Sunny bank holiday boost for tourist hotspots around Norfolk and Suffolk
PUBLISHED: 19:55 28 August 2017 | UPDATED: 20:09 28 August 2017
Archant © 2017
Tourist attractions and beaches across Norfolk and Suffolk had a bumper bank holiday weekend thanks to clear sunny skies.
West Norfolk and Breckland saw many people flock to the coast, recreation sites and parks to enjoy the warm weather.
In Hunstanton the promenade was rammed with visitors looking to take advantage of the temperatures.
At the resort’s Sea Life Sanctuary the Asian short clawed otters, Yorkie, Twix and Smartie, were given an ice pool with nuts in to help cool and stimulate them.
Thetford Forest’s High Lodge woodland base had one of its busiest days of the year this weekend as families made the most of the bank holiday Monday hiring out the on-site barbecues.
Africa Alive in Kessingland enjoyed another busy August bank holiday weekend, with families paying a visit to its recently-born baby aardvarks.
Martin Dupee, director of operations at Zoological Society of East Anglia said: “Beautiful sunshine always brings people to the area and I am pleased they are coming to Africa Alive.”
Pleasurewood Hills made the best of the weather, particularly boosted by the arrival of the East Coast Trucker’s annual convoy.
Revellers also enjoyed annual events, with the Lowestoft Lion’s annual charity gala in Oulton Broad becoming so busy that the Nicholas Everitt car park was full to the brim all day.
Thomas Hoddy, general manager of Pensthorpe Natural Park near Fakenham, said: “We’ve had a fantastic bank holiday weekend. We’ve actually had three of our best days this summer for visitor numbers.”
Derek Orr, organiser of Mid-Norfolk Railway’s beer festival and steam weekend in Dereham, said: “It’s been really good, one of out biggest yet. I’d say numbers-wise we’re slightly up on last year.”
Nikki Jones, information assistant for the Broads Authority, which runs Whitlingham Country Park on the outskirts of Norwich, said: “It has been an incredibly busy weekend. Lots of people have been here enjoying a picnic and the cafe has been busy.
“There have been a lot of people walking around the broad and lots of people on boats and canoes.”
A member of staff at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden in South Walsham, said: “Our figures have been good for the weekend. Over 400 people came to attraction on Monday.”
Cooler temperatures expected
Temperatures this bank holiday Monday beat the average temperatures expected this time of year, according to top meteorologist.
But Chris Bell, a forecaster for Norwich-based Weatherquest, said the high temperatures and sunny skies will turn into lower temperatures and a few showers towards the end of the week on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Mr Bell said average temperatures across the region today reached 26C - they are normally around 22C.
The highest recorded temperature in Norfolk and Suffolk today was 26.8C at Santon Downham, near Thetford.
Last year, the average weather on August bank holiday Monday was 24C.
Mr Bell added the high temperatures were not unusual for this time of year.
“We can easily expect to reach 30C. We are in the middle of summer. We expect this type of warm spell.”