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Heritage Open Days returns to Lowestoft

5 September 2023

The hugely popular Lowestoft Heritage Open Days Festival returns this Friday, 8 September with ten days of free to enjoy activities celebrating our towns rich history and culture.

Once again, Lowestoft joins the nationwide celebration with a host of events specially curated for the festival with talks, walks, exhibitions, recitals, and rare opportunities to view behind the scenes at some of the area’s most iconic buildings. The opening of this years festival coincides with the opening of a new independent archive facility for the town, housed in the Grit Arts Centre on Old Nelson Street, with public tours available from Saturday.

On Saturday, 9 September, a free Heritage Bus Service will connect activities across Lowestoft and Oulton Broad calling at locations including Lowestoft Railway Station, Nicholas Everett Park in Oulton Broad, Whapload Road, Gordon Road and London Road South operated by the East Anglia Transport Museum in Carlton Colville which, with its working trams, trains and trolleybuses will also be opening free of charge to all for the day.

Other activities during the opening weekend include an 1880s Festival in the High Street / Triangle Market, Seafest 23 – a showcase of fish and seafood with live music and stalls at Sam’s Cold Store on Haddenham Rd, an exhibition featuring the former Lowestoft to Yarmouth Railway and tours of the historic swing bridge at Somerleyton.

As part of the festival several churches are opening their doors to visitors including the 500year old Parish church of St Margarets, Pakefield Church, Our Lady Star of the Sea in Gordon Road which will  enable the public to climb its tower and enjoy some spectacular views, North Lowestoft United Reform Church, St Nicholas Church and Christ Church, once at the very heart of the Beach Village which has served the town since 1869.

The festival brings a host of free to enjoy activities including opportunities to see artists at work, learn more about the towns famous composers, authors and artists, the manufacture of Lowestoft Porcelain, visit several of the town’s museums, a pop-up art gallery and five free music recitals.

The St John Ambulance Heritage Centre on Oxford Road will open its doors on Sat 9 and throughout the festival, a host of Old Lowestoft photographs from the Bert Collyer collection will be available to view at the Lowestoft Museum. Amateur Dramatic Society, the Lowestoft Players are opening their theatre housed within the former Sailors and Fisherman’s Bethel on Sept 16 and the neighbouring Marina Theatre are hosting tours and workshops on Sat 17.

Walks and talks include a tour of the nearby village of Corton with acclaimed historian David Butcher, the towns former Hanging Garden’s near the High Street, a chance to see and hear how the railway station narrowly survived destruction during two world wars, an update from the Lowestoft Central Project on their efforts to rejuvenate Lowestoft station, a workshop on tracing family histories and a fascinating tour giving a rare insight into the history and current operations of the Port of Lowestoft.

Exhibitions include railway photography, Corton and its connections to Colman’s Mustard, the history of some of Kirkley’s streets, famous local authors, composers and artists, fishermen’s Ganseys and the town’s maritime heritage.

Once again, the Lowestoft Festival is presenting more events than any town in Suffolk and the Festival Information Hub will be open throughout at the Tourist information Office at the railway station.

Martin Halliday, newly appointed Chair of the Lowestoft Heritage Open Days Festival steering group said; “We are thrilled to be launching this year’s festival, a unique celebration of our town’s heritage with all events free for the public to enjoy. We are hugely grateful to the many organisations and individuals that are enabling access to some of the town’s most iconic buildings or sharing some unique elements of our history including Network Rail for their Somerleyton Swing Bridge tours, the Lowestoft Central Project and Wherry Lines Community Rail Partnership for their sponsorship and hosting of the Festival Information Hub, many of the town’s historians and museums, especially the East Anglia Transport Museum who are operating the free Heritage Bus Service on Sat 9, connecting many of the festival locations and activities as well as opening their museum free of charge on the same day.”

To view all the free activities taking place as part of this year’s Heritage Open Days Festival, please go to www.heritageopendays.org.uk and search Lowestoft. For those unable to access online information, a free twelve-page printed listing guide has been produced and is available to collect from the Festival Information Hub at the railway station.

Read more on Heritage Open Days returns to Lowestoft

Volunteers needed for Poppy Appeal

14 August 2023

One of the UK's most well known charities is the Poppy Appeal.

The Royal British Legion Lowestoft Branch are looking for volunteers to help with this years appeal.
The volunteers who help the charity are the lifeblood of the Poppy Appeal. Without them, they would not be able to collect those vital donations to provide essential support services for our Armed Forces Community.

So, if you can spare a little time to help - contact Phil Turner, who is the Lowestoft Poppy Appeal Organiser on 07715 673920

Poppy Appeal

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Works start at Denes Oval Tennis Courts

14 August 2023

Denes Oval Tennis Courts are currently scheduled to be closed until Friday 25th August. The courts are undergoing intensive cleaning and repainting work. These improvements are just part of the Town Council’s continued commitment to free to access sports facilities.
We thank you for your understanding whilst these works are completed. Of course, other free to access tennis courts can also be found at Kensington Gardens and Normanston Park.
Photo of Denes Oval Tennis Courts
Photo credit - Lowestoft Town Tennis Club

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Black History Month Competition returns for 2023

31 July 2023

Creative Writing & Visual Arts Competition 2023

BHM1Lowestoft Town Council are delighted to once again be marking Black History Month.  For 2023, we are building on our regular writing competition with the introduction of a visual arts competition.  The introduction of this competition gives another opportunity for young people in and around Lowestoft to enter and celebrate inspirational BAME people.


The theme for both competitions is “inspired and proud”.  This theme encourages participants to think about the people who inspire them and make them proud.

Age categories:

The two competitions will also share the same age brackets:

  • up to and including year 2;
  • Years 3 – 6;
  • Years 7 – 11;
  • Years 12 – 13.

Participants are welcome to enter both the writing and arts competitions.

BHM23 VP1Creative Writing Competition:

For our creative writing, our judges are welcoming entries across a range of writing formats – from poetry to dramatic monologues and short stories (anything that shows off your creative writing skills!).  Your entry could be inspired by a real person or include fictional characters.  Maybe you want to write a monologue for Martin Luther King before his iconic “I have a dream” speech, maybe you’d like to write a short story about your own made-up character, or maybe you’d like to write a poem about Lewis Hamilton – the choice is yours!

Our judges will be scoring your work based on creativity, originality and how well your piece is written.




BHM23 VP2Visual Arts Competition:

New for 2023 is our Visual Arts Competition.  For this, we are welcoming any art entry.  It could be a collage, sculpture, drawing, painting, graphic design – the more creative, the better!  Your entry could depict a real person or be inspired by a BAME artist.  Maybe you could do a collage that represents Rosa Parks, be inspired by the clay sculptures of Augusta Savage or the silhouette work of Kara Walker.

In this competition, our judges will be looking at your interpretation of the theme, how creatively you’ve used your chosen art medium, and the quality of the art/artistic skills on display.



Application Deadlines:

The deadline for submissions is Friday 20th October.  Submissions should be submitted to admin@lowestofttowncouncil.gov.uk.  These can be in the form of a picture of the work.  Submissions should include the child’s name, age category and school (if applicable).

Prize Giving:

Prizes will be given to the winner of each competition’s age category.  Our judging panel will also award an overall prize for each competition alongside a prize to the winning school.  The award ceremony is currently scheduled for Friday 3rd November at 5pm (Venue TBC).  More details on this will be announced in the new academic year.


If you have any questions, please get in contact with us via admin@lowestofttowncouncil.gov.uk

Good luck to everyone and we look forward to seeing your amazing creative writing and artistic skills!


Terms and Conditions:

1. The competition is open to all children who either a) attend a school within the Lowestoft area or, b) live within the Lowestoft Town Council parish area.

2. The judging panel will be formed from a selection of Town Councillor and representatives of external bodies.

3. The judges' decision will be final.

4. The Town Council reserves the right not to consider any applications felt inappropriate or which do not meet the criteria set out above.

Read more on Black History Month Competition returns for 2023

Enjoy your PARKS this SUMMER

20 July 2023

With the Summer holidays upon us, Lowestoft Town Council will be highlighting the many things you can do in our parks for free over the summer - from enjoying our many play areas, to learning about the history of Lowestoft in the local museums.

Love Parks Week 2023Website LoveParks

Our Summer events start with #LoveParks Week, a national campaign organised by Keep Britain Tidy to celebrate the importance of our local spaces.  The campaign starts on Friday 28th July until Saturday 5th August.  Over the course of the week, we will be working with local organisations to put on some free events within our parks.  More details can be found on our Love Parks Events page.  The week will also include an online campaign, highlighting some of the features in our parks and how we can all look after and care for the them.

Play Areas20230307 130303

Lowestoft Town Council is very proud of its play areas within our parks as we continue to invest in them.  Recently, we have invested in the new "Alice in Wonderland" themed play area in Sparrows Nest, a "space-themed" play area in Rosedale Park and a "nature-themed" play area at Bentley Drive to name a few.  Each play area has its own unique theme and equipment to ensure that there is something for everyone to enjoy.

The play areas managed by Lowestoft Town Council are:

Britten Road | Bentley Drive | Clarke's Lane | Cotman Close | Gunton Community Park | Fen Park | Nightingale Road | Normanston Park |Pakefield Green | Rosedale Park | Sparrows Nest | St Margaret's Plain | Stoven Close | Thirlmere Walk | Whitton Green

Get interactive with historyNess App Image1

Lowestoft has a rich and diverse history and heritage which is celebrated throughout the town.

  • Get interactive with the history of The Ness with our FREE Ness app!
  • Visit the museums in Sparrows Nest - Lowestoft Maritime Museum, RNSPA Museum, War Memorial Museum(please check their websites for opening times and prices)
  • Discover the Lowestoft Porcelain Collection and more at Lowestoft Museum (in Oulton Broad).
  • Find out more about the diverse history of Lowestoft with the heritage plaque trail.

Keep activeSparrows Nest Bowls

Many of our parks have sports facilities that are provided for free and work on a "turn-up-and-play" basis.

  • Kensington Gardens - Tennis Courts, Bowls (bowls equipment is available from the Groundskeeper)Kensington Gardens Bowls club also run free bowls sessions on Wednesday evenings (from 6:30pm) and Sundays (10:00am)
  • Normanston Park - Tennis Courts, Outdoor Table Tennis
  • Denes Oval - Tennis Courts, Putting (equipment available from outside the pavilion).

Help us look after YOUR OPEN SPACES

You can do your part by:

  • Taking any litter home with you or putting it in the bins provided
  • Collecting and bagging all dog mess and placing it in any of the bins provided
  • Not fly-tipping
  • Joining our team of volunteer litter pickers


Read more on Enjoy your PARKS this SUMMER

Public survey on the future of the 'Drying Racks' at The Ness

12 July 2023

20230322 134851Lowestoft Town Council are asking the public on their opinion on the future of the 'Drying Racks' at The Ness.  The existing Drying Racks (which are replicas believed to have been erected in the 1950s of the originals) are suffering from serious rot and decay with repairs expected to be expensive due to the cost of timber and the large amount of wood needing replacing (over 50% according to a recent structural survey). Alternative suggestions for the Drying Racks include natural decay for wildlife and removal.

Members of the public are invited to fill out this short survey to establish public opinion on the future of the Drying Racks which will help inform any decisions made by Lowestoft Town Council.  The survey can either be completed by following this link or by completing the form below.

The deadline for submissions to the survey is Friday 4th August.  Submissions will then be collated and presented at the Parks and Open Spaces Sub-Committee meeting on 15th August.

Read more on Public survey on the future of the 'Drying Racks' at The Ness

New Management Committee formed for Gunton Estate Community Hall

12 July 2023

Gunton Hall SignIn April 2023, Gunton Estate Community Hall’s new Management Committee was formed at an inaugural meeting, facilitated by Lowestoft Town Council as landlords.

The Hall is central to many of the community events that take place in the local area and Lowestoft Town Council felt that the hall should be run by the community - for the community.  The Town Council was delighted with the interest shown by local residents and existing hall users in forming the new Management Committee.

The Management Committee and Lowestoft Town Council would like to thank the previous management committee of the hall for their hard work and dedication over the years in running the hall.

Speaking on the formation of the Management Committee, Louise Addy, Chair of the Gunton Estate Community Hall Management Committee said “Since our first meeting the management committee has worked tirelessly towards creating an environment that welcomes all hall users in the local community and increasing our awareness and within the surrounding areas.  We are in the process of having the hall redecorated and starting a community garden. We are having a Grand Reopening on Sunday 23rd July 10am – 2pm and welcome everyone to come along and see what is happening, the changes we have made, find out about all the activities in the hall, make suggestions and meet the committee.”


Read more on New Management Committee formed for Gunton Estate Community Hall

Arboriculture Contractors

16 June 2023

Lowestoft Town Council is looking to appoint approved arboriculture contractors for planned and reactive tree works in our parks and open spaces in Lowestoft.

All interested contractors should fill out an Approved Contractors Questionnaire and send all relevant documents to admin@lowestofttowncouncil.gov.uk.

For more information, please contact admin@lowestofttowncouncil.gov.uk.

Read more on Arboriculture Contractors

Bulky Waste Collection Tender

16 June 2023

Contract Opportunity - Collection and Disposal of Bulky Waste

Lowestoft Town Council will soon begin a trial of a scheme to help households in Lowestoft by offering a free to access collection and disposal of bulky waste items such as sofas, fridges, wardrobes and play equipment where such households may struggle with the charges ordinarily made for such a service.

The scheme is part of the Town Council’s aim to decrease fly-tipping and restore pride in the town.

If you have the equipment, necessary licences and are interested in submitting a tender for this works, please read the Tender Document and complete the Approved Contractors Questionnaire.  These should then be submitted, alongside your quotation and all relevant documents to admin@lowestofttowncouncil.gov.uk.

The deadline for submitting documents is 10th July 2023 (please note new deadline extension).

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Be a part of the Climate and Ecological Emergency Committee

15 June 2023

Climate Committee non councillor

With the new Committee memberships agreed at the recent Annual General Meeting for Lowestoft Town Council, we are opening up an opportunity for a member of the public to join our Climate and Ecological Emergency Committee as non-councillor members.

Currently, there are two non-councillor members on this committee with the committee members looking to expand this to three.  Our existing non-councillor members have already contributed positively to this committee, championing initiatives such as the Earth Protector Town Declaration.

With climate awareness ever increasing and the impact of humanity's actions becoming evermore apparent (especially after the recent report on global warming set to break the key 1.5C mark for the first time), the importance of local action and campaigning has never been more important.

By being a non-councillor member of the Climate and Ecological Emergency Committee, you will play an active role in promoting and supporting environmentally-friendly initiatives in the Town, helping the Town Council meet and exceed its Climate pledges and helping to action our recent Earth Protector Town Declaration.

If you are someone who is passionate about the environment and local action, expressions of interest including reasons why the role interests you should be submitted to us at admin@lowestofttowncouncil.gov.uk.  The full Terms of Reference for the Committee are available to view on our website.

Expressions of interest are welcomed by Friday 7th July ready for discussion at the Committee’s meeting on Monday 17th July.

Read more on Be a part of the Climate and Ecological Emergency Committee