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Minister enjoys visit to Seagull

PUBLISHED: 15:32 01 February 2008 | UPDATED: 19:37 05 July 2010

YOU'RE WELCOME: Government minister Harriet Harman and Waveney MP Bob Blizzard at the Seagull.

YOU'RE WELCOME: Government minister Harriet Harman and Waveney MP Bob Blizzard at the Seagull.

THE Seagull Theatre, at Pakefield, made an ideal venue when government minister Harriet Harman visited Lowestoft.

Ms Harman, Minister for Justice at the Department of Constitutional Affairs, visited Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth on Friday.

THE Seagull Theatre, at Pakefield, made an ideal venue when government minister Harriet Harman visited Lowestoft.

Ms Harman, Minister for Justice at the Department of Constitutional Affairs, visited Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth on Friday.

Waveney MP Bob Blizzard accompanied the minister on her visit and had no hesitation in booking the Seagull for an evening meeting with local Labour party councillors and supporters.

Mr Blizzard has been one of the driving forces behind the campaign to reopen the theatre and see it established as a community arts centre.

“Just over 100 people were present and the Seagull made an ideal venue,” he said.

Ms Harman enjoyed her visit to the recently revamped theatre that was saved from closure thanks to a generous loan from a benefactor and the hard work of volunteers.

Hazel Johnson, a member of the theatre's support group, took the chance to inform the minister that £275,000 was still needed to clear the loan on the theatre but so far there has been no response from Ms Harman or the government.

Ms Harman spoke about her past and present work on developing policy for families. Other topics included Iraq, nuclear weapons and the need for a cap on election spending.

She enjoyed meeting Labour members from the Lowestoft area and writing on her website blog Ms Harman described the event as “a stimulating and enjoyable Friday night” and wished all the Labour councillors in the area good luck for the local elections in May.

Ms Harman also commented how local unemployment has fallen from 11.5pc to 2.9pc since her last visit to the area in 1997.

Mr Blizzard also welcomed the latest figures that revealed unemployment levels in the Lowestoft and Beccles areas have been consistently below 3pc for the last three months. “This is really good news for the local area,” he said.

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