been fishing on Rollesby Broad when they saw a “bright light a long way away in the sky” – and promptly grabbed the camcorder. The second page in the file is the official memo explaining that DI55 had been contacted by the Mail on Sunday asking for an official comment on the video before publication. The official response was that the department was aware of the video, had taken an initial look at it, and that no obvious explanation had sprung to mind.


By the time the newspaper was printed about a week later, someone had noted the rather obvious (some would say glaring) similarities between the diamond-shaped object in the video and the diamondshaped iris of the camcorder itself. The remaining page in the files with any Norfolk interest is an e-mail received by the MoD in 2006 from a woman in Norwich. Enclosing two photographs, the woman admitted that “the crafts were invisible” at the time she took the pictures and that she was “directed” where to point the camera – which possibly wasn’t the most promising way start to her account. It seems this woman had interacted with the craft and their occupants since she was four years old. At a time when she was married to “a man in the military” she woke up to find she’d undergone some sort of extra-terrestrial surgical procedure overnight and had “lost a little bit of DNA.” Happily, she recounted that she suffered “no real harm and no long-term psychological damage” – although she did develop a sixth sense of when the craft were above her. Well, that’s Norwich for you. The MOD’s rather droll response was that “there is no corroborating evidence to suggest the UK’s airspace has been breached by unauthorised aircraft.” And that’s it for Norfolk’s UFO experiences, I’m afraid. No strange lights in the sky over Snettisham, no flying saucers landing just outside Heacham, and nobody from Gaywood being abducted by aliens. Oh, to live in East Dulwich. It was there that a mother

and daughter witnessed a “worm-shaped” UFO wriggling around the skies over southeast London in 2003 and reported it to the local police. In their testimony to the MoD, the woman reported that the attending officers were accompanied by two men in “space suits and dark glasses who called themselves Mork and Mindy.” There was initially some concern among a few officials at the MoD about the release of all these files, because they reveal the amazing fact that despite the thousands of reports they’ve received since the Second World War about UFOs, they’ve never done any study or spent any significant amounts of money or time on the subject. The MOD was concerned people just wouldn’t believe it when they found out. Well I’ve found out, and I believe it. In fact, if I’d discovered the governement had spent a fortune investigating invisible spacecraft and people impersonating characters from supid 1980s comedy shows I wouldn’t be very happy at all. The truth really is out there now. Trouble is, it’s not half as good as Mulder and Scully thought it was.

KLmagazine September 2011

September 2011  

The September 2011 issue of KL Magazine

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