The Kingfisher at Walcott Not a lot happening in Cromer today Down to the promenade at Cromer On the Coast Hopper, heading towards Wells


As we boarded the 8:23am train to Cromer we were prepared for a day of sun, sea, and, searching. It felt good to be heading out of Norwich, but all was not right with the train. Why was there such an annoying buzzing sound coming from the doors in our carriage? We found out as we stopped at Wroxham station and was asked to leave the train as it had a faulty locking mechanism on one of the carriage doors. Oh dear, our journey had stopped a few miles from Norwich. This was not good as I had planned the trip with an almost miltary-like precision. There was only a certain amount of time at each location and this was going to throw the schedule off. Oh well, we just had to wait for the arranged transport to take us to our destination (which seemed to take forever). But evenually we were on our way again, only this time it was in the back of a cab with four other passengers. Was this a bad omen?

As it was we arrived in Cromer 45 minutes later than planned and this gave us just 30 minutes to explore before we had to move on. I had high hopes for Cromer as I knew of three arcades so we decided to spend more time in Cromer but sacrifice Wells to make up the time. The sun was hot and things were looking muich better after our little diversion but as we approached the sea-front, the cold coastal wind whipped up and sent a chill down my spine.

Cromer was dead, just a few people here and there, and it felt eerie as I had never seen Cromer so quiet. As we made our down onto the promenade we found that the first of the arcades was still closed. We moved onto the next one (I think it was called the 'Dunes'). It didn't take long to realise that it was following the common template of having the fruit machines and penny-pushers at the front with the video games at the back. We found a small selection but nothing to get excited by. They had Outrun 2 (2003), The Fast and the Furious (2004), Need for Speed Underground (2005), and, House of the Dead 3 (2002). Feeling a little disappointed, we made a hasty exit (with a suspicious look from a member of staff).

With two out of the three arcades being closed we decided we would cut our losses and head back to the train station. We had 15 minutes before the train left for Sheringham and this would put us back on track (no pun intended). I guess we had visited Cromer ten years too late to find anything decent.

It was a small journey to Sheringham, where we would be picking up the Coast Hopper bus to Wells. Although Sheringham was originally on the list of places to visit, we decided to drop it to ensure we had enough time to visit Wells and Hunstanton. I had done my 'research' regarding possible arcades in Sheringham and hadn't been particularly confident that we would find much. There was just 9 minutes before the bus turned up (I said it was precision planning) and we were heading along the coast road to Wells. I had made the journey many times over the years but never by bus and it made for some nice views (being higher up than in a car). I just have to say that anybody who thinks that Norfolk is flat should travel on the North Norfolk coast road, it snakes around several hills! Jops got chatting to a lady in front who recounted tales of wasting much money on a coin 'pusher' but was not a fan of the 'video' machines.

Wells was fast approaching and our hopes were high that 'Grays' wouldn't let us down.


Original article by Gary - May 2006 (revised June 2014)