|Visitors talk to Broads Authority staff and members at the new workshop|
We held a very successful annual public meeting at our new workshop in Thorpe on Saturday combined with an open morning showcasing our work.
The event gave around 50 attendees the opportunity to talk to staff and members about the work of the Broads Authority with various stands in the workshop displaying recent projects and priorities.
Chief Executive Dr John Packman gave a presentation repeated over two very productive and positive sessions in the upstairs meeting room followed by questions and answers.
Each session ended with a round of applause and a comment at the end of the first, and busiest, was that it had been a “lovely” public meeting as it gave visitors the chance to find out about the sometimes little known work the Authority was undertaking.
Stands in the workshop itself focused on planning, invasive species management, the work of our ecologists, visitor centres and tourism and dredging and maintenance projects.
John’s presentations went into further detail about achievements over the past year including:
- The European funded Prisma project which re-used dredged material to restore an eroded spit on Salhouse Broad
- Work to improve access and interpretation at St Benet’s Abbey
- Taking over the responsibility of Breydon water with the help of the new patrol launch Spirit of Breydon
- The revamp of Great Yarmouth Yacht Station
- Management of invasive species
- The Love the Broads visitor giving scheme
- The How Hill scrape which has enhanced the habitat and resulted in a breeding pair of avocets
- Mud pumping at Heigham Sound
- The money-saving move to Yare House
- Various large scale planning decisions including the Pegasus development at Oulton Broad
- A new mud wherry and of course the opening of the workshop to undertake 25% more dredging and save £75,000 a year for reinvestment in other front line services.
A separate presentation was given on the significant work carried out so far on managing the river Chet.
Comments from the public included those relating to the Chet work, the tolls structure for unpowered boats, ongoing planning issues at Thorpe Island, canoe trails, moorings and the management of Breydon.
Many attendees also took up the opportunity to have a trip on the Spirit of Breydon.
The event followed the official opening of the workshop and the naming of the new mud wherry Iona the previous day, as reported in the Eastern Daily Press.