1,000 people support the re-instatement of Hunstanton’s staffed TIC

1,000 people support the re-instatement of Hunstanton’s staffed TIC
From left Amanda Bosworth, Richard Bird and Carol Bower

Three former Town Mayors are united in their opposition to the closure of the staffed Tourist Information Centre in Hunstanton.

The decision to close Hunstanton’s staffed Tourist Information Centre (TIC) was made in June 2020 by a few members of Hunstanton Town Council (HTC) and the Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk (BCKLWN).

In July 2020 a small unstaffed Tourist Information Point (TIP) was opened with a collection of leaflets in the Coal Shed Gallery that is situated behind the camping shop in the car park. This angered traders, residents, visitors and the town’s Civic Society who called for the decision to be reversed and a staffed resource to be opened as there had been no consultation or communication with the local community – despite the fact that popular services were provided by the TIC.

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From left John Bridger, Amanda Boswoth and Yvonne Bridger at the TIP

The Town Council’s Annual Report for 2019/2020, posted online in May 2020 says: “Popular services have included the processing of parking permits for residents, businesses and visitors to the town, and ticket sales for local attractions. The excellent and knowledgeable staff ensure that local businesses are promoted by holding menus from local restaurants, and helping with accommodation bookings for providers registered with Visit West Norfolk. Leaflets are stocked for hundreds of local attractions as well as bus timetables and ‘Where to Go’ guides”.

Until recently Hunstanton TIC had been funded by the Borough Council that does continue to fund the tourism brief and a manned King’s Lynn TIC at the Old Gaol House.

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Richard Bird

Former Mayor, Independent Borough and County Councillor for Hunstanton Richard Bird said: “Hunstanton is the tourism jewel, not King’s Lynn, and it is ridiculous that funding should continue away from the obvious tourism hub.

“It is my opinion that the Town Council should have stood up to the Borough over this issue.”

Web socially distanced queue

A socially distanced queue formed to sign the petition

Hunstanton Civic Society launched a petition on the Green outside the former TIC on Saturday 5th September and there was a steady stream of people wishing to add their signatures to the cause.

Collecting signatures on the Green, Civic Society member Yvonne Bridger said: “The location of the facility isn’t the issue – it’s the staffing element that’s crucial.”

On Sunday 6th September, John Bridger reported: “We now have over 200 signatures online, many with comments attached.

“On the Green on Saturday we achieved 493 signatures, and we also have so far 322 signatures from customers of High Street Businesses.

“Altogether, we have over 1,000 supporters to date.”

The online petition remains open at: http://chng.it/J5SB2qXL

Photos: Ian Burt

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