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'Aliens' invasion puzzles holidaymakers

PUBLISHED: 08:00 02 September 2010 | UPDATED: 09:50 16 September 2010

One of the 'aliens' in Great Yarmouth.

One of the 'aliens' in Great Yarmouth.

An "invasion" of little green men has been puzzling locals and holidaymakers all around the borough of Great Yarmouth.

Paddling in the waves at Gorleston beach, on a boat on the Broads, playing crazy golf at Pirates Cove, dressing up in the Elizabethan House museum.

An “invasion” of little green men has been puzzling locals and holidaymakers all around the borough of Great Yarmouth.

Paddling in the waves at Gorleston beach, on a boat on the Broads, playing crazy golf at Pirates Cove, dressing up in the Elizabethan House museum...even watching Yarmouth races where the startling sight was enough to confuse commentators.

But before the resort becomes the centre of a Roswell-style UFO intrigue, it must be revealed that the green-clad “aliens” are in fact professional actors who have been shooting a new television advert inviting people to “come alive in Great Yarmouth”.

The £12,000 advert, paid for by government funding to deprived areas, is being shot by Norwich production company The JMS Group whose producer Luke Witcomb came up with the striking concept.

He explained that the actors were wearing vivid green suits because it made it easy for them to be later digitally removed from the shots.

At the start of the 30 second advert, viewers will not see the actors at all, only their interraction with objects in the scene.

But as they “come alive” on their holiday, the actors - playing a family, a young couple and and older couple - gradually become visible.

During three days of filming, which ended yesterday, the actors have also visited the Pleasure Beach and Yesterday's World on Yarmouth seafront, the Wild Duck holiday park in Belton, and Waterside, the new restaurant and boating attraction at Rollesby.

Tourism marketing manager Kirsty Burn said: “For the past three seasons we have been running an advert across the Anglia region encouraging day trippers to come to the area.

“This advert will run during January and February in the Yorkshire and Central regions and is aimed at encouraging people to book seven and 14-day holidays.”

She said their intention was to build on the staycation phenomenon which started in last year's recession.

“So many people returned to holidaying in Britain last summer and discovered what they had been missing, and figures from Visit Britain suggest 80 to 90pc of them intend to take future holidays in the country as well,” she said.

The self-catering sector was reporting very good bookings this summer with Yarmouth's attractions also doing a healthy trade, museums in the town showing an 18pc increase in visitors from last season.

She said: “During filming, the reaction of the public has been amusing at times. Instead of looking out at the scenic broad, diners at the Waterside were craning their necks to see what was going on.”

Ms Burn said subject to funding it was hoped to use clips from the new advert in a summer campaign targeting day trippers.

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