Amanda Bosworth, left, with Richard Bird and Carol Bower and below, people attending the petition launch. Pictures: Ian Burt

A petition calling for the reinstatement of a staffed Tourist Information Centre (TIC) in a seaside town has gained more than 1,000 signatures.

Visitors, business owners, second home owners and holidaymakers are among those who have signed since the Hunstanton Civic Society launched the petition on Saturday on the Upper Green.

“It was a busy day in town. If we had more volunteers, I think we would’ve tripled the signatures,” said the society’s chairman Amanda Bosworth.

“Overall it went really well and we have had a lot of support. When we arrived in the morning, we had people come up to us and ask where the Tourist Information Centre was, so it shows it’s a crucial service.”

Mrs Bosworth added she hoped the society could now present its findings to Elizabeth Nockolds, cabinet member for culture, heritage and health at West Norfolk Council.

After the TIC’s closure in March due to the pandemic, the borough council replaced it with an unmanned centre at the former railway Coal Shed in Le Strange Terrace.

But the civic society has criticised the decision, claiming a lack of consultation with the community and businesses, which rely on the tourism industry and are calling for the council to rethink.

Mrs Bosworth said: “People have said everything is online these days but Hunstanton is a traditional seaside town which isn’t geared up for it yet. 

“We have had no notice. Many of the town’s small businesses aren’t online.

“Recently, we have had lots of new people come to the town and at present, we do not have an information service which would make them want to come back here.”

Speaking recently, Mrs Nockolds said the council would continue to liaise with tourism businesses as the community heads towards recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, “with a view to assessing what sort of tourism support they need in the future”.