Heritage event celebrates town’s history
PUBLISHED: 10:10 20 June 2019 | UPDATED: 10:10 20 June 2019
The heritage and history of a town and the surrounding rural community has been celebrated at a special event.
The East Coast Heritage Day, held at the Lowestoft campus of East Coast College, brought together a range of voluntary sector organisations, charities, history groups and local museums to show the community that there is a wealth of information available about the rich heritage of Lowestoft - with people keen to preserve that history.
Co-organiser, with Janis Kirby and Neil Coleby, Lowestoft Town councillor Sue Barnard said: "The heritage of the maritime industry of Lowestoft was well represented with ex-fishermen members of the Lydia Eva and Mincarlo Charitable Trust displaying net repairing skills.
"Nowadays many people couldn't recognise a cod end or an otter board if they were shown one - so it is good to learn about these first hand.
"Continuing a seafaring theme, the Rogues Shanty Chorus entertained with renditions of rousing sea shanties."
Local historian Ivan Bunn also gave a fascinating talk on Sparrow's Nest Gardens.
Sue Barnard added: "The North Lowestoft Heritage Action Zone, which focuses on the High Street, was also represented.
"The Scores, thoroughfares from the Beach Village and the Denes up to the High Street, are distinctive to the town and something we can't afford to lose and also a part of our local history that we need to celebrate.
"The Scores Project has been concentrating on this."
Assistant principal for curriculum and quality at East Coast College, Rachel Bunn, said: "The college is delighted to host this event which is now in its second year.
"We have seen a range of different exhibitors and events going on. The public also had the chance to use the Lowestoft Bridge navigation simulator to steer a large vessel on Lake Lothing.
Next year the College intends to introduce an area showcasing the history of the College and education in the town.
Rachel Bunn added: "We had a lot of people in today who studied here many years ago and said they would be very interested in how the college has evolved, so this is something we will build in to the event next year.
"The first courses we ran were to do with the fishing industry; teaching seamen the skills they needed to crew a trawler and now we teach marine cadetships and offshore energy courses."
Stalls at the event included Blundeston Local History Group, Great Yarmouth Local History and Archaeology Society, the Jack Rose Old Lowestoft Society, Ipswich Medal Society, Lowestoft Archaeology and Local History Society, Royal Naval Patrol Service Museum, Saxmundham Museum, Lowestoft Maritime Museum, Lowestoft Museum, U3A, Suffolk Family History Group, The Ness, Excelsior Trust, Heritage Action Zone and St John Ambulance.
The event saw a steady flow of visitors throughout the day including Waveney MP Peter Aldous, who was particularly interested in the community event and Lowestoft's heritage.
Prior to the Heritage Day a number of residents from local care homes and sheltered housing in the town came into the college for a day of reminiscing. They saw two films about drifting and trawling from the maritime museum and local historian Bob Collis gave a talk on the aviation war 1939 - 1941.
They had an afternoon tea provided by the Hospitality students and then a ukulele group played as they joined in a sing-song.
East Coast College is at the heart of the community, and host many such events at the campus and also in support of local organisations and groups.
They are an important element of our students' study programmes, helping to develop their skills, knowledge and behaviours as well as building a sense of social responsibility.