Historic Lowestoft Scores set for revamp

Hayley MaceThe steep pathways running from Lowestoft High Street to the former beach village were once full of the sounds and smells of the port's booming fishing industry.Hayley Mace

The steep pathways running from Lowestoft High Street to the former beach village were once full of the sounds and smells of the port's booming fishing industry.

Now it is hoped that the history surrounding the Scores can be used to improve and preserve the area for future generations.

The narrow lanes leading up to the High Street are still used as walkways and roads and Waveney District Council is undertaking a project to comprehensively map, research and tidy the area.

Once each of the eleven Scores has been mapped, its historic ownership will be researched to check boundaries so that any issues with safety of the walls and buildings or environmental issues can be addressed with the landowners.

The council's deputy leader Colin Law said: 'The Scores are an important part of our local heritage and work must be carried out to improve them. We need them returned to a high standard we can all be proud of, and to promote their historical significance to residents and visitors alike.

'It is important that we work with local residents, businesses, councillors and heritage organisations towards a common goal.'

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He added: 'A public consultation event will be held this summer once enough data has been collected and this will give interested parties the opportunity to get involved, comment and held create a focus group to lead the direction of the project.'

Meanwhile, proposals are also in hand to transform the historic area known as Arnold's Bequest to the south of the Scores.

The area, between the High Street and Whapload Road, is named after the family who lived in the largest house in the town during the reign of Elizabeth I and left the piece of land for the use of the townspeople.

A project has now started to re-establish full public access to the area and to provide information points telling of its historical importance. Suffolk Wildlife Trust has also identified wildlife habitats in the area that could be enhanced as part of the project.

Anyone with an interest in the Arnold's Bequest land can meet the Friends of North Lowestoft Parks and share ideas at Sparrow's Nest gardens on Monday between 12pm and 2pm.

Anyone who would like more information about the proposals to improve the Scores, or who like to be involved, can contact Chris Ames on 01502 523391 or email chris.ames@waveney.gov.uk.

There are eleven Scores in Lowestoft: The Ravine, which runs next to Belle Vue Park, is crossed by a Victorian footbridge. Next is Cart Score, then Lighthouse Score and Mariners Score, where Oliver Cromwell once stayed. Crown Score has brick and pebble walls, and Martin's Score was once visited by the preacher John Wesley. Rant Score is next, followed by Wilde Score, home to the Heritage Workshop Centre, then Maltsters, Spurgeon and Herring Fishery Score leading towards the top of London Road North.

Two other original scores are no longer visible: Frost's Alley Score is covered by the modern police station, and The Score, which ran from the back of the Arnold's House to Whapload Road, was only ever used in emergencies.

The origin of the name Score is thought to have come from the Old English 'scora', meaning to cut a line.

The Scores Heritage Trail is a free self-guided tour of the area, marked out by red herring-shaped signs.

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