Sunday 8th September 2019 – Greenbuild and a Frog

Yesterday we went to Greenbuild at Felbrigg Hall. This is an annual event and a good source of finding out more eco-friendly ways of heating your home etc. In addition there are the District Council displays and craft and food marquees. We spent most of the time talking to District Council staff and officers about matters which are of particular interest to us.

Firstly, we learnt a bit more about the Deep History information point in Overstrand, which, as mentioned before, has not been officially opened due to illness. We should be informed directly when the opening will take place and were asked if we would consider becoming ambassadors for Overstrand’s information point. Today we saw that the concreted areas, which fill with rain, have been levelled with a surface of small stones, bring completion one step further.

On another display there was a map where, using self-adhesive spots, people could indicate areas in North Norfolk which they feel would benefit from more trees. Given the number we have lost down to gales and felling for property development, we had no hesitation in putting our spot on Overstrand.

We asked coastal engineer, Brian Farrow, about the current activity eastwards, along the beach. He told us contractors are repairing the revetments, introducing more concrete blocks and painting the beacons. He also talked about the Sidestrand slump and the sandscaping at Bacton. To expand further on these points:-

• Horizontal planks of wood on the revetments typically have a life of 15 years before they start to fail round the bolts. To save money, they are removed, the failing areas cut off and then re-fixed vertically. They are possibly not as effective as when horizontal but this process gives the revetments a further 15 years of life and means new long planks don’t have to be sourced from rain forests.

• The concrete blocks were provided free by Bacton Gas Terminal and will bolster those already in place.

• Painting the beacons at the end of the groynes is completed annually as required by Trinity House.

• Some work will be done on the Sidestrand slump which should help stabilise the area.

• As for the sandscaping, it came across as being a case of wait and see. Following the high tides and northerly winds over the past couple of days, some of the sand has already been moved off the beach but nobody knows whether this will return when the wind swings to the south (forecasted for Monday) or if it will be taken further down the coast towards Yarmouth. Brian Farrow was positive about the fact, that although the sandscaping may not be a permanent solution, it will provide for some years to come, protection from flooding for the villages of Bacton and Walcott.

We also spoke to representatives of the environment department but first we noted the two minute beach clean board missing this morning from Overstrand was on display. How do we know it was from Overstrand? It bears the scratches

from when it was blown over a couple of weeks ago. They were interested to hear about our daily litter picking, either round the village or on the beach, and asked if we had thought about becoming dog wardens. This is something we had no hesitation in declining, quite simply because we know residents who after asking dog owners, who have failed to clear up after their dog if they would do so have in return, received verbal abuse. It was then suggested, if we see an area where fouling is a regular occurrence, to report this so the Council can address this. Similarly, the Council would like to hear about fly tipping and littering hotspots.One of the frogs we have seen in our garden has found the new pond. Peter spotted it this morning while clearing some leaves which had blown onto the water’s surface. We spent most of the morning in the garden, observing the frog as it moved to various areas. If it wasn’t sat on the side, it was poking its head above the water. Its presence is most welcome and may account for the disappearance of most of the mosquito larvae.

Begonias (above and adjacent)

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