My Holidays in Great Yarmouth - Past and Present

Photos of Merrivale Model Village and Joyland

By Heidi Frost

Photo:Merrivale Model Village - 1975 - when I was 3

Merrivale Model Village - 1975 - when I was 3

Hazel Spriggs

Photo:Merrivale 1978 - when I was 6

Merrivale 1978 - when I was 6

Hazel Spriggs

Photo:Merrivale - 1982 - I was 10 in this photo

Merrivale - 1982 - I was 10 in this photo

Hazel Spriggs

Photo:Merrivale 2007 - here I am with my 3 year old daughter!

Merrivale 2007 - here I am with my 3 year old daughter!

Paul Frost

Photo:The snails at Joyland - I was about 9 in this photo (1981)

The snails at Joyland - I was about 9 in this photo (1981)

Hazel Spriggs

Photo:Some things never change - my daughter & I on The Snails in 2007

Some things never change - my daughter & I on The Snails in 2007

Paul Frost

This page was added by Heidi Frost on 01/05/2008.
Comments about this page

Hi Heidi,
I love your pictures and am very keen to get in touch with you about a feature I'm researching for a top women's glossy magazine about childhood holiday destinations. Could you possibly email me as soon as poss inc your tel no!
Many thanks, Emma

By Emma
On 12/05/2009

Thanks for pics HEIDI. I too love GT.YARMOUTH been there loads of times ,and i still get a BUZZ when ever i go ,lol. I think i should have been born there ,now 70 years old in july 2010. Been going there since I was about 12 0r 14 yrs old. Missed a few times ,but always gone back. PS I too remember South Denes, all things you mentioned,and more. TAKE CARE ,,Allen

On 14/06/2010

Loved these pictures, brings back memories of my child hood going on holiday in yarmouth. The snails at Joyland have been there for years. I have pictures of me about 5 years old on them. I am now taking my daugher and son on them next week to get a picture of them on the snails too. Who knows, maybe there kids will go on them too!!!....

By Julie Edwards
On 28/07/2010

Have recentley been on the snails with my granddaughter. Felt so funny to go back on as I always went on them with my sister in the fifties,then took my sons on in the seventies and eighties and now in 2010. Surprised I could still fit in with my daughter in law and the baby. Loved every minute of it. Brought back all the happy memories. Seemed like yesterday.

By sandra searle
On 29/09/2010

These pictures are fab :) I too am a return visitor to Great Yarmouth for many many years and now take my son. I love this site, very cool, thank you x

By Donna Horsley
On 15/10/2010

It is interesting to see that picture of the Model Village in 1982. I worked there tending the gardens then so cleanly cut grass and tidy flower bed was my work. I remember it being such hard work, the head gardener did not believe in any power tools whatsoever, so everything was done by hand. Before cutting each piece of grass I had to brush it in one direction with a broom to make it stand up, then cut it in the other direction with a push lawnmower. The results were very good, but in the heat of the summer I certainly earned my wages! The head gardener (I do wish I could remember his name) was a model maker who worked on some movies, including 2001: A Space Odyssey, where he made the big round head of the main space ship. He was responsible for the creation and upkeep of a lot of the models. I worked there for 2 years, and have so many memories and stories to tell about those times! One funny story was when a Heron bird found the big lake in the Model Village and started to eat the Koi Carp fish which were very big and valuable. The Heron would come at night and help himself to a good meal. We tried plastic Herons and other birds but they didn't work. In the end the owner gave the night security guard a gun and said please shoot the Heron before it completely cleans out the lake! Only thing was the night security guard was afraid of the dark and when the Heron landed it made him jump and he fired in to one of the model buildings practically destroying it. The Heron was unharmed and flew off, never to be seen again. Never a dull moment in those days!

By Barry Semple
On 15/03/2011

Great to see those pictures. Brings back so many happy memories of holidays we had in GY in the 70's and 80's. I now have two small children of my own and will be taking them to GY soon. Can't wait to go to the model village, I swear I used to see the little people move about when the adults were not looking. I have a question for anyone or everyone. There used to be an old WW2 sea mine, painted red, the type with the spikes on it. It was on the seafront somewhere. I went to GY for some work I had recently and walked up and down but could not find it anywhere. This featured a lot in our holidays as we would climb on it and have our photos taken. More than this though, it used to appear in a recurring dream I had as a child, every night, a happy dream I would add. Does anyone know where this may now be or if it has been relocated? I would love to find it. Thanks All.

By Ray Hill
On 30/04/2012

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